I'm on day 4 if low carbing, and I feel really awful! Headachey, shakey & generally low in energy. will this stop soon? Right now I just want to guzzle a bottle of cola & down a great big bowl if carbonara! Any words of wisdom from you seasoned low carbers?
Thank you so much. I really needed some encouragement! BIWI, could you recommend some good fats to include? Also, what.should I eat to increase my salt levels (or should I just pop a load of salt on my dinner?)
Will try the early night, but 11week old DS may have other ideas!
Thanks for this thread BIWI! Have had a trawl through. Can I just ask a couple more questions?
I am breastfeeding my 12 week old DS. There is talk on the thread of staying just out of ketosis if you're BFing. How do you know if you're in ketosis? I have been following the rules, but have been adding the odd onion into cooking etc, so maybe slightly more carby! (on the plus side, i've already lost 2inches from my arse!)
Also, if I am adding the odd extra carb (always in veg form, not processed, should I eat less fat, or continue with the same amount?
Sorry if this is badic stuff! Thank you in advance!
No it's not basic stuff - it's a question that's often asked! Here is something I have c+p from lowcarbdiets.about.com:
Question: What is Ketosis? Answer: A lot of people are confused by the term "ketosis." You may read that it is a "dangerous state" for the body, and it does sound abnormal to be "in ketosis." But ketosis merely means that our bodies are using fat for energy. Ketones (also called ketone bodies) are molecules generated during fat metabolism, whether from the fat in the guacamole you just ate or fat you were carrying around your middle. When our bodies are breaking down fat for energy, most of the it gets converted more or less directly to ATP. (Remember high school biology? This is the "energy molecule.") But ketones are also produced as part of the process.
When people eat less carbohydrate, their bodies turn to fat for energy, so it makes sense that more ketones are generated. Some of those ketones (acetoacetate and ß-hydroxybutyrate) are used for energy; the heart muscle and kidneys, for example, prefer ketones to glucose. Most cells, including the brain cells, are able to use ketones for at least part of their energy. But there is one type of ketone molecule, called acetone, that cannot be used and is excreted as waste, mostly in the urine and breath (sometimes causing a distinct breath odor).
If enough acetone is in our urine, it can be detected using a dipstick commonly called by the brand name Ketostix (though there are other brands, as well). Even though everyone is generating ketones continuously, this detection in the urine is what is commonly called "ketosis."
The higher the concentration of ketones in the urine, the more purple the sticks will turn. The Atkins Diet, in particular, advises people to monitor ketosis as an indication of fat burning. Other reduced carbohydrate diets don't pay much attention to this, or aren't low enough in carbs to make much of an impression on the sticks. (The latter type of diet is sometimes called a "nonketogenic" low-carb diet.) Why do some people think ketosis is a bad thing?
There is an assumption that if a body is burning a lot of fat for energy, it must not be getting "enough" glucose. However, there is no indication, from studying people on reduced carbohydrate diets, that this is the case (though there is usually a short period of adjustment -- less than a week, in most cases). Although it's true that our bodies can't break fat down into glucose (though, interestingly, they easily use glucose to make fat), our bodies can convert some of the protein we eat into glucose. Indeed, this works well for people who don't tolerate a lot of sugar, because this conversion happens slowly so it doesn't spike blood glucose.
A dangerous condition called ketoacidosis can develop in those with type 1 diabetes, and it is sometimes confused with normal ketosis. The body usually avoids this state by producing insulin, but people with type 1 diabetes are unable to produce insulin. Even most people with type 2 diabetes who inject insulin usually produce enough insulin of their own to prevent ketoacidosis.
When you say about adding in the odd extra carb, it really depends what you mean! If you end up eating high carb and high fat, that won't be good - although it will still be the carbs that result in you gaining any weight.
What were you thinking 'the odd extra carb' might be?
By the odd extra carb, I mean, maybe an onion in cooking 2-3 times a week (in a meal for 5 people, so I would be eating a 5th of the onion.) We sometimes add chopped toms too (maybe once a week) but are sticking to the sains basics cartons). Otherwise eating Greek yog, eggs, shed loads of green veg & salad with butter & oily dressing, plus chicken, turkey mince etc.
I know this might sound a little bit of a cheat but I have found that chewing sugar free gum has helped distract me during carb cravings. I have been on a very low carb diet for 10 months now and only crave carbs just before my period. But right at the beginning it was an adjustment and I found the best way of mitigating the initial low energy downer was to have a variety of yummy drinks to hand which made me feel zingy and also made me feel like I'm treating myself e.g. ginger root tea, mint leaf tea, licorice tea. The best best thing is that once I had adjusted into the low carb approach (after 10 days) I felt MUCH more energetic, less bloated and generally rather whizzy!
IBlameThePenguins - you will be fine doing that. But one suggestion - if you use shallots instead of onions you will reduce the carb count. Shallots are 3.3g carbs per 100g compared with 7.9g for onions! (Buy the echalion/banana shallots - they are bigger and longer and much easier to peel than those pesky little round ones!)