Insomnia and gluten - Is there a connection?

Insomnia...I feel exhausted and depressed now...

Posted by Milind

Hello everybodty,

for years I have suffered from insomnia which wakes me up after 3-4 hours of sleep and never allows to sleep again. I switched over to gluten free diet and my sleep improved fast...but after two months of being gluten free I suffer from the same problem again..I feel helpless..does anyone have any advice ?

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11 Replies

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  • ianwoowoo answered 2 hours ago

    Hi there,

    Sorry t hear about your problem, sleep disturbance really does wipe me out as well. I can't say I suffer from insomnia but I do get periods where I can't get a good night sleep and I am always awake on and off all night. I have had this the last few nights and this has coincided with one of my mood swings where I feel really depressed and can't pull myself out of it.

    I do wonder if there is a link somewhere - when the mood swings hit I feel like I'm not in control of myself and its some chemical imbalance or something that is causing it but who knows.

    Sorry I can't help you specifically but wish you luck in improving your sleep.

  • Thanks ianwoowoo...that was comforting

  • I know when I've been glutened, it seems to change my sleep pattern, I become very tired in the day, and I seem to have very broken sleep at night....it's as if my brain won't switch off....but it does seem to settle within a week as long as I am careful and stay gluten free.......been got twice this Christmas.....blue Stilton got me Christmas Day and last night I had coleslaw....within an hour of having it, I looked like a beach ball......so last night I had maybe four hours sleep cos I felt so poorly...... It's mega lonely at 4 am being awake.....while everybody else in the house is asleep....if you stress about it...you will make it worse....I find a book and a brew helps loads.....sorry I can't be any more help.....but I do know how your feeling.......

    Janie:)

  • Thanks a lot Janie. You have indeed helped me. I suffered from insomnia for over 5 years before I decided to go on gluten free diet. The reason I did this was that my tummy remained bloated when I woke up from sleep. Doctors did not suggest me to do this. But as soon as I did that my tummy stopeed getting bloated and my sleep improved. So for the last two months I slept well. But I fell back into the same track a week ago ...my friends said that the improvement in sleep I experienced could have been just the placibo effect and gluten is not the issue. I dont buy this as my experience tells me something else. Your response confirms that I am right . I will be more careful about my diet now. I haven;t tested for gluten intolerance though..but my experience strongly shows the connection. Would you suggest that I get tested? Thanks a lot.

  • Yes I would defo ask about a blood test.......tell the doctor about your tummy ache and bloating, when u eat wheat/gluten........and the way it alters yr sleep pattern.......and don't take no for a answer....also ask about calcium and d3 as when they are low they can play havoc with yr sleep pattern......

    Janie x

  • Thanks again Janie. what is d3?

    Wish you a very happy new year!

  • Sorry to hear about your sleep problems. Does sound like you may have accidentally ingested gluten - which is easy to do at the best of times, let alone over Christmas.

    I would personally hesitate to get tested for coeliac disease if you know already that you react badly to gluten, as you would need to go back onto a high-gluten diet for at least three months to maximise the chances of getting a postive result. And even then, false negatives are possible...

    I would suggest you consult your GP to see what he or she thinks about this, but at the end of the day, you know your body better than anyone else and are the best judge of what is right for you. If you know that you feel better without gluten in your diet, why put yourself yourself through all the pain and discomfort of eating it again? If I were you, I'd listen to your body and go with your instincts.

    Anyway, whatever you decide to do, I hope that you feel better soon, and manage to catch up on some sleep!

  • Thank you so much. You are right, there is no point in going back to gluten rich diet just for testing. And now after a week I am back to getting better sleep.You know, after having suffered form insomnia and having consumed many many sleeping pills I was on the verge of getting into serious depression...but accidently came across articles suggesting corelation between insomnia and gluten . No doctor suggested me that connection. I feel so happy that now it seems I have solved this serious issue in my life. I have slet well for nearly two months except for this period of 10 days .And I think it must be because of ingestion of gluten. Thanks a lot again for your response and the concern . Take care and wish you a very happy new year

  • So glad to hear you are feeling better and are sleeping well again.

    It's amazing how far-reaching the effects of gluten can be, isn't it?

    Thanks for your good wishes. I hope you have a very happy - and healthy - 2013 too!

  • I would say definitely yes.

    My friends think I'm mad now if I say - "hey I slept for 8 hours last night" they looks as though to say yes 'yeah????" and ???

    Previously if I went to bed at midnight it would be 2 - 3 before I dropped off to sleep.

    No I decide how much sleep i need

    Take care x

  • Thank you so much.By the way I slept for 8 hours yesterday :)

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