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    Nurdin's Avatar
    Nurdin is offline Junior Member
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    Short Blackouts

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    My girlfriend and me have been doing the Paleo/Primal diet for about 5 weeks now. I'm doing good but she keeps having tiny blackouts when she stands up or sits down (she didn't have these before). Does anyone know why this is and how she can change it?
    She also has fluctuating energy levels (are these related to eachother) ?

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    Blackcatbone's Avatar
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    Are these actual black-out or "I stood up to fast"? I used to get them more frequently when I was having problems with hypoglycemia. These days, not so much. Is she eating enough fat? Is she still eating a lot of carbs and starches? Not enough? Are you two IFing? It can take a while for the body to start efficiently using fat for energy so her blood sugar may be out of whack. Women sometimes need a bit different macro-nutrient levels. Or she may have different issues. If she's eating enough and getting enough fat then it would probably be a good idea to see a doctor, at least to have bloodwork done to see if she's possibly anemic or something else.

    It could also be carb-flu. Not sure if the "mini black-outs" is part of it, as I never really had it due to changing my diet gradually, but someone else may be able to weigh in on that.

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    Uncephalized's Avatar
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    They're usually called "head rushes" where I'm from. I got them a lot when I was first starting out on low-carb. I think it's an adaptation issue. But mine went away within the first month.

    Right, also, I should mention that I think they are linked to lower blood pressure as well as low blood sugar. I have always had pretty low blood pressure as well.

  4. #4
    Lewis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurdin View Post
    My girlfriend and me have been doing the Paleo/Primal diet for about 5 weeks now. I'm doing good but she keeps having tiny blackouts when she stands up or sits down (she didn't have these before). Does anyone know why this is and how she can change it?
    She also has fluctuating energy levels (are these related to eachother) ?
    Dizziness? Also known as orthostatic hypotension?

    Dizziness: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia

    Note it can sometimes be relieved by an increased intake of fluids and salt. I tried to find a reference for that and got this which seems to support that:

    Generally it is best to start with non-pharmacological treatment, and proceed to drug treatment only when this fails. Note that measures such as voloume expansion with increased salt and fluid, moderate exercise and tilt training are relatively safe but their effectiveness has not been demonstrated by controlled trials (Kapoor, 2003). Nevertheless, we think it is reasonable to give these things a try. ...
    http://www.dizziness-and-balance.com...thostatic.html

    Now, I think it's common for people going on low-carb diets to be rather lower than they should be in fluids and in salt. I understand it may be because a low-carb diet can cause your body to lose retained water—and electrolytes with it. Also, one has to bear in mind that foods that people on such diets might well cut out—bread, rice, processed foods—typically have quite a lot (and probably too much) salt added to them.

    I would try drinking rather more water (or other non-harmful fluids, such as herbal tea, broth, lacto-fermented drinks). I'd also take care to sprinkle some wide-spectrum seasalt on food. Something like the Celtic seasalt:

    Celtic Sea Salt® Brand Salt - The Original Gourmet, Certified Kosher Sea Salt

    or the Himalayan rocksalt. Basically, any salt that is not over-refined (you can tell because those are glaring white). Or add some ConcenTrace mineral drops to a glass of water:

    Amazon.com: concentrace

    People in the low-carb world are now saying that many of the initial effects of low-carb diets could be down to insufficient salt. I've heard Dr. Wortman say this. Dr. Eades also says so here:

    Postural hypotension happens when you stand up too quickly and feel faint. Or even pass out briefly. It’s a sign of dehydration. So if you’ve started your low-carb diet, made your multiple runs to the bathroom, and jump up off the couch to answer the phone and feel like your going to faint (or actually do pass out momentarily) and have to sit back down quickly, you’ve got postural hypotension. It’s really easy to fix – you simply need to take more sodium and drink more water. Salt your food more.

    The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D. » Tips & tricks for starting (or restarting) low-carb Pt II
    Last edited by Lewis; 09-18-2011 at 09:53 AM.

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    hazyjane's Avatar
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    I second Lewis- it sounds like orthostatic hypotension. Adding unrefined salt with color to it (I like Real Salt- it's a bit cheaper than Celtic and Himalayan- not to mention even cleaner!) to all her water (like at least 1/4 tsp) will make a big difference very quickly if this is the case.
    I used to see stars and my vision would go black when I stood up to fast- I had salt wasting due to adrenal fatigue. Salt halted those episodes (as well as helped my heat tolerance!)

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    Alex Good's Avatar
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    So doubling my bacon intake is medicinal? HELL. YES.
    In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.

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    Nurdin's Avatar
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    I had about the same answer on Paleo Hacks so I guess it's a really good point to start. Thanks for taking the time to reply!

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    Adrianag's Avatar
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    I was listening to a recent podcast by Dr. Kurt Harris and he said his blackouts stopped when he upped his carbs.
    http://robbwolf.com/2011/09/13/the-p...on-episode-97/
    Last edited by Adrianag; 09-19-2011 at 06:44 PM.

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