Help! Having a hard time - is it diet related?

Answered on May 28, 2013
Created May 27, 2013 at 4:38 PM

Hi - I'm having a really hard time and I would appreciate any thoughts as to what might be going on.

Background: years of not feeling well and being sensitive to everything. Several stints gluten and dairy free always had me feeling better, but being a foodie married to a chef made it hard to commit. Had a breakthrough a few months ago and realized my health and wellbeing taste better than anything. Went GF and DF on March 1, Paleo on April 1. Felt almost instantly better, but had a couple days during the first month of crushing weakness - usually when I didn't follow strict routine - didn't "cheat" but didn't get enough good stuff. Otherwise, stuck closely to the diet and felt good for 6 weeks.

Last weekend I went slowly off the rails. I was scheduled to get braces mid-week (I'm 41 - ack!) and two teeth pulled. So there were a few things that I wanted to eat in advance of that. It started last Saturday and it looked like this:

Saturday: Cupcake (gluten, sugar, dairy) Sunday: bruschetta, sliders, 2 mojitos Monday: 3 carnitas soft tacos and tortilla chips Tuesday: corn on the cob and baked beans Wednesday:(braces on)mashed potatoes, iced tea w/honey, juice, coconut milk ice cream, etc. Thursday: (teeth pulled) more ice cream, not much else Friday: gluten free mac and cheese, gluten free tiramisu, juice, etc

I also quit my two cup a day coffee habit this week (a habit only started with Paleo).

Starting around Weds/Thurs I started to feel horrible. Extreme fatigue, profound weakness, knees aching like crazy (never had this before), dizziness, blues, shakiness, feeling like my veins are vibrating, overall gross and bad and achy and heavy and down. Feel feverish but no temp. Heart a little racy. Difficultly sleeping. Anxiety.

I cleaned up my diet strictly on Saturday. Made bone broth. Upped fish oil. Water, water, water. With the new braces and the tooth extractions, it's been a challenge to eat the right stuff. Been pureeing veggies, made soft meatballs, lots of eggs, made cauliflower soup with bone broth. On Friday I started using Designs for Health Paleo Meal (DF) to make smoothies.

After two and a half days clean, I might be starting to feel better, but not sure. I am prone to bouts of paranoid hypochondria (kind of joking) and that part of me is deathly afraid that I'm reacting to something in the braces - the metal or other god knows what that they use. I have so far been successful in not googling that because it would send me over the edge - what the hell would I do? These things are going to be in my mouth for two years!! (please feel free to debunk this idea, but please don't add to my worries!!:))

So, I would appreciate any thoughts/encouragement about this being diet related. At the time, all of my off-the-rail choices seemed minor, but in totality could they be making me feel so bad? Thoughts about how to speed recovery? I am facing going back to work tomorrow (with braces!!!) and just CAN NOT feel like this. I managed to go for a walk yesterday and today and I am trying to keep moving.

Thanks for reading - I'm kinda freaking out over here! :)

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on May 28, 2013
at 07:54 AM

It sounds like you just have way too much going on. Right now, the main thing I'm focusing on is eating some food.. it's pretty stress-free living.

Just having wires all up in your grill, not drinking your coffee, going off and on GF/DF, stressed out with paranoid hypochondria will put you in a funk.

I'd focus on getting more chill, sleeping better, starting the day on a good note, then using food to keep everything flowing. Not quite sure how one 'gets more chill' though. You said you felt good up until you changed your diet, quit drinking coffee, and put braces on your teeth. This sounds about like what one might expect to me.

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on May 28, 2013
at 10:15 AM

Uhmm... just guessing, but from what you report I think these could be anxiety disorder / panic attacks, and the fact that dairy and gluten can worsen it, even thought it can be related to digestive issues, it makes me think about highly insulinogenic foods spiking your blood sugar then afterwards bringing hypoglycaemia symptoms... you also felt very bad on that week that you had a lot of sugars... I think this is worth exploring, maybe you feel better on a "clean" diet because it manages your blood sugar the best.

So I'd check how near to a possible metabolic disorder you are. You could have some blood work looking for fasting blood sugar, fasting insulin, Hemoglobin A1C, cholesterol and triglyceride levels and a postprandial glucose test would be nice also.

Just trying yo explore some possible causes to sort things out, do not worry too much as it's worse ;)

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