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The Dreaded Paleo Detox

by (268)
Updated about 16 hours ago
Created April 23, 2012 at 9:23 PM

So according to this article, http://www.paleoplan.com/2011/03-02/the-dreaded-detox/ there is such a thing as a detox period after starting full time on the paleo diet.

I think I might be having something like that right now but I'm not completely sure. The last couple of days I'm had moderate to very bad headaches and on and off again diarrhea. I'm also feeling quite run down for no apparent reason. I also continue to be unreasonably hungry basically constantly. I really like my new food plan and I just want to eat all the time. Steamed broccoli? Yes sir!

Anyone else have any experience like this? How long did it last?

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4
20411 · April 24, 2012 at 1:13 PM

It's just low carb "flu" and it can last a few days to 2 weeks. One solution is to up the amount of carbs a bit. Or stick it out. Drinking broth (or anything with salt) also helps.

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11142 · April 23, 2012 at 10:20 PM

I don't recommend counting calories, Paul, but it's good to have an idea of one's macronutrients. Are you consistently lower-than-average carb? How's your fat intake? Keeping track of your nutrition goes much farther than calories ;)

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd
807 · April 23, 2012 at 9:50 PM

I still on occasion have looser than normal stools after eating/drinking coconut oil. been Paleo for 12 months now.

A9fa2bf11cf5f32d5195d677ff2af197
268 · April 23, 2012 at 9:47 PM

I'm not shy about using fat don't worry. I use Ghee instead of butter. I didn't know coconut oil had that property, so thanks for point it out.

A9fa2bf11cf5f32d5195d677ff2af197
268 · April 23, 2012 at 9:45 PM

I use to be a rapid calorie counter. It was awful, stressful and ridiculous carrying a scale around with me everywhere. It's something you have to do when ounces count. I honestly don't want to do that ever again.

2e841984c55e1f346f6e38f60c1620a6
540 · April 23, 2012 at 9:32 PM

MCT oil is a miracle. I drink it in coffee and it cuts my hunger way down. Give it a shot if your in a pinch.

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3 Answers

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0
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21400 · April 23, 2012 at 9:27 PM

I have never experienced it for more than a week or so.

If your previous diet really sucked, most of your symptoms are mostly withdrawal (or so I've been made to believe).

Some of the things that help, would be MCT's (coconut oil and grassfed butter contain them), and getting sufficient water... especially in the case of diarrea. Coconut oil and grassfed butter will also help with the hunger a bit more than just lean meats and steamed veggies. Put some butter on your food!

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd
807 · April 23, 2012 at 9:50 PM

I still on occasion have looser than normal stools after eating/drinking coconut oil. been Paleo for 12 months now.

A9fa2bf11cf5f32d5195d677ff2af197
268 · April 23, 2012 at 9:47 PM

I'm not shy about using fat don't worry. I use Ghee instead of butter. I didn't know coconut oil had that property, so thanks for point it out.

2e841984c55e1f346f6e38f60c1620a6
540 · April 23, 2012 at 9:32 PM

MCT oil is a miracle. I drink it in coffee and it cuts my hunger way down. Give it a shot if your in a pinch.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
1
11142 · April 23, 2012 at 9:27 PM

Detoxes are for the junkies at Cedars-Sinai ;)

Sounds like you just have low-carb flu. Even with eating lots of veggies and greens, it can be difficult to break 100g of carbs per day. Are you tallying up your daily nutrient intake? If not, I would highly recommend doing so.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · April 23, 2012 at 10:20 PM

I don't recommend counting calories, Paul, but it's good to have an idea of one's macronutrients. Are you consistently lower-than-average carb? How's your fat intake? Keeping track of your nutrition goes much farther than calories ;)

A9fa2bf11cf5f32d5195d677ff2af197
268 · April 23, 2012 at 9:45 PM

I use to be a rapid calorie counter. It was awful, stressful and ridiculous carrying a scale around with me everywhere. It's something you have to do when ounces count. I honestly don't want to do that ever again.

01f0f91cf8f4a629634c591f4421610a
0
0 · May 17, 2013 at 12:40 AM

This isn't scientific by any stretch of the imagination, but I think a lot of the "fatigue" and the "flu" people are feeling has a lot to do with the stress of change that comes with going paleo.

If you were having potato chips and soda for breakfast (like I was) and having chili dogs and chili fries and soda for lunch (like I was) and having a big mac and large fries and a huge soda for dinner (like I was) then you are going to be hating life for a couple weeks as your body adjusts to a LOT less sugar and your brain adjusts to living with out (and craving) what it considered "treats".

BUT --

Stick it out anyway! I have cut out a lot of unhealthy things in my life -- and junk food was one of the hardest. But going paleo feels awesome. Even 75% pale feels awesome. Because it's real food. Not sugar. Trust me -- I have been paleo for about 2 years now -- and you will love yourself in a couple months. Your skin and hair will shine. And you will have the type of even emotional life you never thought was possible.

Give yourself 2-3 months. Buckle down. You can do it -- and it's going to be awesome!

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