5

votes

Why do I feel tired all the time? and I have brain fog?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 06, 2012 at 12:41 AM

I'm a 15 yr old guy. I've been paleo for about 1 or 2 years. Before that I was on the standard industrial diet, but I wasn't fat. I reckon now I'm pretty healthy, except that I feel tired all the time. I also have this brain fog that I can't get rid of. I've tried to find the cause of this, but it's very difficult. Going paleo helped a lot, but it's still there. It's manageable now when before it was a major issue.

It can't be a hydration issue- i drink about 2 cups (400 ml) of water every so often maybe 30 minutes to an hour. In total I estimate that I drink about 3-4 litres of water a day. I find that if I forget to drink water or I get to tired to refill, I feel massively worse, I may not need that much, but it's just a precaution because I've once drank only about 1-1 1/2 litres of water a day and I felt 5x worse than I usually do. I think switching to paleo made me need more water.

It can't be a vit D3 issue- while in the winter in New zealand (auckland, which is 37 degrees south, which is approximately equivalent to california?) I feel worse. right now summer has ended, and I have been going out regularly to midday sun without sunblock. VitD3 does help, but I'm pretty sure I'm not deficient.

It may be chemical poisoning, but I've cut pretty much all chemicals (bathroom products, processed foods, cleaning products) but I don't filter my water or eat organic, so I may be getting poisoned there. However, my friends drink the same water, eat a lot worse, and have chemicals like deodorants and soaps and stuff on them, and they arent tired. I don't take any medication/drugs by the way.

It may be vit B/B12, but I eat meat a lot more than my friends do, but they arent tired.

It may be EMF radiation, but I don't use a microwave and I don't have a cellphone, which my friends use regularly. I do however use a laptop sometimes (most of the time im on a desktop). I also use wireless internet. and I have an Mp3 player I carry all the time.

It may be sugar or caffiene- the main source of sugar I eat would be dark chocolate (70% cocoa) because I need that caffeine to keep going. I eat about 200 grams of that a day. But I heard studies proved dark chocolate was healthy, especially with the healthy fat in it. I also sometimes eat white rice/potatoes because of parents it is impractical to go 100% paleo. So I try and eat the "safe starches".

It may be stress/sleeping issues- but although I was stressed most of my life, I'm not stressed now. Also while I may be sleeping approx 10 minutes less a day, I catch up on the weekends. which is more than I can say for my friends, who again aren't tired.

It may be adrenal fatigue due to the stress, but even with the stress removed, it helps, but its still there.

It may be candida etc due to sugar, but I eat a lot less sugar than most people.

I don't think it's excercise because I do weights and sprints regularly (high intensity)

Maybe everyone feels this tired, but I'm the only one complaining about it, so its unlikely.

It's not fair that I feel so tired and cant concentrate all the time, while my friends who eat 50%+ processed food/sugar have loads of energy. Also, my parents, while they are unhealthy(not that unhealthy, imagine the typical slightly overweight middleaged woman for my mom, while middleaged guy who looks thin with a slight pot belly for my dad) do not have this energy problem.

If anyone has any advice as to whats going on, I'd really appreciate it.

edit: Im going to try to add starches. But even when I was high carb once, I still was tired. Maybe it was due to other stuff, so I don't know for sure if starches helped.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

I got into being healthy after I stumbled on mercola.com. Ever since I followed his advice I've felt a lot better. The more I did, the better I felt. Really the only reason I'm looking more into health right now, is because of my tiredness and I cant find the reason why. Also, I find most doctors barely treat the root cause, they just try to sell drugs. I wish I could find a doctor that would help me, but it seems more difficult than to actually solve the problem myself.

C0c839648b31512515daaffe8e4e9ad1

(468)

on September 10, 2012
at 12:28 AM

I'd add fruit in. And if you're shopping or you see people with some food and it looks really good, that probably means you need some nutrient that's in it. Could even be the glucose that comes from it. Add what you WANT to eat that's healthy. Don't avoid carbs too much! I advise fruit.

97ffbac59e88bdff6495d0a9b6f70ff7

(555)

on April 09, 2012
at 04:02 AM

Yes see the doc first - but in my experience, if they too tell you "oh you just need to do get a bit more sleep, or exercise more, etc." FIND A NEW DOC. If you try b12, be sure to read up on this specific protocol - you want methyl b12, not the form that is commonly found in drugstore supplements (cyano b12).

121a16aded2bed8dca492d3c9662ef4c

(1327)

on April 07, 2012
at 02:41 PM

Samuel, you are *growing*. This is a critical time for your body, you need to feed it, feed it, and feed it some more! You are physically active, so you don't need to be worrying about getting fat here. Don't overthink your food. Just eat whole foods and don't fear carbohydrates. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice -- if it's not in a package, you should be just fine. And I'm seconding Sunny Beaches -- before you start really messing about, see a doctor.

121a16aded2bed8dca492d3c9662ef4c

(1327)

on April 07, 2012
at 02:38 PM

Samuel, you are *growing*. This is a critical time for your body, you need to feed it, feed it, and feed it some more! You are physically active, so you don't need to be worrying about getting fat here. Don't overthink your food. Just eat whole foods and don't fear carbohydrates.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 02:26 PM

Health complications can be linked to just about any kind of diet. Some of those that you have listed are also be linked to long term high carb diets.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 01:44 PM

"In what universe is 60 kg at 170 cm for a 15 year old underweight?" I only said "A little". It's really nothing to get your knickers in a twist about.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 07, 2012
at 01:09 PM

"Complications such as heart arrhythmias, cardiac contractile function impairment, sudden death, osteoporosis, kidney damage, increased cancer risk, impairment of physical activity and lipid abnormalities can all be linked to long-term restriction of carbohydrates in the diet." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14672862

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 12:18 PM

And 200g of chocolate as well as 200g of butter daily is too much of questionable food, even for a 15 year old. Butter is healthy yes, but it still contains some lactose and at 200g that's alot of dairy. And chocolate should be nothing more than a small treat, not two large bars per day. Have you looked into the http://paleodietlifestyle.com/ website? He is also a young guy who started paleo at a fairly young age to cope with health issues throughout his teenage years, and from what I know he has issues with butter and coconut and many other foods and eats very strict paleo.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:57 AM

I mean 5' 7", darn keyboard. When I was a youngster none of my boyfriends weighed more than 65 kg at 5' 10" to 6', I myself as a girl weighed 50-55 kg at 167 cm (5' 6").

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:52 AM

In what universe is 60 kg at 170 cm for a 15 year old underweight??? That's 135 lbs at 5'7", approximately.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:46 AM

Then maybe you should go see a doctor and first have some basic bloodwork done to check for any major deficencies or unusual hormone imbalances. And then go from there. Eat good food and lots of it and skip the cocoa/coffee. When all the basics are covered and you are still tired 24/7 then you can think about anything out of the ordinary. Good luck!!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:37 AM

See the doc first. You have already been feeling unwell for too long so now is the time to go to the doc.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:33 AM

You are a little underweight. So you are obviously not eating enough. If you don't eat enough you will be tired.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:32 AM

Cliff, so you are unable to explain how low carb is dangerous?

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:57 AM

No I havent actually, I'd probably look into that.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:56 AM

I don't think teenagers should be this tired. Maybe my hormones are way screwed up.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:56 AM

Yeah, I would say yes to the above questions. I don't know much about ADHD, but I don't think I have it. Thanks for your response though it gave me something to think about.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:54 AM

I feel neutral after eating safe starches. I eat about 200g of chocolate and about 200g of butter, not to mention the fat in steak. Im about 170 cm tall. I'm 60 kg, and I have been that weight for at least a few months even though ive gained muscle, and I don't know why. Ive heard theres no point calorie counting so I don't bother.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:51 AM

Thanks. I have felt my health improve a lot.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:50 AM

200g isnt anywhere near half... its more like an eighth to a quarter... maybe even less

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:49 AM

I heard they taste nice mixed together. But OJ is too processed and i don't like milk.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:48 AM

Yeah, I do think that it is either not caused by low carb, or it is not the only cause. When I was on a standard diet which was relatively high carb I still felt this bad. I started feeling bad about one or two years before I went low carb paleo. I'm going to try adding carbs, then supping with B12, then maybe seeing a doctor. I really don't know what else to do.

00c8eb3f6e6a1884216044ca29cf868a

on April 07, 2012
at 02:57 AM

He's in good health, he's probably getting more nutrients than 99% of the world's adolescent population, and more absolute calories than 90% of it. He just wants more energy, mental and physical. The sky isn't falling, and alarmism isn't helpful.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 09:47 PM

Another thing that strikes me is that you say you eat 200 grams of 70% cholcolate. That's quite a bit. Chocolate contains many more drugs than just theobromine (and no caffeine btw). Google chocolate hangover. The only reason people say dark chocolate is healthy is because of the antioxidants (like in berries and red wine) but a)you don't need an antioxidant overload if you eat healthy and b) antioxidants can be toxic and c) you wouldn't drink 2 bottles of red wine a day because it's "healthy"? I myself get severe headaches from just a small amount of pure chocolate.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 06, 2012
at 09:18 PM

The alternative is don't be afraid of carbohydrate.

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on April 06, 2012
at 08:59 PM

+1 Great Answer. If he is 20 and still feeling funky, maybe then its time to micromanage. if that.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 06, 2012
at 06:42 PM

He is already eating some so called "safe starches" (oh how I dislike that phrase).

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 06, 2012
at 06:38 PM

Perhaps you might care to explain how low carb is dangerous for 15 year olds and then suggest an alternative?

F20af1e0c77eff221d556e3db0fc5684

(248)

on April 06, 2012
at 05:18 PM

Another vote for trying the carbs. Just work in around 500 carb calories a day for 2 weeks and see what happens. If you feel better but are concerned about the effects of carbs, you can investigate some of the arguments for and against their consumption, knowing that Mark Sisson falls more on the anti-carb side of the spectrum.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 06, 2012
at 03:39 PM

But only because the chocolate likely contains weird ingredients.

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:12 PM

breathe deeply; find the balance of coffee that stimulates you without making you shaky or upsetting your stomach (stimulants actually calm people with ADHD - which is why ritalin calms people with ADHD but cracks people out who don't have it); make a list and put the most mundane possible things on it and cross them off as you go about your day; keep a tally mark of how many times you unconsciously get up from your desk, open up the internet browser to goof off, check your phone, etc.; be kind to yourself. If you are ADHD, remember to work with yourself and not against yourself. Good luck!

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:08 PM

(continued from above); distract yourself slightly. This works WONDERS for me. Listen to music, sit on an exercise ball, fidget with one of those handheld puzzle things while you read... you get the point. Anything that demands some of your focus. For me, this occupies the part of my brain that is desperate for a distraction and leaves the rest of my brain available for doing the unrewarding task; turn off any instant messenger / text / whatever. Just do it. Turn it back on every 30 minutes if you need to check it; jump up and do squats / push ups and then immediately get back to work; >>>

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:04 PM

I can sympathize with important but uninteresting... here are some tips in the limited space: sandwich the unrewarding activity between two rewarding activities (read an article that interests you, then read the boring document for 20 minutes, then come play on PH for a few minutes); cross the mid-line of the brain (google this); group your least favorite activities at times when you are the most productive and save the mindless stuff for when you are at your worst; summarize every page you just read in three sentences or less (this got me through law school); continuing on next comment

B9cc28905ec54389c47cde031d709703

on April 06, 2012
at 02:00 PM

15 y/o? You should be drinking OJ and Milk kid.

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:40 PM

Everything about this post hit home with exception to the sun allergy. I would love to hear about your coping with ADHD. At work I am struggling to focus on a task such as reading a document (of little interest but important)... I'll get caught in a headspace where I am thinking about how I should be absorbing the information instead of actually focusing on the words on the page as I scan over them... I wonder if this is ADHD like, or maybe just another type of psychological problem.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:03 PM

And always remember that Mark Sisson is a man in his fifties who noticed late in life what foods hurt him long term and what nutrient ratio and so forth are more appropriate for his age group. From what I remember from his blog he even eats white bread when offered at a restaurant and his carb recommendations are just estimates/guesses from his own experience as a middle aged man. And he likes to sell products that IMHO have nothing to do with a paleo/primal real food diet/lifestyle. But that's just me.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:01 PM

60 g sugar is not a lot... I would stop chocolate too and drink coffee instead

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on April 06, 2012
at 12:17 PM

I think it's great that you're so interested in having a healthy diet, but sometimes moderation is the key. Not all doctors set out to "sell" drugs or to put a bandaid on the problem. If you don't like and trust your doctor, find one that you do! Good luck to you.

6b8d12fc3e43179f9ae1765a4d1a9dc2

(5914)

on April 06, 2012
at 11:22 AM

Sisson did basically make it up to help sell his book. He offers a lot of good advise and he puts a lot of effort into putting out some great info, but he is also stuck in a low carb dogmatic mindset.

00c8eb3f6e6a1884216044ca29cf868a

on April 06, 2012
at 08:16 AM

There might be no NEED for carbohydrates in a human diet--but if you want to "do weights and sprints regularly (high intensity)", you'll go a lot faster and feel much less tired if you eat them. +++ What sort of starches? Anything on the perfecthealthdiet.com "safe starch" list...potatoes (sweet or white), white rice, tapioca, sago, taro. +++ Tip: cook roasts instead of steaks and big vats of mashed potatoes (sweet or regular) so you'll have several days' worth of leftovers in the fridge to bring to school. And at your age, chicken nuggets once a week is better than starving yourself all day.

78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

(5519)

on April 06, 2012
at 05:22 AM

I think the best possible thing to do is try not to self-diagnose over the internet. I think the suggestions to up your carbs is harmless though. Take care.

78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

(5519)

on April 06, 2012
at 05:20 AM

While you have had lots of great people offer suggestions, I think it is very important that you see a doctor before testing out the below possibilities and cutting foods out, assuming you have a malady, etc. Because of your age, I'm just concerned that you'll take all the possible ailments (that may or may not exist) to heart and start going overboard and fixing it on your own. It already sounds like you are pretty preoccupied with "what is wrong with me?" and I think this might drive your anxiety up.

2870a69b9c0c0a19a919e54cb3a62137

(1520)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:27 AM

When I hear brain fog and bloating, I think dysbiosis.

78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

(5519)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:06 AM

If you are feeling this worn down, please don't try to treat the problem yourself. There are lots of different doctors out there and having an objective opinion might be helpful. Not all doctors rush to drugs. They might be able to perfrom lab tests on you to help guide you in making any necessary lifestyle changes. And I agree with Mandy. Being overly concerned about the perfect diet can drag you down mentally. Please take care of yourself and remember that perfection is impossible.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:01 AM

i just thought id clarify. im not an athlete, in fact i barely did any excercise until two years ago. then i read the massive benefits of sprints and weights, then i just did them. Im not really concerned with athletic perfomance, I'm more concerned with the health benefits that come with high intensity excercise.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:41 AM

I'll second the carbs. I never raised teenage boys but I heard from all other parents that a teenage son will eat you out of house and home. I am not a doctor or nutritionist but I would recommend a 15 yo male just skip the grains and sugar and junk and go for as much protein, fat, and wholesome veggies and potatoes as you can eat. Don't try to disect the details of paleo and your personal diet, just EAT wholesome foods. I'm a female but I remember when I was 12/13 and suddenly grew 5-6 inches in one year I had issues with sleep, concentration, and I ate like a heavy weight champ.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:28 AM

What sort of starches would you recommend I eat? and approximately how much should I eat?

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:25 AM

What sort of starches would you recommend I eat? and approximately how much should I eat?

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:24 AM

Though I eat chocolate for the calories, I eat it more for the caffeine boost. Most of my calories are from stuff like steak and butter(not strictly paleo, but for me I havent found anything bad about it and is a convienient source of fat)

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:23 AM

Oh, okay. So you still perform well, you just lack the drive it sounds like. I would honestly suggest adding some starch in and seeing how things go. I am an athlete as well, and I know that if I don't get some starch/bioavailable glucose in me, I decline in every imaginable way- especially concentration and energy. I actually just posted about this. Adding carbs helped me a lot.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:22 AM

I've watched some of Mark Sisson's videos and he claims there is no need for carbohydrates in a human diet. Also, I thought calorie counting doesnt matter if you eat until you are full? But thank you for your answer, because I do feel like I am eating less than maybe I should. Sometimes I starve myself for long periods (like during school) because I forgot to pack something healthy, and I'd thought it would be healthier to wait till i get home than to eat junk bought from the canteen.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:18 AM

@foreveryoung for example, although i get bloated sometimes, I don't look fat at all. I also don't have "skinny fat", and since i'm slightly muscular, I'm not skinny. Also, although i "feel tired", i easily can run faster, do more excercise, do more pullups than most people even though they don't feel tired.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:10 AM

Maybe chocolate isn't the best source of carbs either. Some safe starches might be of benefit though.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:09 AM

Mentally and physically you can't keep up. How are you healthier?

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 12:48 AM

by the way, although I feel tired and have brain fog, I still am healthier in almost every other measure compared to most of my friends.

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23 Answers

11
00c8eb3f6e6a1884216044ca29cf868a

on April 06, 2012
at 01:07 AM

Q1: Are you eating enough food?

At 15 you're still growing. You need a lot more calories than someone who's 38 and sedentary and trying to lose weight. Paleo food can be very satiating...perhaps too satiating. Try putting everything you eat into something like fitday and figuring out how many calories you're actually consuming...you may be surprised at how low the number is.

Q2: Are you eating enough carbohydrate?

Since you "do weights and sprints regularly (high intensity)", you'll want to eat more carbs than the aforementioned 38-year-old couch potato. Again, look at your macros in fitday (or whatever), and keep in mind that it takes about 40 calories to digest a pound of plant matter...so if you're eating nothing but meat, veggies, eggs, coconut oil, and an occasional fruit, you're probably in perpetual almost-ketosis, which is a bad place to be.

tl;dr try eating more food, including starch

00c8eb3f6e6a1884216044ca29cf868a

on April 06, 2012
at 08:16 AM

There might be no NEED for carbohydrates in a human diet--but if you want to "do weights and sprints regularly (high intensity)", you'll go a lot faster and feel much less tired if you eat them. +++ What sort of starches? Anything on the perfecthealthdiet.com "safe starch" list...potatoes (sweet or white), white rice, tapioca, sago, taro. +++ Tip: cook roasts instead of steaks and big vats of mashed potatoes (sweet or regular) so you'll have several days' worth of leftovers in the fridge to bring to school. And at your age, chicken nuggets once a week is better than starving yourself all day.

121a16aded2bed8dca492d3c9662ef4c

(1327)

on April 07, 2012
at 02:38 PM

Samuel, you are *growing*. This is a critical time for your body, you need to feed it, feed it, and feed it some more! You are physically active, so you don't need to be worrying about getting fat here. Don't overthink your food. Just eat whole foods and don't fear carbohydrates.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:22 AM

I've watched some of Mark Sisson's videos and he claims there is no need for carbohydrates in a human diet. Also, I thought calorie counting doesnt matter if you eat until you are full? But thank you for your answer, because I do feel like I am eating less than maybe I should. Sometimes I starve myself for long periods (like during school) because I forgot to pack something healthy, and I'd thought it would be healthier to wait till i get home than to eat junk bought from the canteen.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:28 AM

What sort of starches would you recommend I eat? and approximately how much should I eat?

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:41 AM

I'll second the carbs. I never raised teenage boys but I heard from all other parents that a teenage son will eat you out of house and home. I am not a doctor or nutritionist but I would recommend a 15 yo male just skip the grains and sugar and junk and go for as much protein, fat, and wholesome veggies and potatoes as you can eat. Don't try to disect the details of paleo and your personal diet, just EAT wholesome foods. I'm a female but I remember when I was 12/13 and suddenly grew 5-6 inches in one year I had issues with sleep, concentration, and I ate like a heavy weight champ.

F20af1e0c77eff221d556e3db0fc5684

(248)

on April 06, 2012
at 05:18 PM

Another vote for trying the carbs. Just work in around 500 carb calories a day for 2 weeks and see what happens. If you feel better but are concerned about the effects of carbs, you can investigate some of the arguments for and against their consumption, knowing that Mark Sisson falls more on the anti-carb side of the spectrum.

C0c839648b31512515daaffe8e4e9ad1

(468)

on September 10, 2012
at 12:28 AM

I'd add fruit in. And if you're shopping or you see people with some food and it looks really good, that probably means you need some nutrient that's in it. Could even be the glucose that comes from it. Add what you WANT to eat that's healthy. Don't avoid carbs too much! I advise fruit.

9
E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:55 PM

You're 15 years old. You eat barely any carbohydrate at all. You are going to fuck up your development and be a freak your entire life because of low carb.

Or

Hopefully you won't end up like this kid about your age and die http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12356106

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 02:26 PM

Health complications can be linked to just about any kind of diet. Some of those that you have listed are also be linked to long term high carb diets.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 06, 2012
at 09:18 PM

The alternative is don't be afraid of carbohydrate.

00c8eb3f6e6a1884216044ca29cf868a

on April 07, 2012
at 02:57 AM

He's in good health, he's probably getting more nutrients than 99% of the world's adolescent population, and more absolute calories than 90% of it. He just wants more energy, mental and physical. The sky isn't falling, and alarmism isn't helpful.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 07, 2012
at 01:09 PM

"Complications such as heart arrhythmias, cardiac contractile function impairment, sudden death, osteoporosis, kidney damage, increased cancer risk, impairment of physical activity and lipid abnormalities can all be linked to long-term restriction of carbohydrates in the diet." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14672862

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:32 AM

Cliff, so you are unable to explain how low carb is dangerous?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 06, 2012
at 06:38 PM

Perhaps you might care to explain how low carb is dangerous for 15 year olds and then suggest an alternative?

7
07c86972a3bea0b0dc17752e9d2f5642

on April 06, 2012
at 03:44 AM

One thing that struck me about your question is that you keep saying how your friends are different and how it's not fair, etc. And you know an awful lot about all the little things that could be wrong with you. It seems odd to me that a 15 year old would be so focused on these things which makes me wonder if maybe you could be dealing with some mild depression. Depression and fatigue go hand in hand. When I was dealing with depression, I was always worried about what could be "wrong" with my health. It was a strange sort of dread. Please, talk to your parents or any adult you trust about how you are feeling.

Foodwise, I think what you should do is eat all the starchy, sugary (as in fruit, not actual sugared foods/candy!) carbs as you please. You are a growing, athletic young man. You need lots of good food, lots of protein, fat and carbs. Eat it all to taste. Don't measure your macros, there's no need for you.

I honestly don't know why CW low-fat nonsense "studies" are (rightly) torn apart for the bad science, but things like Sisson's Carbohydrate Curve get a free pass when, as far as I can tell, Sisson basically made it up.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:03 PM

And always remember that Mark Sisson is a man in his fifties who noticed late in life what foods hurt him long term and what nutrient ratio and so forth are more appropriate for his age group. From what I remember from his blog he even eats white bread when offered at a restaurant and his carb recommendations are just estimates/guesses from his own experience as a middle aged man. And he likes to sell products that IMHO have nothing to do with a paleo/primal real food diet/lifestyle. But that's just me.

6b8d12fc3e43179f9ae1765a4d1a9dc2

(5914)

on April 06, 2012
at 11:22 AM

Sisson did basically make it up to help sell his book. He offers a lot of good advise and he puts a lot of effort into putting out some great info, but he is also stuck in a low carb dogmatic mindset.

4
437446d8587a8edf752b6c7cd53149e8

on April 06, 2012
at 03:58 AM

Have you had your thyroid checked? Sounds like hypothyroid to me.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:57 AM

No I havent actually, I'd probably look into that.

3
4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:12 PM

I am really not great in giving advice to 15 year old growing young man because I never raised children of my own (I'm a 50+ female) and also I hesitate to give you advice that might be absolutely wrong and might make your situation worse.

But I was a teenager once myself. You suddenly grow several inches in height overnight, then you grow in all other directions overnight and not necessarily well proportioned (until you're 24 as a male, 21 as a female, that's when your bones stop growing). Your hormones are going crazy and causing all sorts of symptoms both physically and mentally/emotionally. Your brain isn't even fully developed yet and causing you to think and feel things that are confusing right now. You need more sleep than an adult but you keep waking up in the night and can't go back to sleep, you get up but you're not fully awake. Your energy levels seem low one day, then shoot up after you ate sugar (I'm sure that's what your energetic friends are experiencing). YOu might be overconcerned about your looks because they change dramatically overnight and some ignorant adults might be even commenting on them, including your own family. You look for role models because you want to find your right path in life.

If you like what Mark Sisson has to say then maybe ask him on his website what he is feeding his son, I think he has a teenage son himself. You might be surprised that his son's diet is completely different from his own, or not, I don't know.

If you feel that the symptoms you are experiencing are waaaaaay more extreme than what your friends are feeling than consult a teacher or doctor or parent or any adult you really trust well and talk to them and maybe do have bloodwork done.

But from my very personal experience and that of many other old folks I met in life, both male and female, the growing pain, the hormones going bananas, the brain playing tricks, the low energy, then high energy, the body feeling and appearance, and everything looking and feeling so extreme, and most of all that we are THE ONLY PERSON IN THE WORLD who is experiencing this...well we've all been there, done that.

Please don't worry so much about chemicals in your food or environment. YOu live in the cleanest spot there is on Earth, except Antarctica.

Please eat as much meat, veggies, potatoes, eggs, etc. as you can and just skip the grains and sugar (and maybe legumes, depending on how you handle them). Limit drugs like caffeine and chocolate, they are for old folks like me.

Don't focus on disecting the paleo or any other diet and analyzing it to the detail. It's all in the making and you can worry about the details later in life. For now just skip the obvious junk and eat real food. Carbs are not necessary for the human body because they don't deliver nutrients we can't get somewhere else, but keep in mind that scientists "discover" new nutrients that are essential for us every year, the discovery of carbs and proteins and fats happened in my grandmother's lifetime, then vitamin C. Then B vitamins and A and D when my parents were growing up. I myself was already an adult when we first heard about selenium and other minerals and nutrients and that we all lack them and need to supplement them. Vitamin K, F, and what have you were all "discovered" during my lifetime, and there is more to come in the future. But we all survived for thousands of years without knowing what a vitamin or mineral or protein is. And we are the species that produces the largest amount of the enzyme necessary to digest carbohydrates already in their mouth. There must be a reason for that. Mother Nature is not stupid. Mother Nature is the smartest of all and will always win in the end.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:56 AM

I don't think teenagers should be this tired. Maybe my hormones are way screwed up.

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on April 06, 2012
at 08:59 PM

+1 Great Answer. If he is 20 and still feeling funky, maybe then its time to micromanage. if that.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 06, 2012
at 09:47 PM

Another thing that strikes me is that you say you eat 200 grams of 70% cholcolate. That's quite a bit. Chocolate contains many more drugs than just theobromine (and no caffeine btw). Google chocolate hangover. The only reason people say dark chocolate is healthy is because of the antioxidants (like in berries and red wine) but a)you don't need an antioxidant overload if you eat healthy and b) antioxidants can be toxic and c) you wouldn't drink 2 bottles of red wine a day because it's "healthy"? I myself get severe headaches from just a small amount of pure chocolate.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:46 AM

Then maybe you should go see a doctor and first have some basic bloodwork done to check for any major deficencies or unusual hormone imbalances. And then go from there. Eat good food and lots of it and skip the cocoa/coffee. When all the basics are covered and you are still tired 24/7 then you can think about anything out of the ordinary. Good luck!!

3
Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

on April 06, 2012
at 01:39 AM

While I think it's really important to be healthy, you're 15, you shouldn't be this concerned about your diet. I can understand wanting to eat healthy, but it sounds like you're trying to be perfect. Not only is that impossible, it's unhealthy. Eat some carbs, sweet potatoes or something you enjoy.

Your body is telling you something. It might be time to go to a doctor.

78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

(5519)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:06 AM

If you are feeling this worn down, please don't try to treat the problem yourself. There are lots of different doctors out there and having an objective opinion might be helpful. Not all doctors rush to drugs. They might be able to perfrom lab tests on you to help guide you in making any necessary lifestyle changes. And I agree with Mandy. Being overly concerned about the perfect diet can drag you down mentally. Please take care of yourself and remember that perfection is impossible.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

I got into being healthy after I stumbled on mercola.com. Ever since I followed his advice I've felt a lot better. The more I did, the better I felt. Really the only reason I'm looking more into health right now, is because of my tiredness and I cant find the reason why. Also, I find most doctors barely treat the root cause, they just try to sell drugs. I wish I could find a doctor that would help me, but it seems more difficult than to actually solve the problem myself.

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on April 06, 2012
at 12:17 PM

I think it's great that you're so interested in having a healthy diet, but sometimes moderation is the key. Not all doctors set out to "sell" drugs or to put a bandaid on the problem. If you don't like and trust your doctor, find one that you do! Good luck to you.

2
A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:15 PM

Samuel - I think it is remarkable that you are this interested in your health at your age. While I mostly agree with all the other posters about you not eating enough and not getting enough carbs, I want to share with you some things I stumbled upon that improved a life long battle with brain fog and inexplicable exhaustion.

Brain fog:

Do you really struggle with waking up by find it very hard to fall asleep at night? Like, you are tired all day but suddenly become more mentally alert around the time you should be falling asleep? Do you feel disconnected from your body and sort of like you are "watching" yourself? Do you have trouble concentrating on things you aren't interested in, but become completely absorbed by things you find rewarding? I know the answer to that last question is that everyone feels that way, but I mean is it very pronounced in you? Like, is it torture to do homework for a subject you hate, but you can lose HOURS on the internet researching a subject you like?

I ask the above questions because I went through this stuff for most of my young adult life until I was diagnosed ADHD. I never thought I was ADHD because I could always sit down and read for hours and I thought people with ADHD couldn't do that. But, I would start reading a book at night and stay awake all night without sleeping to finish the book - I remember starting to do that when I was nine. It is a common misconception that ADHD is the lack of focus. Really, it is just that you have SO MUCH focus on certain things and you can't apportion your focus appropriately. So, you'll get absorbed in a ticking noise but miss that math lecture completely. Or, get absorbed in a book, but miss that sleep thing entirely.

I don't medicate my ADHD. I did at one point and it dramatically improved my symptoms and calmed me down overall, but I am reluctant to advise anyone to take those drugs - especially a teenaged guy whose brain is still developing. They're a low level methamphetamine and no matter what big pharma tells us, we can't know the very long term effect of those drugs on brain development and personality. I will say that learning more about it and how to naturally address it will definitely help. My first recommendation would be to eliminate grains and dairy, but it sounds like you're on top of that! If any of this sounds like you, write back and I will write more about my coping tactics.

If you have gotten this far in this long winded post, maybe you don't have ADHD....

Exhaustion -

EDIT: Sorry Samuel! I misread your original post. You said it is WORSE in the winter. Ignore this part, then. I'll keep it in just in case it helps someone else, but I don't think it applies to you.

Just a stab in the dark, but maybe the sun is taking it out of you? You said that it was worse in the summer time. I think the majority of people benefit from the sun. But, not everybody. I have a really rare autoimmune disorder called Tumid Lupus. It means I am pretty much "allergic" to the sun. Even very low levels of sun give me a rash and wipes me out. IT SUCKS. But, not the end of the world. I was exhausted all through high school, when I should have been feeling my healthiest. I wasn't fat, but I wasn't healthy. All during that time I was eating a ton of grains, my sleep schedule was screwed up because of the ADHD thing, and I was worshipping the sun. Wish someone had told me then...

Going primal solved a lot of my energy problems, but the best steps for me involved avoiding the sun, eliminating grains (especially beer) and dairy, forcing myself awake earlier so I would go to sleep, not letting myself read at night, exercising when I don't feel like it, and using different coping tactics for ADHD.

All that being said .... you know your body. If something feels really wrong, ask your parents about seeing a doctor and getting some blood work done.

535fafe8afe6923870905c707c4f4454

(720)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:40 PM

Everything about this post hit home with exception to the sun allergy. I would love to hear about your coping with ADHD. At work I am struggling to focus on a task such as reading a document (of little interest but important)... I'll get caught in a headspace where I am thinking about how I should be absorbing the information instead of actually focusing on the words on the page as I scan over them... I wonder if this is ADHD like, or maybe just another type of psychological problem.

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:12 PM

breathe deeply; find the balance of coffee that stimulates you without making you shaky or upsetting your stomach (stimulants actually calm people with ADHD - which is why ritalin calms people with ADHD but cracks people out who don't have it); make a list and put the most mundane possible things on it and cross them off as you go about your day; keep a tally mark of how many times you unconsciously get up from your desk, open up the internet browser to goof off, check your phone, etc.; be kind to yourself. If you are ADHD, remember to work with yourself and not against yourself. Good luck!

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:56 AM

Yeah, I would say yes to the above questions. I don't know much about ADHD, but I don't think I have it. Thanks for your response though it gave me something to think about.

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:08 PM

(continued from above); distract yourself slightly. This works WONDERS for me. Listen to music, sit on an exercise ball, fidget with one of those handheld puzzle things while you read... you get the point. Anything that demands some of your focus. For me, this occupies the part of my brain that is desperate for a distraction and leaves the rest of my brain available for doing the unrewarding task; turn off any instant messenger / text / whatever. Just do it. Turn it back on every 30 minutes if you need to check it; jump up and do squats / push ups and then immediately get back to work; >>>

A97b68379a576dfa764a4828304d2efb

(4181)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:04 PM

I can sympathize with important but uninteresting... here are some tips in the limited space: sandwich the unrewarding activity between two rewarding activities (read an article that interests you, then read the boring document for 20 minutes, then come play on PH for a few minutes); cross the mid-line of the brain (google this); group your least favorite activities at times when you are the most productive and save the mindless stuff for when you are at your worst; summarize every page you just read in three sentences or less (this got me through law school); continuing on next comment

2
78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

on April 06, 2012
at 02:02 AM

Starving yourself through the day because of the lack of healthy food sounds like it's an issue for you. I agree that school food can often be unhealthy...if you are really concerned, what if you kept some jerky or nuts/seeds in your locker in case you forget again? That way, you'll have an emergency stash to take care of yourself instead of just not eating.

I urge you not to try to be "perfect" all the time, especially because you are still growing. Most people posting on here are adults, many who are much older than you. You may be reading about people going low-carb, very low-carb, exercising more, etc etc but they do not have the same physiological needs as you.

Please don't try to compare yourself to any "standards" because you are in a very different place than most people. You are a teenager, and this is a period where there is a great deal of variation in sleep needs and growth. Some teens need more sleep than others. Some teens go through puberty at earlier ages. Comparing yourself to others at this stage of your life will likely just make you more anxious.

I'd suggest you see a doctor, but keep in mind that just because you're feeling worn down doesn't mean that you are ill or doing something wrong.

1
Cf416725f639ffd1bb90764792ce7b8a

(2799)

on April 18, 2012
at 04:21 PM

It might help if you posted everything you eat on an average day. Other than too much chocolate it's hard to say what you're actually eating.

Black coffee/unsweetened tea have caffeine without all the sugar.

From your other post it sounded like you were eating a good amount of carbs 3 days a week on workout days. Did you ever have an uninterrupted two to three week low carb period to give your self time to become keto adapted?

My crude and simplistic understanding of energy levels is that you can be in ketosis and happily burn fat for energy, or you can be a SAD carb burner and have plenty of energy from the high carbs. But if you eat just enough carbs to prevent ketosis, yet not enough carbs to get energy from carbs alone you'll be in a low energy zone.

1
B6114a1980b1481fb18206064f3f4a4f

(3924)

on April 06, 2012
at 07:24 PM

I have suffered from fatigue and "brain fog" since I was a teen, although it's so much better now I might be able to say "I'm cured." For me, it was a combination of things.

Leaky Gut: Let's in a lot of nasty stuff that can cause fatigue, confusion and brain fog

Reactive Hypoglycemia: this is mostly cured with my Paleo diet (moderate carb)

*Fibromyalgia:* also cured after mostly healing my leaky gut and being on a low oxalate diet

Oxalte "Issues": one of those toxins my leaky gut let in that really caused severe problems in me, including severe brain fog (some of this is detailed on my blog http://lowoxalateinfo.com )

Vitamin Deficiencies: yes, I ate more than enough good foods to get enough vitamins but my body just didn't absorb or use vitamins well (more leaky gut/ ineffective gut/oxalate problems)

Biotin Deficiency: again, ate plenty but my body was destroying it and it's so important for energy production!! Can't say how much adding a high dose B-complex and a high dose biotin has helped me!

Stress: I worry too much and get worked up and a little compulsive over small details -- I'm also a little bit of a perfectionist and frankly, I have way too many responsibilities . . . Counseling and stress reduction techniques like walking, meditation, yoga, journaling, and positive affirmations/self-talk have really helped me with this one.

First, I would suggest you go to a doctor and get some of the obvious things ruled out like anemia and thyroid problems. Your doctor can run a comprehensive panel of blood work to test these things. Also, try to get more sleep (at least an hour more each night than you are getting now) and anything you can do for stress reduction or to pamper/be gentle with yourself.

After that, you might consider adding some really nutrient dense foods and vitamin supplementation. Then start doing some research on leaky gut or some of the other things I mentioned that cause fatigue and brain fog and see if any of those seem like they fit you. If so, a GAPS or SCD diet can help to heal the damage of a leaky gut, which seems to help all the other issues, too. Paleo can help heal leaky guts or other gut problems, so maybe that's one of the reason going Paleo has helped you.

Hope you find out what is wrong soon.

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:15 PM

You said that you drink a lot of water and that if you don't drink several litres, that you end up feeling worse.
A nurse took my blood pressure and told me that it was "The low end of good". She asked "Do you drink a lot of water?" I told her that I did and she told me that a lot of people with lowish blood pressure tend to drink a lot of water. I know that if I get thirsty, I pretty soon start to feel worn out so I naturally drank a lot of water.
One thing I have noticed. Since drinking lots of meat and bone stock every day, I don't get so thirsty. I know the stock is still fluids but believe me, I'm not drinking the same volume of stock as the volume of water I was drinking. Maybe the stock is raising my blood pressure to a better level? I don't know but I feel pretty good.

You also said that you sometimes eat rice and potatoes, the so called "safe starches" (I can't get over how silly that phrase sounds). How do you feel after you have eaten them? If they make you feel good then maybe more starches will help but if not then I doubt the other starches suggested above are going to help either.

Do you eat much fat? How tall are you? Are you under-weight? Do you know how many calories you eat per day?

Anyway, it's all just something to think about but I think that you should go to your doctor and tell him how concerned you are about this problem and that you have been trying to figure it out for yourself and are at a loss. He may take it seriously enough to run a few tests.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:52 AM

In what universe is 60 kg at 170 cm for a 15 year old underweight??? That's 135 lbs at 5'7", approximately.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 12:18 PM

And 200g of chocolate as well as 200g of butter daily is too much of questionable food, even for a 15 year old. Butter is healthy yes, but it still contains some lactose and at 200g that's alot of dairy. And chocolate should be nothing more than a small treat, not two large bars per day. Have you looked into the http://paleodietlifestyle.com/ website? He is also a young guy who started paleo at a fairly young age to cope with health issues throughout his teenage years, and from what I know he has issues with butter and coconut and many other foods and eats very strict paleo.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:33 AM

You are a little underweight. So you are obviously not eating enough. If you don't eat enough you will be tired.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 01:44 PM

"In what universe is 60 kg at 170 cm for a 15 year old underweight?" I only said "A little". It's really nothing to get your knickers in a twist about.

4ccf5d9bba64e54fc95802fe8ae33c47

(900)

on April 07, 2012
at 11:57 AM

I mean 5' 7", darn keyboard. When I was a youngster none of my boyfriends weighed more than 65 kg at 5' 10" to 6', I myself as a girl weighed 50-55 kg at 167 cm (5' 6").

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:54 AM

I feel neutral after eating safe starches. I eat about 200g of chocolate and about 200g of butter, not to mention the fat in steak. Im about 170 cm tall. I'm 60 kg, and I have been that weight for at least a few months even though ive gained muscle, and I don't know why. Ive heard theres no point calorie counting so I don't bother.

1
957a563c7e4a165663fd3c71207c39da

on April 06, 2012
at 03:10 AM

You may have inherited a less than ideal genetic profile - you eat so well yet don't feel well, while others around you eat badly and feel fine (well at least on the surface and at this moment anyway). One reason for brain fog is high ammonia levels which are due to eating protein - if our genetics are optimal, it is possible for the ammonia levels to be broken down. If not, the ammonia is backed up. There is a relatively common genetic issue called MTHFR A1298C which produces BH4 to neutralise ammonia....read more here:

http://www.heartfixer.com/AMRI-Outcomes-Non-CV-Autism-Methyl%20Cycle.htm#MTHFR:%C2%A0%205,10-MethyleneTetraHydroFolate%20Reductase%20%28BH4%20formation%29

That site is an Ohio doctor that treats methylation disorders that are genetic in origin. As I said, these problems are not rare.

You may be able to do some testing to get this assessed - organic acids testing via Metametrix looks at metabolic markers to assess ammonia levels in the body and you can also get the genetic testing done - both are not cheap but worthwhile if you have significant issues you can't resolve with diet.

As others have said, maybe you could try increasing carbs and limiting protein. The protein may be the issue.

0
D9cfa8953b89529a678f69169e0d5648

on July 08, 2013
at 09:46 PM

I had brain fog (and tiredness) for a long time on paleo/primal (maybe a year). Through fitday I found that I wasn't eating enough calories -- correcting that helped with the tiredness, but not the fog. Then it was pointed out to me by a paleo authority that my weekly cheat beer could leave enough residual gluten to mess with my head. So I stopped drinking beer, and the problem went away. Possibly a placebo (etc) but it does seem to come back if I fall off the wagon. Do you do beer?

Other than that, go a bit easier on yourself. Train less, rest more, play more, eat sweet potatoes, and don't sweat the small stuff.

Good luck.

0
D7ec8321473b7761734bd00c9cd319bd

on April 06, 2012
at 04:35 PM

I actually solved something very similar last year. I had to do an end run around my primary doctor and see an ENT to get some sort of relief. He saw that I had Allergic Rhinitis and aside from saying I should take over the counter loratidine (allergy medication), he also prescribed a nasal spray called fluticasone which I took for two months, and I've been vastly improved this year.

Normally, each year I'd get a brutal amount of pressure in the sinusoidal cavities, which would usually become a full scale sinus infection, and cause migraines.

As far as diet, you have to eat a lot of fat. I eat a lot of cheese, and that keeps fogginess away, as that saturated fat does give your brain an extra source of energy.

If that isn't appetizing, consider pure unrefined coconut oil, which has high quality saturated fats (MCTs) which directly improve "fogginess".

0
97ffbac59e88bdff6495d0a9b6f70ff7

(555)

on April 06, 2012
at 03:54 PM

Samuel,

I have to say that I think these are some of the weakest answers I've seen on Paleo hacks. These are the same sort of answers that doctors, friends, family, etc. gave me that prevented me from recognizing I had a real biological problem. If you are suffering in a serious way (which it certainly sounds like you are), you need to ignore a lot of these "oh just change this or that little thing" and get some real answers. With something as serious as mental confusion, it's not okay to ignore it and think "oh I must not be exercising/sleeping/drinking enough water." The worst answer is "oh you're just growing and your body is going through changes" -- in other words, brain fog is normal; hello!? Yeah, right! These are the types of answers you'll probably get from most people, including doctors unfortunately.

I suffered from brain fog for years. I'm finally now just getting over it. I've instituted a lot of changes and it's hard for me to say exactly what did it in the end, but here are my main hunches, and for good reason:

1) the SCD diet - as one commenter said, brain fog can be caused by gut dysbosis. Please do some of your own research on this. I went on this diet for over three months and during that time the instances of extreme brain fog became increasingly more sparse. How is your digestion ?

2) B12 deficiency - look up "Freddd b12 protocol" - this is an online thread on b12 deficiency and the issues with treatment (the question would be why you are b12 deficient, which is not immediately obvious - but this is certainly a possibility

Comment if you have any questions. (Note I second the other answers that say you should add safe starches - I think this is a good experiment, but I don't think it will be the answer.) I've cured myself - you can as well.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 07, 2012
at 07:37 AM

See the doc first. You have already been feeling unwell for too long so now is the time to go to the doc.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:48 AM

Yeah, I do think that it is either not caused by low carb, or it is not the only cause. When I was on a standard diet which was relatively high carb I still felt this bad. I started feeling bad about one or two years before I went low carb paleo. I'm going to try adding carbs, then supping with B12, then maybe seeing a doctor. I really don't know what else to do.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 06, 2012
at 06:42 PM

He is already eating some so called "safe starches" (oh how I dislike that phrase).

97ffbac59e88bdff6495d0a9b6f70ff7

(555)

on April 09, 2012
at 04:02 AM

Yes see the doc first - but in my experience, if they too tell you "oh you just need to do get a bit more sleep, or exercise more, etc." FIND A NEW DOC. If you try b12, be sure to read up on this specific protocol - you want methyl b12, not the form that is commonly found in drugstore supplements (cyano b12).

0
B9cc28905ec54389c47cde031d709703

on April 06, 2012
at 02:04 PM

15 y/o? You should be drinking OJ and Milk kid.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:49 AM

I heard they taste nice mixed together. But OJ is too processed and i don't like milk.

0
21b36b3de8ff31b0d41e7f0f4b5c1e03

(1688)

on April 06, 2012
at 12:28 PM

200 g of 70% cocoa chocolate is 60 grams of sugar! Over a thousand calories a day. How are you eating "less sugar than most people"?

If I got half of my daily calorie intake from chocolate I'd feel lousy too.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 06, 2012
at 01:01 PM

60 g sugar is not a lot... I would stop chocolate too and drink coffee instead

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 06, 2012
at 03:39 PM

But only because the chocolate likely contains weird ingredients.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:50 AM

200g isnt anywhere near half... its more like an eighth to a quarter... maybe even less

0
B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 06, 2012
at 06:28 AM

I got tired on the paleo diet too. Never noticed that big energy boosts everyone talked about. For me the solution was cutting out as much muscle meat as I can (still eating organs, bone broth and tons of gelatin, ...) and eating unlimited fruit. I managed to get rid of bloating this way, my sleep is way better, and I'm not tired. And if you're afraid you'll gain weight, that is just not true. I got leaner with fruit.

0
9731b50b49c3ed690113b10eb5ddf046

on April 06, 2012
at 04:55 AM

Just a thought but have you ever thought about intolerances to certain foods? I know that can be a big issue with tiredness. It may be worth checking it out.

Another thing that i think has already been mentioned is nutritional deficiencies. Checking out both of these things can be a bit expensive so it may be worth getting a GOOD multivitamin and monitoring how you feel after different foods you suspect you may be intolerant too, like dairy, eggs, wheat etc. If after awhile you are seeing no improvement then move into thorough testing.

Another option is heavy metal toxicity, like mercury or lead. Again, it's not cheap to test (especially here in NZ you have to get it sent away if you want the proper test done).

A few other tips would be to cut down on that chocolate. 70% chocolate still has quite a bit of sugar in it. When articles say that chocolate is good for I think they mean the REALLY dark stuff like 85% -99% and I don't think they are encouraging you to eat a block or 200gm a day. That sugar isn't going to make you feel that great. If you want the caffeine try green tea, much better for you but yes it does not taste as great!

Another thing - have some fun! It is great that you are so concerned about your health at a young age and that will serve you well in years to come but being this analytical can sometimes do more harm then good and can really take over your life. Just a tip from someone who has been there. I've come to realise noone is ever running at 100% and life is a real balancing act, and you WILL be tired sometimes.

0
3b5da1658f90a12e9a87036ed3d9cac6

on April 06, 2012
at 03:20 AM

Well, I only wish I had the knowledge he has at 15 years old. Kudos to you kid!!It can change your life in the long run..

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 07, 2012
at 04:51 AM

Thanks. I have felt my health improve a lot.

0
31d41e94813784f4f500a4b58aad7a2c

on April 06, 2012
at 02:06 AM

I would say do myfitnesspal for calorie count- you can customize it to fit the paleo standard- Mark Sisson suggests eating 100-150g of carbs a day- look up the info on his site! Most helpful you probably need at least 150g and like what some other people said- sweet potatoes- beets-etc

You could also make some paleo friendly protein bars or get a paleo friendly protein shake mix ( which Mark has via his primal blueprint site!! amazing!) to help with the energy levels- often I have found that I need more protein and more fat especially before working out..

0
20728624e1e13817fbac4e2e5249fb3a

on April 06, 2012
at 01:55 AM

I just had some lab work done that tested my Kreb cycle - I too have extreme fatigue. Lots of info showed up there regarding deficiencies and am now using appropriate supplements which I am hoping will help.

0
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on April 06, 2012
at 01:39 AM

Try some root veggies like sweet potato/kumara, beets, yams, potatoes, carrots, etc. Those are what most would consider "safe" starches. I feel good on sweet potatoes, which I think are called kumara in NZ. A little fruit is good too, but I think for performance it's glucose that you need. do you currently eat any starch at all? If you're coming from nothing then just eat a small sweet potato at lunch or something and see how you feel. If you feel better, eat more at dinner. If you feel better, eat some at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, etc. Keep eating what makes you feel better until it makes you feel worse.

9b3cb8582f8cf0c29d424533d0503e7c

(110)

on April 06, 2012
at 02:01 AM

i just thought id clarify. im not an athlete, in fact i barely did any excercise until two years ago. then i read the massive benefits of sprints and weights, then i just did them. Im not really concerned with athletic perfomance, I'm more concerned with the health benefits that come with high intensity excercise.

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