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A week into lowcarb diet - headache and more brainfog

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by bedman, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. bedman


    Started reading "Recovery from CFS" with 50 success-stories. Since there were some who claim to be cured because they banned carbonhydrate out of their kitchen I also started doing this. Plainly eat fruit, vegetables, eggs, cheese, milk since one week.

    But now i started getting terrible headache (which i didnt have for months) and more brainfog than for a long time. Is this caused by banning carbonhydrates? Do I have to eat a piece of bread or some honey every now and then? Or is it just coincidence?
  2. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

    australia (brisbane)
    low potassium can occur from the initial rapid water weight loss from low carb diet, after first week is over potassium loss is greatly reduced. More green veges can help as well as potassium supplements. Also to much fruit can negatively effect low carb diets from increasing blood sugar too rapidly, berries are a good low carb fruit to have. As for a cure to cfs mm, im not sure its a cures you but it does help with weightloss and controlling blood sugar, even though sugar isnt eaten blood sugars are made from protein and fat is used for energy in a more steady way to carbs. Try and get a copy of the atkins diet book, it has a good explanation of low carb dieting.

    I have read the book, recovery from cfs, im not sure alot of them had cfs, most sound more like depression and alot of the people in the book come from the UK where i think alot of depressed people maybe wrongly diagnosed with cfs, i think someone with true cfs wouldnt recover with the methods they have used in the book.

    good luck,
  3. sandralee


    Sydney, Australia
    Hi Bedman,

    The symptoms you are experiencing could be due to detox, but I also had a problem on a low carb diet. Over a 3 month period, I continued to get weaker and weaker. I wasn't even having fruit because of candida.

    Inspired by another post on the forum (can't remember who) I started dissolving glucose tablets under my tongue and it gave me more energy. I know that this is not a long term solution, as I must be careful not to create sugar spikes. It also goes against the conventional wisdom, but I'll do whatever helps me. I also expect that many others might caution against this approach.

    Best wishes,

  4. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

    australia (brisbane)
    Some people do better on low carb diets then others too. im one who feels better on low carb diet. Another approach could be eating carbs with a low glycaemic index, u will need to google glycaemic index to get food ratings on the index.

  5. Wonko

    Wonko Senior Member

    The other side.
    A ketone headache isnt uncommon at least initially, the solution is to raise carb and fluid intake. If the headache is intolerable then a SMALL bar of chocolate should sort it in 20-60 minutes, in my experience no standard painkillers will touch it. Decreased mental function is also not uncommon until the body adjusts due to the temporarily lowered available energy before the brain gets used to burning ketones. Drinking enough is also vital with low carb.

    The problem with it being a ketone headache is from what you've posted your carb intake probably isnt that low, milk contains a fair amount of carbs as do most fruits, TBH I've never heard of anyone trying low carb without meat or fish and I'm not sure how your going to be able to maintain a high enough whole protein intake to avoid LBM reduction.

    It's possible your problems are down to a dairy intolerance.

    As Heapsreal has said a low carb diet will not cure ME/CFS - it might help with some symptoms to varying degrees especially if you have other issues which are undiagnosed, but it wont cure ME/CFS. Last time I tried ow carb I was as functional as I've been in the last decade but I still had ME, it's just the limits were higher for some things. These days I tend to use a lowered carb approach most of the time (around 100-150g carbs a day raher than below 50g) depending on my needs.
  6. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

    There is no diet cure for CFS. If there was we wouldn't need to have had these groups since the internet started. There are plenty of quack websites claiming cures for CFS. They don't work and cause pain for genuine CFS patients. I did 10 years of different dietary experiments with little help to my core symptoms.

    You didn't mention meat in this diet. It may be that you are one of the people who needs this. If I drop meat then I get increased weakness, headaches and pain.

    Is there anything in this diet that you don't normally eat much of? For examples green veges (sulphurous ones) cause me considerable problems and I need to keep them to a minimum. Also diary products don't agree with me. The diet you mentioned would be a disaster for me based on my previous experience.
  7. Tulip

    Tulip Guest

    If that is all you are eating then you are probably feeling revolting due to lack of protein. Feeling blah for the first few days on a low carb diet is normal but it passes for most people. Try adding chicken, turkey, beef, fish, seafood, nuts, seeds and healthy fats such as olive oil and see if that helps. You can not do a low fat low carb diet, it needs to have fat in it to work and be healthy and is essential for your gallbladder!. Your days eating should be based around protein, a little bit of fat and low carb veggies.

    Also it helps to remember that CFS is a waste basket term that has the disease ME thrown in it but also lots of other things such as depression, food intolerances, post viral syndrome etc etc. All of which can be treated successfully and overcome. But ME can't as others have said.
  8. rwac

    rwac Senior Member

    I can't tolerate low-carb diets

    Although I originally keto adapted quickly, I found that I did much better with 100-150g of carbs everyday. So now I've kinda abandoned low-carb and instead doing the Ray Peat diet.
  9. lucy

    lucy Senior Member

    I agree with others it must be keto - I myself reintroduced some carbs after three days due to weakness and brain fog. Ketonic effect is achieved because the body starts to seek energy by burning existing fat - after being sick for so long and with no sports to sweat the toxins, our fat is nuclear waste repository.
  10. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

    It does sound you're getting so many carbs (from fruit and milk) that the headache shouldn't be caused by too few carbs. I started low carb last week too, and have had some head aches and light-headedness. I think I finally realized I wasn't getting enough salt to handle my low blood pressure/NMH. I started salting my cottage cheese and meats like mad today, and did a lot better. Plenty of water too of course!

    You probably won't get the benefits of a low carb diet when eating normal fruit and milk (and startchy veggies like potatoes), and if you aren't spreading your carbs out throughout the day, you might be yoyo-ing back and forth between eating enough carbs to use that for energy, and not having enough carbs to give you any energy. It takes a couple days for the body to really adapt, so the back and forth could be causing the headaches.

    I've been doing about 8 50-100 calorie snacks per day plus a "normal" dinner ... same as what my fiance eats, but minus the grains. It ends up looking like this usually:
    7am: a few bites of liverworst
    8:30am 1/4 cup of yogurt or cottage cheese,
    10am: a little meat, usually leftovers
    11am: 6 berries
    noon: a good sized salad with some cheese and fatty salad dressing
    2:30pm: 15 peanuts mixed with 4 almonds and 6 hazelnuts
    4:30pm: liverworst
    6:30pm: normal dinner amount of meat and veggies, maybe with a cream-based sauce
    8:30pm: 1/4 cup heavy cream with 6 berries (and a little vanilla and stevia usually)

    This way I'm getting 2-4 carbs every couple hours, instead of all at once like I would if I ate a banana. I don't get any cravings, and can even resist oreo cookies easily now! Weight has gone done consistently even after the first couple days of water loss.

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