Getting Better Sleep — Cool, Dark, And Lots of B6, Carbs, Calories, and Fat

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Chris Kresser and Paul Jaminet

recently posted some sleeping tips.  A lot of other great bloggers write about sleep too, like Mark Sisson, Robb Wolf, and Stephan Guyenet.  I think sleep is really important, and I've had a lot of sleeping problems in the past, some of which I still occasionally struggle with, so I'm going to follow suit and post the things that have helped me most.

Over a number of years, I've found that many things impact my ability to sleep, but from among these I can distill a handful of things I've found most critical:

  • A cool, dark room.
  • Light and phsyical activity upon waking.
  • Lots of carbs, calories, and fat.
  • Sufficient B6-rich foods.

I need to have close to total darkness in the room when I fall asleep, and a sleep mask helps to prevent any residual light from reaching my eyes.  A sleep mask does almost nothing if there's lots of light in the room, as light on the skin seems to have a lesser effect than light on the eyes, but a nevertheless very meaningful impact.

As my sleep has improved over the last two years, I've become less sensitive to light, perhaps because better sleep itself has begun normalizing my metabolic disturbances.  But by “less sensitive” I mean that I can tolerate residual light sneaking in around the edges of curtains.  I don't mean I can tolerate no curtains or a light being on in the hallway, either of which would keep me up all night.  I hope in the future my light tolerance continues to improve, as it makes no sense to me that humans are not designed to be able to tolerate at least the equivalent of moonlight and starlight.

In addition to being dark, the room also has to be cool.  I need a fan if the temperature gets much higher than 65F, and below 60F is ideal.


I have also found that waking up at a regular time and immediately exposing myself to lots of light and getting some modest activity helps a lot.  I believe this is probably because light and physical activity turn down melatonin synthesis.  By turning down melatonin effectively in the day time, melatonin will be able to carry out its functions most effectively at night.


Taking a brisk ten minute walk in the sunlight upon waking would probably do the trick, but if that's not practical I find that turning on all the lights in the house and doing some stretching or light calisthenics works quite well.

What I eat has a huge impact on my ability to fall asleep.

Chiefly among all food-related factors, I need enough calories.  If I go to bed hungry, I will not fall asleep.  If I go to bed slightly hungry I will probably enter some sort of limbo between sleeping and being awake for a couple hours, then suddenly wake up realizing I'm not even sure if I slept.  At that point, I'll have to eat something to fall asleep again.

I used to have a problem where I would have to eat immediately before bed to fall asleep even if I was not hungry, and would sometimes wake up in the middle of the night and have to eat again to fall back to sleep.  I read in Mastering Leptin many years ago that this is a sign of leptin resistance.  I eased into the recommendations of eating two to three meals per day without snacking, exercising after fasting for at least three hours, and never eating within three hours of going to bed, and I've never had that problem since.  Regardless of whether the biochemistry is right, the recommendations worked.

Still, I do need to eat a large enough dinner some three hours before bed time, so that I do not feel hungry.

It's not just how much I eat that matters, though.  It's also the quality of the food.  In particular, I find that getting enough fat and carbohydrate, and getting enough vitamin B6, which is easiest to get from animal foods, are most important.


Few things give me insomnia more reliably than a low-fat or low-carbohydrate diet.

In the case of fat, I think it's just a matter of satiety.  I can get full from a meal based just on meat or just on starch or just on fibrous veggies, but I won't stay full for long.  Back in my soy and canola oil days, these fats helped, but not that much.  Nowadays I use coconut oil, and it also helps, but doesn't always quite do the trick.  Long-chain monounsaturated and saturated fats from butter, lard, tallow, olive oil, palm oil, or macadamia nut oil, on the other hand, can keep me full for at least five to six hours.

When I was working on my review of Dr. Joel Fuhrman's book, Eat to Live, I went on his diet.  You can read my review here, although I didn't talk about my experience in the review.  The diet allows no added oils and requires the consumption of a massive amount of vegetables.  I spent hours and hours eating every day, and I even cheated a little by adding tiny amounts of butter to my lentil soup, but I still felt so hungry every night that I couldn't fall asleep.

I also find I'm likely to have difficulty sleeping when I eat out for dinner.  Most restaurants just don't provide enough fat in their meals.  The exception is if I can order a very absorbant starch like potatoes and ask for extra butter, though this usually requires saying “No, that's not really what I meant by extra butter.  Could I please have some more?”  If my food has a sauce with a lot of cream or I have a dessert with lots of butterfat, it might do the trick.  I think the solution, however, is to keep tub of fat and starch or something really creamy in the fridge to quickly top off any residual hunger I might have when I get home without the need to cook anything.

In addition to getting enough fat, I also need to get enough carbohydrate.

In order to make serotonin and melatonin, the amino acid tryptophan needs to enter the pineal gland or cross the blood brain barrier.  Certain amino aicds such as valine, leucine, isoleucine, phenylalanine and tyrosine compete with tryptophan for entry into these regions.  Eating protein tends to decrease the ratio of tryptophan to these other amino acids in the blood, and thus decrease its availability for serotonin and melatonin synthesis (1).

However, eating gelatinous animal products such as skin and bones would not have this effect because gelatin (collagen) is not rich in these competing amino acids.

Carbohydrate stimulates insulin, which drives these other amino acids into cells and thus has the opposite effect, making tryptophan more available (2).  High-glycemic carbs are more effective than low-glycemic carbs (3), which is consistent with a recent study that found that high-glycemic Jasmine rice reduced the time needed to fall asleep in healthy volunteers relative to lower-glycemic Mahatma rice (4).

Thus, if you are eating low-carb or zero-carb and find that your mood and sleep is fine, your diet is probably working just fine for you, but if you are eating such a diet and find yourself having mood problems or unable to fall asleep, you may need more carbohydrate.

Vitamin B6 is also needed for melatonin synthesis, and as I pointed out in my article “Vegetarianism and Nutrient Deficiencies” it is much easier to get from animal products than plant products.

Plant products tend to not only be lower, but they contain much of their B6 bound to sugars, which makes its bioavailability very poor.  Bananas stand out as a good plant source of B6 because they contain a lot of it — they are more than fifty percent richer than roasted duck, for example — and because they contain a very low proportion of their B6 in the sugar-bound form.  Cooking also decreases the bioavailability of B6 — 25-30 percent in most animal foods and about 40 percent in soy beans, for example — and bananas are easy to eat raw.

I do find that when I eat fewer animal foods I do need to be more careful I'm getting all my nutrients, or else I start to become more vulnerable to sleeping problems again.

Of course, everybody is different, and the most important factors for me might be different than the most important factors for anyone else, but if you think you might relate to any of these you might want to tweak a few things and see what happens.

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  1. Would banana work as well as Jasmine rice as a bedtime snack to work to “drive into cells the amino acids that would otherwise compete with tryptophan, leaving tryptophan to do its good work for sleep and mood”? What are the criteria for a food – does it just have to be something high glycemic? Would coconut sugar and plain sheep’s milk yogurt also work?

  2. I am here because, contrary to my usual habits, yesterday I ate lots of carbohydrates, sugars and fats, all day. I went to bed early (for me) at midnight, and woke up at past midday, which is too late but I do have a day off today and I did need it.
    I will take your advice and eat the carby, fatty meal at night from now on. It works for me too.

  3. Hey Chris, I’m experiencing much of the same 4am wake-ups. Trying to transition to 3 big meals instead of 5 smaller. Any tips? I feel like it’s hard to get to lunch without a snack. Should I just press through with some hunger? Do you recommend the Leptin diet book you mentioned or is it not good science? Also curious how this type of eating lines up with your recent protein recommendations of 1 gram per lb of desired weight. That seems like more protein than a leptin reset?

  4. Mighty fine list of tips. I think you’d be hard pressed to find a more comprehensive guide on what to eat, and avoid, in order to get a good night’s rest.

    I’ll just add that f.lux, an app for Mac, Windows, Linux, and iPhone, has made a huge impact on my ability to fall asleep quickly. It gradually turns down the blue light emitted by your laptop or phone as it gets closer to bedtime. It’s really quite brilliant.

    I’ll definitely be recommending this article for traveler friends who have difficulty catching zzz’s in their first few days. For more tips on beating jet lag, check out this article:

  5. I have trouble sleeping at night. If I can't sleep, I stay until 4:00 pm in the morning. I've notice when my room is cool and dark. I actually sleep a lot better. I'm going try B6 and see if it will work.

  6. I drink a lot of raw milk, should that be enough B6? If not, and I supplement, is the theory that one should take the B6 before bed? Or does the timing of supplementation not matter?

  7. I had boiled potatoes with butter last night and a small dish of cereal and when right to sleep but woke up around11pm and struggled for a couple of hours then had to get up at 1:30am and knock my stupid self out. Have trouble sleeping ever since menopause when I stopped for 6 years. Yeah, thought about suicide every day. Booze and pills are the only thing that saved me. Still use it today. Night before slept fine, can't remember what I had for dinner. Seems like nothing works for me on a consistant basis, but I love potatoes so will continue on with the carbs for dinner.

  8. Sleep is so important to our overall function but we continually abuse the privileges our body gives us. Running on no sleep is a recipe for disaster and the ones who have an excuse are at the highest risk. Without sleep our mobility and cognitive function declines significantly. To be superhuman we need our sleep.

    I just wrote a post on this as well.

    4 Terrific Ways To Get Better Sleep

  9. I am glad I found this blog. I have insomnia too. I tend to watch my carbs b/c it puts on weight. I really don't want them much for breakfast or lunch, but need them for dinner. Does anyone else experience this?

  10. Also for those of us that need to keep using lights or screens after dark — blue blocking glasses work very well by preventing the sleep cycle related photo sensors in our eyes from registering light (their bell curve peaks in the blue range). I'm wearing mine right now 🙂

  11. In addition to the other excellent suggestions for sleep hygiene I humbly offer the following protocols that work for me:

    – weekly massage
    – weekly sauna to deeply relax physical structures of the body

    only sleeping or lovemaking in the bedroom – not even reading!

    no electricity AT ALL in the bedroom including lighting, I place a couple of small candles to create a womblike and nurturing ambience

    no internet, movies or stimulating images after 8pm – replace with classical or devotional sounds, spiritual texts, poetry, reading the lifestories of saints, yogis ie peace loving individuals

    processing the day mentally and in particular choosing pleasant experiences to remember, set the intention to forgive and release all the rest

    roughly plan the following day's activities in a notebook or diary, so the mind can rest

    1. These are good tips! I like the idea of candles, no lights, in bedroom, and after 8pm no stimuli, but instead calming music, winding down, reading spiritual texts and life stories of peace loving people. Writing in your journal about the day, pleasant experiences, set the intention to forgive and release all the rest, and plans for the next day. I’m going to try all this.

      I sometimes write in a Gratitude Journal at night to remember all the things I am grateful for. It’s a great way to end the day.

  12. Trusting myself to eat evermore intuitively has led me to carb rich meals in the evening which definitely supports deep and restful sleep with dreams.

    When low or no carb in the evenings I get terminal insomnia – early morning waking and miss the dream phase of sleep.

    I am anxious about eating carbs in this way, quite freely and foods I consider to be 'bad' ; what works is pastry! eg small roasted veg tartlet or samosas as a side to my chicken and mixed vegetables.

    For now I am continuing as 8+ hours of blissful sleep feels to be such a gift and I know it supports my metabolism and health on all levels (Sleep is nature's balm – Shakespeare)

    I have to be supermindful of getting into a carb based way of eating as I have sugar sensitivity and a history of emotional eating (baked goods), I want to make sure I am not merely deluding myself as a way of getting my refined carb fix lol.

    Good health to all! Thanks for a great discussion


  13. Achieving restful sleep begins with keeping a consistent sleep schedule and creating a bedroom environment that promotes relaxation. Also, mattresses play a key role in the quality of your sleep aside from the tips you have cited above.

  14. i recently had my cortisol tested and found it was high at night, which was no doubt contributing to my insomnia. i started taking a supplement to regulate cortisol which seems to be helping.

  15. Too much carbs and tryptophan uptake can cause serotonin resistance, where the receptors shut down, and you get rebound depression. Seen with SSRIs too. This might also affect melatonin.
    Mustard seeds are the highest natural food source of melatonin.
    Baikal Skullcap is v. effective (very good for allergies too). However I find melatonin at this dose or in supps makes me cranky if I even slightly overdo it. Mustard is OK.

    Melatonin Source Melatonin Content (nanograms/gram)

    Huang-qin or Baikal Skullcap 7,110
    St. John’s wort (flower) 4,390
    Fever few(green leaf) 2,450
    Fever few(gold leaf) 1,920
    St. John’s (wort (leaf) 1,750
    White mustard seed 189
    Black mustard seed 129
    Wolf berry seed 103
    Fenugreek seed 43

  16. @Aaron
    I weened the nightlight away from my kids though as yours they slept well with it. It was rough going, but I took away the nightlight in the room and day by day turned down the hallway light until it just became lights out.

    Great essay. Regarding trying to shut down melatonin upon waking up and thru out the day, I try to make a point to calm down after waking given the big cortisol spike my body gave me to wake me up. Magnesium before going to bed and some DHEA shortly after waking (not every morning) seems to get the circadian rhythm's extreme imbalanced highs & troughs of melatonin and cortisol more appropriate. Life always comes along though and makes some splashy hormone so….

    Again, great essay, the high carb before going to bed I've heard before but now I'll have to check it out perhaps with a few berries.
    Cheers, Zachary

  17. Hi Chris:
    Has anyone considered low levels of zinc or iron as a possible cause of insomnia? I was recently found to be anemic. This is most likely the cause of my sleep problems. Sleep has steadily been improving after 3 months of iron supplementation. Insomnia is a symptom of both iron and zinc deficiency. Women tend to be iron deficient, I wonder if men may tend towards zinc deficiency after years of "healthy whole grain" consumption which has been shown to interfere with mineral absorption, especially zinc. Any thoughts on this?

  18. thanks for posting this, big help since i've been having sleeping problems this past few weeks… and i badly need to get some rest due to my hair problems that is caused by stress and lack of sleep… thanks again.

  19. I would say sleep is the most important part to health, even more important than diet.

    Food has no affect on my sleep at all, apart from finding it a little harder to sleep after a high portein meal.

    What I have also found is that, only the first high GI carb meal in the day will make me feel sleepy, subsequent high carb meals in the same day will have no affect.

    I think society is the problem with sleep. Having to get up at a certain time for society/your job is a BIG problem. I often find myself trying to FORCE myself to go to sleep at a certain time just so I can get enough sleep to wake up at A CERTAIN time.

    The problem is the act of trying to force myself to sleep early actually results in me laying awake all night and getting no sleep. It would seem that laying down and closing your eyes before your body says its time to go to bed will directly delay your circadian rythm.

    On days where I know I have nothing to do the next day and thus I can go to bed and and get up at whatever time I feel like, I have NO PROBLEM falling alseep or staying asleep. I almost always end up oversleeping by societies standard during this.

    1. pressure to sleep is a problem with a lot of people, societies demands are just to taxing for us mere mortals, I am the same way if I have to get up at a certain time to do something that will be taxing or something I don't want to do I have the same problem of sleeping (which only exaggerbates my already problem of sleeping). what I try to do if my blood sugar and sinus problems will let me is watch a movie, in my head, a movie that I like make one up or one movie you watched that you liked to distract you. it takes practice.

  20. Uhm…

    More carbs = better sleep
    More fat = worst sleep

    Low temperature = better sleep
    High temperature = worst sleep

    Has anyone thought about the possibility we should follow two different diets (high fat in winter and high carb in summer) or, better, we should eat more carbs in summer than in winter?

    Actually in summer (or in warmer latitudes) carbs are more available (fruits).


    1. I am definitely with you on this! We need more carbs when it is hot, and basically no carbs when it is cold. Ketosis is thermogenic as proved in a number of scientific journals.

  21. My top recommendation for adding fat is lard from organic, pastured pork. It tastes great on almost everything!

  22. Thanks for that post Chris.

    What really resonates with me is the temperature of the room. Prior to following a paleo diet, I would have described myself as a 'cold sleeper' in that I felt the cold very easily and needed a lot of blankets on the bed, even in summer, to keep warm. However, since switching over to a high fat diet, my body temperature has soared, particularly at night. Combine that with a hot house, and it is the temperature that does my sleep in quicker than anything. I find that I need the room down around 16-18deg C tops, or it is just too hot.

    1. Colder temperatures increase Slow Wave Sleep, and also triggering your temperature control part of the brain also triggers delta wave patterns which is good for sleep.

  23. I have gotten substantial sleep improvement for the past year, by supplementing with vitamin D3 (6,000-10,000 IU/day). I discovered this D3 benefit by accident.

    I'm 55, and I started taking D3 in hope of its helping my IBS symptoms. I take it early in the morning, by adding D3 drops to my coffee. 3 days after starting 6,000 IU/day, and long before I noticed any digestive improvement, I found that my insomnia had stopped. Before this, I'd had worsening insomnia for 5-10 years, and when I started the D3, I was getting only 2-4 hrs/night, 5 nights/week. With the D3, I usually get 7-8 hrs per night, and I lose sleep only 2 nights per month. If I run out of D3, or if I fail to take D3 with me on a trip, my insomnia resumes after 3 days, though not as bad as before I started D3 supplements. A month into my supplementing with D3, I started giving my wife 4,000 IU/day, hoping she'd get improved sleep too, and she did.

    Note: following a suggestion I found on this blog, I also supplement with vitamins A, K2, and E, I take magnesium and calcium, and I also take a daily multivitamin. I take the extra supplements to forestall side-effects from taking so much D3, but the extra hassle is worth it because my quality of life is so much improved. Being able to sleep again is a big relief.

    1. when I read about taking vitad3, it can scare anyone away from taking a theapertic dose, I have not had any problems with taking over 20,000 iu per day (even taking 40,000 iu for several weeks when I first started to build up my supply) when I was taking 40,000 I did sleep so much better then now, but fear of overdose made me lower it and my symptoms intensified. by the way I read some studies that said vitad3 is sequestered (stored) in fat tissue almost right away lower blood levels which translates I probably should be taking more than 20,000 iu because I still am having symptoms tho just not as severe, being obese I am storing most of it. but I am afraid too, I suffer terrible metabolic syndrome which vitad3 is supposed to help considerably including calcium, but taking vita a might just be the ticket to minimize any problems with vitad3

  24. My daughter has a metabolic disorder which makes it very difficult for her body to process B6 (pyridoxine dependency). It's been a while since I considered this impact on her sleep. I do believe there is one, despite the partial success of mega supplementation. Thank you for these great insights and ideas.

  25. i recently attended a bee symposium and heard dr. ron fassender (author of the honey revolution) speak about the benefits of having a tablespoon of honey right before bed. he claims that due to it's sugar profile it ends up fueling your brain rather than raising blood sugar, thus preventing waking up during the nite due to low blood sugar. i've been trying it when i remember, but hard to say yet if it's helping. wondering if anyone else has heard of this or tried it?

  26. Justin, thanks for the link!

    Anonymous, 60 g/day might be "lots of butter" for a woman, but not a very large or active one. Depending on what else is in the meal, 60 grams of better might be a lot for a single meal. I think it's an individual thing. You don't want to crowd out other nutrients, but you don't want to go hungry. If a meal doesn't keep you full for 5-6 hours, I think there's probably something wrong with it.

    Cliff and others — I'll do a post on getting B6 from plant foods in the next couple weeks and cover potatoes. Cooking data is not accurate because cooking creates factors from B6 that interferes with B6 bioavailability, so measuring the B6 left provides an underestimate of the loss. Accurate data must actually feed the cooked food and measure resultant B6-dependent biochemical activity.

    Anonymous, I've heard of it but never read it. Thanks for the suggestion.

    How much carb will be different for everyone, but I think maybe eating one third the volume of the meal as a starch is a good idea. If you eat a lot of protein, you might need more. If you eat a lot of fat, maybe less.

    David, protein stimulates insulin but it also provides the competing amino acids at a much greater concentration than it provides tryptophan. Carbohydrate stimulates insulin but does not provide any of the competing amino acids. Also, I'm not sure how relevant this would be, but to the extent that insulin signaling at the intracellular level promotes sleep, protein tempers the insulin signaling by also stimulating glucagon.

    Julie, I suspect that timing advice is more guesswork than anything else, but nothing wrong with guessing. I find it fine to eat a single meal 3-4 hours before bed if it is large enough.


  27. Kathleen DesMaisons wrote a book called Potatoes not Prozac, where she proposed having enough protein at each meal, and then a potato 3 hours after dinner. As you discuss above, this stimulates the insulin response and allows the tryptophan (from the protein eaten earlier) to cross the blood brain barrier. Apparently 3 hours is the optimum timing for this to happen.

  28. @wild runner – cut a piece of cardboard to cover your clock's display and tape it to the clock just across the top edge. When you need to see the time you can just flip the cardboard up.

  29. I've noticed the same effect. Carbs allow me to fall asleep easier.

    I'm curious, though. I wonder why it is that protein does not have the same effect as carbohydrate when it comes to clearing amino acids (to the exclusion of tryptophan) from the blood? Both carbs and protein provoke an insulin response, so what makes the difference?

    1. Tim Ferriss does this…
      A spoonful of almond butter just before bed. It gives the gut something to ‘play with’ AND, bonus prize, you don’t get the insulin/blood sugar spike. Genius.

  30. This is completely anecdotal,but my grandparents always ate a bowl of ice cream or a dish of cereal, often topped with sliced bananas, around 8:30 in the evening. I don't know if they had any sleep problems, but their practice seems to match some of the suggestions here. Perhaps they had the right idea.

  31. I'm using a clock radio with red LED lights in my bedroom. I figure between the fact that red lights are used in darkrooms and it's similar in color to Grok's fire, it's not as problematic as the blue or green LEDs. At least that's what I tell myself 😉

    1. You are right, red lights are no problem, blue and white spectrum lights are the big bads! There is evidence that even home wifi and mobile phones can be disruptive too.

      1. Red light CAN still be a problem. We need to sleep in as close to a PITCH BLACK room as possible. One sleep study had patients sleeping in a pitch black room, with a little RED L.E.D. taped behind their knee. When the red L.E.D. was turned on, melatonin switched off – immediately. Nobody needs a glowing bedside clock. Use you phone/alarm if you must, but if you try pitch black sleeping for long enough, you’ll find you wake up early all on your own. It’s awesome!

  32. Does anyone have any thoughts negotiating the addition of carbs when one has severe hypoglycemia?

    I also get poor sleep but if I try to add small amounts of carbs to my evening meal, my blood sugars will swing and result in night sweats. I have quite severe digestive problems as well and am thus limited to the slightly spikier carbs sources such as white rice, squash, carrots, beets etc.

    Eating before bed and/or during the night typically hasn't helped either.

    Seems a catch 22 problem.

    1. I have a similar problem, i find eating carbs at night causes a blood sugar spike in the middle of the night that wakes me up! then it takes me hours to fall asleep. usually i then take a dose of Ca/Mg and it helps me get back to sleep.

  33. Does anyone have a problem with staying asleep. I have no problem falling asleep. Going back to sleep after waking up at 3am is my problem. Has anyone found eating more carbs in the evening to be helpful with this problem? Also,Chris, how many carb so you eat during the last meal to improve sleep? I want a ball park number to start with. Thanks.

  34. Have you read Lights Out TS Wiley? We need 9.5 hours of sleep 7 months out of the year. Eating with the seasons, carbs only in summer.

  35. Potatoes are extremely rich in b6 but do you absorb most of it? I know you have to cook them so there is probably a loss but if your baking potatoes in the skin the loss is probably very minimal?

    I cronometer daily and I usually get like 500-600% b6 thanks to potatoes but I wonder how much of that I'm absorbing?

  36. I'm another one who needs sufficient carbohydrate to be able to fall asleep, in addition to calories in general. That's why I generally eat my largest meal of the day for dinner, and often have a small snack afterwards, particularly if dinner was before 7pm.

    Currently, I'm struggling because my husband ordered a new clock for us. My old clock was very small and had a backlit display that turned off after a few seconds, leaving it totally dark most of the time, unless you were actively reading the time. Our new clock has a perpetually-lit blue LED display. Even the "dim" mode is horribly bright. I've had some success turning the clock away from me and sleeping turned the other way because, unfortunately, just going out and buying another clock is not really feasible. I think that by addressing all the other factors for good sleep, I can make do with the lighting situation I have.

    1. low carb diets even modified diet never helped my fasting hypoglycemia in the middle of the night. I still struggle with sleeping solidly, without frequent awakenings because of clogged sinus or nervousness and hunger.

  37. Re: "Carbohydrate stimulates insulin, which drives these other amino acids into cells and thus has the opposite effect, making tryptophan more available"- a "recipe" I like to make is basically a glass of warm milk (tryptophan) with honey (CHO) melted in it.
    I like @Aaron's suggestion of banana too! I wonder if homemade custard with banana would have the same effect? (a recent tryptophan review)

  38. I always read "lots of butter", but it 's not clear to me what "lots" is 🙂

    How much butter do you guys use on a daily basis? Is 60 grams a day too much?


  39. I think that my personal observations regarding fat and carbs matches yours. Large bowl of potatoes with cream and butter, or puffed rice with heavy cream or some bananas with butter do the job. I even found out that, compared to eating lot of animal protein in the evening, carbs make me calm, tame and ready for sleeping. So I prefer a large steak for lunch and some carbs with fat in the evening.

    I am experimenting with magnesium supplements as well, and the carbs/fat plus Mg plus meditation drives me deep into the theta. 🙂

  40. I was lo carb for a long time. And I hit a wall after loosing 100+ lbs. Mood started to decline, stressed more easily and was finding it hard to turn my brain off at night. I gave in and added back in starch. Any potato mashed with lots of egg yolks does it for me now. Also been getting good results with a mix of potato & plantains roasted in lard or tallow.

    1. Dead right you are. Did a keto diet for about a month and it was the worst thing i ever did. Mood, mental state, sugars etc went off the wall. Sleep went down the drain and now months aftet im still struggling to recover. Don’t believe anything you read online.

      1. Well I did keto diet.and I found that I didn’t have much energy due to not eating enough veggies.but on the plus side my cognitive function went high.and that was I suffered brain fog all the time.also I eat a lot of protein .and I didn’t loose any I assume I was eating to much protein.but actually having my brain fog gone on this diet I’d say thumbs up to that.well IV come off it now and brain fog back. And big sleep problems.😥😥😥😥😥

  41. I've discovered some of the same things that you report regarding fats and carbohydrates and their effects on good sleep. I find eating some FAGE full-fat yogurt with part of a banana mashed in it is very satisfying and allows me to fall asleep very easily about an hour later. It works extremely well for my young kids, too!

    I also find I sleep very well (and feel very satisfied) when eating my mashed potatoes. I make them from about 4-5 boiled potatoes with about a half cup of raw whole milk (from Organic Pastures) and about 4-6 tablespoons of butter from grass-fed cows. The carbs/fats ratio is very nice in these mashed potatoes. I especially like making them with the raw milk after it's soured a bit in the fridge (usually a week after opening the bottle).

    I also can't stand any light sources when I sleep and cover up all LEDs on the TV, clocks, charging devices, etc. My older daughter, on the other hand, cannot fall asleep in a pitch dark room because she's too scared of the dark. She seems to have no problem falling asleep with a night light on, even a bright one.

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