No announcement yet.

Getting sick twice in 2-3 months of going Primal. How can this be?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Getting sick twice in 2-3 months of going Primal. How can this be?

    Hey folks,

    I've been transitioning into primal foods for the past three months (the first two I still gave into sugar cravings and ate non-primal stuff in between & and the last month has been full primal as I didn't have any shitty foods in the house anymore).
    The thing is, at times I felt better, but a lot of times I have these insane carb/sugar cravings. A friend of mine said that my body needed to adjust from fuelling on sugars to fueling on fats.
    I also have gotten sick twice (whereas normally I don't get sick so often) (first in January for a few days and again yesterday) and I'm starting to doubt if this stuff is really going to propel me to the high levels of health it promises.
    I also strained my left ab muscles during a work-out 2,5 week ago, so this might be a factor.
    (caught me off guard as I tend to lift consciously and not take on more weight then I can handle, pushing my comfort zones wisely)

    Further background info: I'm 23 years old, 158 lbs and exercise and work-out regularly.
    I don't smoke, I don't drink alcohol
    Previous diet: high carb, low-fat, low protein (ate a lot of bread, cheese, milk, cereal, cookies, pasta, but also quite some conventionally grown veggies and fruits and a bit of meat)
    Current diet: balanced organic: (eat a lot of organic veggies, fruits, meat, fish, eggs, nuts and dark chocolate, drink only water and freshly blended fruit juice)

    I'm sort of reaching a low here, I'm putting in quite some effort to change and improve myself and I feel I'm only getting worse.
    The only explanation I could think of was that my body is cleansing itself of it's toxins or something.
    Either that, or this primal eating stuff isn't healthy. (Which I seriously doubt, how the hell can eating natural organic foods be bad for me? I'm just totally confused over here. )

    Any feedback?
    Free book on Self-change (aswell as Paleo articles) at my website:

  • #2
    Until your body switches over to being able to use fats as a primary fuel lots of things will be a little off, and that can include the immune system. Part of it could be the stress of changing over (and fighting the sugar cravings), part of it could be that the fat-burning pathways haven't yet developed enough to supply the needed energy, part of it could also be simple blind luck! I also practically never get sick, but a month after starting Primal I got a sore throat that just persisted for ever! Then it disappeared as quickly as it came. Even during that period though, I was enjoying the benefits of increased energy and reduced hunger (luckily, I was otherwise relatively healthy).


    • #3
      Yeah, switching from sugar to fat can put a lot of stress on the body, including the immune system. I wouldn't expect to be fully functioning until I was comfortably ketoadapted - it sounds like you aren't there yet though, since you're still having crazy cravings. I'm wondering if you're consuming too much sugar via the fruit and fruit juices. Many people find that fruit contributes to carb cravings, especially in the beginning.

      Otherwise, how are your vitamin D levels? Personally, I'm pretty sure that supplementing vitamin D has done wonders for my immune system.
      The Primal Holla! Eating fat. Getting lean. Being awesome.

      You were sick, but now you're well, and there's work to do. - Kilgore Trout


      • #4
        I too have had more illness over the past few months (and just started PB as well), but honestly, I've been around more sick individuals lately too. I'm not sure the illness is (or isn't) related to the diet change, but from my own observations, I think it's just been one of those seasons.


        • #5
          Welcome to being a human. I really think that folks coming into this looking for specific results are going to be disappointed. I have to say I feel the eensy-weensiest bit cheated because I'm not having the increase in energy so many talk about, but that's life. There are so many other benefits that it feels ungrateful for me to expect it to fix everything.

          As important as food is, it's just food! It isn't a miracle cure. On top of that, humans have a notoriously bad habit of assigning causation where there probably isn't any, so be careful not to blame the diet for things it can't control. I would advise to continue on, and if in a few months' time you're still unhappy, then consider making some adjustments.

          Hope you feel better soon.
          The Paleo Periodical
          It's not a Diet. It's a lifestyle.


          • #6
            Def second supplementing with Vitamin D and get your levels checked in 3 months.
            Ancestral Nutrition Coaching
            Pregnancy Nutrition Coaching
            Primal Pregnancy Nutrition Article


            • #7
              Hang in there.
              I got sick several times (twice in a month) when I first started this. I had known before that I had gastroparesis. I would get sick maybe once or twice a year, but the thought of it coming back so often was almost enough to make me give up. At any rate, I began supplementing with magnesium citrate (and D at the same time) and it went away after about a month. That was three months into Primal I think and now I'm working on at least 4-6 months without any problems.
              Cravings were pretty intense for me too, but they go away if you stick with it. It's worth it believe me.
              I'd second what theholla said about the fruit juices too. If you are looking to get ketoadapted, sometimes it could be best to just drop fruit out of the equation for a little while.
              "So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains
              And we never even know we have the key."
              ~The Eagles, "Already Gone"


              • #8
                I've been taking VitD3 for about 8 months, and while i don't remember being sick at any point of 2010, i certainly have not been sick once since D'ing up. Is just a casual correlation? Not sure, but i doubt it. I honestly do not remember the last time i was sick, and i live in a very unhygenic household(not my own doing but hey).

                However, you have to consider that when a person is sick, it is a sign that your body is getting rid of toxic waste buildup, and therefore i would say that it is a very natural part of life, since you are 3 month into a transition phase where you are erasing ''a lot of bread, cheese, milk, cereal, cookies, pasta'' etc. I'm not convinced that it is a bad thing. Obviously if you persistently get sick, there's a problem, but sickness in itself seems an obvious thing to happen when ridding the body of nasty stuff.

                BTW, are nuts your only fat source? Is so, cut down, and add better sources of fat.


                • #9
                  Thanks for the feedback, guys.
                  I'll definetely give the primal diet a couple more months and see how things go.
                  I can definitely saw that I have experienced changes in energy levels (more stable, less spikey) and my bowel movement and digestive track seems more efficient (stomach more at ease)
                  I'll get my hands on some vit-D supplements.

                  I thought meat, fish and vegetables provide plenty of fats as well?
                  What other foods would you recommend that I'm currently not eating?
                  Free book on Self-change (aswell as Paleo articles) at my website:


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Edje Noh View Post
                    I'll get my hands on some vit-D supplements.

                    I thought meat, fish and vegetables provide plenty of fats as well?
                    What other foods would you recommend that I'm currently not eating?
                    Yes they do provide fats, but i suspect you may not be eating enough calories without an individual source of fat. Great fat sources are pasteured butter, anything coconut(shredded, milk etc), avocado etc. Of course, animal fat is great, IF the animal is pasteured, grass fed, free range, no hormones etc. Organic is not good enough in this instance. Well, it is better than not, but just saying.

                    As for VitD, make sure it is VitaminD3. If you live somewhere with no sunlight(i live in london), and you have not seen the sun for a while, then you are most likely deficient. I take 5000iu daily. It may be worth getting your D levels tested to see where you're at then experiment. A good brand is 'Healthy Origins', who do great deals on amazon. Their brand is free of soy, gluten and all the other shit. That said, sunlight is better than pill, so if you have the chance to get some then get some.


                    • #11
                      Awesome, I ordered Vitamin D3 5000 iu supplements yesterday, should be dropping in the mail tomorrow.
                      I also already eat plenty of avocado's and coconut as well. I bought some rice/coconut milk too a week ago and I liked it, might add in some more of that.

                      Don't know about the meats. In Holland (where I live) there's three levels of animal friendliness on the meats in
                      the 'better' conventional stores (some extra range, free-range and biological (fed organic foods)). I always stick to biological. There's also the meats in organic grocery stores, but those are extremely expensive.
                      Free book on Self-change (aswell as Paleo articles) at my website:


                      • #12
                        I think the VitD makes a pretty hefty difference - I just do not get sick anymore, ever.
                        The Primal Journey of Mr and Mrs Fist


                        • #13
                          I got sick a couple weeks ago - so did everyone else I know, though I was the last to get sick after sharing a bed with my wife who was sick for over a week when I fell ill. The big difference for me was that I was sick for about 3 days while all my friends and family were out for 2 WEEKS - its been over 3 weeks and one of my friends still hasn't got his voice back and a lot of my friends are still prone to coughing like 3 pack a day smokers if they do anything too physical. I missed no work, was back to full power lifting training on the 4th day and 2 hour Judo sessions on the 5th day. While primal didn't stop me from getting sick I am pretty sure it had to do with the fast recovery
                          "First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do" - Epictetus


                          • #14
                            Been primal a little over a month, and I too fell ill. It has taken me a week to get feeling remotely better, so you're not the only one. I will say that next time you get sick invest in some Epicor and AHCC. I thought it was hocus pocus but within 2 hrs of taking it I felt the sinus congestion disappearing. It really works.


                            • #15
                              I got a terrible bout of strep throat about 2 or 3 weeks into primal and then a fairly mild flu about two months in. I also dealt with low blood pressure problems and what I think were some gall bladder problems for awhile. I was totally convinced, though, that i was on the right path and that sometimes things just get worse before they get better. Now I am in my fourth month and things are looking way up. I have autoimmune probs and adrenal issues and I think the adrenal issues were definitely a factor in my fatigue and bp probs. I had to add some salt and good carbs just to stay upright and now I don't need the extra carbs anymore.
                              True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington. ~Anonymous
                              The worst carrot is better than the best candybar.--TornadoGirl