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Is my recently developed hypoglycemia related to VLC intake?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by spk View Post
    p.s. And here's the thing. Even if you find out you have some big medical issue, eating Primal or Paleo or whatever you like to call it is going to HELP. I personally know people with multiple sclerosis, cancer, obesity, you name it who are flourishing eating in this way. Just finding your particular version of it can be a trick for some of us... I for one went a little too long on VLC and messed myself up a bit. So I understand the frustration.
    Thanks for the encouragement and advice, I'm starting to feel a little more positive

    May I ask what were you experiencing when you ventured into VLC, spk? I have been browsing a few forums and reading some very contradicting experiences, all ranging from life saving to torture.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Dragonfly View Post
      Definitely a bit too fast for your system, methinks! Not hypoglycemia, though. More like intense carb "flu".
      Up your starchy carbs to 70 or so. Don't drop your fat, as long as you are digesting it OK. You need it for satiety and I suspect you dropped your calories more than you realized. Eat more often, if needed during this transition.

      Try not to drink water 1/2 hour before or after mealtimes. You will need all your stomach acid/enzymes to adequately digest your food. If you need liquid with meals try 3-4 oz kombucha.

      It can take folks from 6 weeks to 6 months to completely adapt to vlc. I just went vlc after 2 years of 70-100 gm Primal carbs & I am still experiencing carb "flu".

      Magnesium deficiency is widespread and if you dropped all your grains when you dropped all your carbs, then you may need to supplement 400-600 mg of Magnesium Citrate (if you have constipation) or Glycinate (if not). If you are doing dairy, you don't need the calcium.
      Originally posted by Cryptocode View Post
      Cold turkey into Low Carbs and Cold Turkey into ketosis are two different things. LC is 100-150g, VLC is 50-100g, Ketosis is < 50g.

      I'd suggest upping carbs (not starches) to around 100g and staying there until your body is fully adjusted, about 3 months. You'll still loose weight if you keep your fats high (around 60-65%).
      Both of these are right. It sounds like you took it from one extreme to the other in a very short period of time.

      It takes different people different time spans to adapt. For some it is easy with no carb flu at all. For some it is a looooong process and very uncomfortable. There is no need to crash into it all at once though. Give your body a while to get adjusted to just regular lowER carbs, then re-evaluate and see if you want to go for the Full Monty ketosis.

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      • #18
        Mmm - I hesitate only because everyone is so different and yet, I think we gals could learn so much if we just shared our experiences from a female perspective. * Changed my mind - I'll send this in a PM to you *
        Last edited by spk; 05-30-2013, 08:18 PM.

        “you aren't what you eat - you are what you don't poop.” Wavy Gravy

        Today I am Fillyjonk. Tommorow I will be Snufkin.

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        • #19
          Could it possibly be low blood pressure? It doesn't really make sense because it tends to occur after high not low carb meals (and more so on older people) but it matches the confusion and disorientation.

          How big are your meals? Do you have any history of circulatory issues? (generally cold hands/feet)

          The easiest first step is to test both BG and BP.

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          • #20
            Hi, I agree with the electrolyte issue.
            The recommendation for sodium intake when VLC is 5000mg / day. 1 tsp of salt only contains about 2400 mg. Personally, even salting liberally, I generally only use about a 1/4 tsp of salt per meal. When I was VLC I used to have 1-2 bouillon cubes a day to keep my sodium level up.
            Primal since 9/24/2010
            "Our greatest foes, and whom we must chiefly combat, are within." Miguel de Cervantes

            Created by MyFitnessPal.com - Free Weight Loss Tools
            MFP username: MDAPebbles67

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            • #21
              I found this VERY common, and we can't diagnose someone, but I would take about 500mg of potassium chloride and drink it in a glass of water.

              The clue to me is "I feel worse after I drink (plain) water." That sounds JUST like symptoms of low electrolytes. And you can have them because it's how much you EXCRETE that counts, now how much you CONSUME and going ketogenic creates HUGE exretion of electrolytes.

              I am almost 100% sure this is it. And after the potassium test, try the sea salt test, a small teaspoon of salt in a full glass of water.

              See how you feel then.

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              • #22
                I have to agree about the sodium. Especially if you are drinking too much water (not saying that you are, but it sounded like you may have downed a large amount of water). My personal experience is that I went through a stage where I replaced my carb addiction with a water addictive behavior- thirsty? How about 2 or 3 glasses of water instead of just one! I wandered along borderline hyponatremic (which seriously feels JUST like dehydration and/or low blood sugar to me) for about three until an incident where I went really overboard and got very sick.

                I also have reactive hypoglycemia and got a monitor and tested to death until I had a very good understanding of what set it off- it is very individual so if one person or a book says that something gives them hypoglycemia, it can be different for you.
                “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” W. Edwards Deming
                Blogging at http://loafingcactus.com

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                • #23
                  weak legs, weak extremities...this is a key symptom of electrolytes getting low. Your body will do ANYTHING to maintain proper sodium and potassium...but it excretes FAR more when on low carb.

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                  • #24
                    All good suggestions so far. I missed the part about it occurring after water also. Another thing you might want to have checked is for a "hypervagus reaction". Some people are more sensitive to stimulation of the Vagus nerve, which is stimulated via eating and drinking.

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                    • #25
                      any follow up on this from the OP?

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                      • #26
                        I agree, I'd see your family MD about these symptoms. Try adding additional carbs for a few days up to 75-100g and see what happens. You're not going to gain weight by doing this and if your body needs them, EAT THEM. A primal diet is meant to nourish your body and that can mean different things for different people and different bodies, if what you are doing is harming your body, try something new. Take care of yourself!

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                        • #27
                          Instead of just saying "I think it's this and do this", my recommendation to the OP is to get her DR to do a full blood panel and some other tests related to her numb legs. That will give her much needed info about her BG, electrolyte balance and other markers, might hopefully rule out some serious CNS disorders which have symptoms such as hers and give her a starting point to correct the issues.

                          Sent from my DROID RAZR using Marks Daily Apple Forum mobile app
                          Don't be so concerned about yesterday, or worried about tomorrow, that you forget to enjoy today.

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                          • #28
                            Thanks for all the replies. Even after a high sodium meal I still experience these symptoms and it's very unpredictable because they can be mild or extreme. I drink 2 liters of water a day but I'm finding it hard to cut down. Some cherries relieved the symptoms but not completely, recovering from an episode takes a long time.

                            Upping the carbs tomorrow and gonna eat some more fruit and add in some starches next week. I'm still a little anxious this is irreversible and will contact the dr if symptoms don't improve despite having more glucose in my system.

                            I usually only count net carbs so I should experience a less diuretic effect than being in ketosis... My total carbs must be 70-80g. I've consistently tested negative for ketosis.

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                            • #29
                              try potassium. TAke some Litesalt or Nosalt add it to water and drink and see how you feel...

                              Also a high sodium meal isn't the same as drinking seasalt dissolved in water.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by richard View Post
                                try potassium. TAke some Litesalt or Nosalt add it to water and drink and see how you feel...

                                Also a high sodium meal isn't the same as drinking seasalt dissolved in water.
                                I tried this today. Felt great but it had an almost immediate effect on my bowel movements, like my body is rejecting it and the weakness feeling returned. Drank another two cups but with no success. I'm starting to feel more convinced it is an electrolyte issue. I don't know why it's so extreme in my case with all the confusion/disorientation.

                                Any other suggestions as to how I can balance my electrolytes?

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