I have been dealing with what I thought were hormonal problems - acne, hairloss, fatigue, PMS and weird periods. When it did not stop I got my thyroid checked and I came back Hypo with an elevated TSH (other levels weren't measured yet). I had been off meds since starting Paleo with a low TSH, so I find that surprising. My liver levels were also too high. Z I tried different things, adding supplements, being much more strict (I cut out honey), but nothing helped. Upon researching I read about low carb paleo and high carb paleo when it comes to hair loss and a LOT of sites said going low carb too fast can actually cause thyroid like symptoms, including hair loss.
I was only eating 59g of carbs a day instead of my higher carb intake in summer, which was 70-110. I was not planning to get into ketosis, I am actually trying to gain weight, I just got tired of carbs like carrots and sweet potato.:(
Is it likely that this is my problem? And if so, how can I reverse the effects? I read that one needs to eat an insane amoun of carbs to get out of it? I am back on my usual 70-110 carbs and a bit more sugar from honey and fruit, I feel less fatigued but my hair is still coming out in clumps. I am so embarrassed to leave the house! I am 30 and female by the way.
Do you consume significant sources of polyunsaturated fats? If so, stopping is very likely to help with thyroid function, although it takes a few months.
Some raw vegetables, such as cabbage, slow down thyroid function.
Paul Jaminet thinks a higher carb diet helps with the thyroid.
Potatoes are better then sweet potatoes, because sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene, and people with low thyroid function have difficulty converting carotene to vitamin A. When it isn't converted, carotene has an anti-thyroid effect.
I have heard about the link between low carb and thyroid problems, maybe introduce white rice into your diet to add some variety
When I eat very low carb I get very anxious and depressed so I stick to about 120 grams of carbs a day (i think) I added in white rice as well, I think paleo is a guide not a strict rule
Here is a great article from Dr Cate about low carb and thyroid (you may have read it already):
She basically says to eat carbs again until the symptoms stop, then start again, but SLOWLY reducing the carbs. I think this is fairly common in women as we get into the 30s and beyond. I especially hear of it a lot from peri- and post-menopausal women.
I would definitely try adding back in some white potatoes. Maybe even a little white rice (per Jaminet).
A personal anecdote: the first year I was paleo I would occasionally have this crazy intense craving for oatmeal. (about once a month ... hmmm). I would make a big bowl of gluten free oatmeal (from Bob's Red Mill) with maple syrup and cream (I don't usually eat cream either!). It was heaven. Then I would be fine. About a year into it, that craving finally stopped. Looking back, I guess it was my hormones learning to re-regulate; it was the only craving I had.
My mother also has the same issues, but hers manifests as massive exhaustion. She started eating a bowl of gluten free steel cut oats every few mornings, and it went away.
Of course oatmeal is not paleo, but it's not a bad concession (personal opinion) if you are trying to ease your body and your hormones into a new pattern.
Another thought: if you are trying to gain weight, you should consider going "primal" rather than paleo, and adding a little dairy, even if it's just heavy cream. (One of my fave treats is heavy cream on frozen blueberries - it freezes and tastes like ice cream). A few teaspoons of cream a day packs on the pounds for me. :)
Mireia, what about your high liver levels? What does your doctor say about this? I know zip about liver issues but might be this cause of your symptoms? Not sure how eating low-ish carbohydrate diet can cause liver problems.
As for your thyroid, it is essential you get free T3 and free T4 levels tested. An elevated TSH level is disconcerting but it might not be problematic really. Should your free T3/T4 values be low your doctor might want to prescribe something like Synthroid. I would also ask for additional thyroid tests to see if you have Hashimoto's (a thyroid autoimmune disease). If all you have is a slightly weak thyroid you might consider iodine and selenium supplementation.
Best of luck. Like you, I struggle getting ample carbohydrates because of IBS and GERD issues ... but I am doing okay. My TSH is also elevated but I don't have any overt hypothyroid symptoms. I do take an iodine (kelp) supplement and make sure I get enough selenium in my diet.
I am no expert, but many people experience hair loss (even in clumps) from 3-6 months after giving birth. I'm sure you've already thought of this, but since you said you are breastfeeding, I thought I would mention it:
Hair loss can affect men and women of all ages. This article studies that single men and women who had begun losing hair in their early twenties are more suffer from depression and feeling less attractive and they think older they actual are. When you want to control your hair loss, you should avoid too much stress and eat some healthy food and don’t iron your hair too much and should use some hair treatments and some [spam link removed] that actually helps to cure your hair losses.