So I was on Whole Health Food Sorce reading a very interesting article about Tooth Decay and processed carbs. The link is here:
One commenter, PaleoRD, describes his fatigued adrenals on a low carb diet.
"I made the connection between overactive adrenals and low carb after reading Schwarzbein. Adrenaline is constantly secreted to help maintain blood sugar, most noticeably in the morning after a long night's fast. That is why those with fatigued adrenals have to drink coffee first thing in the morning! Adrenaline stimulates glycogen breakdown in the liver and gluconeogenesis as well as tissue breakdown to free up proteins for energy. After long term low carb, my glycogen stores must have gotten so low that my adrenals where having to overcompensate with excess adrenaline.
I actually have the opposite problem of fatigued adrenals, my adrenals are healthy so when I went low carb they really starting pumping out the adrenaline which would explain my poor sleep, dark eye circles and I could literally feel my heart beating very hard. I do not use any stimulants (such as coffee, tea, or nicotine), so I assume that my adrenals are healthy.
Schwarzbein's recommendations are pretty basic. Between 15 and 50 grams of carbs per meal depending on your degree of insulin resistance and activity level. Protein and fat are unlimited in her program, but she recommends limiting saturated fat if you have a lot of weight to lose. She recommends never going below 50 grams of carbs per day to avoid adrenal fatigue that can occur with long term carb restriction. She notes that our bodies really do not have a feedback mechanism for carb intake like we do for fat, so that is the only macronutrient that needs to be monitored.
My energy level was actually really high on low carb because of the adrenaline. I now try to eat a sensible portion (25 - 75 g) of carbs such as rice or potatoes with my last meal and I can again sleep like a baby!"
What I am curious about are the people who are completely fine on low-carb diets, and of course the Masai and Eskimos and their adrenal health.