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Tired, certainly no surge in energy

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  • Tired, certainly no surge in energy


    This is my 19th day of Whole30. By and large, the challenge has worked nicely for me, and I am really happy I embarked on this. I must have shed several pounds already. The carb flu was very mild and disappeared after the first week. I haven't had any cravings whatsoever.

    So far so good. But many people here report that they have experienced an surge in energy. Now, I had some health issues under CW but fatigue was not one of them so I had not expected a miraculous change in this respect. However, I did not expect that I would be more tired either, which is exactly what is happening. I do not feel particularly tired during the day but I seem to be unusually tired in the evenings. I am one of those lucky people who work from home and are in (well, almost) full control of their schedule, which - among other things - means that I can sleep as much as I want to. Before Whole30, I would typically fall asleep at about 11 p.m. and wake up at 7 a.m. Now, I still get up at 7 a.m., more or less, but I feel quite tired roughly at 9 p.m. More tired than I would feel at 11 p.m. previously. And it's not like I do anything very tiring. For example today I spent my day working (i.e. typing), watching a movie, reading and having a walk (about 1 hour). Nothing spectacular and unusual. So why would I be so tired? Any ideas on what I may be getting wrong? If I have no choice, I will happily let my body sleep 10 hours a day, but in case it is a deficiency, e.g. an important vitamin, I would appreciate some tips on where I should investigate.


  • #2
    Could very well still be going through the "carb flu" period. give it a few more weeks.


    • #3
      I would start supplementing vitamin D heavily as well as zinc and magnesium and fish oil. When I first started on it I noticed an immediate change in my energy thoroughput -- being "somewhere in Europe" you might not be getting enough. What are your food macros? If you are coming from a carb based diet it will be a couple more weeks before your body is trained to run more on protein and fat instead of highly processed sugars. This could be why it is having a hard time making energy efficiently.
      Last edited by TheFastCat; 04-18-2011, 12:42 PM.
      ad astra per aspera


      • #4
        Or you might not be getting enough carbs. Whatcha eating?


        • #5
          Afaik a lack of b-vitamins can cause fatigue or low energy, but meats and especially organ meats are good sources of these and there are some plant sources for most of them aswell (vegans usually get b12 deficiencies though). A paleo diet is pretty much the diet with the highest nutrient density, and if any defficiencies are present it is often due to malabsorption from gut issues on their previous diet, lack of sun for vit D and poor soil resulting in low magnesium levels in plant matter. Ehrm another possibility might be that the new reduction in calories is affecting your energy levels. Some people also report better energy levels with a bit higher carb (like 100-150 instead of very low) even after becoming accustomed to a low carb diet, and you might be one of them. If you are seeing results bodycomposition wise I would be reluctant to change anything though and muss it up Final possibility would be you reducing coffee/caffeine intake.
          For now I would recommend just going to bed when youre tired and then playing with calories/carbs once you get close to your goal.
          Fish oil reduces inflammation but I don't see how it would affect energy levels much, especially when the OP is on a strict paleo diet with low o6. Magnesium is usually prescribed for people who have TROUBLE sleeping (or muscle cramps), popping pills without defficiency symptoms seems unnecessary to me, same with zinc. There might be a case for vitamin D though.
          Last edited by Pandadude; 04-18-2011, 12:52 PM.


          • #6
            I feel so tired now that I am even shaking from cold, although this has been a very nice spring day. So maybe it's the carb flu, after all.

            Here is what I posted in another thread a couple of days ago:
            I plugged my meals today in an online calculator just to have an idea. I could only use estimates because I didn't weigh anything. The numbers in parentheses indicate the percentage of recommended daily intake (the website is CW, of course - I am adding them just for fun).

            Energy: 6 015,40kJ

            Protein: 55,69g (76,3%)

            Carbs: 54,28g (15.6%)

            Fat: 111,52g (152.8 %)

            Cholesterol: 725,80mg (241.9%)

            I am a female, early 30s, 238 pounds, 5 feet 7 inches

            My meals:
            breakfast: two slices of bacon, two scrambled eggs, one onion, a bit of chives, fried zucchini, five radishes, four cherry tomatoes
            lunch: roast leg of pork, cabbage and carrot (fresh), steamed fennel, leafy greens (lettuce, romaine, arugula) with olive oil
            dinner: kale sautéed in a bit of duck fat
            random snacks: about 3 teaspoons of coconut oil
            Today I had offal (chicken hearts and stomachs) for breakfast, turkey thigh stew, leafy greens, cabbage and carrot for lunch, asparagus with garlic butter plus a few slices of bacon stolen from my husband for dinner. And about two spoons of coconut oil. And a banana just a while ago, hoping that it could help a bit (I think it did help).

            Vitamin D might be the culprit. I am very pale and should get more sunlight and/or find a good supplement.

            Final possibility would be you reducing coffee/caffeine intake.
            We can safely exclude this one. I mostly drink water only. In the winter I occasionally make ginger tea - just grated ginger and nothing else. I may have drunk about 5 cups of coffee in my entire life.
            Last edited by Farfalla; 04-18-2011, 12:52 PM.


            • #7
              Update: The banana eaten 5 minutes ago did really help. Which probably means that the carb flu is not over as I had thought.

              And I forgot to mention that I have been taking fish oil as a supplement for two weeks. I will definitely consider adding vitamin D.


              • #8
                Or now that it's almost summer, go outside and sunbathe with minimal clothes for 20-30 min a day Just dont stay outside for 6 hours like I did today and get burnt! Still good to have some vitamin D for crappy weather and such though, many of us here are fans of (vit D recommendations in European countries are often way too conservative and thus supplements contain too little).
                Your meals are making me drool btw


                • #9
                  Thank you, everyone. It is 11 a.m. here and I feel fine now. I will seriously consider getting some vitamin D.


                  • #10
                    Sounds like carb flu. I had the same experience and did up my D3. The other thing I discovered that my adrenals were shot and so I started taking a supplement to boost it. I use "AdrenalSmart" and it has made a huge difference in my energy level. Additionally, I would suggest eating a bit more carbs in terms of vegetables. If I feel I'm lagging, I will have a small salad with some good fats and protein and it wakes me up!