After doing a great deal of research and reading Sarah Fragoso's book Everyday Paleo I finally started eating Paleo yesterday.... and today I feel awful!! I am totally committed and want to continue but I have zero energy and feel nauseous. Is this just my body adjusting to a low carb diet? Did anyone else experience this when they started? What should I do and how long does it last? I appreciate any feedback you can give me :)
I'm going to disagree with a couple of the other answers... in the long run, I think it's best to go all in, cold turkey. OK so you might have a tough two weeks whilst you withdraw from the carbs - but after the carb flu you'll start to feel great!
Just stick with it for the next two weeks, make sure you have plenty of good fat in your diet and drink enough water.
KE, you may be going through withdrawal.
According to experts wheat is like a drug. This is an interview with the author of Wheat Belly:
Q: You write that wheat is “addictive,” but does it really meet the criteria for addiction we’d use when talking about, say, drugs?
A: National Institutes of Health researchers showed that gluten-derived polypeptides can cross into the brain and bind to the brain’s opiate receptors. So you get this mild euphoria after eating a product made with whole wheat. You can block that effect [in lab animals] by administering the drug naloxone. This is the same drug that you’re given if you’re a heroin addict; it’s an opiate blocker. About three months ago, a drug company applied to the FDA to commercialize naltrexone, which is an oral equivalent to naloxone. And it works, apparently, it blocks the pleasurable feelings you get from eating wheat so people stop eating so much. In clinical trials, people lost about 22.4 lb. in the first six months. Why, if you’re not a drug addict, do you need something like that? And of course there’s another option, which is to cut wheat out of your diet. However, and this is another argument for classifying wheat as addictive, people can experience some pretty unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.
Low carb flu and wheat withdrawal
Stick with it. If you are trying to low carb it, maybe you should consider keeping your carbs higher for the first week or two while your body is adjusting.
Like with any addiction you just have to hold out till the toxins get flushed from your system. It is also super important that you don't cheat with wheat during your first 30 days or your adjustment period could be extended and your potential results diminished.
Gluten withdrawal, for me, is absolute hell. I feel like I'm dying for about three days. I'm in favor of going cold turkey and just sucking it up and dealing with it for a few days. It WILL go away, I promise! The fog will clear and a whole new world will open up to you! I agree with Suz, eat enough good fats and drink lots of water. Get a lot of sleep. You can do it!
Exactly what have you eaten for the last three days? Food doesn't always affect how we feel immediately. Your body will likely go through an adjustment period to the different types of nutrients you are providing, if they are significantly different. Did you sleep well last night?
There are two ways of dealing with this. First, you can actually eat some fruit or sweet potato. These are paleo things, and there is a range of carbohydrate levels people feel comfortable at- as will be evident by the range of comments you'll get here. The paleo diet is lower in carbohydrates than the standard American diet, but if you stick around you'll become aware of the carbohydrate catfight, where people who don't actually do science complain about people who want to do science that isn't being done.
But, if you want to lose weight, and maybe have my problem where I can't go and buy a week's worth of fruit because I will eat it all instead of actually saving it for it's appointed day, you may want to take option two, which is basically tough it out. I've found the fastest way through that haze is brisket, but you are nauseous where as I was having cravings.
There are some other issues- some people are actually allergic to coconut oil. You might be nauseous because of it; I don't know how much Fragoso relies on it, but a little bit can make me feel seriously sick to my stomach. You might try butter instead if you suspect it.
When I gave up Gluten, I had bad withdrawal symptoms, but once over, it was a whole new world. Also, experiencing the withdrawal symptoms will help you keep from going back, You DON'T want to experience that or the lack of energy ever again. It's worth every second.
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