9

votes

Why do I feel cold when fasting?

Answered on March 21, 2016
Created January 06, 2011 at 5:50 PM

Hey folks. Whenever I fast, I feel cold. Does anyone else experience this? Is there anything that can be done to remedy it?

I've always become cold very easily, and attribute it to poor circulation. However, this is unexpected, and definitely unwanted.

Thanks!

BTW, when fasting, I wear the same clothes and am in the same environment as when I'm not fasting.

UPDATE:

I usually fast for 8-20 hours. For example, I finished eating at 9pm last night, and probably won't eat again until 4-6pm today. During a fast, I consume nothing but water.

It's rare that I fast more than once a week. I try not to feast before a fast. After fasting, I usually eat ~25% extra food for that meal.

I'm male, 6'1", 160lbs, lean, and athletic, with 9-10% body fat, according to the Navy SEAL body fat calculator: http://fitness.bizcalcs.com/Calculator.asp?Calc=Body-Fat-Navy

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 21, 2012
at 06:38 PM

That hack works great, Adam! I also found out that, when I go to school, when I go I'm cold, when I return I'm warm. I thought it might be the stress, but why would I get stressed out from going to school???

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on February 21, 2012
at 05:01 PM

I got wool socks, gloves, and do bodyweight squats.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on March 09, 2011
at 01:17 PM

Thanks for all of the responses and comments, everyone! Very helpful and insightful.

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on March 08, 2011
at 10:47 PM

Nick, people frequently report cold hands and/or feet after a fast of about 16 hours. Not too long ago, a doctor (Emily Deans, author of the Evolutionary Psychiatry blog) reported on Paul Jaminet's Perfect Health Diet blog that this happens to her, and there was a brief discussion about it there. Paul speculated that 16 hours is about when liver glycogen runs out.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on February 22, 2011
at 03:49 PM

@Rob My hands and fingers start feeling cold about 14-16 hours after my last meal, and they become colder as time passes.

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 21, 2011
at 02:39 PM

Nick, do your hands and fingers feel colder than the rest of you? And does the coldness begin about 16 or 20 hours after the last meal?

82166cc32b6cf26de33b69f58fb583b1

on February 21, 2011
at 02:37 PM

Nick, do your hands and fingers feel colder than the rest of you? And does the coldness begin about 16 or 20 hours into the fast?

46a50abafc820cfab9e91ada8b26148a

(152)

on January 08, 2011
at 10:04 AM

this is the main reason i started fasting. I've always been hot all the time, sweat A LOT and I think it's hyperhidrosis. Fasting has helped some with this.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 07, 2011
at 12:20 AM

Thanks, Ambimorph. I just searched this on Google, and found a couple of studies showing this.

B3c62d89cd47b7d7209b6a99243d0ded

(10778)

on January 07, 2011
at 12:04 AM

I actually found that when stuck at a desk, if i just breathed deeply for 5 minutes, deep and slow, that I started warming up. --- How's that for a Hack?

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 06, 2011
at 08:29 PM

Yeah, exercise definitely helps to increase blood flow all over your body. I guess I should hunt around the office for a private spot to do some body-weight exercises.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 06, 2011
at 08:27 PM

That makes a lot of sense. Thanks, Jake. I don't feel that it's dangerous for me, but it's definitely unpleasant. The next time I fast, I'm going to try wearing another layer of clothing.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 06, 2011
at 08:22 PM

@chaotic3quilibrium, @steve Thanks for asking me those questions. I've updated my original post with answers. Let me know if there's anything else that I should include.

D38c0cc994b194de08289e0fe3f99d1e

(421)

on January 06, 2011
at 07:18 PM

Are you keto-fasting and just restricting carbs and protien, or are you forgoing fats as well, and for how long and how often are you fasting? Also, what is your body type (e.g., normal, heavy, lean)?

3c66bc3a4bd1742ac9886eff6b6016dc

on January 06, 2011
at 06:28 PM

Can you describe your fasting window(s)? Are you doing a single long fast of x days (or hours)? Are you doing intermittent fasting where you eat between 6-10pm each evening? Are you alternating days where you don't eat at all and the next day gorge from arising to dropping into bed that night? Each fasting pattern has it's own unique hormonal response depending upon the variables implied above.

3c66bc3a4bd1742ac9886eff6b6016dc

on January 06, 2011
at 06:27 PM

Can you describe your fasting window(s)? Are you doing a single long fast of x days (or hours)? Are you doing intermittent fasting where you eat between 6-10pm each evening? Are you alternating days where you don't eat at all and gorge from arising to dropping into bed that night? Each fasting pattern has it's own unique hormonal response depending upon the variables implied above.

  • 49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

    asked by

    (840)
  • Views
    45.2K
  • Last Activity
    124D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

16 Answers

best answer

9
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18676)

on January 06, 2011
at 09:07 PM

Actually, fasting is known to reduce core body temperature, not just the extremities. Even just caloric restriction does this. It is accompanied, and probably caused, by a lowering of metabolic rate.

I don't know if this is good or bad in the long run. There are reasons to believe either. It's certainly uncomfortable, though -- I definitely notice it, too.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 07, 2011
at 12:20 AM

Thanks, Ambimorph. I just searched this on Google, and found a couple of studies showing this.

46a50abafc820cfab9e91ada8b26148a

(152)

on January 08, 2011
at 10:04 AM

this is the main reason i started fasting. I've always been hot all the time, sweat A LOT and I think it's hyperhidrosis. Fasting has helped some with this.

7
1ec4e7ca085b7f8d5821529653e1e35a

(5516)

on January 06, 2011
at 07:12 PM

Check out this link. http://www.leangains.com/2010/09/eat-stop-eat-expanded-edition-review.html

In the book review Martin has a section entitled "fasting and cold fingers"

The basic idea is that during fasting your blood circulation is centered around your abdomen and less blood circulation to the extremeties. He believes it is nothin to be worried about. It can be helpful (says Martin) because during the fast you are attempting to rid yourself of abdomen fat and the enhanced blood flow speeds this process. Don't take my word for it though, read the site.

I get cold sometimes when fasting. It seems to be happening less and less. My take is to put on warmer clothes and stick it out. Of course you should never do something you feel is harmful to your health. If you are having issues with fasting maybe you should start with a fast for a shorter period of time and extend it gradually over a few weeks to acclimate.

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 06, 2011
at 08:27 PM

That makes a lot of sense. Thanks, Jake. I don't feel that it's dangerous for me, but it's definitely unpleasant. The next time I fast, I'm going to try wearing another layer of clothing.

2
B3c62d89cd47b7d7209b6a99243d0ded

on January 06, 2011
at 08:23 PM

I can get a bit cold during long fasts, i believe the body is just being careful with it's energy reserves. I don't see this as a problem, and it is even rather pleasant during the summers.

A quick spot of movement or exercise warms me back up. Wool socks can help, too.

B3c62d89cd47b7d7209b6a99243d0ded

(10778)

on January 07, 2011
at 12:04 AM

I actually found that when stuck at a desk, if i just breathed deeply for 5 minutes, deep and slow, that I started warming up. --- How's that for a Hack?

49de4cd2f26705785cbef2b15a9df7aa

(840)

on January 06, 2011
at 08:29 PM

Yeah, exercise definitely helps to increase blood flow all over your body. I guess I should hunt around the office for a private spot to do some body-weight exercises.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on February 21, 2012
at 06:38 PM

That hack works great, Adam! I also found out that, when I go to school, when I go I'm cold, when I return I'm warm. I thought it might be the stress, but why would I get stressed out from going to school???

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on February 21, 2012
at 05:01 PM

I got wool socks, gloves, and do bodyweight squats.

1
8763119a6ff9dce4bf78d543426b0144

on March 08, 2011
at 09:58 PM

Funny i stumbled across this today...yesterday i fasted for 24 hrs and at about hr 16 i too became cold and couldn't warm up, but actually was getting colder. I even turned the heat up in the house and the wife was super surprised. I am 6' 192lbs with 7% BF...all of thses answers make sense. Thnx for all the input hackers!

1
9bc6f3df8db981f67ea1465411958c8d

on January 08, 2011
at 06:55 AM

When fasting your body is answering by conserving more energy and that translates in less body heat. That's a first common sign of the body in energy conservation mode. I you were to fast for an extended period of time, you would get even colder, then would have less and less energy and eventually even climbing stairs would seem like a chore.

This is normal, but I think that it can only get better with time and your body getting used to be efficient with its energy.

1
5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on January 06, 2011
at 07:20 PM

Not really big on fasting, but for me, I've noticed I get cold a lot easier when I'm cutting the calories. I always attributed it to the metabolism running a bit more sluggishly without the extra calories.

0
37852a8f3131b6871fcfccce1f861ef6

on March 21, 2016
at 07:41 AM

Yes. Incredibly cold. And my circulation is fine. Have learnt to bundle up, wear five pairs of socks and gloves in bed.

Fasting works great for me in every other aspect.

 

 

 

 

 

0
4ee70be4b90aebf30fd55e303147a5fe

on January 16, 2014
at 08:21 AM

Fast sometimes I have ,Yep there are some problems ,something like your body circumstances.Complicated ,if you like check here maybe there will provide some solutions.

http://bit.ly/1b4HA4f

0
74d36eab8de11fa3d66782cd471c20ec

(0)

on January 14, 2014
at 12:42 PM

Stumbled across this, possibly outdated by now, but anyway. I experience the same at the end of a 16 hour fast period (16/8 pattern). My explanation (being a MD by the way) is different: During fasting your body shows a slight shift in the balance of the autonomous nervous system towards the sympathetic side. This so called noradrenergic or adrenergic reaction leads to cold extremities due to less blood flow in the extremities. It also causes the nice feeling of being wide awake and alert. You can enhance (or worsen) the effect by the intake of caffeine (as in coffee).

0
987a0b119a5343daf6bd485be069d25e

(0)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

I am freezing right now and I'm three hours from being done on a 24 hour. I have fingerless gloves on but I am so cold. I had to take a bath before bed and I just laid there for 2 hours shivering.

0
3cce90784d45f2c44e53792ed1ee576f

on April 03, 2013
at 11:57 AM

I seem to get really cold every time I eat. I have Raynauds's disease i.e. thick blood that finds it hard to reach the extremities. I'm having green tea for breakfast, poached eggs with spinach for lunch and whatever I like for dinner. I've just had my eggs and my body temperature has shot down and I can't feel my big toes, which have changed colour. Last two days I've had to have a bath after dinner to warm up. Its only four degrees outside but that's warmer than the last few weeks, although not all the snow has melted, it is sunny.

I just think what little energy I have is concentrated around digesting my food, but seriously, two eggs and some spinach, how much energy does that require?

0
635db7f65298b2f1f119a2efaf161ac3

on March 06, 2013
at 09:12 PM

I too get cold when fasting. I do daily 20/4 windows, and 16/8 windows on lifting days. Works ok for me though, since I live in the desert southwest and summers get into the 100+ temps. :)

Studies have shown that metabolism actually increases when fasting, at least during the first 24-72 hours. More info on that at leangains, just search for Top 10 Fasting Myths Debunked article. So, it's unlikely the coldness is due to reduced metabolism. Though I don't have an answer for it.

By the way, when I have my big pile-o-chicken breast at dinner, I warm up quickly. :)

0
2d45f120f93691d1b2c283344dfd027c

on November 01, 2012
at 12:57 PM

Fasting reduces body-core Temp,the body conserves energy by pushing circulating blood to the major organs,this is logical and normal.Those with less than 10% body fat will feel it more. People may also notice an increase in blood pressure while others notice a drop in pressure. this is way fasts should be supervised by someone whom knows the warning signs for certain individuals that may get into potential serious problems.

Anyone whom has never fasted before or whom has known health issues should always be supervised and monitored by a health care professional.such clinics do exist such as true-north in the USA and I myself supervise individuals www.bodybudddha.co.uk.

0
0b919d047609c0dd4d5a2016a5ff56da

on July 21, 2012
at 04:23 PM

im muslim and i'm fasting for about 18shours this ramadan, just googled cold and fasting and this came up.

why are you lot fasting is this part of your religion too?

my mates dad was a rastfarian and he would randomly fast because he said it's good for the body but this was not aa obligation of his religion.

0
C42ca04212a396353131758237f209d7

on February 21, 2011
at 10:54 AM

A study by Johnson et al in 1982 showed that the subjects on a calorie restricted diet or intermittent fasting program were leaner and more active yet more vulnerable to cold. Fortunately, unlike, the small animals used in these tests, we have ample methods of keeping warm and this, although an expected side effect, is not to be concerning.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!