I have been following a paleo/primal for the last 6 months. I live in a cold environment and have always dealt with the cold well. This year I have been very cold feeling. Cold feet and hands and am wondering if limiting myself to no starched generally is the cause. I am thinking about adding some acceptable starches like sweet potatoes. Anyone else had this issue as well with paleo?
Does everyone need starch in cold climates? I don't think so or the Inuit and Laplanders would have been in trouble a looong time ago. But do you need starch in a cold climate? Only you can answer that. I would try both upping the fat and if that doesn't work, then trying carbs. Upping the fat works better for me personally.
I don’t know if you need more starch, but you might feel warmer if you eat more. I noticed this long before going paleo that the more starch I would eat the warmer I would feel. When I tried VLC, I was cold most of the time and had to bundle-up at night when I went to bed.
I don’t know if this is really good reason to eat more starch or not. I am guessing as long as you are not messing with your thyroid that it might be a small issue in the big scheme of things. I had other problems with VLC and do better in general with more starch.
Are you eating enough fat?
I'm virtually zero-carb, and bearing up quite well in the Minnesota cold so far. I do notice that I'm eating more lately, but not carbs. Fatty stuff like cheek meat and soup bones and pork hocks. I'm currently nibbling away at a big beef heart, very lean, because I wanna loose the last of my spare tire, but heart has fat deposits around the outside and I notice I do enjoy that the most. I have a huge tongue in the freezer, even leaner, gotta thaw it out and see what that does. But the thawing will take long enough, I'll probably grab something real fatty in the meantime. Can't help myself.
BTW, this is the sniffle season, y'know. Are you sure you don't have one of the millions of strains of itty-bitty cold viruses going around?
One last piece of advice: never wear long-johns in the house. Your brain needs to feel the chill somewhere in order to regulate your core temperature appropriately.
Low carb negatively impacts thyroid function and decreases body temperature. When I restrict carbs, my waking oral temperature is about 96.0 degrees, but when I do not, it's 97.5. Doesn't sound like a big difference, but life is miserable even in relatively warm Portland with carb restriction. If I had some more bodyfat, this effect might be mitigated to some extent. This was with a high protein diet, which is supposed to have the highest thermic effect of food, mind you.
The only way that fat is going to keep you warm is if you store it as body fat or you're eating mostly medium chain fats, which themselves have a high thermic effect. I don't know if the timescale of liver processing is such that coconut oil consumption would make you feel warm shortly after eating it (I'm allergic so I don't really want to test it) but I suspect that you'll still have an uphill battle with staying warm around the clock.
A simple way to test this is to see what your waking temperature is tomorrow and then eat starch for a couple days and test again. You'll notice the difference without measuring it though.
Is there a particular reason why you're restricting carbs? If it's for weight loss, there's more than one way 'round the barn.
I find that as sunlight wanes in the northern latitudes, the tendency to crave carbs increases, and people gain weight in the winter. I have been fighting this urge and eating VLC this winter. It is really hard to stay motivated with only 6 hours of daylight and the shortest day is still over a month away.
On SAD, I always thought I needed more starch in fall/winter. On primal, I've noticed I'm more hungry for fatty meat. I don't know if we should trust either of these impulses, because I've noticed a nice warm bowl of thick bone broth stew satisfies my urge completely.
As long as I continue losing weight I won't worry if I feel like extra meat. Otherwise, I'll add another layer of clothes and go back to what I ate when it was warmer.
i found the exact opposite. i am one of those cold nosed people who love it 40C and cry at the thought of temps below 25C. about a month and a half ago on LC IF i started to feel warm and energetic. the people who know me best commented on my warm feet and hands and lack of gloves in september.
four weeks ago i let a ND convince me to try more veggies; albeit i just upped the non-starchy one, but still i'm cold....and back to LC IF
do you think adding starch would have given me a different outcome?
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