Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
11 Jun

What Happens to Your Body When… You Carb Binge?

Carb BingeAnother day, another co-worker’s birthday (and the obligatory cake in the break room). Elaine Benes was right: this is insanity.

You’re into the Primal style of eating, so it’s easy to resist this stuff, right? You ignored the dirty looks when you turned down that piece of fudge-smothered bundt cake offered by your boss’s wife at their employee open house. You don’t mind gnawing on the few anemic carrot sticks left at the annual holiday party. Dessert just isn’t part of your vocabulary.

But would it hurt to indulge this once? This guy’s birthday? Well, you like him well enough, and the cake is a lemon cream after all. And it’s the end of the work day. Seriously, it’s not like you’ll suddenly burst into flame and melt in a fiery, torturous death, leaving nothing but a smoldering spot on the carpet. You’re disciplined. You can more than make up for this later. The worst that can happen is a sugar rush, and you spent half your time at summer camp walking (well, running) around in that state. Those were good times. Oh what the heck, gimme a slice. Yeah, sure, a little ice cream too.

So, what will happen? To your body, we mean. Once the plastic fork (with its spongy contents) hits your mouth. What goes on in there anyway? And why are you suddenly thinking of Willy Wonka and that kid who gets sucked down the garbage chute?

First off, the good news. There’s no purple suited man to pull an ominous lever. Nor is there any other permanent fate awaiting you. You’ll leave work a live, generally functional human being. They’ll be no curse or pox on your house or even truly long-term risk elevation for that matter. Nonetheless, you’ll likely regret your decision.

Within a matter of 10 quick forkfuls, you’ve gone from small doses of quality carbs wisely spread throughout the day to possibly 100 or more grams of pure sugar in one sitting. O.K., some guilt is setting in…. But that’s not all that’s happening.

The Domino Effect

Domino Effect

Within a few minutes, your pancreas kicks into overdrive and sends out a flood of insulin to try to sop up all the excess glucose that’s suddenly rushing through your bloodstream. Remember, while glucose is muscle fuel when it’s in the muscles, it’s toxic sludge when it stays in your bloodstream. Your body knows that and does everything it can to get it out of there. Perhaps you’re feeling flushed, a little high, spastic, or nauseous depending on how much you ate, how big you are, what your normal carb load is, and how acutely you tend to “feel” the effects of sugar and other substances. Ironically, if you were insulin resistant, you might not even notice these sensations, but you’re not. You’re a clean-fuel-burning primal specimen.

And it continues. The gush of insulin now creates a see-saw effect. If your glycogen stores have room, some of the sugar goes into muscles. If there’s no more room, the excess goes into fat cells, where it is stored as fat. In reaction to this quasi-emergency that looks like another life-threatening stress, the body steps up its efforts to achieve homeostasis by releasing both epinephrine (adrenaline) and cortisol from your adrenals. Your heart is racing, and you’re starting to feel uncomfortable, maybe even sweating. And we’re still likely within the first hour after you finished off that cake!

A bit more time passes. Burnout settling in yet? That’s called a sugar crash – when all the glucose is gone from the bloodstream and you start to feel sluggish, off-kilter, like the internal circuits are all fried after sparking in a heap of now smoldering wires. Hmm. Maybe that spontaneous combustion image wasn’t so far after all.

But there’s more…. The havoc that sugar rush set off – the swing of glucose and insulin, the cortisol and adrenaline – they’ve sent your immune system into a tailspin. Research has shown that the function of immunity-related phagocytes is impaired for at least five hours after intake of simple sugars. Free radicals have their heyday as well within the first few hours after sugar increases oxidative stress on the body. Your blood even thickens as a response to the stressors.

Wait, you aren’t out of the woods yet. You get home and try to sleep it off, but you toss and turn as your heart continues to beat faster than normal. Hmm. Little surprise there. The old hormonal system is confounding in its interconnectedness. You lay there cursing not just that cake but the entire cultural custom of birthday celebration. As the sun comes up and you roll out of bed, you think you should be done with this sugar business by now. Maybe. Maybe not. Unfortunately, a hefty dose of sugar can compromise the immune system for more than 24 hours. Groan. The images flash before you. The flu your daughter brought home earlier this week. The miserable cold (that incessant cough!) your boss has. Passing plans or reports around the meeting room. Shaking hands with the new clients who came by yesterday. Your toddler’s insistence on drinking from your cup last night. Suddenly you’re seeing your week in a new (and dimmer) light. Your immune system might have handled it all quite easily before the sugar incidence/insult. That’s one birthday cake that keeps on giving!

As bad as this sounds, it could be worse. If you follow the Primal Blueprint regularly and the lemon cream was just a detour, you’re a generally healthy person. You’ll experience the effects, and you may feel them more acutely than you did before you chose the low-carb path. (This isn’t a bad thing.) Nonetheless, after the dust settles, the worst thing you can end up with is maybe a cold you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise. Your system will realign itself pretty readily. Within a couple of PB style days you’ll be as good as new.

But if this is a normal day? Sigh. This presents a much bleaker picture. That see-saw of insulin and glucose? The process breaks down in your body until you develop insulin resistance. That rush of adrenaline and cortisol? That hormonal havoc over time fries your adrenal system. Your body is constantly in a state of “fight,” and inflammation becomes a constant state of affairs. Enough sugar over enough time (with the lack of exercise to boot), and you’ve gotten yourself into quite a pickle. (Maybe a pickle would’ve been a better snack choice….)

The Primal Blueprint offers up a plan to help guide our everyday choices as well as information to help us weigh the compromises we choose to make along the way. How we take care of ourselves each and every day can ameliorate the more taxing damage from occasional concessions we make for personal and social reasons.

And so we conclude the Willy Wonka journey.

Willy Wonka

What are your thoughts on sugar shock? PB compromise? Questions? Stories to share?

I Like, Fanboy30, Paradox Blue Flickr Photos (CC)

Further Reading:

On the Question of Sweeteners

The Salt/Blood Pressure Debate

Diabetes is Now a Disorder of the Small Intestine?

Subscribe to Mark’s Daily Apple feeds

Sponsor note:
This post was brought to you by the Damage Control Master Formula, independently proven as the most comprehensive high-potency antioxidant multivitamin available anywhere. With the highest antioxidant per dollar value and a complete anti-aging, stress, and cognition profile, the Master Formula is truly the only multivitamin supplement you will ever need. Toss out the drawers full of dozens of different supplements with questionable potency and efficacy and experience the proven Damage Control difference!

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. I have eaten primal about 90+ % of the time for the past 5 months. Lost a bunch of weight and size. This thanksgiving I had some bread stuffing(love the stuff), 2 small pieces of pie, and a few small squares of pizza. I had no issues other then had to go #2 a few more times over the next few days.

    I find it really interesting that everyone can have such different reactions.

    One other note. I was listening to a Robb Wolf(the paleolithic solution) and he was telling a military person who was going to be deployed to always stay slightly inflamed by eating some sugar and gluten due to not knowing what the food available to them would be. I was thinking once one gets to there genetic potential. Would this be a good option to prevent the major lows from a binge?

    Any thoughts?

    Matt wrote on December 3rd, 2011
  2. after following rule 80/20 for primal living for about 4 weeks now I love it. My body feels amazing.
    On the weekend I treated myself with a baked spud while shopping – you know, the potato, cheese, sour cream with ham and pineapple.
    Well I took it home to eat and lucky, as no more than 30minutes after eating it I was overwhelmed by tiredness that even walking around trying to shake it off did no good so I fell asleep on the couch – FOR 4 HOURS!! I woke up feeling groggy and horrible :( No more big carb spuds for me!!

    I just can’t get over how intense the need to sleep was. It was like my body was sutting itself down so it could digest my meal.

    NewlyPrimal wrote on December 7th, 2011
  3. this just happened to me. I thought I was dying until I looked it up. NO. MORE. CAKE WITH COFFEE. ON EMPTY TUMMY!

    Camila wrote on January 20th, 2012
  4. This scared the crap out of me. I do not want to harm my body like that. I already feel a little bit sick, and the symptoms are too familiar. It’s not worth it at all.

    Wild Child wrote on February 1st, 2012
  5. Mark,

    I have often wondered about the benefits or detriments (physical, not mental) of exercising to burn off an unusual indulgence. Let’s say I have a piece of cake at the office. (“I’m just a social eater….”) When, and how much should I exercise (30 minutes on the nordic track?) to burn it off. When do those sugars hit the blood stream? Does it help to do cardio? When? An hour later? The next morning? Or, does it just not really matter and I should just forget it and go back to a regular routine?

    Stephen wrote on February 17th, 2012
  6. i used to be a marine and i work out not as much as i used to though. i am more educated about proper lifting techinques, sleeping habits, sugars etc.. i want to make an enviroment since i still live with my family i am 22 any advice on making a enviroment of healthy food

    ben wrote on February 28th, 2012
  7. Hi Mark, I love the primal blueprint way of life. I started it October 2011. Right now I feel terrible. For no apparent reason other than testing myself on whether I would, I binged on chocolate for the first time in ages. My head is spinning, my heart is racing. Even my eyes are having trouble focussing. I am also having trouble concentrating….Never EVER again will I do that!!! Back to meat and veggies for me.

    Kylie wrote on March 11th, 2012
  8. I’ve recently discovered Primal style of eating and am soooo intrigued by it. It’s a completely different way of viewing foods and life. And because it makes a lot more sense than my previous diet, i’ve decided to learn more about it and embark in this new journey. And i am so excited by it. I’ve been eliminating sugar, grains, corn, soy and eating a more PB diet for the past two months. Until yesterday that is, when i visited a legendary Italian restaurant on Little Italy in the Bronx. Well this place is incredible. So i told myself “it’s ok – this once in a while experience is to be enjoyed” and boy did i ever enjoy it!!!!. I had tons of crusty bread and butter. Hot antipasto. Fettuccini alfredo and a sweet flaky desert. Everything was oh soooo gooood. And to my surprised when i measured by blood glucose within the hour it was in the low 90’s. So i continued to enjoy the rest of the night, went to a show and headed home.

    As my boyfriend was driving, i was getting more and more car sick and nauseated. I blamed it on my boyfriend’s driving and winding road. Not even thinking it was related to my meal AT ALL. By the time i got home, i was miserable. I threw myself in bed, coat and all (I was the female version of that picture at the beginning of the article). I was physically ill, dizzy, nauseated and had a stomach ache. I just felt gross. I managed to find strength to shower. And oh boy, when i got to the bathroom, it was puke central. I hadnt puked in 100 years. And it was just pure pure torture. How could i be reacting this way to food? Foods i’ve been so used to eating only 2 months prior? And then finally my ordeal was over. Within a few minutes, i felt much better.

    I was taken aback by this reaction. I never expected to become physically ill and miserable like this. I’m very new to all this primal way of eating and did not anticipate for a minute that my former diet would have this affect on me. My boyfriend suggested that, maybe i had eating one particular dish that was spoiled or didnt sit well with me. But instinctively i knew. I knew it was all those carbs and all that sugar. So i started searching online and voilà!!!!!! I stumbled upon this article. And wow it’s a great awakening for me!!!!!

    The one thing that has been lingering since last night is my vertigo. Can vertigo possibly be linked to sugar? I’ve noticed that it’s been getting consistently worse since i’ve been eating primal. Could it be that i’m now experiencing the effects of sugar a little more strongly. The one sugary thing i still have is 2 glasses of wine two or three night a week. I guess i can cut it out and see if this helps. But wine with dinner is such a nice indulgence on those especially harsh days. Please advice.

    liz wrote on March 17th, 2012
  9. Last night I decided to try every single dessert at a fancy dinner while on vacation. I have been following the primal blueprint for the past 6 weeks and feeling amazing. Not only did I try the desserts at dinner I ate a ton of rolls at lunch. I gave myself permission to eat.

    I feel awful. It is worse than the worse hangover I have ever had. I could not sleep though the night, I woke up every hour despite being exhausted. I am dehydrated. I have a pounding headache that won’t stop and I feel awful.

    Thank you for your article, now I see why I feel so bad. It is not worth it to have the sugar at all! I had no idea that one cheat could have such a dire effect on my entire system. Again, thank you.

    Michelle wrote on March 24th, 2012
  10. I looked this up because I’ve been slowly moving towards a diet with less sugar (when I eat too much sugar I don’t enjoy myself, I can’t get up in the morning, I have no self-control…)

    This morning I was feeling great from my new diet, so I thought it couldn’t hurt to buy sugar and make cookies like I used to.

    I ate a pickle. It worked. I don’t really like pickles.

    Layla wrote on June 2nd, 2012
  11. One piece birthday pie and a spoonful of ice cream = a nose that will not stop running, sneezing about 100 times a day,(wondering if my ribs will break) pain in knees, foggy brain, feeling wiped out. I have not been Primal long enough to have a cheat day or a carb “treat” Totally not worth it. The cravings began anew. I wonder how long Tuesdays “treat” will last. My mail man just delivered the Primal blueprint 90 day journal. I need to take the blood tests and then I am going for broke.

    lynn wrote on August 2nd, 2012
  12. I started the Dukan diet and (not so unfortunately) I indulged for one meal every weekend (for 6 weeks) and the weight just fell off. It was so good getting off processed carbs and starches. I continued without the indulgences for a couple more months and lost 6 kgs. (The Dukan diet stipulates one ‘oatmeal’ galette serve every day).

    I haven’t had any fruit yet.

    I have now started Paleo for health reasons. I see it as a good lifestyle choice. The vegetable recipes that have accompanied the recipe books and on the website are fantastic. So far, every dish has been enjoyed by the whole family (even the shredded brussel sprouts)!

    What I fear is what will happen if I go through another phase of regular indulgences (Christmas is coming up). With such a high fat intake on Paleo, could regular indulgences cause weight gain? Will I have to do some ‘extreme’ exercise to compensate for those times even though I remain vigilant for the rest for the week –it’s just that one meal on the weekend?


    Anna wrote on August 14th, 2012
  13. After the usual christmas binge of chocolate and macarons (as a detour from a high protein diet) I am sitting here with sweating, racing heart, nausea, and bloating. Gross. Thanks for explaining these symptoms and ensuring I avoid this potent cycle in the future!

    Tess wrote on December 6th, 2012
  14. Binging hard this evening, 3-4 months paleo, last 3 weeks pretty strict.
    Might throw up but testing this stuff is fun.

    Kristaps wrote on December 24th, 2012
  15. This is a true story. I binged on GS cookies after being low carb and essentially sugar free for 8 months. My body still hasn’t recovered. I started Sat and went until Wed. I was so tired I skipped crossfit all week. And lets not talk about the stomach issues. The racing heart beat was pretty interesting. It was the first observable effect.

    fs wrote on February 23rd, 2013
  16. Hi Guys!

    I was wondering if you could help me with a little question. In your article you cited “a hefty dose of sugar can compromise the immune system for more than 24 hours,” with the article$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed .

    I looked at the article and didn’t see where it said anything about immune system compromise after sugar dosage. Just the differences in glucose, leptin, and triglyceride responses between sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup. Can anybody help me out with reading it?


    Chris wrote on March 30th, 2013
  17. Thank you for this article! It helped me realize the implications of my sugar cravings and the strength to not give in to them! Thank you Mark!!!

    Lucie wrote on April 16th, 2013
  18. This article is waaaay extreme and blown out of proportion. “Reefer Madness For Sugar”. I eat very healthy, lift weights all the time, CrossFit, etc. I’m in great shape. However, from time to time I’ll polish off 1/2 full-size tub of ice cream or the majority of a large pizza. No ill effects at all. None! If anything I’ll get a vascular pump due to the carbs (and generally eating low carb diet). Sleep like a baby.

    Yeah one can get a carb crash after eating a baked potato for lunch and the like but gimme a break with this end of the world 100g of carbs in 1 sitting BS. Little bird saying the sky is falling.

    Rico Suave wrote on August 13th, 2013
    • I tend to agree, Luke. I fast eod and have dessert regularly on non-fasting days. Although it might not be the healthiest thing in the world, it doesn’t seem to be the worst thing in the world either lol. I never have those physical reactions, and I sleep soundly fasting, or after eating sugar. Kudos to those of you who abscond carbs. I will live on the wild side for now. 😉

      Cindy wrote on August 13th, 2013
  19. Well this helps to explain why my panic attacks disappeared for a few years, when I was eating mostly fish, veggies, and rice. Other than those few years I grew up impoverished (eating the worst quality food you can imagine), then developed an addiction to fast food (breakfast/lunch/dinner) when I moved out at 17 years old. I’m now 32 and after years of ups and downs I’m following a strict paleo diet which is helping a lot. However, I gave in and indulged in red wine, bread, and a big brownie the other night when I went out to dinner with my husband. I had a severe panic attack that night and couldn’t understand why it was so much worse than usual. I’m assuming if I eat strictly primal then do that, the sugar shock is worse. I feel like now it’s difficult to have a social life, as mine has always been with groups of people who like to go out and drink/eat all night.

    Tori wrote on September 17th, 2013
  20. I was starving and just ate so much dessert I am so appalled. I enjoyed it thoroughly but of course I now have a racing heart and am bloated. I also know tomorrow I will have to train like a madwoman to feel better. I hate the fact that I binge sometimes, and need some sort of formula to talk myself out of going crazy when I get that feeling of “I have to eat dessert NOW!!” It’s like I can’t control my emotion, and even if I try to put it out of my mind, it takes control, and I will think of donuts or whatever until I eat it. I think I just answered my question…I am letting it take control of me when I can control it. But I still need the formula. HELP!!

    Almost a whole Sara Lee cheesecake, peanut M &M’s, white chocolate, a donut, a shortbread cookie, and barbecue chips. The rest of the food that I had today was 2 fruit & veg shakes with no sugar, just ice, and a stir fried chicken dish with cashew nuts, brown rice, a lightly fried egg, and some raw veggies.

    I live in Thailand so I eat a lot of Thai food. Luckily I live on a street where there are a lot of restaurants that make healthier versions of Thai food to accomodate all the athletes living on this street. There are 4 gyms on this one street!

    A few hours ago, I went to do groceries. I tried to talk myself into just buying a granola bar to offset the craving of something sweet with something not so bad. But I fell into the trap. The problem is when I want to eat dessert, I gather everything that I like and eat it all. Never just one thing. I think I do it because I don’t eat it often, so I try to kill 10 birds with one stone, so to speak.

    I have decided to try to stick to just brown rice and chickpeas for carbs, and the occasional bread. I LOVE bread, pasta, pizza, but I see how much weight I gain when I eat a lot of bread.

    I am lactose intolerant, and have IBS. I also think I have a slight intolerance to wheat. I think we all do. When I eat rice, I feel fine. I have so many pills to take it is exhausting. But if I don’t, my body doesn’t work as well.
    Digestive enzymes after each meal, Lactaid for the lactose intolerance, flax seeds for regularity, probiotics for control of yeast and PH balance.

    I train 1x a day, 6 times a week. Sometimes 2x a day. I usually eat healthy, but I think it’s the feeling of loneliness sometimes, or the feeling that I am always depriving myself of something to stay a certain shape, or just wanting to eat junk in my house and watch the Golden Girls ;-)…

    Right now it is 10pm, and I feel like I could go for a run, but of course I won’t do that. I will train hard tomorrow morning and try to eat normally and not make such a big deal about the fact that I probably just ate 1500 calories in an hour.

    Why did they have to make junk food taste so good?? :-(

    Let’s just all stick together and keep talking and supporting each other in the fight to stay alive and healthy with the occasional pig out!!

    Jojo wrote on October 11th, 2013
  21. I have been eating around 30g carbs a day for 4 months in an attempt to shed the extra 2 stones im carruing and it has been really tough going to abstain from all the high carb foods i love so much. Today i gave in. I felt so uninspired my the options of ‘permissible’ options for lunch, i chose cheesy nachos, deep fried chicken with a sweet sauce, beer and a chocolate icecream dessert. It was pure pleasure to eat, asbolutely delicious!
    However, that was 30 mins or so ago and now i feel incredibly hot (sweating even) and i can feel the heavy feeling of lethargy starting to settle in. I know i am going to feel even worse as the day passes. Experience tells me that i will have a horrible time trying to get out of bed tomorrow morning and feel physically and mentally exhausted throughout the day. Compounding this will be the unabateable hunger that i will not be able to shift, no matter how much protein and fat i eat…..and the overwhelming desire to seek solace from the exhausion and irritability in grain- and sugar- rich foods.
    Ultimately today’s delicious lunch won’t have been worth the physical unwellness and the phychological frustration of knowing that my weakness has knocked me back days and days in my weight loss efforts. Its just so hard to abstain from foods that taste nice and give you a sense of true saiety. Feels like a long, hard struggle. Thanks for your support, just wanted to share my feelings on the topic. Eishing you all the very best with your efforts.

    Libby wrote on October 15th, 2013
  22. Thank you. very informative as I am the epitome of a sugar addict. I have been the sugar addict for 35 years. Eating a whole tub of icing & a entire cake smeared on thick on many occasions. I am surprised I do not have any of the diseases associated such as the below listed.
    •Heart disease
    •Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases)
    •Chronic lower respiratory diseases
    •Alzheimer’s disease
    •Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis

    Annonomous wrote on November 16th, 2013
  23. Hi Mark,

    Most of the year (80%) I follow a low carb, mod protein, high fat style primal style diet–I’m low to moderately active. When I’m successful at this diet, I can maintain my weight; however, the last couple of years, I’ve fallen off the wagon big time. Way too many “good” carbs, and a ridiculous amount of bad carbs; usually starting around the holidays. It’s like I miss the sweets and pancakes and bread-y things. I seem to gain weight rather quickly during this time. Not withstanding the poor diet choice(s), is this quick, fast & substantial weight gain even more impacted due to restricting carbs most of the time throughout the year? Thanks. Em

    Em Belle wrote on March 10th, 2014
  24. I was wondering what would be the best thing to do after a carb binge to help speed up the recovery process and get back to feeling normal. Would a Dukan style eating of pure protein (no vegetables) be better or would something like going on a pure vegetable day or even a full on fast day be best? or should we just forget about the binge and move right back into the primal way of eating…?

    Also, what supplements would help after a carb binge? I’ve heard R-ALA, Chromium and B vitamins help.

    Would really love to hear your comments.


    Daisy Poon wrote on March 28th, 2014
  25. Hi Mark! This site is making the world a healthier place; thank you.

    I know I’m a little late and there isn’t a huge chance at a response, but I have a question. I love sugar – always have – but generally ate healthfully before switching to a 100% primal diet. Before, I’d have legitimate sugar binges of 150-250g of carbs but have always been a runner/climber, always been skinny, have normal blood glucose post-fast levels, and never get sick. Now primal, I’m even skinnier than usual [much to my mom’s dismay, who is increasingly worried about grandchildren potential].

    I have not cut calories and am actually a bit less active as I get used to this diet but still do sprints and bodyweight exercises. I’m by no means “skinny-fat” and never was even when eating carbs (I gain muscle it seems by thinking about squats while eating cupcakes).

    Question: Is it possible that some people are better adapted to eating carbs? Is it wishful thinking to assume that because my reaction to sugar & carbs is/was fairly minimal that what you describe in this article is *not* happening and the occasional treat is OK…or is my metabolism just fast and disguising some of the more obvious effects of the damage?

    thedrsaway wrote on June 13th, 2014
  26. I have been primal for about a month and it feels good. Sometimes I like to push my body to the limit, and for some reason today I was justifying an extra carb intake. I took in about 150g of carbs from homemade ice cream within 40 minutes, and I felt terrible. Heart was racing, head felt heavy, nauseous, bloated, gassy. The worst was the emotional depression. You just want to sit and cry. Even though on the inside I was really intrigued and pleased to truly see the awful effects of sugar. It encourages me to give it up for good.

    “If you have found honey, eat only enough for you, lest you have your fill of it and vomit it.” Proverbs 25:16

    Daniel wrote on July 20th, 2014
  27. I have been feeling like crap for about 2 years now. Xtreme fatigue, muscle weakness and tingling, muscle and joint pain, memory problems, bad fuzzy head.. been doctoring this whole time too and had pointless tests and procedures done to figure out my problem, seen multiple drs, etc.. No-one can diagnose my problem. Actually in process of getting into Mayo clinic because my current Dr. thinks possible Chronic Fatigue Syndrome but isn’t too familiar with it and a little hesitant to make a sure diagnosis. In the meantime I decided to try cutting back on sugar and non-whole grain carbs. My symptoms began to improve. I went on vacation and fell off the wagon. I was right back to square one. So, I started cutting way back again and was just starting to feel a little better and decided to test my theory again. Last night I ate lots of sugar and lots of carbs. Slept til noon today, was up for 3 1/2 hours and crashed again at 4. Its 7 o clock, I am so weak and tired, still in bed typing this. Feel terrible. Shaky, exhausted, weak, sluggish, achy. Going to lay back down now. Answer: obviously my body CANNOT tolerate that junk so here’s off to a healthier lifestyle!!!😴

    sjb wrote on August 11th, 2014
  28. Hi Mark, I frequently read your posts which do tend to keep me on the straight and narrow unfortunately tonight had eaten before reading this one. I’ve lost 59lbs following low carb over the past two years and I’m down to a healthier 134lbs 5’3 33y female. I believe everyone reacts differently to bad foods for a number of reasons but I for one can fully relate to this post and that physical and emotional feelings that follow the binge.

    When I was overweight and unhealthy I never felt these feelings associated with sugar. It’s only since Id cut them out do I have these problems. I even stopped juicing because Id feel immediately comatose after drinking a veg juice with half an apple in it. Vision problems, sleepiness and warm flushes.

    All my tests seem to keep coming back normal for thyroid, glucose fasting etc but I definitely feel worse now than I used to after eating a high amount of carbs simple or complex. Strange.
    I don’t want to cause myself any more harm with evil foods as I fully understand what is happening when I do that to myself, I’m educated enough which makes it all the more ridiculous but I seem to turn in to a zombie and eat so much chocolate that most people would be heaving with. It doesn’t seem normal to me, I’m talking a thousand calories worth of milk chocolate in one sitting, then a few hours later easily more. Should I be worried? Could I be pre diabetic or insulin resistant?

    goldilukes wrote on March 2nd, 2015
  29. Hey Mark! Sadly, we just recently had a carb binge, pizza and beer night. It doesn’t happen often, which is why I’m not going to beat myself up over it, but I did notice something a little bit weird. The days following the ingestion of carbs my skin becomes physically sore to the touch. Like my whole body is bruised, but without the discoloration. I was just wondering if you could explain this uncomfortable sensation?

    Katie wrote on March 17th, 2015
  30. And for me, all that high blood glucose, high insulin, cortisol, adrenaline and impaired immune system, triggers a major acne break out that takes weeks to settle down again. Found this out after having a binge while on holiday last week

    Diane wrote on July 31st, 2015
  31. 1) Love you, too, Lyle. A little late to this party, aren’t you?
    2) Let me know when you’re ready to actually understand how human metabolism works.

    Mark Sisson wrote on May 5th, 2011
  32. You seem pretty defensive Lyle…

    Jason Martin wrote on May 6th, 2011
  33. What’s up with coming to someone else’s website using profanity?

    carla wrote on May 6th, 2011

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2015 Mark's Daily Apple

Subscribe to the Newsletter and Get a Free Copy
of Mark Sisson's Fitness eBook and more!