View Full Version : Fasting & Sleep

Greg Davis
04-02-2008, 11:34 AM
Anyone else find that they have trouble staying asleep when they are going to bed in a fasted state?

Its like my body is telling me to get up and go hunt something.. I'm thinking I just need to adapt more to IFing, or maybe my insulin sensitivity is still too low to be able to pull off a lot of fasting..

Gittit Shwartz
04-02-2008, 12:07 PM
I have trouble falling asleep. I try to have my eating window up till 4-5 hours before going to bed, that helps. Started IF a little over a week ago.
Very low carbs make it hard to sleep at first too, but back when I had been doing it for a long time, I eventually adapted. Of course there will never be anything like a nice big carb fest followed by plummeting blood sugar to put you to sleep...

Mike ODonnell
04-02-2008, 01:05 PM
I can't sleep when I am hungry...hence why I always plan to have my biggest meal at night (sort of like Warrior Diet mentality). Not too late...usually within 2-3 hours before bed to let blood sugar levels drop, but at least I am not hungry going to bed. Having loads of protein at night is probably ideal as it will take hours while you are sleeping to continue to digest...and you will have a steady stream of amino acids during prime GH hours to rebuild muscle. Anything over 4 hours after eating....I get hungry again. I am not hungry in the AM when I wake so it's easier to start the day and fast till 12ish.

What time are you going to bed? That could also have something to do with it.

Greg Davis
04-02-2008, 01:27 PM
I think I might be moving in your direction Mike since going to bed with raging fasting energy levels can a bit much at times.


(1) It can be more practical to get some meals in early, then be done with eating cuz I can go out visiting people etc. and not worry about eating in the evening.

(2) I do find that there is no risk of a food hangover (feel better in morning) if my stomach is totally empty before bed.

(3) DeVany's take on IF seems to be essentially to skip dinner every once and a while.

So I'm still not sure what is best for my schedule and if my sleep issues are more a result of other deficiencies in my diet approach. Surely some mix of both morning and evening fasting might be best, but I suspect that I'll eventually settle on one or the other as a preference.

Mike ODonnell
04-02-2008, 01:37 PM
I honestly have never suffered food hangover (unless it was way high in sugar and late at night). But we are all different. Maybe something easy and small to eat that is mainly protein and fat is the answer? Personally I can't skip dinner....also somewhat of a social aspect to be able to go out with people and being pretty flexible on eating late at night...as anytime I am out it is later. Also a big meal early in the day makes me sluggish and mentally slower.

"Lights Out" talks about going to bed too late and it signals the "days of summer" which means more carbs to fatten up and survive winter....so more cravings for sugar especially if you are up too late. I find that to be very true.

Greg Davis
04-03-2008, 08:46 AM
I don't think staying up too late has been my problem although I tend to have really late nights a few times a week for social reasons (ie. hanging out with girlfriend or roomates).

I was thinking about your larger meal at night approach and its starting to make sense to me the more I think about how I could be the most productive during the day. Generally over the last few months I've been making all my meals about the same size, sometimes in the AM if I'm not training the day, and fasting at night now and then. But using some of your logic which makes sense it really might work out better for several reasons to go with the mostly morning fasting with small meals during the day and larger one in the evening. Fair sized meals during the day due tend to slow me down..

hmm I'm gonna give it a try for a few weeks and see what happens to my (1) sleep; and (2) daytime energy levels. Thinking even if i train early in the morning I'm just gonna leave more time afterwards before eating and stick to small lunch/snacks until dinner. I actually feel pretty productive after a workout so keeping that feeling going throughout the day might be possible if I don't blunt it with a dinner sized meal.

In fact I think I'll start a training/food log starting monday (i'm travelling for a jiujitsu tournament this weekend!) and post up my experience somewhere if not here.