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Old 01-24-2014, 03:18 AM   #1
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Does Low Carb Cause Very Frequent Urination?

I've been eating low carb for 4 months now, have dropped 56 lbs and brought my A1C down from 9.8 to 6.4 (though I think it will be even less when I get tested next week). However, I've been having very frequent urination since eating this way (every 2 hrs at night and many times during the day - sometimes 7 times in 2 hours). I wondered if eating this way could be causing kidney problems? I noticed when I had my mini binge two weeks ago, the urination slowed wayyyy down... It started back up around day 3 of low carb (about when I went back into ketosis) and hasn't slowed down at all. I do hope this latest weight loss is really fat and not just water!!

I'm just still really exhausted all the time from the lack of sleep - can't even rest during the day really... Any insight? Or anyone else have this problem?!

- Jacki
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Old 01-24-2014, 03:47 AM   #2
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LC does cause you to lose water, which is one reason that it is good for lowering your blood pressure (less fluid to pump around means your heart doesn't have to work as hard). It probably stopped on your binge as you began retaining again, one of the effects of insulin. After 3 days, you would have used your glycogen stores and cleared your blood of excess insulin, so you would again start losing water. That all makes sense, and is expected, and healthy.

Peeing every 2 hours at night, however, is excessive. When in ketosis, your body keeps enough water for its processes but doesn't store any extra, so when you drink it can be like putting extra water into a bucket that's already full - it just comes right out. Maybe you can just cut down on fluid intake as you approach bedtime and see how it goes? Or, maybe you have truly peed so much that you have lowered your electrolytes and need to up your salt intake, which will cause you to retain a bit more water. Also, caffeine is a powerful pro-peeing drug, and that can make you pee even more, so cutting down or eliminating may be useful. (Keep in mind that there is a real thing called caffeine withdrawal, so if you are -- like me -- you will have a headache and feel bad for several days before you feel good again.)

Over the 4 months did you ever get back to sleeping well? It is common to have problems sleeping in the first week or 2, and then it usually gets better. Your body has to change a variety of hormones and enzymes to shift from burning glucose to fat as your primary fuel source, and during this time of shifting sleeplessness is a problem.

One thing is for sure -- you did NOT lose 56 lbs of water You would have been dead about 46 lbs ago! That's good news, right?
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Old 01-24-2014, 03:52 AM   #3
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I want to add:

Some people have had some success with melatonin supplements to help get some sleep.
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:47 AM   #4
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How much are you drinking? Going every 2 hours is quite a lot. You could be losing minerals electrolytes... Unless you are drinking excessively, I recommend you go see a Dr.
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:49 AM   #5
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I'm actually not drinking a lot at all because I'm trying to not have to go so much
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:49 AM   #6
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How much is not a lot?
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:52 AM   #7
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I keep a water bottle with me all day (16 oz) and probably go through about 3 a day plus a small glass of diet soda with meals.
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:59 AM   #8
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So about a quart a day?

I drink around a gallon a day and don't need to pee as frequently as you do. And if it's really urgent, maybe once at nighttime, but that's rare.

Personally, I'd go see a doctor. This is not normal.
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Old 01-24-2014, 07:03 AM   #9
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Are you peeing a lot when you do pee, or just feeling like you have to pee w/out much result? I ask because the "feeling" of needing to pee w/out result can be the sign of a bladder infection---one can run for a long time w/a low grade infection.

Also, I second the poster above who suggested melatonin for sleep. I has helped me immensely.
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Old 01-24-2014, 07:41 AM   #10
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Yup. I am currently being treated for bladder infection. I could not sleep because of having to pee and all night. Sometimes very little. That was at the beginning and then pain in bladder and urethra came about 5 days ago. You might go to dr. just to make sure. I am not on antibiotics as they just cause me further problems. I see a holistic type dr and she put me on immunoplex.
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Old 01-24-2014, 07:47 AM   #11
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Actually at dr now! I was freaking out over this... No my sleep has never improved the entire 4 months yet...

When I go I really GO volumes! It feels like it's pulling fluid from all vet my body!

Dr is running a renal panel and I did not have a UTI. He said it also could be I'm not drinking ENOUGH and the Metformin might also be aggravating things.
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Old 01-24-2014, 07:48 AM   #12
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Ok. Glad you are at dr.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:50 AM   #13
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Glad you went to the dr. Keeping my fingers crossed for you.
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Old 01-24-2014, 10:11 AM   #14
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Thanks! Oh, he also thought I might be in TOO deep a ketosis...?! Said I should try increasing carbs slightly and see what happens. Is this possible?
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Old 01-24-2014, 11:00 AM   #15
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That is old fashioned high carb thinking... How many carbs do you eat a day? If you want, you can post a few days' worth of menus and we can have a look if we can help a bit more...

XXX Chloe
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Old 01-24-2014, 12:44 PM   #16
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I had been eating around 11-15 grams per day because I recently cut out the sugar alcohols to see if that broke my stall (it did!)... He only meant go up to 20-25 a day, not back to high carb! But I'm still curious COULD going too low have caused the excessive urination? I guess I'll see after a few days of adding more veggies and maybe a few berries... But just wondering if anyone knows?
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:21 PM   #17
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I would not add berries, they add fructose which really is not good. I eat around 5-15 carbs a day, but make sure I eat plenty of fat and just enough protein. Definitely have not felt this good in a long time.

I hope you feel better soon and find what works to solve the mystery!
XXX
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:42 PM   #18
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Just curious. You said you drink some diet soda with meals. Is it Diet Mountain Dew? For me - and I have no idea why - it causes frequent peeing....without drinking large quantities of it. Just a thought.
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:57 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EmmTee View Post
Just curious. You said you drink some diet soda with meals. Is it Diet Mountain Dew? For me - and I have no idea why - it causes frequent peeing....without drinking large quantities of it. Just a thought.
No, it's usually Coke Zero or Diet Rite... But that's interesting!
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Old 01-24-2014, 04:31 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackibar View Post
I had been eating around 11-15 grams per day because I recently cut out the sugar alcohols to see if that broke my stall (it did!)... He only meant go up to 20-25 a day, not back to high carb! But I'm still curious COULD going too low have caused the excessive urination? I guess I'll see after a few days of adding more veggies and maybe a few berries... But just wondering if anyone knows?
Our bodies are all so unique, carrying w/them our own individual DNA, as well as hereditary, environmental, and lifestyle issues. I've always known that, at least intellectually, but hanging out here for months has solidified the old "Your mileage may vary" meme.

And on that note, while some will tell you carbs are dangerous, and every one of them is suspect for some reason, I personally believe that carbs are just carbs, and it's up to us to decide how much our body can tolerate, or at what level they are healthy for us, or at what level of them we can lose weight on.

This can only be done by personal experimentation, imo. So, if adding in a couple more carbs helps, it does. If it doesn't, you'll discover that. I am a big believer in a low carb lifestyle, but I am not a believer in being afraid of anything that has a carb count.

IMO, you are currently doing extremely low carb. Interesting to note that Phinney and Voleck consider 50 grams or less of carbs a day to be solidly low
carb. So I think it's up to all of us to find out in what range under 50 grams a day as a lifestyle works for us.

Sometimes I think there is a fear of carbs here that goes too far, particularly for newbies trying to do everything right.
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:26 AM   #21
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More thoughts on this... I’ve been doing my own research, reading, etc., and I feel I may have figured things out. First, my “carb experiment” over the weekend definitely slowed down the urination - I did take myself all the way out of ketosis and am assuming that my glycogen stores have filled back up which required the water from my system, right? And now that today I’m back on the low carb by Wed it will probably start up again (the urination issue).

But what I’m wondering now is if this is because of Vitamin D toxicity…?? I’ve always been LOW in Vit. D but for a couple of years had been taking 20,000 - 30,000 IU daily because I’m so large and read that the larger you are the more you require. My SEVERE tension headaches totally went away on this regimen, and my levels were always between 50-80. Back in December I had tests run and it showed a level of 98! Also showed a slightly elevated calcium level of 10.5. I only found out about these results a few weeks ago when I saw my Lyme doctor. I’m thinking now that the low carb diet brought my Vit. D levels up naturally and I really didn’t need the supplementation any more - or not as much anyway. I stopped the Vit. D completely for a few days and my headaches came back so I started back up but only at the 20,000 level thinking that would be ok. Well, now I think it was actually my pillow causing the return of the headaches, though I’m not positive. Got a new support pillow and they’re better, so we’ll see…

But upon reading about all this, it seems that too much Vit. D can cause too much calcium which causes polyuria! OR… in the past I had a temporary bout of hyperparathyroidism which caused too much calcium which at that time did NOT cause the polyuria, but I wasn’t doing low carb at that time either and my blood sugar was terribly out of control. So now my theory is that this excess Vit. D > excess calcium + the low carb diet is causing the major polyuria and that when I eat more carbs it slows it down because of the glycogen thing. Would this make scientific sense?! Anyway, in the meantime while I’m waiting on these lab results, I’m going to say off the Vit. D (and hope the headaches don’t come back) and maybe things will start leveling out for me soon. I’m actually HOPING this is the problem so I won’t have to stop eating low carb! And I hope we caught it before any permanent kidney damage was done - but I’m feeling we did since there was no protein in my urine or anything like that.

Thanks again for your help!
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:44 AM   #22
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For the first week on low carb, I lived in the bathroom...but then (unless I'm low carbing) I tend to hold anywhere from 5-10 pounds of extra fluids. Scary.

After I lose that extra fluid, the excess urination goes away. It's kind of nice sleeping at least 4-5 hours without waking up. In the past, I'd be up every 2 hours going to the bathroom. Oh, and I drink only about 48 oz of fluid a day.
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Old 01-27-2014, 11:55 PM   #23
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Jacki,

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you and hope the tests will show you what is causing your issues.

xxx Chloe.
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:16 AM   #24
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Your theories definitely make sense to me.

You've also lost close to 55lbs so you wouldn't need as much vitamin D as before either--because there's less of you! I'd up the carbs to 20-25 as well. You may lose a bit slower but that's bettter for your kidneys as well.



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Old 01-28-2014, 04:43 AM   #25
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I always have to pee. about every hour to two hours. Drink enough water and eat salt. I found electrolyte drink tablets at the local drugstore, also available at some running/sports stores called "nuun" - you put one in a 20oz bottle of water for 1 gram of misc carbs (no sugar) and it flavors, adds a bit of fizz, and sodium/potassium to your water. I love these, especially for workouts because I can never drink enough fluid otherwise.

I never had sleep loss problems on low-carb, but I always did on low-fat. Back when I was dieting "wrong" and losing muscle mass I could never sleep and my heart raced. I began back then (2+ years ago) to take 2.5mg of melatonin nightly (I get the 5mg hard tablets and break them in half -they last forever) along with 100mg of 5-HTP about an hour to 30 minutes before bed. It helps immensely, as does insight meditation and having a white noise maker.

I sleep like a baby now, but as for the urination problem, I do always wake up around 4 or 5 am to go to the bathroom, and in the morning I'm super regular after adjusting to low-carb. It's great to get it all over with LOL.
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Old 01-28-2014, 04:57 AM   #26
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This is an issue for your doctor since you already have medical conditions you're being treated for.
Keep in mind no one here can diagnose or recommend a treatment for you
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:22 AM   #27
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This is an issue for your doctor since you already have medical conditions you're being treated for.
Keep in mind no one here can diagnose or recommend a treatment for you
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:30 AM   #28
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I had no intention of getting medical advice from those here - I mainly just wondered if this was common or normal. The minute I saw it wasn't, I went to my dr!
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:50 AM   #29
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Yes, you did the right thing, and thanks for posting here about your troubles.

I hope others will also go see their dr when things are not right...

I think Dottie was just pointing this out again because some people come here and seek medical advice and this is not what LCF is about of course!


Anyway, how are you today? Did you manage to sleep better? How are you feeling?
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Old 01-28-2014, 09:01 AM   #30
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Yes, the past two nights I have slept a little better due to not having to get up so much. I'm expecting that to change, though, probably tonight! I guess that's really a good sign though, since it would mean I'm back in ketosis! Also 6 lbs came back on that quick so I'm ready for them to be gone again...
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