Thyroid UK
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Insomnia and diet


I was reading the question on insomnia below and I have the same problem, I fall asleep quite easily but wake up about 2 or 3 times before the final wake up when I just can't drift off. I have done a lot of research on the net and there are so many things that all the web sites say, I was so confused so I just started eating a completely fresh food diet, I cut out all processed foods, bread and pasta and just ate fresh veg, fruit, fish and meat. After about a week of doing this I actually had my first sleep in what felt like years without waking up once! So I have tested it and gone back to my old diet for a week and sure enough I haven't had any sleep this week. So its back to the fresh healthy food for me. I just wanted to share this because I thought it can't do any harm trying.

I am seeing the Endo next week so I was going to discuss it with him, i thought it would be interesting to see what he thinks.

Hazel :)

6 Replies

Sorry forgot to add that I have been eating a lot of Brazil nuts too because I heard they are good for your thyroid!

Hazel :)


Brazil nuts contain selenium which is needed for t4 to t3 conversion.


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Interesting . . . . . have nothing to lose(only weight!) and to gain just one good nights nights sleep is worth the effort - will try it, Keep you posted.


Hi Hazel,l follow the same diet as does really have to eat well to hopefully live well even when your sick!.just wanted say if you are not doing it all ready, is to cut out tea and coffee..l drink red bush tea.( pretty yucky with almond milk but needs must and at least its a cuppa!).and sugar is like a stimulant if you have any in the evening CHOCOLATE and the like can keep you awake and disturb might find some useful info on Dr mercola's website..

good luck and best wishes


Very interesting Hazel. Have a look at my site Gluten Free Guerrillas on here. I mention it as one of the symptoms I had - which isn't typical for Coeliac Disease was always waking up around 2/3am in the morning for no reason. Plus night cramps, feeling dizzy, nauseous, and extremely tried (12 hours sleep from 6pm to 6am was a boon if I didn't wake up). From what you've described you've nearly eradicated gluten from your diet. I've seen a lot online and in research which closely links Coeliac Disease and Thyroid autoimmune problems (CD is an autoimmune problem). Quite a few people in our group had thyroid problems first then discovered they had coeliac disease. So maybe ask your endo for a blood test to rule it out:T

issue transglutaminase antibody (shortened to 'tTGA')

Endomysial antibody (shortened to 'EMA')

*note some people don't produce the ttga anti-bodies so another test can be done see: ie an IgG test instead "The tTG and EMA tests have IgG versions and these tests will then be accurate for someone with IgA deficiency. IgA deficiency is diagnosed when someone has a total serum IgA test and the results are very close to zero (less than 10mg/dl). This is not a test for celiac disease, but a means to make a more accurate diagnosis. "

Of course you may not have Coeliac Disease at all - but do discuss it with your endo and ask what your scores are for Vitamin D and B12 blood tests. Often if any of these are very low they can play havoc with your hormones and sleep patterns. Again there is a lot of research on the link of these with Thyroid problems and other autoimmune diseases like CD and Pernicious Anemia.

Note: It's worth you continuing to eat gluten foods again before you see the endo as the blood tests won't highlight problems if you do have CD without you eating them. So continue with bread, pasta and any of these and derivatives of them:wheat, rye, barley, oats, spelt plus beer, soy sauce, processed gravy. If they truly make you feel dire eating at least pasta/ bread once a week should still mean you produce the Coeliac Antibodies (if you do have this problem).

Good Luck.

<b>Updated on Jan 30 2011 1:30PM:</b> PS For example I got my sister to get tested for CD after I was finally diagnosed. She was positive. After still feeling iffy she was tested again and they discovered she has Hashimotos Thyroid as well. Meanwhile my mum has thyroid problems and pernicious anemia was discovered so her Endo has requested Gastro investigate CD as well.

My top tip is keep a simple day diary of time/ how you feel/ what you ate and discuss it with your endo. They are normally well clued up on Coeliac Disease and the relationship with Thyroid yet some facts/stats from you always help discuss the problems.


Not too sure if I have made a mistake and posted this twice!

Thank you so much FionaGFG thats really helpful, I am defo going to speak to the Endo about it and thats a really good idea to eat my old diet so that the problem shows up in the tests, I will definitely have a look at your site.

I am very lucky Donna because I actually don't like tea or coffee and I dislike milk even more LOL :) I do like my chocolately though and have changed to 85% coco because I heard its better for you and I only have a couple of squares in the evening if I've had a bad day, which thankfully seems to be ok. I am defo going to also have a look on Dr Mercola's web site.

Thanks again,



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