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Old 03-31-2015, 08:41 AM   #1
MountainMom
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My heart doesn't like my new lchf lifestyle

Ten weeks ago I agreed to take part in a cancer research project. I needed to go to the hospital gym and walk quickly on a treadmill for 40 minutes, 4x per week for 16 weeks. I don't have cancer, but what the study is trying to prove is that with regular exercise, you may be able to build up a type of resistance to cancer.

Anyway, my resting heart rate when I began was about 72, which is in the normal range and I had to keep my active heart rate between 139-151 during each work out.

Up until 2 weeks ago, I was making some pretty significant gains and in order to keep my active heart rate between 139 -151, I was starting to have to run.

Also, my resting heart rate went down to 59 which is quite good, into the athletic range.

Things changed though on my first week on the lchf diet, which caused me to slow down a bit on the treadmill. My legs felt like jello.

Second week, my resting heart rate is now 70 and I'm walking, can't even imagine running right now. Had to take the incline off completely. I'm not suffering for the 40 minutes, but just walking on a flat treadmill is all I can do and stay in that range...around 145 bpm on average.

I know it's pretty obvious that glucose is a higher octane fuel and that I expected I would have a slight decrease in what I could do on the treadmill, but what surprises me is how my resting heart range changed at well.

I'll try drinking even more water today...maybe that will help.

Anyone else notice anything similar?

As soon as I drop my weight, I will be happy to go back to eating more fruit. I've been missing it a lot.
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Old 03-31-2015, 08:52 AM   #2
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I feel more anxious and my heart rate is up on hi fat. I think fat causes anxiety.

Same thing on fish oil if I take it late at night, I cant sleep.
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Old 03-31-2015, 08:58 AM   #3
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Yes, you aren't supposed to exercise strenuously the first 4-6 weeks on a LCHF/keto diet until you become keto-adapted. Your body doesn't have the enzymes necessary to easily use fat for fuel yet, but you are not getting glucose either. Glucose IS NOT a "higher octane" fuel, it is just the one your body is used to. You will be able to do whatever exercise you want, but you need to give your body enough time to be efficient at using your body and dietary fat. For more details, read "The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living" or "The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance" by Drs. Steve Phinney and Jeff Volek.

Also, the best thing you can do to prevent many types of cancer is eat a low carbohydrate diet.

Last edited by Mistizoom; 03-31-2015 at 09:00 AM..
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:01 PM   #4
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Classic! As already pointed out, you are not fully adapted yet.

As a fat burner, you will likely become better at endurance sports as you have a pretty unlimited supply 'on board' and as a glucose burner, there is the constant need to replenish.

And a great big YES to preventing cancers to take hold by keeping carbs low!! That and a fair number of other important health factors. One concerning the heart is that people often find that their blood pressure lowers and this is attributed to the fact that a low carb/ketogenic diet is anti inflammatory. This means that your heart actually prefers LCHF!
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:14 PM   #5
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I relate MountainMom! I have noticed I am fatigueing much faster than normal. I'm seeing weight loss every day though so I'm going to power through! It is startling though feeling weaker suddenly.
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:47 PM   #6
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Well even my resting heart rate is up 10 points, so that's odd to me. I'm about to eat a banana!
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Old 03-31-2015, 02:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainMom View Post
Well even my resting heart rate is up 10 points, so that's odd to me. I'm about to eat a banana!
It will probably make you feel better in the short term, but you'll have to start your ketosis adaptation all over again. Maybe LCHF isn't the right WOE for you. Have you looked into other options?
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Old 03-31-2015, 02:54 PM   #8
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All I can say is LCHF saved my life. But yeah, you have to wait to be keto adapted before the energy kicks in. I am obese. I've lose alot of weight, but still obese. I now can shop for two hours without finding a bench. I climb up steep hills. I walk on the treadmill. I never could have done these things before. My resting heart rate used to be 99 (pumping hard to make it through my large body). Now my resting heart rate is usually 59 - 65. Amazing for someone my size. My blood pressure used to be right around 145-150 / 90-95. Now my blood pressure is usually below 120/80. Last checkup (this month) it was 115/70. My last blood work showed everything had improved. I'm getting ready to have new blood work done. I feel better than I ever have in my life. But yeah, maybe it's not for you.
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Old 03-31-2015, 03:10 PM   #9
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Agreed... I'm going to stay with low carb, but not to the extreme.

I didn't eat the banana because I know that would undo my progress, but I sure don't want to make my heart do wonky things.
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Old 03-31-2015, 03:37 PM   #10
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It is not that LC is bad for your heart. It is that your body is working hard at adjusting to it & you were exercising on top of that. You can't expect your body to act the same when you turn the fuel system upside down.

It is actually recommended that we not exercise the first few weeks of LC nutrition.
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Old 03-31-2015, 04:05 PM   #11
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Yes, taking it easy on the exercise is recommended.

In terms of heart health, it is true for me that going keto allowed me to get off all hypertension meds. My heart keto.
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Old 03-31-2015, 04:46 PM   #12
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I guess if you are going to have to stay in the study and see it to completion, maybe a more moderate approach would be better for you. It takes me about a full month to full get fat adapted. I don't try to do anything strenuous in that timeframe. Once I become fat adapted, my energy comes raging back and I feel like I'm in my twenties again. If you are not getting around 5-6 grams of real salt per day on keto diet, your heart rate will for sure go wonky. If you plan to stay on keto, drink some bone broth with plenty of salt or just take some salt and put it in your water. It always makes me feel better.
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Old 03-31-2015, 06:05 PM   #13
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My blood pressure, cholesterol and resting heart rate have all dramatically improved on low carb. As everyone has said though, you need to be fully committed for a month+ before you really see those results.
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Old 03-31-2015, 06:40 PM   #14
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In the first few weeks you are losing a lot of water, so you can experience dehydration and electrolyte depletion. That can cause fatigue and increased heart rate (because of lower cardiac volume) as well.

Drink plenty of fluid with good amounts of sodium, potassium, and magnesium. Salty broth for sodium, lots of leafy greens for magnesium (or supplement) and for potassium, reach for an avocado instead of a banana.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:24 PM   #15
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I second what some others have said A. Your not adapted yet and B. You are losing all your electrolytes and with you drinking so much water it's getting flushed out that much quicker. Being depleted of electrolytes can cause your heart rate to be elevated and cause heart palpitations. So definitely get those back in from magnesium, potassium and sodium even putting a few pinches sea salt in water and drinking it will give you what you need
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:59 PM   #16
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yeah, I think it's water...drinking about 4 or 5 more cups of water more than I usually do. I'm sure that will help.
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Old 04-01-2015, 02:24 AM   #17
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I read your initial post but not every reply so please excuse if I repeat things others might have said already.

First thing that caught my eye were the heart rates you needed to maintain during your exercise. Considering your initial resting heart rate of 72, 139-151 is very close to if not slightly higher than your anaerobic threshold. If you're over your anaerobic threshold your muscles need more oxygen to burn fuel than they can get - you start breathing more heavily. In this state your body CAN'T burn fat even if it's keto-adapted. So if you're on a LC diet there's no glucose easily available for your muscles to burn and it has to build some. Glucose is generated in the liver using protein. If there's no free protein floating around (from food) the body starts using its own protein = muscle!

Maybe you can determine your actual anaerobic threshold or you use one of the calculators online (that only use your age, gender and heart rate to calculate it so they're not very accurate but you get at least a reference point).
Then you should try to stay below that heart rate during exercise. Your body still has to learn burning fat efficiently during exercise. But once it's keto-adapted and you're better conditioned you'll have MUCH more endurance than on a medium or high carb diet.

Should you want to exercise above your anaerobic threshold try ingesting some protein beforehand. If you plan on exercising WAY beyond your AT you should ingest carbs before your workout. But be careful: 100g carbs have 400cal and you don't burn 400cal in a jiffy.

I do endurance training and I found out that I exercised mostly above my AT when I was still on a HC diet. Nowadays I try not to overexert myself and stay strictly below my AT. I know how it feels now, don't need a pulse monitor anymore. I do get better too although progress feels much slower than before. But it's healthier and more efficient in the long run (pun intended )

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Old 04-01-2015, 02:26 AM   #18
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Addition: of course you need ample water too
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Old 04-01-2015, 05:59 AM   #19
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Do the researchers know you have changed your diet? By changing your diet you have changed two variables in one subject. They aren't testing to see of exercise is protective against cancer anymore (at least in you anyway).

This is why non-inpatient human studies can be so flawed. Darn humans.
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Old 04-01-2015, 06:02 AM   #20
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Do the researchers know you have changed your diet? By changing your diet you have changed two variables in one subject. They aren't testing to see of exercise is protective against cancer anymore (at least in you anyway).

This is why non-inpatient human studies can be so flawed. Darn humans.
This is a very good point. You should probably tell the researchers and may need to drop out of the study if you are confounding their data.
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Old 04-01-2015, 07:40 AM   #21
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Yes, I informed them the day I decided to go on it because I laughed about how my feet felt like jello. There was never any restriction placed on us for our diets. I can still do my 40 mins without any problem at all. I'm not breathing hard or suffering. It's just that I can't use much of a grade now, and I'm definitely not going to be able to run and keep my heart in that range for long. It's been over two weeks now though, so hopefully I start feeling a bit better. I'm starting to think fluids are the key. I'm needing a lot more water than I needed before.
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Old 04-01-2015, 08:07 AM   #22
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I get racing heartrate when I'm dehydrated, and/or my electrolyte levels aren't kept up. On a low-carb diet, our kidneys excrete more electrolytes than a sugar-burning diet. That means we have less sodium and potassium available hanging around in our bodies. So we need to keep that topped up.

Try to keep your sodium upwards of 3,000 and do the best you can on the potassium. I never get enough but I try. I can tell a marked difference in generally feeling more well and in the quality of my workouts between having enough salt and having too little.
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Old 04-01-2015, 08:19 AM   #23
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It's good that you told them, not good that they don't seem to care. This is why I take a lot of research with a large grain of salt. It is useless to test something like cancer incidence without controlling for diet.

I have done a little research attached to a university though, and I know how hard it is to get human subjects. You don't want to lose them.
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Old 04-01-2015, 10:39 AM   #24
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Well because this study is about the following, not my diet. The only real requirement was to make sure I was healthy and my heart was good and that I was a non-smoker.

"Exercise is associated broadly with reduced risk of breast cancer, but we do not

currently know how much activity (i.e., the intensity, duration, and frequency) is

necessary to obtain the benefits, nor do we know the exact biological mechanism by

which exercise produces these beneficial effects. Additionally, it is unknown how quickly

these benefits remain if physical activity is not continued. The goal of this study is to

learn more about how the intensity, duration, and frequency of exercise may influence

risk for breast cancer."

Last edited by MountainMom; 04-01-2015 at 10:40 AM..
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Old 04-01-2015, 11:45 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainMom View Post
Well because this study is about the following, not my diet. The only real requirement was to make sure I was healthy and my heart was good and that I was a non-smoker.

"Exercise is associated broadly with reduced risk of breast cancer, but we do not

currently know how much activity (i.e., the intensity, duration, and frequency) is

necessary to obtain the benefits, nor do we know the exact biological mechanism by

which exercise produces these beneficial effects. Additionally, it is unknown how quickly

these benefits remain if physical activity is not continued. The goal of this study is to

learn more about how the intensity, duration, and frequency of exercise may influence

risk for breast cancer."
Exactly. The variable is supposed to be exercise. In you, it is exercise AND diet because you changed it in the middle of the study. A scientific experiment should control for everything but one variable.
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Old 04-01-2015, 12:14 PM   #26
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Exactly. The difference in diet may be 'the' factor but it appears it is not being considered. It is a huge factor. Eating a diet that induces insulin as opposed to a diet that does not, is a pretty important thing.
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Last edited by clackley; 04-01-2015 at 12:15 PM..
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Old 04-01-2015, 02:45 PM   #27
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Well I think I'll let the researchers worry about that. If they really wanted to control that, they should have required a food diary.
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Old 04-01-2015, 04:16 PM   #28
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Right you are! It is really great that you are willing - and participating in a health science study. It is a noble venture.

I only wish that those that are conducting such studies would control for obvious factors better.
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"The energy content of food (calories) matters, but it is less important than the metabolic effect of food on our body." Dr. P. Attia
“Eat animals. Mostly fat. Enjoy!
"I resist insulin" Hyperlipid
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Old 04-01-2015, 04:50 PM   #29
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I've really enjoyed it a lot. I have 6 weeks to go. A pretty major increase in water helped me tremendously. I'm almost back to my speed prior to going on the lchf plan. I think most my issues had to do with needing more water.
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Old 04-01-2015, 05:27 PM   #30
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I am glad to hear that. You have regained your previous workout stamina. I would be careful about consuming excess fluids as too much may be counter productive.
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