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  1. #1
    69 Stacks's Avatar
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    Why do I feel so bad?

    Primal Fuel
    Greetings all. I started a ketogenic diet on February 3rd, and I'm having some problems adjusting. Iím hoping someone can shed some light on the problem(s). Before I continue, itís worth mentioning prior to coming here, I went to the doctor last week and had some (fasting) blood work done. I will be posting screenshots of the results below. When I told my doc Iím on a ketogenic diet he looked at me like I was from the 9th rock from the sun and was absolutely useless as far as troubleshooting my issues; I even had to prod him to order certain blood tests (i.e., insulin). I was stunned by his lack of knowledge.

    Anyway, my primary goal is weight loss. February was a breeze. I was consuming about a 72/24/4% ratio of macros. I was in ketosis by the 6th day, lost 13 pounds that month and had very few symptoms while adjusting. By March 8th I was repulsed by all the fat consumption so I decided to stop counting fat grams (mind you, I didnít skimp on dietary fat, either Ė what I switched to was similar to Atkins induction). By March 14th I was knocked out of ketosis. Note that a couple of other things happened prior to the 14th: I caved in to my Diet Pepsi (w/aspartame) addiction and I started my period on the 11th. I knew that either one could be a potential culprit. I stopped drinking the DP, but I still didnít count fat grams. I was back in ketosis by the 16th, so apparently I was getting enough. I decided to wait until this month to determine whether it was the aspartame or my period that knocked me out of. At any rate, ever since I got knocked out of ketosis up until now, I have had a really, really rough time. Iíve had extreme muscle weakness, memory problems, sugar cravings, etc. I started supplementing with 800 mg of chelated magnesium on March 20th with no relief, and then 1000-2000 mg of potassium on April 5th also with no relief (kids, donít try this at home). From the beginning Iíve used coconut oil and salt, and over the past few days Iíve been taking about 12 MCT oil softgels a day. From the day I started this diet up until today, I have remained at or under 20 g of carbs a day. Calories have hovered between 1400-2100. Anticipating being potentially being knocked out of ketosis again around the time my period was to begin (the 8th), my ketones on the 3rd were down to .5. I immediately increased my fat intake to 75% + grams per day and tested at 1.5 by the 8th (and back down to .8 on the 10th Ė my ketone readings bounce around a lot). I test my ketones with a blood testing monitor, so my results are accurate (the strips are crazy expensive Ė even from Canada Ė so I only test 3x a week).

    To sum it up, Iíve had ďcarb fluĒ symptoms since being booted out of ketosis in March (although I was curiously asymptomatic in February). I am posting my blood test results below. Any comments/suggestions are appreciated (to date, there are some tests that havenít been run; for example, vitamin D). Also, I took a fasting (12h) blood sugar reading prior to my appointment and it was 101.

    Iím thinking insulin resistance or reactive hypoglycemia, but I donít know. If thereís a problem with my numbers they didnít show up when I had my tests done, naturally (although insulin and sugar are both on the high end of normal). I just canít figure out why I feel so lousy, and I'm about ready to give up on this thing.








    I reached my photo limit, but I have numbers for creatinine, complete blood count, and a liver function panel available (all are within normal limits).

  2. #2
    Knifegill's Avatar
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    You're over-thinking this. Just eat the most satiating foods you can that allow you to stay at a slight caloric deficit over time. You don't need ketosis. It might be safe and fun, but it sounds like it's not working for you. I recommend potatoes.


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    I agree w knifegill. A lot of people are successful w ketosis but I've come to think it's just not a long term thing for everybody. Have you tried just regular primal?


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    Try adding more carbs just in the evening.

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    Ketostix are petty useless for people who are intentionally in ketosis. Once your body starts adapting to using ketones for fuel they will stop showing up in your urine at the high concentrations you saw at the beginning. This doesn't mean you are out of ketosis, it means the pathways to burn the ketones have upregulated in response to your diet.

    That said, it sounds like keto diets may not be for you. A lot of us have gone down that path and had similar experiences.

    Also, do you exercise? Being able to properly burn fat relies on having a healthy amount of fat burning mitochondria in your body's cells, which are boosted by a few intense workouts per week.
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    Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

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    Since all your values are in relatively normal range it is hard to say. It would be helpful to know what these test values where prior to your switch. I would suggest that if you keep on this rout you read up "the art and science of low carb" by phinney and volek. Or at the very least read this and include some re-feeds http://www.ebookszip.com/pdf/tnt-diet-pdf-46501.pdf

    The easiest would be to just shift to standard primal weight loss protocol. Thats 50-100g of carbs per day with periodic couple of days here or there dipping into sub 50g range.
    Last edited by Neckhammer; 04-12-2014 at 07:37 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eureka5280 View Post
    Ketostix are petty useless for people who are intentionally in ketosis. Once your body starts adapting to using ketones for fuel they will stop showing up in your urine at the high concentrations you saw at the beginning. This doesn't mean you are out of ketosis, it means the pathways to burn the ketones have upregulated in response to your diet.
    op states she is using a blood monitor.

    that being said, i have never heard that having your period will knock you out of ketosis.

    less than 20 gms carbs per day is VERY low, especially if you are only consuming 1400 cals. even atkins isn't that low and their induction is only 2 weeks. you also don't say how much weight you have to lose? swinging between 1400-2100 cals is a BIG swing. pick a smaller cal window, depending on your size and activity level, and stay there consistently for a couple weeks.

    you feel like ass, so what you're doing isn't working.

    up your carbs, consistent cals and add salty bone broth to help with electrolytes.
    As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

    Ė Ernest Hemingway

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    Quote Originally Posted by noodletoy View Post
    [FONT=Book Antiqua][SIZE=3]op states she is using a blood monitor.
    Oops, sorry. Not enough coffee yet this morning.
    __________________________________________________ _____________________________
    Eureka5280: M / 38 / 235lbs / Goal: 180lbs

    Diet: Currently experimenting with higher carb (Peat-esque) primal with emphasis on beef, dairy, seafood, sugar and a bit of starch on lifting days.

    Activities: Started Stronglifts 5x5 on 3/1/14. Adding sprints and hikes soon.
    End of Year Working Set Goals: Squats-250, Bench-200, DL-315

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    Are you obese? Your diet may be appropriate for obesity or diabesity but may not be appropriate for a healthy person wanting to drop some vanity weight. Give a less drastic diet a try.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    Starting squat: 45lbs. Highest squat: 167.5 x 2. Current Deadlift: 210 x 3

  10. #10
    69 Stacks's Avatar
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    I suspect insulin resistance due to my high-normal insulin and blood sugar results, but most importantly due to the way I felt before I started this diet. Then, too, I rapidly regained 60+ lbs following a low calorie/low fat diet. I think that metabolically I was in real trouble. I practically needed a 24h sugar drip to keep my blood sugar from taking a nosedive every two to three hours. I wish I'd had blood work before I started. Two of my own recent blood sugar results were 101 and 102 -- and that's two months after starting this diet.

    I'm starting to put 2 and 2 together, but it's taking some time. I don't think I'll ever understand why I didn't have any symptoms when I first started keto, though, other than I was really eating a lot of fat right out of the gate. And then the lowering of my fat intake combined with a potentially broken metabolism caused things to get rough. I really won't know until I keep a consistently high fat intake. Guess I'll just keep on keepin' on with a few tweaks here and there. I just wish I knew what I could do to immediately feel better (besides eat potatoes ;-).

    Thanks very much for all the replies. It really means a lot to me. I've pretty much been on my own with this so I really don't know if I have done / am doing the right thing.

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