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Old 09-30-2011, 04:23 PM   #1
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Anyone else have their heart rate drop with weight loss / low carb?

The other day, I felt slightly dizzy so I checked my blood pressure. It was actually great but my heart rate was in the low 50s I use to be one of those average types who had a heart rate in the 70s.

I've been checking it periodically since then and it's still in the low 50s all the time. I haven't felt bad since the one slightly dizzy time. In fact I feel great with lots of energy.

I haven't been exercising. I'm sedentary except for a job where I work on my feet (nurse) and occasional yard work.

Has anyone else had their resting heart rate drop from either low carbing or from significant weight loss?

I've tried searching Google, but I can only find the bad reasons for a drop in heart rate or the explanation of being extremely fit (yeah right for me). I'm a nurse with a master's degree so I'm sure I don't have any symptoms of the bad diseases. Any ideas?
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Old 09-30-2011, 04:27 PM   #2
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Maybe both low carb and weight loss. My resting heart rate is about 62 now. It used to be in the 70s.
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Old 09-30-2011, 04:28 PM   #3
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Here's a short article:
Heart rate: What's normal? - MayoClinic.com
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Old 09-30-2011, 07:42 PM   #4
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I have felt more racing and palpatations since going low carb but i have a congenital heart condition and issues that come with that so I may not be normal. Lol
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:34 PM   #5
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Both heart rate and blood pressure

I had significant and permanent drops in both heart rate and blood pressure after pretty much eliminating starchy foods and sugar from my diet. It's been about four months, and I'm still at less than half my blood pressure med. dose.
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Old 10-01-2011, 02:56 AM   #6
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Are you hypothyroid?

As a nurse you know that a heart rate of <60 per minute is not good. When I went undiagnosed for 5 years (because my primary insisted my lab values were 'normal'), a major sign was the fact that my heart rate dropped into the low 50s--but no one 'connected the dots.' I find that now, if my thyroid levels drop, so does my heart rate. I'm usually 63-68, but if it goes below 60 for any length of time, I check with my endo.

If you've tested as 'normal' for thyroid, keep in mind that my endo told me that many people are like me and have lab values that appear 'normal.' A good doctor will consider symptoms and other issues--like heart rate.

It's something to consider.
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Old 10-01-2011, 03:08 AM   #7
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I've always had decent heart rate and blood pressure, especially for a big guy. But yes, I don't know if it's the LC or just the weight loss, but I've had my resting heart rate lower by around 10 beats per minute and my blood pressure (which was never high) has now dipped even lower.
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Old 10-01-2011, 05:01 AM   #8
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Both my b.p. and heart rate fell after low carbing for a while. It did take 1.5 yrs of steady consistency to get totally off meds.
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Old 10-01-2011, 07:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo41 View Post
Are you hypothyroid?

As a nurse you know that a heart rate of <60 per minute is not good. When I went undiagnosed for 5 years (because my primary insisted my lab values were 'normal'), a major sign was the fact that my heart rate dropped into the low 50s--but no one 'connected the dots.' I find that now, if my thyroid levels drop, so does my heart rate. I'm usually 63-68, but if it goes below 60 for any length of time, I check with my endo.

If you've tested as 'normal' for thyroid, keep in mind that my endo told me that many people are like me and have lab values that appear 'normal.' A good doctor will consider symptoms and other issues--like heart rate.

It's something to consider.
I actually considered my thyroid, but I lose weight really fast and my normal body temperature is actually slightly above normal. I'm also female and female type things are "regular" and normal which is a sign of a healthy thyroid. I don't have the other symptoms either like dry skin, brittle hair, low energy, etc.

Thanks for this suggestion though.
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Old 10-02-2011, 06:14 AM   #10
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Same w/ me Cathy. Took 1.5 years low carb to get off blood pressure meds, 1 full year after 20 lbs weight loss.
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Old 10-02-2011, 06:57 AM   #11
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The benefits for me of weight loss and exercise resulted in my resting heart rate going from 100 to the mid 60's.
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Old 07-07-2013, 09:52 AM   #12
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Keeping my New Year's Resolution, in the past six months, I've lost 50 lbs -- from 362 to 312. My resting heart rate fell from 67 to 38. It is consistently ranges between 35 to 41 bpm. I have no heart disease and none in my family history. My blood work shows everything within normal ranges. No problems with the stress test. EKG and ECG were normal. I have never fainted in my life. I have no dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath, pain, nausea, disorientation, blurred vision, or anything else. In fact, I feel my best in 15 years. The cardiologist can't determine a cause, so he can't treat it. He doesn't think I need a pacemaker -- yet. I think it's my brain trying to adjust. For all my 64+ years, my body has only increased in size. I never lost more than 5 lbs for only a few days. Now, my body is steadily decreasing because of the low carb diet, lack of sugar, and exercise. Certainly, it needs some time to adjust to the "new me." But I do want the heart rate to go up. Since the cardiologist has no answers, I'm going to keep losing weight and seek some herbal solution.

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Old 07-07-2013, 10:30 AM   #13
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Weight loss + workout --> low resting heart rate.

I went from 235 in my late 30s, out of condition, to 175 and great condition over a 6 year period, starting with the Scarsdale diet and then adding a thrice a week cardiovascular workout class (if the floor isn’t a pool of sweat at the end, you’re not doing it right), followed by Nautilus, then a 4 to 6 mile run (I’m not fast – 8 minute miles) 2 or 3 other days, “LSD” (Long Slow Distance) on Sundays.

Result: At 55 and thereafter, a resting heart rate of 42. (And a decrease in my a-fib, which has been under full control by meds ever since.) During the CV class, I would get to a 126 rate, so no blockage, but a stress ECG had to take me to “Stage 5”, as my cardiologist put it with awe in his voice, to get a rate at which he could evaluate the charts

It’s over a decade – I’m now 75 – since I tapered off that regimen to nothing more that occasional mountain hikes, but that heart rate persists. (Tekur: When it dives into the 30’s, that’s time to worry.)

In summary to this topic: I’m at least anecdotal evidence that weight loss + conditioning leaves you with a slow, strong heart.

But low carbs . . . I went on a 5 mile broken mountain trail hike the other day, in the morning – before breakfast, only light eating the day before. I now know exactly what “hitting the wall” means. Still had a mile to go and no exit.

So, high carbs the day before, even morning of, an extended exertion. You will need the glycogen. It is no fun when it runs out.

Last edited by NeverLift; 07-07-2013 at 10:33 AM..
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:54 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverLift View Post
But low carbs . . . I went on a 5 mile broken mountain trail hike the other day, in the morning – before breakfast, only light eating the day before. I now know exactly what “hitting the wall” means. Still had a mile to go and no exit.

So, high carbs the day before, even morning of, an extended exertion. You will need the glycogen. It is no fun when it runs out.
Do you normally eat low carb? If you are normally eating a fair amount of carbs then, yeah, that's the problem with carbs. If you eat them you just need more and more.
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Old 07-07-2013, 12:46 PM   #15
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Mine has gone down a lot. Used to be in the 90's now it's low 60's high 50's.
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Old 07-07-2013, 01:15 PM   #16
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Sometimes "rules" aren't

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Do you normally eat low carb? If you are normally eating a fair amount of carbs then, yeah, that's the problem with carbs. If you eat them you just need more and more.
Independent of source: Glycogens are essential. Once they are present in the liver and muscles, the body doesn't know or care how they got there. If you need a higher-than-normal store for a high energy endurance activity, carbs convert far more readily to glycogen than protein.

No single-food source is appropriate for every activity. The Scarsdale diet that I followed for 2 years was devoid of carbs, rather it was high protein, veggies, caused mild ketosis for more rapid yet healthy weight loss.

But before hiking in Shenadoah: I'd break the diet. 8 to 12 miles, 1,500 ft vertical each day, so . . . Food: Pancakes, potatoes, toast (plus the usual) every day for the week! Yum.
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Old 07-07-2013, 01:21 PM   #17
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Independent of source: Glycogens are essential. Once they are present in the liver and muscles, the body doesn't know or care how they got there. If you need a higher-than-normal store for a high energy endurance activity, carbs convert far more readily to glycogen than protein.

No single-food source is appropriate for every activity. The Scarsdale diet that I followed for 2 years was devoid of carbs, rather it was high protein, veggies, caused mild ketosis for more rapid yet healthy weight loss.

But before hiking in Shenadoah: I'd break the diet. 8 to 12 miles, 1,500 ft vertical each day, so . . . Food: Pancakes, potatoes, toast (plus the usual) every day for the week! Yum.
You may find reading the work of Drs. Phinney and Volek in 'The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living' and /or The Art and Science of low Carbohydrate Performance' of interest to you.
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Old 07-07-2013, 01:34 PM   #18
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OK, I quit.

First quote: Does not speak to needing to build an excess of glycogen in a short period of time for temporary abnormally high but extended exertion. The second refers to a "broken metabolism." My metabolism is just fine.

Guess I'm posting in the wrong place, my topic was initially low heart rates and Google pointed me to this thread, then I noticed the site's topic was carbs and The Wall, 3 days ago, was still fresh in my memory . . . I extemporized

A fine filet, rare and topped with gorganzola, was my exquisite July 4th entree. Wouldn't do that before a half marathon unless I wanted cramps.

Sorry, y'all.
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Old 07-07-2013, 02:21 PM   #19
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OK, I quit.

First quote: Does not speak to needing to build an excess of glycogen in a short period of time for temporary abnormally high but extended exertion. The second refers to a "broken metabolism." My metabolism is just fine.

Guess I'm posting in the wrong place, my topic was initially low heart rates and Google pointed me to this thread, then I noticed the site's topic was carbs and The Wall, 3 days ago, was still fresh in my memory . . . I extemporized

A fine filet, rare and topped with gorganzola, was my exquisite July 4th entree. Wouldn't do that before a half marathon unless I wanted cramps.

Sorry, y'all.
Sorry but I think you misunderstand. My message was only that you may enjoy reading the books I suggested. The other lines are what accompany my 'screen identity' always. Just things that I have read and really 'spoke to me.
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Old 07-07-2013, 06:48 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverLift View Post
A fine filet, rare and topped with gorganzola, was my exquisite July 4th entree. Wouldn't do that before a half marathon unless I wanted cramps.
I may be wrong, I'm not a big exerciser (just do my hour a few times a week and pat myself on the back) but I thought that the difficulty with extreme low carb and exercise was with short bursts of intense exercise, like sprinting, ie, that sprinters (or other short burst competitors) saw an increase in their times. I was under the impression that marathoners were fine with LC.

I always feel great when I do my workout fasting, but I guess that doesn't mean too much bc I'm not very serious about it. I don't think I'd want to run a marathon fasting.
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Old 07-07-2013, 07:29 PM   #21
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A fine filet, rare and topped with gorganzola, was my exquisite July 4th entree. Wouldn't do that before a half marathon unless I wanted cramps.
If you are not keto-adapted then certainly that would be a bad idea. If you were keto-adapted, then a higher fat meal would probably be better, but steak and cheese wouldn't be a horrendous choice (as long as you gave it time to digest a bit before running). I second the recommendation for Phinney and Volek's books.
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Old 07-08-2013, 12:16 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverLift View Post
OK, I quit.

First quote: Does not speak to needing to build an excess of glycogen in a short period of time for temporary abnormally high but extended exertion. The second refers to a "broken metabolism." My metabolism is just fine.

Guess I'm posting in the wrong place, my topic was initially low heart rates and Google pointed me to this thread, then I noticed the site's topic was carbs and The Wall, 3 days ago, was still fresh in my memory . . . I extemporized

A fine filet, rare and topped with gorganzola, was my exquisite July 4th entree. Wouldn't do that before a half marathon unless I wanted cramps.

Sorry, y'all.
Just a little refresher on biochemistry: Cramps are caused by H+ ions that are in excess from lactic acid buildup. Lactic acid is a byproduct of glucose metabolism (and protein metabolism or muscle catabolism) and will never be a byproduct of fat or ketone metabolism. If I am wrong, please correct me and show me the pathway of creating lactic acid from ketone [BOHB1]
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Old 07-08-2013, 12:22 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rubidoux View Post
I may be wrong, I'm not a big exerciser (just do my hour a few times a week and pat myself on the back) but I thought that the difficulty with extreme low carb and exercise was with short bursts of intense exercise, like sprinting, ie, that sprinters (or other short burst competitors) saw an increase in their times. I was under the impression that marathoners were fine with LC.

I always feel great when I do my workout fasting, but I guess that doesn't mean too much bc I'm not very serious about it. I don't think I'd want to run a marathon fasting.
The only study that was done was using 4 cyclists in ketosis for 6 weeks. I believe there is a study going on at the moment. So I think that the actual science on this is out. From what I have read and from what I know from anecdotal experiences, athletes that have been in ketosis competing against those using glucose as primary energy source have done much better, did not need to eat as much during the workout, did not cramp, did not lose as much muscle (branched amino acids can help, but I won't go into that), and did not get the bowel impairments that other athletes were subject to.

So. I do not think that you can fairly say that because 4 cyclists saw a slight drop in high power/short duration efforts, that this is the case all over. I don't remember if they tested resting metabolism on these athletes, either, which could have a huge significance in these results. A better experiment would involve many athletes on controlled ketosis and non-ketosis diets to see who did best overall, who suffered the least damage to their bodies, and who performed best. In the case of the 4 athletes, all of their power outputs went up significantly overall, which means they were able to acquire more energy in ketosis.
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