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What am I doing wrong?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 16, 2013 at 2:08 AM

I'm a 22 year old female; 5'7" and 150 pounds. I used to run a mile at least 3 times a week if not more and a little bit of strength training. I started paleo/primal last month because I was having a problem with binging on carbs/sugar and hated the way I felt especially the lack of energy I had. I took a break from exercising when I started because I was just so tired. I thought it was an adjustment to the way I was eating, but then I started getting heart palpitations around week 2 (I went to the doctor and got blood work this week and still do not have the results back). I also have extreme brain fog and muscle weakness. I have been alternating between being constipated and having extremely soft stool. I do not take any supplements (mostly because I don't know what to take).

My sample diet:

Breakfast: 2 to 3 eggs cooked w/butter, bacon, cucumber w/avocado and salsa Lunch: spinach salad w/beef (or tuna or chicken), guacamole, sour cream, tomatoes, onions w/almonds or macadamia nuts Dinner: baked chicken cooked w/coconut oil, sweet potato w/butter, and carrots

I will usually have 2 servings of fruit a day such as an apple and a cup of blueberries. I typically eat around 1800 to 2000 calories a day.

Other foods that I eat: blackberries olive oil sauerkraut chicken sausage Salmon dark chocolate feta cheese bell peppers broccoli pineapple bananas watermelon strawberries

I added up a typical day in micronutrients and got this.. Total fat: 121g Total carbs: 110g Protein: 93g Sugar: 51 Total carbs: 89

If you have any suggestions for me I would greatly appreciate it. I really want this diet to work out for me because I think it makes the most sense to me and it really helps me not binge on carbs/sugars. I also live in NJ so if anyone can recommend a health care provider to help me work this out that would be awesome.

I forgot to add that I've been feeling extremely irritable and having crying spells for no reason.

81feb1022a28f534867616b9316c7aa4

(638)

on March 30, 2013
at 05:38 PM

I agree, I had to experiment with my carbs alot to find out what worked best for me. Too low and I can't sleep, can't concentrate etc and too high and it set off cravings for sugary things. and with fat, at first too much in one go and I got nauseas... seem to be adjusting now. Think it just takes a bit of time to get in too :)

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 03:07 PM

I'm being checked for lyme's disease and mono. I will definitely incorporate more fruits and vegetables! I am not going to stop looking for an answer until I find one. Thank you for all of your suggestions. I hope you start to feel better!

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 02:54 PM

Yeah, I'm getting checked for vitamin D..I'm really anxious to see what the blood work finds. I will definitely check into green pastures cod liver oil if it turns out to be my vitamin d levels. Thank you for your suggestion!

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 02:50 PM

It's been exactly a month today and I don't think I'm losing weight. That was a really interesting article and that could be exactly what's happening to me. I just figured that since its been a month already my carb intake shouldn't really affect me that much. I think I will up my carbs and see if that makes a difference. Thank you!

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5 Answers

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on March 02, 2013
at 08:36 AM

Paleo is in itself a whole journey. I just felt like you at the beginning, but I noticed that the finding the right amount of carbs was the key. I noticed that my body could not recover as fast when low on carbs, or using just sweet potatoes as carbs instead of rice. My advice:

  • You might need 6 months into Paleo before you can finally hack your carbs
  • Wait 3-4 months before every time you change the type or amount of carbs
  • Never forget to have lots of fat along your carbs
  • Using carb-loading days is a more advance hack that you might want to experiment with, specially for workouts, but do not do it your first year.

Even today, if I go too low on carbs, might get bad moods and some brain fog.

81feb1022a28f534867616b9316c7aa4

(638)

on March 30, 2013
at 05:38 PM

I agree, I had to experiment with my carbs alot to find out what worked best for me. Too low and I can't sleep, can't concentrate etc and too high and it set off cravings for sugary things. and with fat, at first too much in one go and I got nauseas... seem to be adjusting now. Think it just takes a bit of time to get in too :)

0
Df5a3fb2b79ef55238def7bcdad1b94e

on March 02, 2013
at 03:03 PM

I am far from an expert but am wondering if you have any food allergies at work here. I would ask your doctor to test for those, as well. Was just reading a section from Dr. Russell Blaylock's newsletter titled Food Intolerance and Allergies Lead to Brain Fog. He mentions a friend who had been tested and discovered an allergy to egg whites. Once he stopped eating them, the brain fog disappeared. Dr. Blaylock goes on to write, "During my research on immunoexitotoxicity, I discovered severeal studies that show when the gut's immune cells are activated by, for example, food allergens it caused the microglia cells in the brain to activate. This interfered with higher brain functions and caused brain fog."

If you do have food allergies, that might also explain some of your gut issues, as well. Good luck to you. I hope you get it sorted out.

0
3b031bce7c181c10452ee202e2b54dc6

on February 16, 2013
at 05:39 AM

Ok, Im going through much the same thing.

The muscle weakness and brain fog makes me think it may be mono or lyme's disease. I have been suffering for 4 months! I am tired and sleeping a lot. I cant handle stress like I used too and I can hardly walk!

Don't push it! Take time off now. Eat even more healthy and eat some fruits and vegetables until you cant eat anymore.

Start taking lots of vitamin c and go ask your doc for a mono spot test and lyme test, maybe even HIV to be safe. If these come back negative and your symptoms start to worsen schedule another visit and keep pushing to figure it out.

You could also be experiencing some kindo f allergy from the nuts or who knows!?

Good luck.

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 03:07 PM

I'm being checked for lyme's disease and mono. I will definitely incorporate more fruits and vegetables! I am not going to stop looking for an answer until I find one. Thank you for all of your suggestions. I hope you start to feel better!

0
4debe57f81d507bcb844f10b2ef38a83

(398)

on February 16, 2013
at 05:16 AM

Is your doc checking your vitamin D? If you are used to running, and you are not out there getting both exercise and ultraviolet light, that might have a major effect on your mood. Green Pastures fermented cod liver oil is a good supplement for D, because it has also has Vitamin A in the correct proportion for your body to use them both properly.

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 02:54 PM

Yeah, I'm getting checked for vitamin D..I'm really anxious to see what the blood work finds. I will definitely check into green pastures cod liver oil if it turns out to be my vitamin d levels. Thank you for your suggestion!

0
32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 16, 2013
at 03:32 AM

Kate- Exactly how far into it are you? Is this your third week or so? Your ratios look fine ... maybe a bit high in fat for starting out. Some people need to ramp up the fat slowly. Are you losing weight? Sometimes that gives me those same reactions - loose stools, heart palpitations, etc. I wonder if it's not tied to the fat being burned up (maybe toxins released? or just part of my body's process of burning it off?).

Also, sometimes the drastic change in carbs can do weird things to your hormones. If you were pretty high carb before, even going down to 100g might freak your body out. Here is an interesting article about that (the first part is a bit tedious .. in the middle she talks about hibernating and that's where it gets good):

http://drcate.com/going-low-carb-too-fast-may-trigger-thyroid-troubles-and-hormone-imbalance/

I would try to increase your carbs and decrease your fat a little, and see if that helps. Then slowly taper back to where you want to be. (At the beginning, I would even eat a bowl of oatmeal occasionally).

Don't feel like it's all or nothing from week 1. It can take some adjustment!

16c18a17afd6526f21b48744280d43e1

(0)

on February 16, 2013
at 02:50 PM

It's been exactly a month today and I don't think I'm losing weight. That was a really interesting article and that could be exactly what's happening to me. I just figured that since its been a month already my carb intake shouldn't really affect me that much. I think I will up my carbs and see if that makes a difference. Thank you!

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