I'm just wondering if what I just said in my title is true or not.
I'm naturally slim/skinny with a 10-15% BMI ( normal range 5-85%) and due to past events and probably genetics I'm a bit high strung and prone to anxiety , and especially after turning to paleo ( its been 5 months now ) I tend to snap or go into a mini rage if things go wrong. I assumed it was too low carb. so I introduced starchy carbs in the last week and a half and already my mood has improved. Even with little sleep I seemed as calm as can be. I'm also not getting all angry and "loosing it " that much.
Is there any evidence that supports what I'm saying?,
Or anyone with personal experience of this?
If so, what sort of starchy carb or any carb even did you introduce or add more of?
I'd want to know, did you concurrently INCREASE your fat intake when you initially went low carb?
Everyone's response to dietary changes vary, but If you're already suffering from anxiety, your drop in carbs my have initiated the infamous carb-flu increasing any irritability you may have been feeling. The flu would have resolved when you became keto-adapted. However, if you didn't up the fat intake, then you were probably deprived of fuel.
The literature says that mood disorders are helped by ketogenic low-carb diets. However the brain is glucose dependent for much of it's functioning...you must make sure you get at least 300 calories (probably more) from some safe starches. And if you have a performance bias (ie, you crossfit, you exercise a lot) you'll probably need much more.
A few folks at my psych hospital are now being given higher-fat, moderately ketogenic diets with great and almost immediate results.
I did VLC for a while and felt pretty sh*tty. Under the recommendation of my dietitian, I reintroduced sweet potatoes back into my diet and have noticed I feel a lot better in mood, concentration, satiety, etc. And I do suffer from depression and currently take St. John's Wort.
I think this article is extremely interesting. It links carbohydrates with serotonin release, which signals to your brain that you're full. Here's another source about serotonin and carbohydrates (skip to page 178).
After a few months low carb my anxiety went out of control. I ended up incrementally adding sweet potatoes, yams, and potatoes and feeling a lot better. I later found this post on the subject by Anothony Colpo called "Can Low-Carb Diets Make You Crazy?" and definitely think the answer to that question is yes. Maybe not for everyone, but it did for me.
I've wondered about this, too. According to Kathleen DesMaisons' research on sugar addiction, "good"/slow carbohydrates are needed to help the brain make good levels of serotonin in people who tend to depression and addiction - somehow they help get the tryptophan across the blood/brain barrier. Following her program years ago, I have to say my depression and anxiety were at their lowest, especially as I accumulated months and months of no sugar or white foods (though I continued to eat plenty of whole grains, potatoes, Ezekial bread, beans, etc). But, I've since found out I'm autoimmune diabetic and a low to very low carb primal diet is much better for managing my overall health and my weight.
I will say that my anxiety and depression have gotten worse over the last year and I recently started an SSRI for that, and I wonder if I would need it if I were able to eat more starches. Hard to know cause and effect - a lot of other shit has happened in last 2 years (like getting my diabetes dx, for instance! and turning 40, not to mention major hereditary precedent on both sides for mood disorders) that could explain things. It's always a tough balance for me with the diabetes, sort of choosing which parts of my health to focus on. I definitely feel better emotionally with more starches, but then I have to take more insulin, which makes me fatter, which makes me anxious. Ha! OTOH including even "good" carbs in my eating is a slippery slope, because if I get in an addictive/compulsive eating cycle those can be hard or impossible to moderate for me.
It's an always-dissatisfying dance for me to balance care for diabetes/depression/compulsive eating/weight. On the whole, LC-VLC primal addresses everything most comprehensively, but it's still not always feeling PERFECT, and hasn't cured any of the pieces totally.
I get " cranky". , but same is true - naturally lean even before Paleo. My sis-in law is coming today, and I know I'd better eat some starch before she gets here or I may not be able to bite my tongue when she launches into her routine, which has annoyed the SH@T out of me since I've known her.....
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