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  • I need energy and I am sensitive to caffeine

    I started the primal diet about two months ago and am six weeks pregnant. About three days into the diet my energy levels crashed and have not rebounded. I can't bring myself to do even moderate exercise and after a walk I need a nap (it's been this way from the beginning so I can't attribute it all to pregnancy.)
    What can I eat or do that will increase my energy levels? I felt awesome the first few days eating this way and I'm not sure why that wonderful, euphoric feeling went away or how to get it back.
    I'm willing to cut out or add almost anything at this point, except maybe raw dairy bc WAPF tells me my baby will have crossed eyes and a deformed palate without enough raw milk.
    I know I'm at least 80/20 (if you consider dairy primal.) I'm not overweight, though I weigh a lot which is strange since I don't look it. I do have thyroid disease and adrenal issues but I felt much better before going primal.
    Any tips on how to put the pep back in my step?

    Editing to say I did have a mild burst of energy about two or three weeks ago but it only lasted a few days before going kaput. I just need my energy levels to be consistent.
    Last edited by kimann79; 08-06-2011, 08:44 PM.

  • #2
    Hi. I suffered from the same.

    How many carbs are you averaging per day? With your hypothyroidism and adrenal fatigue (I have(had?) both too), you'll do better and will feel better on greater than 50.

    Other things that will help:
    Vitamin D
    Vitamin B complex
    maca
    coconut
    "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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    • #3
      What about fish or krill oil?
      Are you on any medications for your thyroid?
      Do you keep a journal - maybe looking into any changes or something you did during the times your energy increased again - anything to do with your cycle? Ie hormonal? I know you are pregnant now but before that did you have big energy swings depending on your cycle?
      Last edited by sweetp; 08-06-2011, 10:42 PM.

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      • #4
        Stop this and immediatly raise your carbs. It wasn't until I raised mine to 200g a day with potatoes and rice that I started feeling better.

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        • #5
          The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D. Tips & tricks for starting (or restarting) low-carb Pt II

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          • #6
            Diana Schwarzbein, MD, writes a lot about low carb/hypothyroidism/adrenal fatigue/insulin sensitivity vs. resistance. VLC is too hard on a hypothyroid with blown out adrenals. I have no idea where on earth people get the idea that VLC is always the way to go and why people want to go down in their carbs rather than up when things aren't clicking; VLC is simply not appropriate for all of us (including this body).

            "Schwarzbein says that a diet too low in carbs can cause stress to the adrenal glands. It can also stress the thyroid gland."

            Why some don't tolerate very low carb diets? : Schwarzbein Principle Forum : Active Low-Carber Forums
            Last edited by TigerLily; 08-07-2011, 12:28 AM.
            "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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            • #7
              Originally posted by TigerLily View Post
              Diana Schwarzbein, MD, writes a lot about low carb/hypothyroidism/adrenal fatigue/insulin sensitivity vs. resistance. VLC is too hard on a hypothyroid with blown out adrenals. I have no idea where on earth people get the idea that VLC is always the way to go and why people want to go down in their carbs rather than up when things aren't clicking; VLC is simply not appropriate for all of us (including this body).

              "Schwarzbein says that a diet too low in carbs can cause stress to the adrenal glands. It can also stress the thyroid gland."

              Why some don't tolerate very low carb diets? : Schwarzbein Principle Forum : Active Low-Carber Forums
              I have hypothyroidism/adrenal fatigue/insulin resistance and no way could I do 200+ carbs. Some of the comments on this thread sound like they are coming from another species. I keep carbs to absolute minimum, and my dr agrees.

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              • #8
                Can you post a sample of your daily diet (including quantities)? Also your stats (height, weight).

                Are you having any morning sickness?

                Are you eating any carbs? Half a sweet potato or a cup of white rice might be all that you need to get you headed in the right direction.
                Newcomers: If you haven't read the book, at least read this thread ... and all the links!
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                F/49/5'4"
                Jan. 1, 2011: 186.6 lbs PBSW Mar. 1, 2011: 175.8 lbs
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                • #9
                  Have you had your thyroid levels checked since you've been pregnant and started primal? You may need some adjustments to your treatment.

                  I probably wouldn't do VLC when pregnant (YMMV).

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by kimann79 View Post
                    I know I'm at least 80/20 (if you consider dairy primal.) I'm not overweight, though I weigh a lot which is strange since I don't look it. I do have thyroid disease and adrenal issues but I felt much better before going primal.
                    Any tips on how to put the pep back in my step?.
                    Probably not with anything with caffeine in it (I noticed the title you used for the thread). I wouldn't take anything stronger than an occasional cup of green tea.

                    As I understand it, the time taken to switch from a basically sugar-burning mode to a basically fat-burning mode varies from individual to individual, but is generally something between two and six weeks. Maybe this is what is going on; maybe not. I guess that could be consistent with your energy going after three days and not coming back yet.

                    I don't know whether it's advisable to try to switch your metabolism while pregnant. At the same time, I can't see that high carb wouldn't be less than optimal for you or the baby. What should your level of carbs be? Should you go back up a bit? If you do, should you then taper down? I just don't know. Maybe you could sort of figure this out with a glucometer: you might need a few more carbs, but you probably don't want so many that your blood sugar spikes too high. Maybe you should eat more often—not generally encouraged with Primal, but, heck, there are snacks listed in Mark's book, and you are complaining of low energy. Maybe a couple of snacks between meals would be called for. Balanced snacks: i.e., not standard snack food, which is just carbs, but some protein and fat in there, celery + cheese, whatever. I keep saying "maybe" because I don't know. I think you'd be best off taking advice from a medical professional who knows a lot about pregnancy and is also clued-up on "traditional" diets.

                    I'd see your family doctor and get some blood tests run, because maybe it's not the food or not just the food.

                    You could probably get some good general advice on what to eat during pregnancy from Chris Kresser's site. He has a WAPF/Paleo focus, and has put up a special microsite offering dietary information relating to pregnancy. Don't know what he's charging, but here it is:

                    http://healthybabycode.com/signup
                    Last edited by Lewis; 08-07-2011, 11:52 AM. Reason: f--ing Safari's spellcheck keeps subsituting malapropisms

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                    • #11
                      I'm 5'7 and weigh 154 with a larger build (I wear a 6/8).
                      I'm taking high vitamin cod liver oil and I eat a lot of coconut oil/coconut products.
                      I think I get more than 50 carbs a day.
                      A typical day looks like this:
                      Breakfast- two eggs cooked in pasture butter with a veggie or smoothie made out of raw or coconut milk, a raw egg, a serving of fruit (usually berries) and some stevia or a bit of raw honey.
                      Lunch- veggies with protein- either organic turkey/chicken/roast beef or leftovers from dinner
                      Dinner- Two or three veggies (usually with butter or coconut oil) and grass fed beef/chicken/fish.
                      Snack- raw cheese/sometimes fruit/once in a while homemade flax crackers/homemade yogurt

                      About three times a week I eat a sweet potato or yucca with dinner. If I get hungry I snack on soaked and dehydrated nuts or raw cheese. I eat about two fruits a day (one is usually berries).
                      I don't snack more than once a day. I'm just not hungry. I eat normal portions. Nothing too crazy. I try to eat homemade bone broth three or four times a week.

                      No morning sickness. I occasionally cheat with locally made ice cream or rice with Indian food.

                      I'm going to read some of the articles linked to this thread but would it really help to go above 200 carbs? How in the world can I do that? I would have to eat oatmeal for breakfast and a grain or potato with every meal. Grains tend to do a number on my stomach. Even when I cheat with rice I try not to eat more than a 1/4 cup. I always heard people with auto immune disease do better on fewer carbs. I'm willing to add some more in to see how I feel but, since I'm not working out very often and I'm pregnant, I'm concerned I'll put on too much weight. I've gone up a dress size with each of my two children and I don't want to come out after this baby is born wearing a size 10.

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                      • #12
                        Sounds like you're having carb flu. I'd actually add more fat and protein, rather than carbs. If you can get your carbs around 100 a day, the carb flu should taper off soon. (And even if you do come out of the pregnancy at size 10, eating Primally will help you get back down to your 6/8.) By the way, your weight, height and size is almost identical to my 13-year-old daughter (she's an 8/10), and she is NOT fat or "larger build," so you aren't either. Larger build is a 16/18, not a 6/8.
                        Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

                        Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


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                        My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kimann79 View Post
                          I'm going to read some of the articles linked to this thread but would it really help to go above 200 carbs?
                          Sounds like a heck of a lot to me. People's needs doubtless vary, but I can't see that an amount that high would do anyone any good. In the long run I'd have thought that would mean raging glycation, bloodsugar roller-coasting, inflammation, and a poor environment for the right gut bacteria. Mark suggests staying under 150 g/day:

                          How many carbs should I eat each day? | Mark's Daily Apple

                          I always heard people with auto immune disease do better on fewer carbs.
                          According to Datis Kharrazian blood-sugar spikes can precipitate auto-immune attacks on tissue:

                          Dr. Datis Kharrazian On Thyroid Problems And Metabolic Syndrome (Episode 382) | The Livin La Vida Low-Carb Show

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                          • #14
                            Sounds to me like you're six weeks pregnant. Holy cow, my first trimester I had to push just to be able to make dinner. Sleeping 10-12 hours a day (I typically need 6.5 -7) was the norm. I was exhausted. It got better in the second trimester.

                            I'd check with your doctor - make sure your other issues are in line - pregnancy can affect those. And if all else is okay, I'd wait for the second trimester to see if you are starting to feel better.

                            It honestly sounds to me like you suffered from the carb flu in the beginning, then you go pregnant and you never fully recovered. It couldn't hurt to add a sweet potato in there daily. But again, go to your doc and get a general health clearance before you make any assumptions.
                            Last edited by Andtckrtoo; 08-07-2011, 12:17 PM.
                            Christine
                            Wag more, bark less

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Andtckrtoo View Post
                              Sounds to me like you're six weeks pregnant. It couldn't hurt to add a sweet potato in there daily. But again, go to your doc and get a general health clearance before you make any assumptions.
                              +1

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