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Thread: New, and boy do I have a headache! page

  1. #1
    Kandy's Avatar
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    New, and boy do I have a headache!

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    Well, technically, I did have a headache. That is, until I downed a glass of cran-grape juice and ate a toasted bagel. (Am I even allowed to say bagel on this site?)

    I started Primal again on Jan 2. I also tried back in September of 2010. I really believe in the premise, I've also ready Good Calories, Bad Calories plus tons and tons of other research online. Everything makes 100% total sense to me. But here's my hang-up: abut 3 days in I get a life-crippling headache. I've ready the sticky for beginners and it mentions just powering through the "carb flu" for a few days (or in some cases re-evaluate diet if flu lasts months). But I wouldn't call my reaction a general malaise. It's a completely debilitating headache, I suppose comparable to a migraine and it ONLY goes away when I eat some carbs. There's no way I can sweat it out for months on end. I can't even make it through one day. Plus, I'm in nursing school and I really, really need for my brain to work.

    What to do here? Am I supposed to wean myself off slowly, if so, how slowly? If one glass of juice keeps the headache at bay, how badly will that impact the program? Am I really not gaining benefits until I've completely weaned myself?

    I'm hypothyroid (low T3 and borderline T4) and I also have PCOS. Sorry this is so long; I'm about 195 pounds and desperate. I'm so sick of being fat and tired (although the tired part is better now that I've finally found a provider willing to prescribe me T3). My husband is on the verge of leaving me. I feel like I'm a terrible role model for my daughter and I am just so ready for this to change.

    Kandy

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    Wean yourself with things like sweet potatoes, winter squashes and even white potatoes and a little white rice (exercise lots of moderation) if your symptoms are debilitating. So much better than a bagel and that sugary juice stuff. I would try maybe two small servings a day for awhile and then cut down from there. Also, make sure you are eating plenty of fat. That's one of the hard things for some of us to do at first.
    Last edited by TornadoGirl; 01-08-2011 at 06:19 PM.
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    Dragonfly is offline Senior Member
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    Welcome! I also live in WA...

    Try eating starchy root vegetables instead: sweet potato, carrots, etc. Eat them with protein and/or fat. Track your carbs and try to end up at or just under 100 g/day to begin (this is total carbs, including fiber.) Once your body adjusts, you can drop the carbs down as needed. If you get carb cravings from eating grains, forget the rice for now.

    Also eat more fat--really helps with the carb cravings/carb flu symptoms (for me at least!)

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    Kandy - it can take up to two weeks for some people to get through the carb-flu. A few things to consider? Are you eating enough protein and good fats to combat the carb cravings? Instead of juice and a bagel, what if you had a serving of fruit (with some protein)? Make sure you are drinking plenty of water to flush your system. I am not much help on the hypothyroid, but some have supplemented with l-tyrosine and have seen good results. Once you get over the hump it gets much easier! Good luck!

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    Welcome
    2 weeks after going primal I was taking antibiotics for strep throat and bronchitis. Carb flu can come in many forms, you just never know what you're going to get lol! Of course, how low carb you went those 3 days might be an issue. Staying around 100g/day at first helps, along with eating more fat. It might also be a blood sugar issue, your blood sugar is now dropping lower than before and causing headaches until you eat something that raises your blood sugar back up. more fat will help with this.
    Carb flu does not last forever, thank god. I know some people will say this is just prolonging the inevitable, but maybe ease into it a bit. Try eating a lower carb fruit in the morning, like berries or an apple along with your protein and fat(I really recommend coconut oil) I also recommend getting a blood sugar monitor and starting checking your blood sugar levels. Women with PCOS also have a tendency to be diabetic or hypoglycemic. It would be a good idea to see where you are at.
    There are a few members here that have PCOS and are have hypothyroidism so I'm hoping some of them will chime in with some advice too
    Calm the f**k down.

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    Kandy's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input. I think the berries are a good idea, I do like smoothies made with berries, yogurt, and full fat coconut milk. I thought about the blood glucose monitor thing since it was clear that the headache was connected to sugar consumption (or lack thereof). I was without a computer for a couple of weeks there and couldn't track on fit-day like I did last time. But I've been on every diet known to man and well frankly, I'm quite good at knowing the macronutrient intake of what I am eating. I'd definitely think I was really low on the carb, like 25 to 50 g...probably leftoever mentality from my atkins days.

    Anyhow, now that my headache's gone, I'm hopping back on the bandwagon this morning. I guess I'll take this a little slower.

    Kandy

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    Griff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kandy View Post
    What to do here? Am I supposed to wean myself off slowly, if so, how slowly? If one glass of juice keeps the headache at bay, how badly will that impact the program? Am I really not gaining benefits until I've completely weaned myself?
    You can either have a slow, prolonged, but not as intense carb-withdrawal, or you can have a short, but very intense carb-withdrawal. I prefer the latter. Right now you are not helping yourself by taking in juice and wheat. You won't have to "sweat it out for months on end" unless you keep feeding it - which you are doing with the juice and other carbs. One glass of juice has 35 grams of carbs in it, and that's assuming you're drinking their dinky 8 oz serving size.

    So what do you want? You have to decide that for yourself.
    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.

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    I would second the suggestion to try to eat some less sugary, more nutritious carbs in order to ween yourself off. I made an almost complete switch, and after a couple of days of headaches and fatigue I decided I needed to take things slower. I started to eat a serving or two a days of things like sweet potatoes or butternut squash soup, and maybe had some fruit too. This killed the headache and made the transition far easier, and even if some people don't consider those foods healthy (I do), they were still far better than what I was eating before (tons of bread, sugar, etc).

    Remember, the most important thing with any healthy way of eating is that you can stick with it. Eating super primal and then having to binge on sugar isn't really sticking with it. I think a more balanced approach, particularly in the beginning, can be very helpful.

    Good luck!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Griff View Post
    You can either have a slow, prolonged, but not as intense carb-withdrawal, or you can have a short, but very intense carb-withdrawal. I prefer the latter. Right now you are not helping yourself by taking in juice and wheat. You won't have to "sweat it out for months on end" unless you keep feeding it - which you are doing with the juice and other carbs. One glass of juice has 35 grams of carbs in it, and that's assuming you're drinking their dinky 8 oz serving size.

    So what do you want? You have to decide that for yourself.
    +1
    Type 1 diabetic for 25 years.
    Low carb for 7 years, LC Primal for 2.5 of those.
    Fruit and starch free.
    Total weight loss- 3 stone/42 pounds. Current weight = 121 pounds. Height 5'5
    I take Zymessence systemic enzymes.

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    hope you feel better.... would like to know how you're feeling in 1 weeks' time.

    Cara
    http://primroseandpaleo.wordpress.com

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