Thanks for this confirmation, Pollux. Hang in there, 2~3 months seems to be the threshold for noticeable body changes from my point of view.
Originally Posted by Pollux
Ok, agreed on not taking carbs straight up. But my first alternative choice would be to take fats, not extra protein, to maintain a levelled metabolism. A partially ketogenic diet looks a lot safer to me than a high-protein one, be it because of blood sugar excess or protein metabolite toxicity.
Originally Posted by teach2183
Here's the part that I don't get: isn't high protein going to require extra cortisol? because gluconeogenesis seems to be driven by cortisol...
I realize that this thread is a few months old, but thought I would post my insight anyway.
I started trying to the PB (well diet portion - not exercise) about 2 1/2 years ago when my health started going downhill. Got VERY, VERY ill 3 days in so gave up. A month later started feeling a little better so tried giving it another go got sick again a few days in. Gave up the idea of giving up all carbs/grains for almost a year but did reduce them significantly (general kept them to b'fast only), but as my health continued to go downhill (and waiting months for a specialist referal) I decided to give it one last shot. I was a little ill on day 3, but not as severe as the first two times. Pushed through and have been fully primal since (almost a year and a half). This past December I finally saw the specialist and got my diagnosis of Addison's disease. The illness that I had when started primal the first time was an Addisonian crisis (glad I didn't know it at the time b/c it scares the he!! out of me now).
I find eating a primal diet really helps to keep my blood sugar under control. I do think that I need to add some starchy carbs back in as I have been crashing and exhausted a lot lately - probably in the form of white rice since I really want/need to get nightshades out of my diet so potatoes aren't a good option. I too am curious if the reason for my lethargy is that I don't have enough cortisol to convert fats into energy. If you find out any more I'd LOVE to hear it please. I really would love to have others to talk to about this - I feel so alone in my journey much of the time.
I find I have no problem keeping my weight in line with primal - I'm 5'5" and 125lbs. That can go up when I am on holidays/off plan, but drops back quickly when I cut the non-primal foods.
Exercise is still my demon. Unlike a normal person, exercising when I don't feel 100% is a bad idea - sure way to lead to a big crash. I need to pre-meditate my exercise and dose up on my hydrocortisone before hand and often a little after as well. If I'm sick at all, then I skip the exercise - even walks are a bad idea on those days.
Celiac disease is strongly correlated with Addison's. One of the first things my endo wanted to do was test me for celiacs (didn't work though as I was already gluten free). When I do cheat and have a bit of gluten though I feel rotten for days - have been doing that a lot less frequently b/c of it.
So, if your friend does decide on changing her diet/lifestyle please advise her to do it slowly. A big dietary change is stressful on the body and without the ability to make cortisol it could bring on a crisis. I would probably advise dropping carbs from one meal/day first - probably starting with supper. She'll need to evaluate how she feels as she goes along.
If she does decide to make the change and wants to talk to someone that is in a similar situation, please pm me and I can pass along contact info.
Thank you so much for your advice and for posting a real life case. I'm happy to find an Addison sufferer that has gone through the whole deal. It's "small" details like those crashes you had the first times that I'm looking for and I find very important, so thanks for sharing.
My conclusion is that anyone that is already aware of their condition, monitoring their symptoms, and in control of the medication dose should be able to transition into PB / LCHF without much of a problem. But of course a controlled transition is better than an abrupt one.
Regarding your condition, I think you might look into one other adrenal hormone that doctors forget to supplement you with: aldosterone. This is especially true if you feel frequent salt cravings and have low blood pressure. Maybe it helps avoiding the lows and would enable you to exercise. You should probably discuss this with your endocrinologist.
Wish you all the best,
Keep the information flowing.
Actually cortef supplies some mineralcorticoid, so my endo does not think I need florinef quiete yet. I have new blood work coming next month though so that might have changed in the last few months. Definitely something that is on both of our radar though.
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