Author: Dr. Angeli Chitale, ND
Adrenal Stress and Insomnia
If you frequently find yourself up waking up at 3-4 am, there may be a simple answer…you are stressed. Fortunately for most – there is a solution, but first we need to understand why you wake up.
Why Stress Causes You to Wake Up at 3-4 am
Stress causes the adrenal glands to fire off adrenaline and cortisol. Adrenaline gives you a burst of energy to deal with stressful situations (the well known “fight or flight” response. Adrenaline also raises the heart rate, increases respiration, dilates the pupils, slows down digestion and causes muscles to contract. It’s like caffeine on steroids!
A Common Concern for Many
Understandably, if you are stressed or upset it can be impossible to fall asleep, but why does it always wake you up at 3-4 am? We are all goverend by the circadian rhythm (the day / night cycle set by the movement of the earth around the sun). According to Chinese Medicine 1- 3 am is when your liver regenerates. To do so, it needs glycogen (storage form of glucose). The problem is that adrenaline surges day and night cause your cells to use up glycogen. So if you are often stressed, your body may not have enough glycogen for the liver to regenerate at 3am. If your liver cannot get the glycogen it needs, your adrenal glands will compensate by releasing adrenalin, which is why you are wide awake and ready for action, not exactly a state you want to be in at 3am.
Chinese Medicine 24-Hour Organ Clock
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, our internal organs work to a 24 hour ‘clock’, with certain times of day being peak times for that organ. This is the time that the organ will carry out its most essential functions.
- Large intestine: 5am-7am
- Stomach: 7am-9am
- Spleen: 9am-11am
- Heart: 11am-1pm
- Small Intestines: 1pm-3pm
- Bladder: 3pm-5pm
- Kidneys: 5pm-7pm
- Circulation: 7pm-9pm
- Endocrine system/pancreas: 9pm-11pm
- Gallbladder: 11pm -1am
- Liver: 1am-3am
- Lungs: 3am-5am
I Don’t Want to Wake Up at 3am – An Easy, “Do It Yourself” Remedy
If you always wake up at 3am or have trouble sleeping, this simple home remedy has changed peoples’ lives so why don’t you give it a try?
Adrenal Cocktail Recipe
- ½ cup orange juice (freshly squeezed from ½ an orange)
- ½ teaspoon cream of tarter (available at any grocery store)
- ½ teaspoon Himalayan or Celtic salt (available at any grocery store)
Just mix all the ingredients and drink before bed or make a double batch and keep by your bedside.
*You may also do this in the morning to deal with stress throughout the day, but always be sure to drink it before bed as well.
The Science Behind it: Why The Adrenal Cocktail Stops You From Waking Up at 3am-4am
The Adrenal Cocktail is made up of ingredients that replenish vital organs (liver, pancreas, cell electrolyte balance) and stabilize glucose levels to keep you from waking up at 3am.
- Freshly squeezed orange juice: gives the liver glucose it needs to regenerate.
- Cream of tartar: High source of potassium, an essental element for maintaining the sodium/potassium balance in cells, vital organs (liver), muscles, nerves, and the digestive system.
- Himalayan salt delivers 84 essential minerals and elements found in the human body, nourishing the adrenals and maintain the body’s sodium/potassium pump (inside each cell).
To get a better idea of whether or not you may have adrenal fatigue, take your FREE, mini Adrenal Fatigue Quiz HERE!
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