3

votes

Low Carb = Thin and No Period vs Moderate Carb = Regular Period and Spare Tires

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 17, 2012 at 8:43 PM

I was wondering if other ladies go through the same thing. I have tried Low Carb (anywhere from 0g to 50g) before and after paleo with similar results, i.e. amazing weight loss, easily mantained, great energy, great skin but zero period. It happened when I did the South Beach diet for 2 years and last year, when I did 100% paleo all year, whith about 30-50g carbs, 80g when I exercised.

Now I have been following paleo with higher carbs 100-150g, my period is pretty regular, but I hate the way I look. I went up 2 jeans sizes, my belly is fat and I have massive love handles.

Has anyone gone throught a similar situation and found a balance? My carbs are a little white rice, sometimes sweet potato, fruits and honey a few times per week.

I eat lots of fat from coconut oil (a few tbsps when cooking), a big salmon steak several times per week, and fatty meats like lamb, few times per week.

I don't know what else I should mention... :)

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on November 18, 2012
at 09:54 PM

30 Bananas a Day people spout this?!?! I thought this was the kind of thing you'd read on a pro-ana/pro-mia site. Holy cow, Batman; that was terrifying.

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 05:53 PM

Start lifting Heavy , your sending the wrong signals to your body , you will watch the fat melt off !

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 02:28 PM

Yes, I only weight lift, very light stuff btw and do a bit of cardio. Will try the carbs at night and see how it goes. Thanks!

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 02:27 PM

It could be both, I guess. I upped my calories from about 1600 to 2100, because staying in the 1600 - 1800 annoingly enough also meant no period. I will look into the article, thanks for the link!

7b20db75b09540914bd0c852e868a9d6

(454)

on November 18, 2012
at 12:35 PM

i was going to say this, too. unless you were raising your carbs without lowering your other macros, and therefore consuming more calories, i don't see how going up in carbs would make you gain actual fat.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on November 18, 2012
at 07:41 AM

somebody missed sex ed in school I think.

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 06:08 AM

Start putting carbs @nite , do protein and fat threw out the day and get all your carbs @ nite . It will mos def help wit the weight loss

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 06:05 AM

As of the no period i will admit first hand im not an expert in that field . Is the weight training all u do ?

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 12:09 AM

I nearly detoxed my hair, nails and teeth on raw vegan, so, erm, no detox for me, thanks. I really enjoy being a fertile member of the species, with a fair chance of procreating in the future.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on November 17, 2012
at 11:31 PM

While I don't think anything in here is accurate I'm not sure talking shit is the best response. Joanna - Do you have a source for this info we could take a look at?

Fa666905e4ed72858084dbcfed164daf

(649)

on November 17, 2012
at 11:22 PM

Joking right??? This is a total joke. ^^^^ HERE is the #1 reason NOBODY should take health advice from strangers on the internet! Periods = toxic???? Vegan, right? Former fruitarian? Come on, fess up.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 10:48 PM

Thanks, this is very reassuring, because I have been very wary of cutting carbs again. I don't drink coffee and I don't indulge on protein because I have had several kidney stones and can't really mess with that. I guess I will try exercising more in the evenings and having my carbs before bed, because they really help me sleep better. Hope the handles will go away this time, even if slowly :)

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:35 PM

I weight lift at a regular gym (3x week), and eat 3 square meals, mostly because it is practical to cook just once for husband and me. I found that when I eat 1 meal a day I felt pretty good, but It also contributed for no period.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:28 PM

I never tried this before. So, considering I eat 100% paleo (except for the rice and maybe honey) the only thing I should cut down is fruit? I must read more about it, I guess.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:25 PM

I lift weights 3x week, with 20 min run before and after, and my rollerblades are my only means of transport, so I do exercise.

21b36b3de8ff31b0d41e7f0f4b5c1e03

(1688)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:09 PM

Do you exercise? That can bridge the gap between carrying a bit more weight but not going up in size/love handles.

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8 Answers

4
Fa666905e4ed72858084dbcfed164daf

on November 17, 2012
at 10:15 PM

I'm sorry to tell you that this is very common, but not talked about much. Many women have reported disrupted cycles on LC - including this woman right here. You are right to add back in the carbs so please stay the course on that. Do not restrict! Do not fast. Keep up the weights for sure.

Here's an unsubstantiated theory about what's going on here. You've sent your body the signal that it was starving - that's pretty much how a long term LC diet works. You were walking about with elevated cortisol and adrenaline which are the stress hormones the body uses to make glucose. You were surely secreting a lot of these hormones since you did LC for an extended period of time and your glycogen reserves were surely low. So cortisol was needed to make glucose for you to survive. Reintroducing carbs into a high cortisol environment can translate into fat gain - especially about the tummy and love handle area. I am banking on the fact that over time if you continue to stay the course your body comp will improve.

Here are a few thoughts:

You could try to work with your natural cortisol rhythm by doing what the other poster said and time carbs for the lower cortisol part of the day - later in the afternoon and evening. Which means that if you're working out you may want to time that for later in the day as well so you can get some carbs in after.

If you are a coffee drinker, don't eat your carbs at that the same time. Coffee is great and all but it does elevate cortisol so perhaps carbs plus coffee could be a problem.

Finally, mess around with fruits instead of starches and see how you do. Personally I do better with fruit and dairy sources of carbs.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 10:48 PM

Thanks, this is very reassuring, because I have been very wary of cutting carbs again. I don't drink coffee and I don't indulge on protein because I have had several kidney stones and can't really mess with that. I guess I will try exercising more in the evenings and having my carbs before bed, because they really help me sleep better. Hope the handles will go away this time, even if slowly :)

4
Aff97e82eccef9d957abdd7317f72457

on November 17, 2012
at 09:18 PM

maybe the kinds of carbs you are consuming are causing you bloat and weight gain. I started a FODMAPS elimination diet the other day for similiar issues and in just 3 days have realized that fruit and I are not friends. Look into it, its very interesting so far!

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:28 PM

I never tried this before. So, considering I eat 100% paleo (except for the rice and maybe honey) the only thing I should cut down is fruit? I must read more about it, I guess.

2
543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 18, 2012
at 04:12 AM

just wondering if your increase in belly fat when you are higher carb, is not actually fat at all, but rather an increase in water storage.

tho, from a visual perspective, i guess it's irrelevant what it actually is, if it still "looks like" belly fat and love handles.

Paul Jaminet had this to say on the water weight subject;

"I think we have to conclude that the phenomenon of water weight loss on low-carb diets, and water weight gain on carb re-feeding, is variable across persons. In some persons it happens, and in others it doesn???t."

source "Water Weight: Does It Change When Changing Diets? Does It Matter?"

I do not know if there is any info in Paul' post which may help you, i hope so, i have not read it in detail myself. So there may be something in there for you. And there are also links to some CarbSane posts on the topic.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 02:27 PM

It could be both, I guess. I upped my calories from about 1600 to 2100, because staying in the 1600 - 1800 annoingly enough also meant no period. I will look into the article, thanks for the link!

7b20db75b09540914bd0c852e868a9d6

(454)

on November 18, 2012
at 12:35 PM

i was going to say this, too. unless you were raising your carbs without lowering your other macros, and therefore consuming more calories, i don't see how going up in carbs would make you gain actual fat.

1
F694b3d8c620c7717287b32b6cac7f7e

on November 18, 2012
at 05:34 AM

I have a friend who was vegan for years. She became very sick and her period completely stopped for many years.

I persuaded her to go on the paleo diet and her periods have come back.

My own experience was my period became regular and healthy when I went paleo. Little to no premenstrual tension. This is after many years when my period was getting more and more problematic.

I think the body stops periods for either of 2 reasons: 1. It is too malnourished to have a period and certainly not nourished enough to have a child or 2. The body needs to heal and is using the nourishment it receives to make itself well so it will be healthy to have children. There is a doctor who treats infertility with the low carb diet.

I am now in menopause (53) and I finding myself buoyant and happy with some hot flushes but that's because I keep drinking coffee. Alcohol is also another hot flush promoter.

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on November 17, 2012
at 10:15 PM

I had my RMR tested both moderate carb (200gmish) and ketogenic. My RMR was 20% higher on Keto which fits with my subjective experience of extremely high energy on a Ketogenic diet. It is possible that if you did LC and at 10% more you could have both....

1
3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:23 PM

Look into carb back loading and indeed lift more weights . Do u crossfit ?? If so back-off on it a little as on a paleo LC to moderate Carb approach is not enuff to support the body from muscle loss , as weird as u might think this might sound tge fat gain can be from muscle loss and not necessarily carbs . The carbs u are eating are indeed well . Can u let me kno if u crossfit also how many days a week etc.. do u do pwo carbs and do u weight lift ???

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 06:08 AM

Start putting carbs @nite , do protein and fat threw out the day and get all your carbs @ nite . It will mos def help wit the weight loss

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 02:28 PM

Yes, I only weight lift, very light stuff btw and do a bit of cardio. Will try the carbs at night and see how it goes. Thanks!

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 17, 2012
at 09:35 PM

I weight lift at a regular gym (3x week), and eat 3 square meals, mostly because it is practical to cook just once for husband and me. I found that when I eat 1 meal a day I felt pretty good, but It also contributed for no period.

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 06:05 AM

As of the no period i will admit first hand im not an expert in that field . Is the weight training all u do ?

3089dd0b9a8f1d24f1b08d6cc3ca84e3

(363)

on November 18, 2012
at 05:53 PM

Start lifting Heavy , your sending the wrong signals to your body , you will watch the fat melt off !

-2
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on November 18, 2012
at 06:36 PM

anonymous, yeah, i am a former vegan/fruitarian, but i wasn't making a joke. glad i could make you laugh though haha. satchmo, i read it on the 30BAD website years ago so i wouldn't be able to give you a link. it made sense to me at the time and still does. marcela, yeah, raw veganism has been hard on me as well. gydle, i sat through health class just like everyone else. i think it's a requirement unfortunately.

-7
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on November 17, 2012
at 11:15 PM

i personally don't think periods are necessary. i haven't had one in a long time and it's a blessing- i hate wearing pads. i've read that women get periods because we are so toxic and it's our bodies way of getting rid of the toxins, so since your diet now is so clean, your body doesn't need to detoxify as much. obviously, if you are getting fat then you don't need the excess carbs.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on November 18, 2012
at 07:41 AM

somebody missed sex ed in school I think.

Fa666905e4ed72858084dbcfed164daf

(649)

on November 17, 2012
at 11:22 PM

Joking right??? This is a total joke. ^^^^ HERE is the #1 reason NOBODY should take health advice from strangers on the internet! Periods = toxic???? Vegan, right? Former fruitarian? Come on, fess up.

8742eb54ef934a87d4f398e2c48a199a

(15)

on November 18, 2012
at 12:09 AM

I nearly detoxed my hair, nails and teeth on raw vegan, so, erm, no detox for me, thanks. I really enjoy being a fertile member of the species, with a fair chance of procreating in the future.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on November 18, 2012
at 09:54 PM

30 Bananas a Day people spout this?!?! I thought this was the kind of thing you'd read on a pro-ana/pro-mia site. Holy cow, Batman; that was terrifying.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on November 17, 2012
at 11:31 PM

While I don't think anything in here is accurate I'm not sure talking shit is the best response. Joanna - Do you have a source for this info we could take a look at?

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