So Ive been VLC for 4 months now. I eat meat and fat, and some green veggies. NO starchy veggies or sugar of any kind. Previously Ive had some sort of gut sickness, allergies/intolerances to wheat and dairy, and possibly other starches.
My main issue that caused me to try VLC Paleo was that I was a slave to food. I was starving every 3 hours..light headed, dizzy, cranky, unfocused. And, the worse part was that I would wake up about 3-4 hours after bedtime with my heart beating fast and my adrenaline pumping.....UTTERLY STARVING. The rest of the night was not restful. This went on for years, becoming critical recently.
Ive been basically a whole foods, natural eater for 10 years. It didnt fix it. So I gave up carbs cold turkey. I eat a a lot of raw lamb and beef and sashimi, and I love it. I dont crave carbs at all. My weight training strength gains (but not mass gains) have progressed better than ever before. For the first three weeks of keto adaptation, I suffered. Then, as my body got keto adapted, it felt like running on diesel.
I never run out of energy in my workouts now. I can go hours without eating, sometimes all day, and I never lose focus or get dizzy. I sleep much better. I still wake up 5 or 6 hours after bedtime, and sometimes my heart rate is up a bit, but I can go back to sleep and get quality rest after that, and I DONT feel hungry.
Then I tried adding 50 grams of starch carbs (Japanese yam) to post workout meals, three days a week, in an effort to get an anabolic effect and gain muscle mass. First time was Monday. That afternoon I got super sleepy at work, lost focus, and felt irritable. I also felt flush in the face as if my blood sugar just wasnt right.
Tuesday, I was back on my rest day/no carbs routine. I got really hungry before lunch, where I was content before. Wednesday, I had another carb/glycogen load post workout. Immediately felt cranky, moody, and flush in the face.
Thursday rest day I was starving before lunch. Last night, I woke up 5 hours after bedtime with my heart beating double time, STARVING. I didnt sleep much the rest of the night, laying there hungry.
My workout today was the first time in two cycles that I not only didnt progress, I regressed! I had no energy.
Im definitely dropping the carb load idea and going back to meat, fat, and veggies only. No muscle gain is worth feeling like that.
Has ANYONE else experienced anything like this kind of carb intolerance? Whats with the waking up at night with my heart rate up, starving? I now know unequivocally that carbs cause my disrupted hunger signals, and at least exacerbate my rude awakenings at night. Any ideas?
asked byanimaleater (2432)
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on March 30, 2012
at 09:45 PM
Hi Animaleater. I'm not exactly the same but I have lots of problems with complex carbs. They make me very hungry very quickly (spaghetti squash can make me screamingly hungry), can make me gassy, can also make me very tired very very quickly.
I'm not sure why I have such a hard time processing carbs but it may have something to do with the bacteria in my gut being out of whack. I recently had a parasitology test which told me I'm missing some vital bacteria. I'm now supplementing with it and hope to try some carbs in the next few weeks. You might consider getting tested to make sure you've got good balances of the basic necessary bacteria. It's a symbiotic relationship where we are wholey dependent on our bacteria to process our food and feed us nutrients, vitamins, enzymes, etc... Antibiotics, stress, all sorts of weird shit can affect it. If they're out of whack then we are out of whack.
on March 30, 2012
at 05:37 PM
I had the same problem with waking up in the middle of the night with my heart beating and so hungry i could not go back to sleep. However, this problem i attributed to eating too little carbs to supplement my active lifestyle. I'm not sure if I was right to think along this track but I found that as soon as i upped the carbs in my diet, specifically on training days, the problem went away. I would really love to know the science behind this and why this happens to people.
on April 07, 2012
at 12:06 PM
I have the same problem. The waking up multiple times with heart pounding has been the case for me forever. When I used to eat a "healthy" high carb diet, I used to have night sweats as well.
For one month I ate only fatty meat and morning coffee with cream and for the first time in years, I slept through the night- no waking, no hunger, no sweats.
After the all meat month, which I found hard to maintain, I went to VLC and starting waking with some but less hunger (no sweats).
My understanding of what's happening is that my blood sugar is too low at night and adrenal glands kick in to raise blood sugar, hence the racing heart. I’m also assuming insulin surges when that ravenous hunger is there upon waking. Sometimes I just have the heart racing and little to no hunger. Sometimes I have the hunger as well.
I’m now trying to go back to fatty meat as much as possible to try to get back to sleeping through the night. I wish I could get there with a general LC diet but it seems I have to be even more strict.