Circadian Rhythm Disorder

Posted on Jul 15, 2012 in Medical Rewind

Be sure to listen to Medical Rewind with Dr. Rashid Buttar and Robert Scott Bell as they discuss the article below in detail.   Listen to the Monday, July 9th show.    


Circadian Rhythm Disorder

The quality of your health depends upon many pieces that not only include the health of your bodily systems, but also include a healthy diet, exercise, and spirituality.

Diet. Treatment of Circadian Rhythm Disorder includes adjusting your diet to eliminate foods that stimulate or disrupt the neurological system, while moderating strong cravings for high-calorie, simple carbohydrates.

Dietary recommendations for Circadian Rhythm Disorder include:

  • Choose complex carbohydrates that are digested slowly and gradually increase blood sugar levels, such as raw apples, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and winter squash.
  • Drink decaffeinated herbal teas, especially teas that promote relaxation, such as chamomile tea.
  • Add foods to your diet that are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids such as ground flax seed, wild-caught salmon, minimal-mercury albacore tuna, walnuts, and fish oil.
  • Eat foods that contain the sleep-inducing amino acid tryptophan, such as turkey, hummus, lentils, hazelnuts, sesame seeds, and sunflower seeds.
  • Incorporate organic virgin coconut oil into your cooking.
  • Add nutrient-dense and unprocessed foods such as sprouted nuts and seeds to your diet.

Foods to AVOID include:

  • All simple and refined carbs that are digested rapidly and spike blood sugar levels, such as white bread, cookies, cakes, etc. 
  • Foods that contain refined sugars, or artificial non-nutritive sweeteners such as aspartame, Splenda®, etc. 
  • Sodium nitrite found in processed meats such as bacon and hot dogs
  • Alcoholic beverages in excess since they can interfere with normal sleep patterns
  • Excessive caffeine intake – While moderate amounts of caffeine may be beneficial, excessive consumption can disrupt the body’s systems, causing insomnia and digestive irregularity (constipation or diarrhea).
  • Excessive fluids immediately prior to bedtime
  • Large meals immediately prior to bedtime
  • Tobacco products – Cigarettes contain over 4,000 chemicals, many of which interfere with sleep-wake cycles.
  • Hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats) found in many processed foods, deep-fried foods, fast food, and junk food. 

Exercise.  Moderate exercise is considered to be an effective part of a treatment program for both the depression and insomnia associated with Circadian Rhythm Disorder.  Experts say that moderate exercise improves general health and the quality of sleep, and gives sufferers an increased feeling of control over their lives, which helps deal with depression. Exercise may also increase blood flow to the brain, further relieving depression.  Exercise in the morning or early afternoon, rather than close to bedtime, to avoid disrupting your sleep cycle.

Other tips for sufferers of Circadian Rhythm Disorder:

  • Heavy metal toxicity can produce vague symptoms that sometimes are mistaken for other chronic conditions.  Discuss heavy metal toxicity with your healthcare professional before receiving any diagnosis or treatment for a serious chronic condition. Read more about heavy metal toxicity.
  • If you have “silver” dental fillings, get an evaluation from a mercury-free dentist who specializes in the safe removal of mercury amalgam fillings. Exposure to mercury (a neurotoxin) damages neurotransmitters along the HPA axis and can be a cause of Circadian Rhythm Disorder.  Find a mercury-free dentist in your area now!