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For the ladies: hormone changes when going Primal?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Aingealag View Post
    Aldergirl: I haven't tracked my diet the past few weeks, but when I do keep a food diary, I find I eat enough. Around 1900 calories, which is enough for me, because I'm not very active. I maintain a healthy weight easily (73kg at 6ft tall) -which is apparently strange considering my thyroid is quite underactive.
    I don't think it's strange that you easily maintain your weight at 1,900 calories--it really doesn't seem like that much food, even for being sedentary. Your thyroid might be underactive because you eat so little? I see quite a few websites that say starvation brings about a underactive thyroid, though I really have never done serious research on the subject...

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    • #17
      Aldergirl: I calculated my calorie target at a few reputable sources. It's based on RMR (resting metabolic rate) for my age, gender, height and lifestyle. Most of the time it comes up at about 1850. I eat whenever I feel like it, never stingy when scooping fats onto my plate and I'm never hungry! Although I don't think starvation is an issue for me, it is an interesting notion about my thyroid... I just assumed lately it was underactive because my dose of Thyroxine was too low... Food for thought haha what a delicious pun eh? But I digress..

      Thanks for taking the time to lend me advice!

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      • #18
        No problem! I hate when my body doesn't work right and I can't figure out what's wrong, and I know it can't be fun going through what your dealing with. Hopefully you'll find your answer and your hormones will balance back out!

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        • #19
          Hello,
          I was contemplating starting a thread here today out of desperation but found your thread and thought maybe someone reading this could help me. I am at a loss for what to do. I went primal in January of 2012 and have been ever since. At first I felt absolutely amazing. I had so much energy and felt so alive. I had been suffering with headaches that had reached an almost daily occurrence level with occasional migraines on top of that. I was desperate for something as I was really getting concerned about how much OTC medications I was having to take. Once I went primal, those headaches went away and for the first time in forever I felt like I could actually enjoy life without having to worry when the day's headache would hit me. But now, over the past couple months, I have gone down hill at a rapid rate. I am having daily headaches again. I had 3 migraines this month alone, I have ZERO energy, always (every single day) wake up feeling like I never went to sleep, totally unrested. I have absolutely no sex drive anymore probably because I either have a headache or am too tired..like..whole-body tired and my joints ache all the time. On top of this I am always bloated. I look 5 months pregnant all the time. My cycles however are regular and I have never had cramps.

          Maybe I should give you some background though. I am a 52 yr old female. I have never been sick except for the occasional flu or cold. I have no health issues what so ever except for what I mentioned above. I don't smoke, don't drink except for the occasional social drink with dinner, don't eat processed foods anymore and even before going primal only ate them a tiny bit, like canned soup or lunch meat but that's pretty much it. No heat-n-eat stuff ever. I've always eaten healthy. I weigh 136, am about 5'6" and have been a size 4 since high school. Since going primal I now eat organic, gmo free every single chance I can, follow the primal diet as closely as I can, only use a little bit of sugar when I have to and then it's xylitol, honey or coconut sugar or maple syrup I made myself. The only dairy I eat is grass fed butter and grass fed cheese. I use only olive oil or coconut oil, make my own lard, and use no soy. I don't get alot of fresh fish so I do take Blue Ice fermented cod liver oil on occasion when I feel I need it. So I really don't know what else I can do diet-wise.

          I've also noticed lately that my hair is extremely "straw-ish" and falls out in huge amounts when I shampoo it. I've switched all my bath products to organic or chem-free as well. With all the fat and oils I consume I am surprised my hair is so dry and tangly all the time. (I have very thick coarse textured hair). I truly feel like I'm falling apart at the seams. I have a headache as I type this that again, I woke up with. I've spent countless dollars on pillows and mattresses trying to figure out how to get better sleep.

          I don't really want to go to a Dr. to be put thru a mirage of medical tests that I may not need plus I don't have the money for that. I steer clear of pharmaceuticals. I do however see a chiropractor regularly.
          I can't tell you my protein/carb ratio because I have never had any luck trying to count that out. I don't understand how you all figure that out quite honestly. But a typical day's food for me is 2 eggs for breakfast, usually with a couple strips uncured bacon, a big salad for lunch with mixed greens, cheese, nuts, and home made dressing, sometimes I put albacore tuna or avacado on it, and for dinner we usually have roasted, grilled or baked chicken, pork or beef, a good veggie like brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, green beans, kale or something like that. Very few potatoes though and I only snack on dark chocolate (70-77%) or some fruit (cherries, blueberries, clementines or strawberries usually).

          So someone, please help me figure this out because I am truly at a loss at this point and so disappointed because I felt so amazing when I went primal. I haven't really changed anything from then to now nutrition wise.

          Thanks in advance

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          • #20
            Hi MooseM,

            I'm about to hit the sack, so just writing a quick message on my phone:

            It's so worth getting a blood test to check vitamins, minerals, thyroid etc. It really sounds like it could be your thyroid! I have autoimmune thyroiditis so I know what I'm talking about. Once you know what's going on, you can deal with it properly.

            Wishing you all the best!

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            • #21
              Aingealag,

              Thank you so much for your reply. How would I go about getting that blood work done? I don't have a primary since I've never been sick. Do I just call one up and ask for it? I know that may sound stupid but having never been sick and grateful for it, I really don't know if just asking for this at a regular physician is what I should do or is there another route I should take?

              Again, thanks so much. I'm really desperate for some answers. My husband thinks maybe I'm not exercising enough and I'm not because I can never do anything for the pain in my joints or my headaches. If I try pushing physical activity with a mild headache I risk launching it into a migraine

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              • #22
                Moosem,
                I'm your age and have had similar issues. I would recommend getting your thyroid checked. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's (hypothyroid) last spring by my GP, I had suspected it for a long time. It turned out that she wasn't very experienced with dealing with it so I asked around and found someone that specializes in hormone issues. He ordered a bunch of tests, it's expensive, but I'm tired of trying to fix things myself. Last year while trying to deal with my symptoms myself through diet and supplements my thyroid got really out of whack. My next appointment is in September, I hope that with the test results we'll have a better idea of what course I should take to heal my thyroid.

                I don't think exercising with a headache is a good idea, at least for me it would be a sure way to turn it into a full on migraine.
                At your age it's a good idea to get some blood work done and to see a doctor who can interpret the results. Yes it is expensive but think of all the money you've saved over the years. Since you are starting from scratch in terms of a doctor why not see if there are any paleo/primal docs or functional medicine docs in your area.
                Find a Primal/Paleo Physician or Healthcare Practitioner
                Last edited by Urban Forager; 08-20-2013, 09:28 AM.
                Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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                • #23
                  Urban Forager,

                  Thank you! I so appreciate you both replying to me. This morning I was in tears when I woke up with yet another headache and feeling exhausted so any input you guys have is gold to me. I had no idea there was a website for Primal Practitioners! I was just sitting here contemplating how I could begin to explain to a conventionally taught doctor why I eat so much fat and not get handed the basic cholesterol meds which so many of my friends seem to end up on. I will check out that website right away and again, thank you so much for your help!

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                  • #24
                    Urban Forager,

                    Thank you! I so appreciate you both replying to me. This morning I was in tears when I woke up with yet another headache and feeling exhausted so any input you guys have is gold to me. I had no idea there was a website for Primal Practitioners! I was just sitting here contemplating how I could begin to explain to a conventionally taught doctor why I eat so much fat and not get handed the basic cholesterol meds which so many of my friends seem to end up on. I will check out that website right away and again, thank you so much for your help!

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                    • #25
                      I hope you feel better soon, Moose. I had a bad headache a couple of weeks ago (twice) and I was miserable, nothing seemed to help. Finally I took 800mg of Ibuprofen (not something I normally do) and it went away.
                      Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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                      • #26
                        I hope you find a good (Primal) physician. I have very little faith in "regular" GP's, but they can still order blood tests for you. Just explain your issues and a good GP will order a standard blood test checking for vitamin/mineral deficiencies and check thyroid status and possible infections. Tip: when your GP is writing the referral for the blood test, check to see what he/she is checking for. Some can be a little conservative. Just say you want "the lot" or at the least vitamin B's & D, immunoglobulin E (hope I spelled that right, I'm pretty sure it checks for allergic reactions in your blood) iron, calcium, magnesium, reproductive hormones & thyroid.

                        Good luck! I'm sure whatever is going on is very much treatable!

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                        • #27
                          Some great info here I just wanted to add a link to another MDA thread with lots of info about female hormonal imbalances: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread22423.html

                          Moose, definitely gutted checked for Hashis. My mum has it, and migraines were one of her first symptoms. You may need to get a scan of your thyroid to confirm if you have it.
                          "I think the basic anti-aging diet is also the best diet for prevention and treatment of diabetes, scleroderma, and the various "connective tissue diseases." This would emphasize high protein, low unsaturated fats, low iron, and high antioxidant consumption, with a moderate or low starch consumption.

                          In practice, this means that a major part of the diet should be milk, cheese, eggs, shellfish, fruits and coconut oil, with vitamin E and salt as the safest supplements."

                          - Ray Peat

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Aingealag View Post
                            I hope you find a good (Primal) physician. I have very little faith in "regular" GP's, but they can still order blood tests for you. Just explain your issues and a good GP will order a standard blood test checking for vitamin/mineral deficiencies and check thyroid status and possible infections. Tip: when your GP is writing the referral for the blood test, check to see what he/she is checking for. Some can be a little conservative. Just say you want "the lot" or at the least vitamin B's & D, immunoglobulin E (hope I spelled that right, I'm pretty sure it checks for allergic reactions in your blood) iron, calcium, magnesium, reproductive hormones & thyroid.

                            Good luck! I'm sure whatever is going on is very much treatable!
                            I checked for a primal physician thru the link I was given. Unfortunately they are all chiropractors and in my state they can not order blood work. I think I found a decent GP tho and will ask for a complete blood profile specifically asking for what you've mentioned as well. After doing some research yesterday I do have alot of symptoms of thyroid imbalance and I guess women are particularly susceptible during times of hormone changes such as post partum and menopause. Spent 12 hours in bed yesterday with another stupid migraine so I'm really ready to get this solved. It's really interfering with my life now.
                            Thanks for your advice, I really really appreciate it!

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                            • #29
                              You're welcome keep us posted on this thread when you get your results back, ok?

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Aingealag View Post
                                You're welcome keep us posted on this thread when you get your results back, ok?
                                I sure will, especially if it'll help someone else

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