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Pain (cramping?) in hands and feet - diet related?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 30, 2012 at 6:02 PM

For the past week or so I've been noticing slight pain in my feet and hands, mostly in the palms and arches, especially when I'm going to bed. It feels sort of like cramping of very small muscles in the arch and palms. But just now I started to notice it when standing here in front of my computer, so I thought I'd ask about it. I'm also finding that my arms have been "going to sleep" more often when I sleep with them in weird positions (something that has definitely happened before, but not with this frequency). The pain is mild, but if it's diet related then probably something is out of whack, and I'd rather nip it in the bud.

I would imagine this is diet related, as most of my other health complaints have been. Any idea how?

My diet:

I eat a low to moderate carb paleo-type diet, including fermented dairy (kefir, cheese, yogurt). I've found that fruit seems to trigger acne, so I've avoided it for the past year. Safe starches don't seem to cause problems, so I try to eat them in moderate amounts for glucose as per the Perfect Health Diet. Nuts and chocolate seem to trigger acne as well so I avoid them. I eat lots of bone broth, vegetables, saturated fats, and moderate amounts of meat and organ meats(for a paleo eater...). I do a leangains type IF protocol with a 14 - 17 hour fasting window from around 8 or 9pm until 10am - 1pm.

Recently I've been eating more fermented vegetables as a couple of batches of kimchi and saurkrout have matured.

Am I perhaps trending towards hypothyroid (again - I think I was before I added in the safe starches)? Might I be deficient in something (like potassium?) that is causing cramping? Or is it more likely to be nerve-related?

Any insight? Is this something to be worried about?

Thanks

Edit: I wonder if circulation is somehow an issue. Just now I was sitting and reading and found that if I directed attention and energy (as in chi, ki, or whatever - I practice aikido...) to my hand when it was hurting I could feel the discomfort move from the palm out the fingers and then away completely. When I relax my attention I can feel the discomfort creep back along my fingers to my hands and even to the elbows. Perhaps Raynaud's or something related as was suggested?

747f9c27424619fe3ae717c7455c292e

(610)

on September 05, 2012
at 06:44 PM

I'm now thinking that milk thistle, which I began taking for my liver is involved. I've had insomnia two nights this week, and yesterday I had a mild headache, which I never get. I thought that these might be related to whatever's causing the hand/foot pain, which, come to think of it, probably started shortly after I began taking milk thistle. It looks like milk thistle lowers cholesterol, which could be the cause of the pain I think? Anyways, I'm going to drop it and see what happens.

5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 31, 2012
at 03:20 AM

Then my money is on peripheral neuropathy being caused by such autoimmune issues. Many people think that only diabetics get neuropathy. Not the case: elevated BG and/or neuromuscular disturbances caused by lupus, Sjogren's RA, MS, AS, scleroderma, etc. can all be responsible for neuropathy and weird painful and numb feelings at night.

747f9c27424619fe3ae717c7455c292e

(610)

on August 30, 2012
at 10:30 PM

I've definitely got autoimmune issues, and I've had other nerve issues in the past. I would frequently get twitching in my face, especially around the eyes. I haven't had that for a while though thankfully.

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5 Answers

2
5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 30, 2012
at 07:24 PM

I'd go see a neuro and rule out neuropathy. Even though you don't seem to eat high carb, neuropathy can result from underlying autoimmune issues and/or impaired IR. Sounds a little bit like small fiber neuropathy. It'd be wise to rule that out before focusing exclusively on the diet or micronutrient deficiency. That hand going numb is probably related to prior carpal and is a nerve entrapment issue. But that also can be worsened by any conditions that promote neuropathy (c.f., diabeties and/or autoimmune conditions).

747f9c27424619fe3ae717c7455c292e

(610)

on August 30, 2012
at 10:30 PM

I've definitely got autoimmune issues, and I've had other nerve issues in the past. I would frequently get twitching in my face, especially around the eyes. I haven't had that for a while though thankfully.

5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 31, 2012
at 03:20 AM

Then my money is on peripheral neuropathy being caused by such autoimmune issues. Many people think that only diabetics get neuropathy. Not the case: elevated BG and/or neuromuscular disturbances caused by lupus, Sjogren's RA, MS, AS, scleroderma, etc. can all be responsible for neuropathy and weird painful and numb feelings at night.

2
A0b7cabc6897d525cfa151b5b2a27ec6

on August 30, 2012
at 06:25 PM

I have the same problem. A magnesium deficiency could be the cause as well. I'm getting myself tested at the doctor's this weekend. Also check out Reynaud's disease. I got it because of my fibroymalgia. Gets the worst when my hands and feet are cold.

1
3da133d12992bb6ebc007b25502bd895

on December 21, 2012
at 05:56 AM

Aloha!

I became low thyroid, borderline on low carb and switched to Perfect Health Diet. I had already started some thyroid compounded T3 T4. I was just in the Middle East and started having palpitations so I backed off the thyroid. (I am RN but didn't seek a physician over there) Also I took daily Magnesium, Iodine at home and didn't take it with me because my bags were overweighted with dive gear and camera equipment ;p. I sat next to a doctor on the way home and she said I should not stop Mg abruptly. (I have no idea if she knows what she is talking about) Anyway, my arms are falling asleep at night and your comment made me want to mention that I am having a similiar scenario. Tonight I went out and bought banannas and took some Mg Citrate. Good Luck. uh, yea, the hand cramps are a first.

1
3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on August 30, 2012
at 06:33 PM

did you switch from table salt to sea salt? Sounds like iodine deficiency.

0
7eea3916b44bfe420cd7fa8f16da1215

on April 10, 2014
at 02:44 PM

I've just switched to a paleo diet (not exclusively meat and veggies yet but way way less carbs..) and I have noticed the same aching in my feet and hands and weird puffing up. I really do think it's diet related as it happened at the same time I started cutting way back on the grains. On the brighter side my problematic digestion has been really solved.. after 20 years of low grade problems and then 2 years of IBS everything seems to have cleared. It's only been 3 months but I feel this is a breakthrough.

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