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Gittit Shwartz
01-27-2009, 04:57 AM
Thought I'd share a recent observation:

Lately I've been having trouble falling asleep, and on two separate occasions about 2 weeks apart decided to take 3mg melatonin. I slept for 7 hours and was wakened by the alarm.

Both times I found my body temperature upon waking had dropped by nearly 1 degee F (0.5 C) from the previous day's. The next day it was back to normal. I track my morning body temperature regularly and know how it varies with the menstrual cycle - neither of these days should have shown a significant change.

I've heard warnings before not to take melatonin unless you know you have time to sleep til you wake naturally, now I'm even more convinced. Apparently melatonin is involved in body temp regulation, lowering the temp at night to make you sleepy.

I'm not sure how long the temperature drop lasted but it was pretty alarming the first time (96.3 F... not good).

Patrick Yeung
01-27-2009, 06:42 PM
Is it actually bad for your body temp to drop?

I know that some animals, such as mice, can have their body temperatures drop down to half of their waking temps, and their heart rates drop below 10 bpm when they are hibernating. Bats are another example of this.

Thats interesting though. Ive been having a lot of trouble getting to bed all my life, but have refused taking meds because of the dependency created. Though, there are newer drugs where this is not the case, id rather go with something less powerful. Was thinking of taking melatonin, or tryptophan, but havent gotten around to getting either.

And just curious, why do you check your body temp before/after you go to bed?

Steven Low
01-27-2009, 06:58 PM
No, normally the body drops some temp while sleeping. I'm not sure how much the normal range is... but a few degrees should not be worrisome.

Garrett Smith
01-27-2009, 08:19 PM
There is something there, obviously. Quick search of Pubmed would seem to confirm.

Complex effects of melatonin on human circadian rhythms in constant dim light. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9376645?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsP anel.Pubmed_DiscoveryPanel.Pubmed_Discovery_RA&linkpos=4&log$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed)
These results indicate that melatonin was able to phase shift sleep and core temperature but was unable to synchronize core temperature consistently.

Gittit Shwartz
01-27-2009, 10:18 PM
Patrick - I check my body temp in the morning because I have low T3 and I'm trying to fix my thyroid (with Dr. G's help).
While some degree of variation may not be a problem for someone with normal thyroid function, I've noticed a clear correlation between my AM temp and how well I feel/function on that day in terms of fatigue, motivation, mental clarity etc. If it drops below a certain point I might as well be hibernating :(
Also helped me figure out what things I do may be detrimental (fasting too much/too long, drinking coffee regularly, keeping carbs contantly below 30g) and what may be helpful (carb cycling, vitamin D).

Garrett Smith
01-28-2009, 04:59 AM
Gittit,
Have you tried any herbal teas to help you sleep?

Gittit Shwartz
01-28-2009, 06:41 AM
Hmmm, I've tried passionflower in caps but not as a tea. It didn't seem to help much. I'll see what I can find though - thanks for the tip Dr. G.

Garrett Smith
01-28-2009, 08:35 AM
Try a mixture of herbs, make the tea decently strong, at least at the start.

Valerian may or may not work for you, some folks get a lot of wild dreams. I personally like valerian (in caps, not so much in tea, it smells a bit funky).

Patrick Yeung
01-29-2009, 03:37 PM
Patrick - I check my body temp in the morning because I have low T3 and I'm trying to fix my thyroid (with Dr. G's help).
While some degree of variation may not be a problem for someone with normal thyroid function, I've noticed a clear correlation between my AM temp and how well I feel/function on that day in terms of fatigue, motivation, mental clarity etc. If it drops below a certain point I might as well be hibernating :(
Also helped me figure out what things I do may be detrimental (fasting too much/too long, drinking coffee regularly, keeping carbs contantly below 30g) and what may be helpful (carb cycling, vitamin D).

Awh, I personally have not had to battle with thyroid disfunctions, but I was dating a girl who did, and it was real tough for her. She had to be real careful about what she ate and what she did, or shed just crash.

Its amazing when you do a little research how many foods have such a big effect on your thryoid functions. All this soy milk drinking/tofu eating people are doing now is gonna be costly later.

Garrett Smith
01-29-2009, 05:05 PM
Oh yeah, taking a hot shower or bath before bed has been shown by research to help as well.

Gittit Shwartz
01-29-2009, 05:07 PM
Tell me about it. I used to eat as many cruciferous veggies as I could stuff in every day for their anti-estrogenic properties. These are at the top of the list of goitrogens. In fact practically every plant food I ate regularly was on that list. No wonder my thyroid is run down :o

And yeah, depending on your definition, I think something like 70% of the adult population of the US is supposed to have some thyroid disorder.

George Mounce
01-29-2009, 05:35 PM
Bah, I'll stick to my broccoli. :p

Brian Stone
11-04-2009, 06:12 AM
This seemed as good a thread to jump in on this topic as any. It's been of interest to me because I recently heard that exercising at night (shortly prior to sleep) can cause sleep interruption, since your core temperature is usually elevated for 3-5 hours after intense exercise before dropping to a lower level. I also dug up this article:

http://ezinearticles.com/?Sleep-and-Body-Temperature---The-Connection&id=177405

I've never been a great sleeper so I've experimented with various things, but I've noticed that green tea seems to make me feel more relaxed at night and yet inhibit my ability to fall asleep, for a short while. It would seem that hot baths would have the same effect - raising core temperature, and yet I found studies that showed that, at least in the elderly, hot baths prior to sleep are effective to induce quality sleep:

http://www.journalofnursingstudies.com/article/S0020-7489(02)00023-8/abstract

Any general comment on this? Is the different induction method to raise temperature the real factor, or maybe something else?

Steven Low
11-04-2009, 09:16 AM
Artificially raising body temperature is different from metabolically induced raised body temperature.

The former will drop off fairly quickly as the heat dissipates, the latter will keep going depending on how close to sleep you exercised.

This reminds me that I need to push my workouts to earlier in the day if possible as well...

Garrett Smith
11-04-2009, 09:43 AM
Gittit,
If you had a positive response to melatonin, you might want to look into methylcobalamin (aka methyl-B12) injections or intranasal spray (I'm not as big a fan of the sublingual versions anymore).

See these studies for more research on this topic:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10215009?itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed _ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum&ordinalpos=1
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8981490?itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum&ordinalpos=3
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8914118?itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum&ordinalpos=4

Gittit Shwartz
11-04-2009, 11:02 AM
Funny this thread popped up again, I'd just sworn off melatonin completely. I've been using it a bit to get over jet lag and then to adjust my sleep schedule to get more hours of daylight. Four out of five times I wake up suddenly about 3 hours later, feeling alert and refreshed, and can't get back to sleep even as the alertness wears off. Any idea why that keeps happening? Sans melatonin I never wake up on my own before I'd been asleep at least 7 hours.

Thankfully the temperature drop isn't an issue anymore - I'm on Armour and Isocort (adrenal extract) and I think I can say I'm thriving :)

For sleep, I'm finding that getting a good dose of sunlight soon after I wake up, exercising before breakfast (even a light workout/yoga), and dimming the lights a couple hours before bedtime works best for me... I also take 10,000 IU of Vitamin D in the morning and 400 mg magnesium at night which seems to help. No "sleep aid" per se made much of a difference.

Gittit Shwartz
11-04-2009, 11:07 AM
Thanks for the links Dr. G, I was just starting to put together some material for a review/presentation on chronotypes for school :)

Brian Stone
11-04-2009, 12:19 PM
For the record, I haven't had positive experiences with melatonin either. I find that I wake up after about 6 hours and feel artificially alert, and/or it causes erratic interruptions to my sleep.

Kelly Frankson
11-04-2009, 03:45 PM
Gittit, what have you tried diet wise for your t3?

Gittit Shwartz
11-05-2009, 03:06 AM
Kelly, I'm now taking thyroid hormones (Armour Thyroid), so I can't say any dietary manipulation solved the problem.

That said, there are a few things that did help a little. Chronic low carb can impair T4 to T3 conversion - I found I felt better at about 100g per day. Plenty of Vitamin D from sunlight or supplements. Also, if you live far from the shore or eat very little seafood, you may benefit from iodine supplementation - Dr. G can tell you more about that than I.

I still don't eat cruciferous veggies (or hardly any raw veggies for that matter) because they bother my stomach, but I can't say if that's made any difference.