Misty has a long history of mysterious sleep issues. Just when she would solve one sleep mystery, another would pop up. It turned out, each of them was caused by something different. Luckily, Misty Williams became her own health advocate and was able to get to the various root causes and correct them. Now she runs Healing Rosie, an organization that provides high performing women in their 20s and 30s with the resources and community to successfully confront the unexpected in their own wellness journey.
Misty joins me on the show today to share the different suspects you should be considering if you have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting enough quality sleep.
Suspect #1 – High Cortisol
Most people know that stress can play a big role in our ability to sleep well. The cortisol that our body releases in times of stress is what keeps us awake. For Misty, she experienced a significantly elevated level of cortisol during an illness and once it was rectified, her body struggled to get rid of it. You won’t believe how long she was awake (we’re talking days, not hours!).
Some people don’t realize that stress isn’t the only way that cortisol can be elevated. Misty explains that X-rays, infections and other illnesses can also spike cortisol. Stress reduction protocols are key for combating this cause of sleep issues.
Suspect #2 – Busy-ness
Our lives are extremely full – too full, in some cases and all of that busy-ness can impact our ability to sleep. Being busy all the time with a million things on our mind, might be lumped into the stress category but it can be more than that. The mind might be racing making falling asleep incredibly hard and then when you do get to sleep, suddenly you’re awake a few hours later. Even waking up too early (and unable to get back to sleep) can be a symptom of being too busy. Lifestyle changes are the only way to alleviate this.
Suspect #3 – Toxic Metals
Misty experienced sleep issues after she had her mercury fillings removed by her dentist who inadvertently released some of the toxins into her body. Toxic metals, like mercury, can cause serious sleep disturbances. And, it can take the body up to 5 years to be fully rid of these toxic metals. A heavy metal detox may help.
Suspect #4 – Hormones
This is a very common cause of sleep issues for women as they approach perimenopause and menopause. The response to low estrogen (and even low progesterone) can be sleep problems. Low estrogen can also cause night sweats and hot flashes. Low progesterone can be caused by excess cortisol (caused by stress or metal toxicity) and also causes sleep issues.
Suspect #5 – Epstein-Barr Virus
We’ve talked in previous podcasts about Epstein-Barr and how pervasive (and undiagnosed) it is. Misty raises an interesting point that EPV can cause sleep issues. When the body is dealing with a really heavy viral load, it can affect our sleep. This suspect can be hard to catch because many doctors won’t test for this and the virus can sit dormant for a long time and then have a flare up. There are good homeopathic treatments for EPV.
Suspect #6 – Parasites
This may surprise some people but parasites are nocturnal so if you have them, they can keep you up at night. Many people don’t consider parasites because they think only people who travel to third-world countries get them. That’s not true! People can get parasites in many developed countries – including the United States! Luckily, most parasites can be evicted with a special cleansing protocol.
Suspect #7 – Circadian Disruption
Our modern lives don’t follow our natural circadian rhythm (except, maybe some farmers). We stay up too late using artificial light and we stare at blue screens all day and night that confuse the parasympathetic nervous system. Then, after hours of tricking our body into thinking it’s daytime, we suddenly expect it to accept that it’s not. The way to counter this is to live by circadian biology (and rise and sleep according to the sun). Since this is pretty much impossible for most people, there are ways to decrease exposure to blue light. Start by using amber glasses, limit screen time close to bed, and set screens to amber mode in the evening. Misty also has amber light in her house and uses blackout curtains to make sure her room is pitch black at night.
Suspect #8 – Heat
Misty says that a good night’s sleep requires a cold room. She likes to keep the room very cold (as cold as you can stand it). She also uses a ChiliPad on her mattress that helps to keep her body temperature low at night. Another way that Misty suggests lowering the body temperature at night is by having a cold bath (or shower) before bed.
Eliminating Health Mysteries
Sleep is absolutely crucial to our health. It’s important to determine what is interrupting your sleep (and it may be more than one of these suspects) and correcting it with the tips and tricks Misty shares in this episode. To truly demystify your sleep issues, check out the Best Sleep Summit which launches on March 16th 2020. Hear from 40 experts on how you can get your best sleep ever. Register here for FREE.
Related Podcast Episodes:
EPISODE #044 The Truth about Insomnia (and What to do About It)
Thanks for Listening
If you like what you heard, please rate and review this podcast. Every piece of feedback not only helps me create better shows, it helps more people find this important information.
All information, content, and material on this podcast is for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider.
Some of the links provided are affiliate links. This means we may make a very small amount of money should you choose to buy after clicking on them. This will in no way affect the price the product but it helps us a tiny bit in covering our expenses.