How I Raised My Body Temperature with Carbs


Do you suffer with hormonal problems such as adrenal fatigue? Are you hypothyroid? Do you gain weight easily, have insomnia, or no energy? Do you have a low sex drive or cold hands and feet?

I've been suffering with signs of hypothyroidism ever since my daughter was born in 2007. I've been doing low carb to try to lose the weight.

Who knew that eating MORE carbs was just the ticket to help raise my body temperature and help my thyroid?

How I Raised My Body Temperature with Carbs

My average temperature has really been going up in the past few months.

Check this out:

It is pretty awesome to see that my average temperature is steadily rising. The past two weeks I am at a record high of 98.4! Getting tantalizingly close to my goal of 98.6.

I know I've got a lot of the symptoms of hypothyroidism. I've got the myxedema (more on that in an upcoming post), little red dots on my skin called petechiae, I have the extra 15-20 pounds that just won't budge no matter how much I limit my calories or my carbs, and of course I've got the low body temperature.

When your body temperature starts to come up, it's a sign that your thyroid is working better. So yay!

Carbs Are Your Friend

Carbs are getting such a bad rap on the internet lately, but you know what? We need carbohydrates just like we need protein and fat. If you dramatically reduce any one of these macronutrients, it can cause problems.

Go too low fat, not good. Not enough protein? Also bad. The same goes for carbs. Of course everyone is different and we all need different amounts of macronutrients. So you may need less than I do. Or maybe you need more. It really is an individual thing. But if you have hormonal problems, the point is to nourish your body as best you can and give it what it needs to recover. I know, I'm going to get angry comments that “waffles aren't nourishing” but you know what people, it is working for me. The numbers don't lie.

I really jacked up my intake of carbs in January. That's when I started eating grains as a part of breakfast, lunch and dinner. I also greatly increased my food intake in January, following Matt Stone's RRARFing plan.

I had increased my caloric intake a lot back in October as well after reading a few other books that discussed how not eating enough carbs — or enough food in general — can make hurt your hormones and make you put on weight.

Then in January I decided to go for it and increased it even more. I read Matt Stone's Diet Recovery e-book and it convinced me to give what he calls RRARFing a try. RRARFing is rehabilitative rest and aggressive refeeding.

I had been nervous to try RRARFing, because I was worried that I would put on a bunch of weight. I decided I had a lot more to gain than lose — in other words, I knew I needed to get my hormones functioning properly before I tried to lose weight. What's the point of losing weight when it's just going to keep coming back again and again because your thyroid is not working right?

So I took Matt's advice and ate a lot more carbs, fruit, starches, grains, and sweets — like maple syrup on my pancakes and jam on my toast. I ate a starchy carb or grains at every single meal. This is unheard of for me, since I used to feel guilty just eating a piece of bread. I had actually gotten to the point that I thought that there was no point eating fruit or rice, because they were not “nutrient dense” enough and they would make me gain weight. This is what most peopel are saying online these days, and I fell for it. Little did I know that it was doing damage to my hormones. (See my post: Why I Ditched Low Carb)

What am I eating? Waffles or pancakes with or oatmeal for breakfast (sometimes I also have eggs), crackers and cheese or a sandwich and chips for lunch, and pizza or pasta or meat and fish with rice for dinner. For snacks I've been eating fruit or fruit-sweetened yogurt. And I often eat cookies or biscotti or ice cream for dessert.

Yeah, RRARFing is fun!

Now, I did put on a little bit of weight in this past 6 weeks or so. My jeans are tight. But I haven't gone up a size. And this may be what my body needs to do in order to heal. I trust that when my temperature is nice and hot and my metabolism is humming, my body will balance itself out. And I'd rather get my sex drive and energy back and have a few extra pounds. Plus, I can't lose these extra pounds on low-carb anyway, so what's the dang point?!

I also started taking dessicated thyroid on February 18th and I will continue to take it going forward. After reading [easyazon-link asin=”0975262408″ locale=”us”]Hypothyroidism Type 2: The Epidemic[/easyazon-link] by Dr. Mark Starr, I wanted to try taking the dessicated thyroid to see what would happen.

Clearly these things are working! Wheeeee! I can't tell you how happy I am to be at 98.4. I'm hoping I can get to 98.6 by next month. I'll keep you all posted.

Notes on My Average Temperature Chart

This is an average of my daytime temperature, not my basal body temperature (BBT), which is taken first thing in the morning.

On the left, I included my average temperature for May, 2008, just because I happened to have an old spreadsheet from when I was taking my temperature. I think around that time we were about a month into doing the GAPS Diet, and I was supplementing with iodine, dessicated adrenal gland, cod liver oil, etc.

Next I included an average of the first two weeks in December, an average of the first two weeks in January, and an average of the first two weeks in February and then the last two weeks in February.

I wish I had an average for say, last summer, when I wasn't eating enough and was eating more low-carb, and I was not taking any iodine or glands. Unfortunately I wasn't charting my temperature back then. I do know it was consistently in the low to mid-97s.

Why Chart Your Temperature?

Why is it so important to chart your temperature and what can you learn from it? If your temperature is consistently low, that's a sign of low thyroid function. If your temperature is up and down every day, that's a sign of adrenal fatigue.

Ideally your temperature should be a stable and steady 98.6 degrees Farenheit.

As you work on raising (or lowering, if you are hyperthyroid) and stabilizing your temperature, charting helps you to see if what you are doing is working.

How to Chart Your Temperature

Charting your temperature is the most important thing you can do to balance your hormones. If you are trying to raise your temperature and heal your hormones, you need to start charting.

What you do is take your temperature three times a day, ideally 9 am, 12 noon, and 3 pm (but just do the best you can). If you can't get around to taking it three times, then just take it twice, or at the very least, once.

Then you take the average of those three temperatures and plot it on the graph. You can do this on graph paper. I like to do it using a Google Docs spreadsheet.

If you take your temperature three times during the day, put a 3 on the chart. Put a 2 if you only take it twice, and 1 if only once. Also, you might want to make notes of any changes that could impact your temperature, such as an illness, a stressful event, or a change in diet or supplements.

If you prefer, you can also take your temperature only in the morning. That is called your Basal Body Temperature (BBT). I prefer to take an average of three temperatures throughout the day.

If you use the basal body temperature, you are aiming for at least 97.8 pre-ovulation. (Your temperature will be higher post-ovulation.)

Here's here's a picture of my chart for December:

And here's a picture of my chart for February:

As you can see, the temperatures are along the left —- on the vertical Y axis (in Farenheit). The X (horizontal) axis represents each day. I charted a number on the X axis which represents my average temperature each day.

You'll also notice that the temps in February are a lot closer together than they were in December — not quite as jagged. And it's starting to make a straight line — which is a good thing.

As I mentioned, you could do the same thing with a basal body temperature (BBT). This is what many people recommend, including Matt Stone, Broda Barnes, Mark Starr, et al.

How to Take Your Temperature

I like the [easyazon-link asin=”B002MMW6QU” locale=”us”]Vicks SpeedRead Digital Thermometer[/easyazon-link] recommended by Matt Stone. It's so cheap, you can buy a few of them and put one by the bed, one in the kitchen, one in your purse or backpack, and so on.

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B002MMW6QU” locale=”us”]

The most accurate way to take your temperature is rectally, but not everyone is going to be up for that. Some say the underarm reading is the second most accurate, and then there's oral. I usually do oral.

(Note: I just took my basal body temperature this morning and registered 97.7 both orally and under the arm. I did not try the rectal reading.)

If you're consistently a nice, toasty 98.6, and you don't need to raise your temperature, you don't have to check it obsessively every day and chart it, but we should all be taking our temperature periodically to make sure we are healthy.

And remember, folks, this is not just about hormones. Taking your temperature is a critical way to monitor your health. I think everyone should be taking their temperature on a regular basis.

Learn More About Body Temperature and Hormones

I got a lot out of reading these books and highly recommend them:

Diet Recovery by Matt Stone

[easyazon-link asin=”0975262408″ locale=”us”]Hypothyroidism Type 2: The Epidemic[/easyazon-link] by Dr. Mark Starr

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”0975262408″ locale=”us”]

Where to Find Dessicated Thyroid, Adrenal Gland and Iodine

I use and recommend the following supplements. Check with your doctor or health practitioner before starting a new supplement.

[easyazon-link asin=”B00014DQGU” locale=”us”]Natural Sources Raw Thyroid (90 cap)[/easyazon-link]

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B00014DQGU” locale=”us”]

[easyazon-link asin=”B003Y2CVYY” locale=”us”]Standard Process Thytrophin PMG 360 T[/easyazon-link]

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B003Y2CVYY” locale=”us”]

[easyazon-link asin=”B001COZBYS” locale=”us”]Standard Process Adrenal Desiccated 90 T[/easyazon-link]

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B001COZBYS” locale=”us”]

[easyazon-link asin=”B000X843VG” locale=”us”]Optimox Iodoral 180 tabs[/easyazon-link]

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B000X843VG” locale=”us”]

[easyazon-link asin=”B001AEFM9Y” locale=”us”]J.CROW'S® Lugol's Solution of Iodine 2%[/easyazon-link]

[easyazon-block align=”none” asin=”B001AEFM9Y” locale=”us”]

Share Your Comments Below

Do you chart your temperature? If so, have you had success raising your temperature? What are you doing and what is working for you? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

If you have questions, please comment.

Photo credit: Sick by Claus Rebler, on Flickr

Find Me Online

Ann Marie Michaels

I have 25 years of experience in digital and online media & marketing. I started my career in Silicon Valley and Los Angeles, working at some of the worldโ€™s top ad agencies. In 2007, after my first child was born, I started this little food blog which I grew to over 250K monthly unique website visitors and over 350K social media followers. For nearly 15 years, I've helped my audience of mostly moms and women 25-65 cook for their families and live a healthier lifestyle.โ€จโ€จ The year after I started the blog, I founded a blog network in the health & wellness space called Village Green Network. I started the company on my coffee table and bootstrapped the business to over $1.3 million in annual revenue within 5 years. During that time, I helped a number of our bloggers become six figure earners. After being censored on almost every social media platform for telling the After being censored on almost every social media platform from Facebook and Instagram to Pinterest and Twitter, and being deplatformed on Google, I am now deployed as a digital soldier, writing almost exclusively about politics on my blog Because who can think about food when we are fighting the second revolutionary war and third world war? Don't worry, there will be more recipes one day. After the war is over.

242 thoughts on “How I Raised My Body Temperature with Carbs

  1. I’m wondering if you’ve seen this article by Dr. Catherine Shanahan of Deep Nutrition? She describes what she calls the “bear in the woods” theory, whereby a very abrupt change to a low-carb diet can cause some people to experience all the symptoms of hypo-thyroidism via a chemical called reverse T3.

    She contends that returning carbs to the diet until you raise your thyroid function, and then slowly returning to a lower carb diet will result in the benefits of lower carb program without the adverse thyroid symptoms.

    It’s a compelling argument.


      1. I agree, it took many months for me to start feeling ‘cold’ after going low-carb; in fact, I felt warmer (especially hands and feet) in the first stage of the low-carb diet; probably because I replaced the carbs with lots of tropical oil and animal fat.

        In addition, I experienced a radical re-distribution of my body weight very shortly after eliminating grains, potatoes, sugar etc. I gained a much more hourglass-like figure after a life-time of a very thick-through-the-middle, ‘boy-like’ or ‘banana shaped’ body; at almost 50 I finally feel like a woman! Oddly, I actually gained pounds while at the same time going down almost two whole pant sizes… weird, but I’m not complaining. My friends have forgiven me now, but at first I was met with shrieks of “Oh my god! You look like a @#$%&*! teenager! Skinny beeoch!”

        After about a year on that program I switched back to a diet moderately high in things like white and sweet potatoes, sprouted spelt biscuits and crackers, sprouted cornbread and brown rice and raw local honey. What I didn’t do was go back to eating processed carbs, nor did I lower my newly acquired saturated fat intake. I continued to consume cream, butter, liver pate, bacon, lard, slather myself in coconut oil daily, etc, etc, like I had while I was low-carb, but now right alongside, integrated into, or more often smothering the carb foods. Talk about satiation!

        What I notice several months into the higher carb program, is that my new shape remains, and I don’t appear to have put on any extra weight. I feel better than at the tail end of my low-carb phase, and have a great deal more energy; mostly I think because I’m finally sleeping again (cruel, unrelenting insomnia was for me, a devastating side effect of going too low carb, as was anxiety and even some strange, never-before-experienced phobias). Yikes!

        The good news is that those things subsided after a couple of months eating higher carb. Unfortunately however, I’m still feeling ‘cold’ and my temps are very low most of the time. Also, the digestive troubles I had come to assume were ‘normal’ before learning otherwise during my low-carb experiment have returned; albeit with less severity. I was much more comfortable after eating when I was lower carb. I continue to include ferments and cultured dairy at every meal, and always bone stocks with cooked meat, but it doesn’t seem to be helping. I’ve actually consulted a acupuncturist about the bloated feeling in my liver region.

        In your opinion(s), is this a temporary return of old symptoms, or do I just have to chose between carbs and a gas-free existence? I’d sure like to continue eating pancakes with honey on Sunday, as well as biscuits with gravy, sweet potato puree, home-fries, homemade crackers with my liver pate, cornbread with my chili and the occasional sugar cookie at the holidays. Life’s just more fun with carbs! Not to mention the fact that my family loves me again… you can’t imagine the impact of a low-carb mandate in a family of five men.

        It’s starting to feel a bit like a ‘damed if you do, damned if you don’t’ conundrum. I’d really appreciate help figuring this out.


      2. Matt – I’d love to see a response to Dr. Kate’s post from you, too. I mentioned your theories on her blog and blew off my comment. I really like what Dr. Kate has to say in general, but think that in this case her approach may not be right for everyone.

        1. The one thing that keeps me from buying into this ‘low-carb is bad’ is that the people shouting ‘I love carbs & Low carb is unhealthy!’ from the rooftops are not the ones treating actual patients. Obviously not that all doctors and nutritionists are pro-low-carb but the ones that have seen the efficacy of it first hand and have become proponents of it haven’t followed suit in this recent 180 flip. Of all the people saying that carbs aren’t the devil I trust Chris Kresser and Paul Jamminet the most, both of whom hold more of a middle of the road point of view.

          While I admittedly haven’t read much of Matt Stone’s posts from what I have read he comes across more as a charlatan and a huckster than anything else. I haven’t been able to find any background information on who he is, where he went to school, or what he has studied. Perhaps I haven’t looked hard enough.

          And lets not forget that the low-carb icon Dr. Atkins told people on his diet to find their own level of carbohydrates that they need for losing & maintaining. Obviously he recognized the variability between us all.

  2. What dessicated thyroid are you taking? I am also reading Hypothyroidism Type 2: The Epidemic by Dr. Mark Starr and considering starting a supplement… but I am not sure what to take nor how much. I know you don’t give medical advice, I am just curious to hear what’s been working for you (and I know you just recently started…) thanks:)
    I have never limited my carbs but I am trying to eat more to raise my temps, which are lower than I would like.

    1. I’m just taking one I bought on Amazon right now. I’ll add the link to the post.

      I also just started taking dessicated adrenal and I’m back on Iodoral.

      1. My mom read Dr. Starr’s book and just loved it. She said that you could only get dessicated thyroid by prescription and the only natural one is Armour Thyroid and another one I can’t remember the name of. Is the raw thyroid dessicated? I’m so confused! I read somewhere that the T4 is taken out of the over-the-counter ones to be able to legally sell it over the counter. Do you know anything about this?

        This is such an interesting topic and thanks to you for introducing Matt Stone to me. I also bought his book and it makes total sense to me what he writes about.

        1. Yes the raw thyroid is dessicated.

          “I read somewhere that the T4 is taken out of the over-the-counter ones to be able to legally sell it over the counter. Do you know anything about this? ”

          No but I’d love to see a reference

          1. I don’t have an official reference, but I do know that Standard Process *used* to carry something that contained the T4 and T3, and they had to stop selling it because of gov’t regs, from what my alternative practitioner told me. If you look at the SP label, it says “processed to remove thyroxine” which is T4. I take a prescription generic of Armour Thyroid called “thyroid porcine” which is compounded for me by my pharmacist. You *must* have a prescription in order to acquire thyroxine…unless of course you buy raw thyroids and make your own dessicated thyroid.

            1. @Brandy,
              So does that mean that the thyroid from Dr. Rons or the one Ann Marie is taking is missing something? I just started taking the Standard Process one and one from Apex energetics called thyroxal. I don’t think I have a huge thyroid issue, but I need support. My tests always come back fine, so going to a doctor is kind of out. This is very discouraging.

              1. @Lori: I guess I do not know for sure! My practitioner was only speaking to the Standard Process issue because I was inquiring about it as a possible alternative to the prescription (because I don’t like going to the regular doctor if I can help it). I would think the main issue is whether you are see results with what you are taking. If you respond really well, it probably doesn’t matter! I stick to the prescription because I have a thyroid that was physically damaged by Lyme Disease. It is probably irreparable…I have to make sure I am getting the dosage I need.

                I tried to look around, and I really can’t tell for sure. Apex claims it “support T3 and T4 production” not that it supplements it, but that could be a marketing/legal issue, not that it actually does not contain thyroxine.

                Another thing to consider is that the liver converts T3 to T4, so these things can also point to an underlying liver problem. The fact that the T4 is removed ought not matter as much IF the liver can do the conversion of all the T3 that is available to it. When there is a thyroid hormone deficiency, there are often multiple problems going on, not just an underactive thyroid gland, unless the thyroid gland has actually be damaged.

                1. @Brandy@Afterthoughts,
                  Thanks for responding. I don’t have a diagnosable thyroid issue, at least not since the last time I had blood work done maybe a year ago, so the SP and the APex might just work for me. It probably wouldn’t hurt to get blood tests done in a few months to see where that stands; although, I hear they are not that reliable. But, I don’t have a damaged thyroid as far as I know. I’ve been taking lots of vitamins to support my liver, and I think it’s okay at this point too, so we’ll see! What I was told by a medical intuitive (if you believe in those things) is that I do have a thyroid issue but that it would never show up in blood work which is what I expect. He doesn’t like SP and thinks I should go on Armour, but I’m not going to a regular doctor because every time I do, it’s just wrong, wrong, wrong.

                  I appreciate you explaining all of this to me.

          2. International Pharmacy ( is a good place to get dessicated thyroid hormones without a prescription; however, I strongly recommend avoiding that unless blood tests have shown a need for it. RLC was the brand of dessicated hormone I was recommended by my naturapath and I did feel more myself on it. Unfortunately, after long time usage I developed chronic cystitis that was only relieved by changing to Levothyroxin. It seems to be a possible undesirable side effect of long term usage. ๐Ÿ™ I don’t have the same energy levels but thankfully the extremely unpleasant cystitis has stopped.

      2. My Naturpoath has put me on Iodoral, but says that dedicated adrenals and thyroid glandulars are difficult to navigate due to the lack of consistency in product from one animal to the next. In other words, potency varies from batch to batch.
        Also, what are your suggestions for upping carbs for someone like me who has gone on GAPS only 3 months ago? I can’t do much fruit yet without adverse effects.

        1. I spoke with a medical intuitive, and he basically said the same thing. He said I should only take Armour, but my chiro put me on the Standard Process Thyroid, and I’m fine with it. It reasons that if you were really eating thyroids then they would vary so what does it matter UNLESS, I guess, you have a serious issue.

          These are just my very uneducated thoughts!!!

  3. My temperature has gone up a few tenths of a degree since I started carbing up almost a month ago. Cooking and eating are way more fun with carbs. I find that if I stick to the unrefined carbs I feel as good or better than I do on low-carb — refined sugars and flours do me no good!

    1. I agree with you, Sarah. Low carb is no fun.

      I use 100% whole grains almost exclusively. There is some white flour in our diet but it is very minimal.

      And I always use unrefined sweeteners.

  4. Good post…I have a question. I’m recently noticing that I’m incredibly hungry, even right after eating. I’m also waking up in the middle of the night hungry and having trouble getting full. The middle of the night waking started when I was pregnant about a year ago, but the constant hungry feeling during the day just started. I started adding a ton of carbs a few weeks ago. Do you think the hunger be my body trying to heal? I’m concerned. (read Diet Recovery and am asking Matt’s opinion, too). I have almost the same symptoms as you, except my hair is thinning, too. Thanks!

    1. I had the same experience. Not waking up in the night hungry, but my hunger definitely increased within a month or so after eating more in general and increasing my carbs. The first couple months (Oct-Nov) I remember I would suddenly be STARVING — I had to eat every 2-3 hours.

      Thinning hair is a symptom of hypothyroidism as I’m sure you know. (I’m writing that for others’ benefit)

        1. Yes it can.

          A classic sign of hypothyroidism is the outer part of they eyebrows thins out. I had this, and my eyebrows have filled back in!

          Also, many people will have hair loss on their lower legs. My husband has this, and he always thought it was due to his socks rubbing on his skin.

          1. @Ann Marie,
            My husband has that too and he says it’s also his socks. And, he has thinning eyebrows.

            I have hair loss in other *uhmm* areas. : (

          2. Losing hair on lower legs can also be a sign of low testosterone for men… it was one of the first things the doc asked my husband when he was in trying to evaluate just WHAT his problems were stemming from.

            1. Yes, my husband also has low testosterone.

              Apparently Jimmy Moore does too:


              The loss of hair on the legs can also be a sign of adrenal exhaustion, I have read.

              And low testosterone is caused by malfunctioning hormones.

  5. I totally agree that one should focus on re-balancing hormones before attempting to lose weight, as once everything is in good working order it will be much easier to achieve your ideal weight.

    Is it possible to have both hypothyroid AND adrenal fatigue? I seem to have most of the symptoms of both.

  6. I did my own version of refeeding when I first started working on my health a few years back . I was working with a Westain A. Price focused practitioner and she told me I had been starving myself, (low carb, low cal), so I started eating way more, including increased carbs. I gained the most weight working w/ her- on top of the extra 15 lbs I was already carrying I put on another 25 lbs over the course of that year. It was gradual and yes at first I didn’t jump clothing sizes, but by the end of the year I was really uncomfortable in my body!

    I do believe everyone is different but I would be clear that carbs don’t serve some of us that well. I am low carb now and feel much better now- I’m loosing weight steadily, (at least 1 pound per week), and my body temp has not plummeted with lower carbs.

    I started taking atrium thyroid about the same time you started your thyroid support and my temps have slowly gotten higher- I think that’s made the biggest different. Before I started this thyroid support I was not loosing hardly anything even with being low carb. Now I’m eating at least 1/2cup of fat per day plus lots of other high calorie foods and I’m loosing! So all this to say, the thyroid support is key and low carb does work really well for some of us yet I totally believe that others may need more carbs. It’s all about figuring out our own unique needs!

    1. Maria,

      What is your average body temperature (BBT or daytime)?

      It sounds like you are hypothyroid, which naturally causes weight gain, regardless of what you eat. But I guess you know that.

      I think it’s important to eat a balanced diet, and to eat enough food in general.

      However, from what I have read, low carbing and/or not eating enough causes your thyroid to downregulate. So adding more carbs and eating more in general really does help the thyroid. Many people who don’t have hypothyroidism can end up with it after eating low carb for a while.

      Let us know how you do with the dessicated thyroid.

      1. Yes, I do have hypothyroid as well as adrenal fatigue. My average basil has gone up from 97.6 to 97.8 since I started the dessicated thyroid 6 weeks ago. I have slowly been upping the dose every 2 weeks, my practitioner says it takes at least 3 months to experience the full benefits. I feel like I’m already benefiting seeing as my weight would barely budge before, and now I’m loosing a little over 1.5 lbs per week while eating plenty of cals.

        I felt so sluggish when I was refeeding, I may just not be suited for carbs. I’m certainly not opposed to them but I feel better on limited carb intake. I totally believe that my years of under eating attributed to my thyroid issues but there were some other factors at play for me as well.

        1. also it’s important to note- I have taken dessicated thyroid in the past but it didn’t work. I have been aggressively working on deep adrenal healing for 1.5yrs now- i feel like that paired w/ the thyroid support has made it work this time around.

          1. @Maria

            Yes I really think adrenal fatigue and stress plays such a huge role in this.

            For me, letting go of all my worries about eating has greatly reduced my stress.

            1. “For me, letting go of all my worries about eating has greatly reduced my stress.”
              Amen sister. I have really been focusing on letting go of ALL my worries. I keep reminding myself that if I’m busy worrying about _____ , whatever, I’m not present in my reality now. You know? And really, why worry? Does it change anything? Yes. You trade your joy for it. Really bad trade.

  7. Hello Ann Marie – can’t wait to go back and read this post this evening. Quick question though – is there any particular reason why you are not taking Dr. Ron’s supplements (glands)? Would you recommend them as well? Again, can’t wait to read this later ๐Ÿ™‚ thank you for writing it all up!!!

  8. Gosh I hope that picture isn’t of you!!! Definitely hormonal problems!!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

    Glad to hear you are doing better. I too am a recovering low-carber but still on GAPS. Thank you for some sanity!

      1. Could not find any pics I liked of women taking their temperature on Flickr.

        Taking your temperature used to be very common when I was a kid. Now it seems like people only do it when they are sick, and even then not very often.

  9. Hi – just wanted to throw something out there about that thermometer (and coincidentally my hormone doc just asked me to chart my AM body temperature for the next 2 weeks so good timing for me reading this post!)

    I have that cheap Vicks thermometer too and I also have the classic glass/mercury type – they are WAY different – like significantly different. I asked my good friend who is a nurse and she said that’s common – those cheap digital ones aren’t accurate and to go by the mercury results. It’s hard to know my exact temp with it – a definite downside – but wow, it’s like a degree different which is pretty critical with this type of thing.

    Perhaps I had a bad one – but I wanted to mention. Thanks for the great info!

    1. Yes I should have mentioned that mercury thermometers are much more accurate.

      However, I feel that mercury thermometers are too dangerous.

      And yes, I have gotten “bad” Vick’s thermometers before. I had one that was WAY too high. I’ve also gotten ones that didn’t work at all.

      This is why I usually order 3 or 4 at a time. I send them back if they don’t work.

  10. Great information. I have been hypoT for decades and off prescription medication once Armour was re-formulated. I alternate between Thyroid Energy by NOW Foods and the Natural Sources Dessicated Thyroid. Needless to say I must have my coconut oil pill as well. I am doing pretty well but now that I am menopausal my weight loss is just not happening. Is anyone in a similar predicament? Please share what has worked for you.

  11. You said above that you take dessicated thyroid. Are you using the top one in the links above? I see your response to the question below, but not sure if the Natural Sources Raw Thyroid is considered dessicated.

  12. You are such an inspiration to me Ann Marie! I have recently added carbs back in and am resting A LOT. I have put on a few pounds, but I also discovered I am pregnant so I am sure that has something to do with it. I don’t know how well your body can heal under the stress of pregnancy, but I will say that I feel much better this pregnancy than with my last (where I went low carb). I find that desiccated adrenal helps me enormously. It keeps my hair from falling out and helps me sleep much better. Please keep us updated – you give me confidence that I can heal someday too!

  13. I’m not following how you can attribute so much to the increase in carbs when you started taking dessicated thyroid and Iodoral at the same time. Please clarify.

    1. I only started taking dessicated thyroid on Feb 18, or 12 days ago.

      Unfortunately I don’t have a record of where my temps were when I started increasing my intake of food and carbs back in October. But I am sure it was not higher than 97.something. So you can see that my temps jumped up to 98.0, and then when I increased the carbs even more in January/February, it jumped up even more to 98.2.

    1. @Tropicalgal

      I recommend eating enough carbs. You don’t have to eat grains or starches to get enough carbs. You can eat a lot of squash, honey, and fruit on the GAPS diet.

      Also look into supplementing with dessicated thyroid and adrenal, and maybe also iodine.

            1. My uneducated guess…… I don’t think it does. I have hypothyroid and my chiro put me on IOSOL, 3 drops a day for 5 days a week.
              I have low triglycerides.
              I think high tri’s come from eating too much sugar/carbs, ( I say the bad carbs ๐Ÿ™‚ ) and my hunch is also bad fats– dounuts, you know the junk foods… twinkies etc.
              I am sure there is more to the high triglyceride story, I have not studied it a lot.

              1. My mother suffers from high triglycerides and after three months on GAPS intro no improvement. SO I am looking for hidden problems.

      1. And how about eating lots of veggies? I eat about 10 cups of veggies each day, plus yogurt and fruit….it doesn’t necessarily have to be grains…although if you need high carb you will need the grains and below ground veggies, squash, etc

            1. Because I don’t like them. I like a little sauerkraut here and there and the occasional salad or roasted Brussels sprouts. But eating 10 cups per day of veggies would be drudgery for me.

                1. It adds up quite quickly and I do love them….

                  From my perspective and education, if someone is in need of high carbohydrates then the most nourishing foods for them are fresh vegetables and fruit. Not to say they also don’t need grains. But they should be getting lots of veggies and fruit because these foods are rich in obviously carbs but more importantly, the micronutrients that are most beneficial for them. Above all, observing and listening to the body is key, and it sounds like you are feeling better with the grains, but I would try adding more veggies too. People who typically have a high need for carbs also tend to love veggies.

                  1. I would eat the veggies if I liked them. I really don’t.

                    And I think life is too short to fill yourself up with something that you really don’t like.

                    Onward to my sourdough bread!

                    Keep doing what you are doing — it sounds like it is working for you.

                    1. @Ann Marie,
                      I don’t always eat a lot of veges either. I try and eat them…then I realized I was eating a lot of gotergins (sp?). Now I’m sort of taking a break. I have better BMs when I don’t eat as many veges too!

                    2. More than veggies or grains what I love is a good sauce! So much that yesterday for lunch I decided to eat all the leftover baby green beans and sauteed kale (probably a good two cups) because they made a perfect vehicle for the tomato cream sauce from the pasta meal a couple nights ago. And bread? Why that’s a vehicle for butter and cheese!

                      After several months of VERY minimal grain and zero wheat, along with plenty of saturated fats, fermented and cultured foods and bone broths I decided to be brave and try sourdough and, yippee, it’s being digested nicely!

  14. Hi Ann Marie,
    Like I wrote on my FB post to you, I just started taking the Standard Process Thyroid and another one that my chiro gave me. I can’t remember the brand.

    I know at one point you were doing progesterone cream. Do you think that helped at all?

    97.7 pre-ov temps sound high! That’s usually what my post-ov temp is. I’m curious to chart it during the day, though, and see how that goes.

    1. I tried progesterone cream but didn’t like it. I was taking the recommended amount and ended up getting a yeast infection.

      I think it can be hard to take enough to get the desired results. However, I think progesterone cream can help. So I still put a little bit on at night sometimes when I remember. I don’t know if it is helping — maybe it is.

      I think I’m going to add back in my GABA too to help me relax at night. And the foot baths with magnesium.

      Minimum of 97.8 is what you want for BBT pre-ov according to Matt Stone and others.

      1. You might want to try a different type of progesterone if that interests you. I’m doing Beeyoutiful brand. I’m taking a very low amount–1/16th of a teaspoon every day divided into two portions. Yesterday and today both my post ov temps were 98.14 and 98.16. That’s good for me. I’ve only been doing the progesterone for a few days. I didn’t think I ovulated this month, but now my temp is rising, so we’ll see if it stays up.

        1. Yes, progesterone can be good. It’s another way to take the stress off your hormones.

          But helping to improve thyroid function will allow your body to make more progesterone.

          So both ways are good and it wouldn’t hurt to do both.

      2. Young Living has quite a menagerie of outstanding all natural products that are therapeutic grade. I’ve been taking Young Living Progessence Plus, Endoflex, And Thyromin. The progessence plus has been taken for over 1 yr and has been great in treating my poky cystic ovaries and regulating my cycle. The endoflex & thyromin I’fe been taking since Jan 2012 and has also helped me a bit…no weight loss yet, skin is still dry and itchy…and my leg hair after being shaved takes weeks to grow in again. (That’s not a bad thing though in my opinion hahaha)

  15. I am reading Matt’s book right now and my question is this – will a higher temp FOR SURE equal losing weight? I have both adrenal and thyroid sluggishness/fatigue (which occurred like clockwork after each of my 3 kids’ births, becoming impossible to lose the weight after our 3rd). I have many of your same symptoms – if not ALL – but scared shitless to just EAT – been in starvation mode for soooooo long (& STILL not losing that 15-20 I want to lose!) – scared to now add more carbs in the form of waffles/breads. Have avoided that stuff like the plague for sooooo long – u are telling me your pants are getting tighter and I will not lie – that scares me. I get what u and Matt are saying – heal the hormones first then work on weight loss. Not done with his book yet but close – so this refeeding is temporary – and laying off exercise is too. Will I eventually be cutting down on carbs again then? The exercise contributed to my problems to begin with – overtraining. Just not sure long-term how this all works. Feels so… Controversial. Which I am down with and like I said, giving this a-go, but truth be told? I am terrified I will gain MORE.

    1. You sound just like me. I have that extra 15-20 that will not budge.

      I think most women are paranoid about gaining weight.

      I hate gaining weight and I hate being heavier. I was happier when my clothes were looser. But I know this is temporary so I’m willing to stick it out. Especially because I want to have another baby. So if a few more pounds is what I need, so be it.

      The refeeding and resting is temporary. But you don’t want to go back to a low carb diet. Maybe you’ll settle on a more moderate carb diet. I think we should all find what works for us. Some will need to eat more carbs, others will do better on less.

      The point is to RECOVER from needing to diet. Once you get healthy, you won’t put on weight easily. Hence the title of Matt’s book, Diet Recovery.

      1. So Matt can promise me that after I get temps up (as soon as I’m at 98.6 I’m good to go? And do I have to add a degree under the arm if I’m using a mercury thermometer?) — I will be able to lose weight then? Because I am not shitting you when I say I’ve done EVERYTHING “right” to try to lose. I’ve gone low-carb, been sugar-free for too long to count, done intervals, done HIIT, done PACE, been a runner (former long-distance runner in college — had to quit due to a non-life-threatening heart issue), tried running again within last year or two (lost ZERO weight), swam a ton, you name it. I have been working with my chiro for years to help regulate thyroid/adrenals/hormones & just did a 10-day detox (where I lost 10 lb., but I feel it starting to creep back on as I am refeeding… Noooooooo!!!!!!!!!). I’m so just FRUSTRATED! I’m NOT a size 10! I’m a 6, trapped in a size 10 body! HA! I don’t weigh myself — too frustrating/depressing. Have done all sorts of guaranteed weight-loss/fitness type programs only to lose NOTHING. I try to “do something about it” & I get NOWHERE.

        I have been starving myself probably… not intentionally like eating disorder-ish, but I definitely don’t eat till 3-4 pm at times — lots of times. I just think I need to eat fewer calories — bought into that whole calories in/calories out bullshit, and now I’ve screwed up my metabolism somethin’ fierce!

        The ONLY THING I’ve not tried is to refeed. And reading the Matt Stone book, it makes sense, but this nagging voice in my head is saying, “Gwen, you’re gonna gain weight… carbs are BAD. Eating waffles & shit is BAD! (PS — I’ve been LMAO at the people who read your blog who are complaining because you said “effing” the other day — are you fucking kidding me?!?!??! HAHHAHAHHAHHAHAHAHAHAH!)

        I just don’t want to be that random freak person (like one person above who said she did WAP/higher carbs & gained 25 lb. in a year) who does this & it totally backfires. You know? I don’t typically DIET. I do my damnedest to avoid the whites — flour/sugar & processed shit. But I just am so freakin’ confused now — and reading that low-carb jacks up metab further, I’m feeling like I don’t really know ANYTHING ANYMORE!!!!!!!!

        I love the idea of raising metabolism. Thought my intervals/resistance training was doing that, too, but it just burned my adrenals out further. Mind you, I’m probably 5’4″ & maybe 155-ish? Maybe 150? I don’t know… makes me want to bawl to step on scales, so I just don’t. Size 10. PISSED.

        So… I’m willing to try this because literally aside from the stupid WW & Jenny Craig programs which I will NEVER DO (diets are for the birds!), I’ve tried everything else. Everyone who knows me agrees I eat better than anyone they know & are shocked I cannot lose. Starvation mode is ALL THAT MAKES ANY SENSE. Still haven’t eaten yet — it’s 12:30 pm. (long story — up with baby all night — too much to go into) I just need to EAT. But so terrified the carbs will make me gain & store more fat.

        I just wish Matt could ease my mind that this WILL WORK for weight loss. I want to be that person who eats & eats & eats & still is losing! HA!

        Thoughts? Sorry to ramble ON & ON… just so few people who I can talk about this with who get it — who also buy into the refeeding but who (like me) are scared about gaining. And I am DONE having kids, so I don’t want to carry ANY extra. Been doing that for the past 6 years now (since 3rd baby was born). SICK OF THIS SHIT! HA!

        1. As someone who once had a very similar mentality, I would highly recommend therapy. It sounds like you are so afraid of gaining weight, and if you can psychologically let go of that fear, you will be so much freer. Psychology plays such an important part in our relationship with food and even with our ability to lose weight. Therapy will help you work through your fear and your need to control your body. It will set you free and then you will be free to lose weight. I was fixated on losing weight for years, and through therapy, books, journaling, etc. I was able to let go. And then I lost the weight. No joke.

        2. Dear Gwen: SING IT SISTER!!! I agree with you on all points. Except the baby thing, no experience there.

          I studied nutrition for a year and every freaking theory had me in love and passionate that THIS was the one. The blood type diet, the paleo diet, the raw food diet, the WAPF diet, the Ayurvedic diet, the macrobiotic diet…there was like 100 diets that were the “right” diet in the moment.

          Every Friday when I read the “success story” on Mark’s Daily Apple I’m like – no grains!! Then I read other blogs like this one and I’m like – limiting my carbs is making me fat!! Grains (properly prepared) are good!! Oh lord.

          So – you raise a good question – exercise (Ann Marie – you didn’t mention that – you were doing the kettle bell thing – what happened with that and how does it factor in to your resting/re-feeding plan?) plays a big part in how our calories are handled, how our mood/energy/outlook on life is, and the many differences we experience when we are doing it consistently vs. not. Not to mention knowing WHICH type works best for each individual. Personally I’m useless without consistent exercise and a lot of rest just exacerbates my fatigue.

          And I think it’s important to note that while I’m anxiously awaiting Ann Marie’s results like everyone else….I understand they will be hers alone and could have a completely different effect on me. I might try it and get better results than she does and I might try it and suddenly resemble a parade float.

          It’s fun to read all this stuff and hope is contagious! I rarely share my hypothyroid/hashimoto/bio identical story anymore because when I did it seemed that I was advocating things and then other women would try “my” plan and be disappointed. It’s such an individual thing. I have a good practitioner, I listen to my body as it will actually tell me stuff and I keep trying different things that seem REASONABLE to what I know about myself and my history.

          1. I failed at the Kettlebell Challenge. I only ended up logging about 4 or 5 workouts. Maybe more, I’ll have to check. Have to post the winners today.

            I had a SUPER stressful couple of months — crazy stressful with work. And I got sick from overwork. So that’s why I ended up not kettlebelling. I wasn’t going to push myself when I just could not handle it.

            I’ve never had a problem losing weight and I’ve NEVER been one to exercise. I’m one of the most sedentary people you will ever meet. Like Mark Twain, writing all day lying in bed (at least I heard he did that).

            I don’t think the answer is exercise. I think it’s healing our hormones and correcting our metabolism.

            LOL @ the parade float. You guys are so funny!

          2. Me 3, Ladies – I was a size 4-6 before my second child and ate what I wanted. After Baby #2, I put on the 15-20 pounds that everyone here is talking about and it only creeps back on if I manage to get my weight down for a little bit. Right now, I am going gung ho on the carbs. I have packed on a bit more, but it seems to have settled and I feel so much more free rather than freaking out over every bite. I say, I’d rather live like this and be happy rather than be constantly dieting only to have the weight creep back on…and if I get back down to a 6…well that would be freaking awesome!

            1. @AB

              RIGHT ON!

              I’d rather have a few extra pounds and have energy and my sex drive and the freedom to eat chocolate chip cookies and pizza than to live a hellish low carb existence.

              1. @Ann Marie,
                Me Too!!!!

                “Iโ€™d rather have a few extra pounds and have energy and my sex drive and the freedom to eat chocolate chip cookies and pizza than to live a hellish low carb existence.”

        3. Gwen, you definitely sound like you have a damaged metabolism. Unfortunately, this is not easy to fix. I had an eating disorder for most of my 20s, and I was told by my nutritionist flat out that I would gain weight in recovery (which would then come off) and it would take about a year for my metabolism to heal. In the end it took 4 years because I had relapses along the way. Rrarfing finally helped me finish the job, but I never ate beyond appetite. Read Matt Stone’s post on the Ancel Keys starvation study (you should be able to search for it on his blog). It will explain a lot. But in the end, you will gain weight, no question, because it is part of the process. Now, according to Matt (at least what he said last year), the way to minimize this is to stick to exclusively unrefined foods and keep your fats somewhat low. For me, this seems to work well. I eat very high-carb and do not restrict my fats, but I do eat fairly lean means and don’t go crazy with butter or olive oil. I did not gain much weight rrarfing (5 lbs maybe). BUT, I think the missing thing here is quality of life. Focus on rest, positive thoughts, doing things that make you happy, sleeping, etc. It’s not only about food and the other things help immensely with hormones. You will probably binge because you are starving, but just try to go with it and understand why you are doing it. Make friends with your body.
          My temps went down definitely in the last year because of stress, but I’m just going slow and dealing with it. I will not do major overeating or anything because of my eating disorder – listening to my body is all I do. But, if you start tuning in, it will get better. I’m definitely thinner now than when in ED recovery and eat whatever I want.

          You may also want to work with a nutritionist who specializes in eating disorder recovery.

        4. @Gwen

          I don’t think Matt would promise anything when it comes to weight loss. Nor would I.

          I can totally empathize with you. It is so hard on our bodies to have babies! To be honest, that’s one thing that has ALWAYS bugged me about the paleo movement. You have this movement of mostly guys who can’t bear children, and there are some women, mostly very young women who haven’t had children yet. They’re all about “Hey, look at me, I’m so lean!” I just want to say, come back and see me after you’ve had 3 kids.

          I’ve done everything to lose weight, too, and I’ve NEVER had a hard time losing weight. I was only overweight once in my life (it was during a tough time financially — after the Dot Bomb and 911 and I had lost my job, had just gone through a divorce, lost my home, and was living on unemployment). Once I set my mind to it, and got a job again, it was easy to take the weight off. I just stopped eating quite as much. And I think the stress went away because I was working again. (Albeit, working as a secretary, but at least I had money coming in.)

          Ever since I had Kate, nothing I’ve done has helped me lose weight. And people say, OH, that’s because you’re eating WAPF and eating grains. Cut out the grains and you’ll lose the weight. Sorry but that’s just BS. I’ve tried that. Did not work. Oh sure I lost 15 pounds. But no matter what I do I can’t lose that last 15-20. I’m stuck around 145 no matter what I do. I was down to as low as 1000 calories per day and still, nada. I am not a size 12/14 (which is what I wear now), I’m a size 8/10.

          But let’s face it, carrying babies and nursing is super stressful on the body. That’s why I’m so focused on healing my body and hormones now. I will worry about the weight once my hormones are healthy.

          “I have been starving myself probablyโ€ฆ not intentionally like eating disorder-ish, but I definitely donโ€™t eat till 3-4 pm at times โ€” lots of times.”

          I did that for years and years. And it’s gotten worse in the past few years because I’m so paranoid about gaining more weight.

          “The ONLY THING Iโ€™ve not tried is to refeed.”

          That’s what I figured too, which is why I’m doing it.

          “I just donโ€™t want to be that random freak person (like one person above who said she did WAP/higher carbs & gained 25 lb. in a year) who does this & it totally backfires. You know?”

          Yes, I know, which is why it’s even harder for me to do this. I’m in the public eye and everyone’s a critic. Everyone thinks they know what will work for me. And people are not nice to people who have soft, pudgy bellies.

          Someone on FB just commented about this post, “That’s the dumbest thing I ever read.” And that was one of the nicer comments.

          But I have to stop caring what THEY think and just do what works for me. That is all that matters now. Let them say what they want. I’m going to do what I know I need to do.

          “Still havenโ€™t eaten yet โ€” itโ€™s 12:30 pm. (long story โ€” up with baby all night โ€” too much to go into) I just need to EAT. But so terrified the carbs will make me gain & store more fat.”

          For heaven’s sake, go eat! I had a pancake with maple syrup and an egg this morning. ๐Ÿ™‚

          “I just wish Matt could ease my mind that this WILL WORK for weight loss. I want to be that person who eats & eats & eats & still is losing! HA!”

          I can’t tell you that it will. But I can tell you that your health and your hormones come first.

        5. Oh, Gwen,

          My heart is breaking a little for you. You sound so terribly exasperated, frustrated, and very much at your wit’s end. I have my doubts about adding in “a lot” of carbs, BUT…

          Allow me to share my experience and maybe it’ll give you some hope. I’ve been a low-carber for about 7 years now. Not super-low carb…maybe about 20% of my total calories come from carbs. So I’m not ketogenic, but I’m certainly eating far fewer carbs than the average person.

          A few years ago, I was unemployed and had nothing better to do than hit the gym twice a day, and I hit it pretty hard. I felt great at first. I was really seeing some changes in my physique, adding muscle, changing my shape, etc. I didn’t have much fat to lose because I had lost most of it prior to that. (I’m 5’2″ and was probably about 138 at the time, so definitely not a “large” person, but I wasn’t as “cut” or “tight” as I wanted to be. So I really stepped it up with weightlifting to build more muscle.) After a while, I noticed I didn’t have the energy I once did. It was a chore to get myself into the gym, and I had to force myself to do it. I didn’t want to. I had lost the excitement and motivation. I was also starting to put weight back on — and it was fat, not muscle. I didn’t understand, because I was also “doing all the right things.” I was SO frustrated, so I completely understand how you feel.

          I was on a message board at the time and a very, very wise and beautiful lady whom I’m very grateful to recommended that I increase my carb intake. The amount of work I was demanding from my body simply could not be fueled well enough with too few carbs. Like you, I was TERRIFIED of adding carbs back in. I’d been so low-carb for so long and I just *knew* I was going to gain weight if I started adding carbs back in. (Mind you, I *was* eating carbs at the time, but very little, and nothing starchy. They all came from veggies.) She made a very good case for why this would help me, and I figured it couldn’t hurt to try it for a few days. And you know what?

          I felt much, much better. It was like somebody flipped a switch. I had better energy, renewed pep — both physically AND mentally/emotionally, AND the weight came off! BUT…and this is a big but (no pun intended, hehheh) — I upped my carb intake without much grain. I basically doubled my veggie intake, especially delicious raw peppers, cucumbers, carrots — things that are refreshing and crunchy and colorful. I also added in fruit, and I cannot tell you how LOVELY it was to enjoy a small piece of fruit after all those years of being scared that an apple would make me gain 5 pounds. (Insert eye roll.)

          Another caveat here…when I ate fruit, I specifically ate it in what’s called the post-workout window. (Within 30-45 minutes of working out. You don’t want to wait too long to refuel your muscles.) The very best time your body can handle/properly metabolize sugars like fruit and even “junky” refined sugars is right after a workout. At that time, the carbohydrates preferentially go toward refilling your glycogen stores, NOT toward being stored as fat. (You could also have a small amount of something carby about 30 minutes *before* a workout, and you’ll probably find you get a little boost from it.)

          I would come home from the gym and have a protein shake along with a piece of fruit — protein and carbs — exactly the things your muscles are BEGGING for after a hard workout. Really — after so long without any fruit, it was just so *nice* to be able to have some.

          I really did not do much grain. It sounds like you’re concerned about adding in things like waffles, cake, muffins, etc. Well, you know what? You don’t have to. If you want to up your carb intake, you can do it very well without those processed and refined things. How about sweet potatoes or other sweet/starchy tubers? Beets, parsnips, squash. Or, like I said, just really up your veggie intake. We tend to forget that broccoli is a carbohydrate! Eggplant, asparagus, tomatoes — all carbs! Just because they’re not starchy or grains doesn’t mean they’re not carbs. They’re definitely not as *dense* a source of carbs, but they *are* carbs, and you might find that’s a good place to start. You can up your carb intake without going into territory that might be a little to scary for you right now, *especially* if things like cookies/cake/pasta are “trigger” foods for you. (I can stop after a big helping of veggies or a sweet potato, but put baked goods in front of me and I’m a goner! I have no “off-switch” with that stuff.) I also did oatmeal, but only about 2 times a week, and again, I kept it to that post-workout window.

          After being very worried about gaining weight from the carbs, it was really nice to add a little more variety to my diet and see for myself that I actually LOOKED and FELT better. But I do want to emphasize that I didn’t go from 25-35 grams of veggie carbs a day to all of a sudden having a bagel for breakfast and pasta and breadsticks for lunch. I added things in gradually, still sticking to real/whole foods.

          If you’re working out as hard as you are/were, your body really does need more carbohydrate. I *know* that’s hard to wrap your head around. Believe me, I know. But I learned the hard way. I can tell you now with confidence not to be afraid of upping the carbs a little, *especially* before or after a workout, and try to keep it to foods that won’t lead you to binge, if that’s ever been an issue for you. I’m getting a master’s in nutrition, and I could bore you with the biochemistry if you really want, but for now, just know that your body’s reaction to all that heavy exercise and very, very low carb intake is perfectly normal. You’re doing a lot of work that *demands* more carbohydrate, but you’re not providing your muscles with any, So *of course* you’re fatigued! *Of course* you’re feeling sluggish — physically *and* psychologically. Your body is trying to tell you something, girl! I don’t think it’s necessarily telling you to dive head-first into a dozen donuts, but it’s telling you to feed your muscles with a little more carbohydrate than you have been.

          Go easy on yourself. The raging cortisol from all the stress and worry over this stuff is entirely counterproductive. Don’t be afraid to listen to your body. You’ll know within a couple of days if you feel better or worse, so it’s worth a try to change things up a little. But do be kind to your body. Most of us don’t love our physical forms, but they’re the only ones we have, right? And yours has blessed you with three children. It’s been so good to you. Be good to *it* and it’ll respond well.

          1. OMG — thank you ALL SO MUCH for the responses! This had made my day!

            I need to preface ALL OF THIS with the fact that I have a VERY high-stress life. 2 of our 3 kiddos have profound special needs. We have a little help during the days (maybe 30 hours a week or so), but only about 6-8 overnights off PER YEAR. Yes, I get about 360 nights of broken, shitty, not-great sleep. I sleep with one of my daughters in my arms most of the night, Hubby has the other daughter in his arms most of the night. KNOW the cortisol is runnin’ high, and there really is no end in sight for this, so I’m working against that & pray to GOD that I’m doing so for MANY MORE YEARS. They weren’t supposed to live to be 1, but they’re now 5 & 10 years old, so we know we’re doing something right, but OMG, I NEED SLEEP!!!!!!!!

            So… that being said, I KNOW I’m up against a tough battle here. And the adrenals/thyroid have been “off” for awhile now. I think I had postpartum hypothyroidism. DONE having kids — mostly because of our souped-up genes, but also because it wreaks HAVOC on my body. I literally gain a ton during pregnancies, lose pretty much all of it within the first month postpartum, then gain 20-25 lb. changing NOTHING about 8 mo. postpartum. So… that’s my track record.

            Also, being a former hardcore distance runner, I’ve had to tone all that down after college — like 15 years ago. I have tried it again, but I SUCK now, and it feels so counterproductive & a bit too much for me to train & train & never race because I don’t want to see how f’ing slow I am now and then WHY AGAIN am I running so seriously again? To never race? Ummmm, ridic.

            So… tried other programs. Took them SERIOUSLY — like gave them a year, year & a half to see results. ZERO. Course, I was eating maybe 1000-1200 calories (mostly between 2-3 pm and 9-10 pm) daily. STUPID! I don’t think I had/have an eating disorder, per se… I just think I am backwards with my logic on the whole calories in-out thing. I think I thought I had to create that deficit — and if I did (which SURELY I was? I KNOW I was…), I’d lose. And I DIDN’T. I AM AT MY WIT’S END! LOL I just want to be rockin’ a swimsuit this summer & not feeling super exposed & chubby & gross. I need to lose this 15-20 lb.! NOW! Like 5 years ago. LOL

            Ditto on the reduced sex drive, thinning hair, red spots (had NO CLUE that was a thyroid thang?!?!), thick skin on upper arms (ditto — no clue it was thyroid-ish?), carry most of my weight in that pear-shaped zone (ass/hips/thighs/saddlebags, dammit), have relatively tiny upper body. Just so DONE.

            Just want to do it all RIGHT. Oh, and interesting side note — back when I was 13% body fat & running Division I track/cross country in college — I ate tons of carbs. Bagels or oatmeal or pancakes for breakfast (with 100% pure maple syrup — always been health conscious — even moreso now with our super-sensitive daughters…) — bread/sandwich for lunch, bread for dinner. I NEVER restricted anything but SUGAR. Only ate fruit-sweeteners or pure sugars like maple syrup or brown rice syrup or honey.

            But I also was exerting myself pretty seriously then… I’m not now. Ever since I did all those programs (maybe within past year or so?) & failed, just was so discouraged. I didn’t know WHAT was right, what was BEST FOR *ME*, and how to proceed. When I DO do something, I walk outside with dogs or on treadmill (if I’m desperate — hate that mofo!), or I jump on mini trampoline/rebounder. I love that, but just am not making time. And was told NOT TO during 10-day detox & now not to with the refeeding.

            I’m a hot mess. I’ll admit it. LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ I enjoy exercising — but haven’t lately because it feels like it’s all for NOTHING. And honestly, I won’t lie — when it’s time to eat, MOST DAYS, probably 90% of the time, I think, WHAT SHOULD I HAVE? What is OK to have? No, shouldn’t eat that because Matt said it’s bad (peanuts/PB)… Dr. Mercola thinks that’s evil (grains/fruits)… etc. I just eliminate damn near EVERYTHING & so then I just eat a Larabar & feel guilty & move on. HA! Disaster. LOL

            I need a live-in chef. Period. Anyone in? HA!

            1. @Gwen

              So funny how we can be online all the time and we know each other but we don’t always connect the dots right away.

              I know you. You have been posting on message boards forever. I remember you writing about your daughter’s G-tube on message boards waaayyy back when.

              Anyway I just figured that out when I went to check out your blog. I never saw your blog before, and never saw your pictures. Now it’s so nice to know that that’s you!

              So anyway, hi! And I freaking LOVE your sense of humor and the obvious strength and positive attitude you have. It is so refreshing.

              What you’ve dealt with and are still dealing with is more than enough stress for 25 lifetimes. You and your husband are angels. I can tell that your daughters are so sweet but man I can also see how hard it must be on you guys.

              God bless you a thousand fold. If I could come and be your live-in chef, I would.

              And yeah, long distance running is probably the one of the very worst things you can do to wreck your health and hormones. Thankfully, anything that involves running is like kryptonite to me, or else I would have done it, too. I got scared off from all those bad experiences I had in elementary and middle school gym class.

              Anyway, I just wanted to say hi and just give you a great big old virtual hug. I hope I get to meet you one day.

              1. Oh and PS: I think people who get upset about the word EFFING (or worse cuss words) have too much time on their hands and need to get a life. Obviously you HAVE a very full life. ๐Ÿ™‚

                You are just awesome. Thanks for being you!!! xoxoxo

                1. xoxoxo And I agree COMPLETELY about the cursing. It’s just WORDS! If we didn’t say there were “good” ones and “bad” ones, it would be soooo much better. LOL A well placed “fuck” can be a whole day-changer for me! HA!

                  HUGS — and thank YOU for being YOU! xo

                  1. @Gwen I don’t generally admit this on my blog but we cuss like sailors around here. My dear husband is from New York and his favorite show is The Sopranos. ‘Nuff said.

                    I got no problem with it.

                    I do have a problem with what I consider truly bad words, words that are hateful and racist — like for example, the N word (nigger). We would never say those words.

                    But the f word — eh, so not an issue.


                  2. Lol…

                    “A well placed โ€œfuckโ€ can be a whole day-changer for me!”

                    I concur. I really don’t cuss much but there’s are moments when it’s just the best form of therapy!

              2. YES! That’s me, girl. I’m glad my blog officially connected-the-dots for you, too! THANKS for the kind words about the girls & our life. ๐Ÿ™‚ I feel sooooo incredibly blessed — I really do. I would NEVER trade this life for anything! Yet, I will admit, I just feel like it’s HARD to overcome some of this sometimes. An uphill battle. But I will get there! I already am.

                I have worked hard to let go of my need to “lose weight.” It’s so hard! So limiting — that feeling — every time I walk past a mirror to think, “OMG, that’s not MY body… is it? No, I love it… I DO, but man, if only my saddlebags were a teensy bit smaller… yep, THEN I’d have the perfect body!” HA! I’m neurotic!

                Anyway — trying to make it all work, ya’ know? I’m 98% happy — just blogged about “The 2% can suck it” recently (yikes!) — I mean, 98% of the time I seriously LOVE LIFE! That 2% is a bitch, but I’m soooo just dealing with it by writing about it — sort of purging myself of all that shit so I can DEAL & move on — but I really feel I have a relatively good grasp on my life & all that it entails.

                If I got counseling, they’d have me in daily because I’ve got a LOT to talk about, but honestly my writing helps me deal THE BEST. ๐Ÿ™‚

                SOOOOO nice to connect — I email subscribe to your blog & LOVE your take on things. THANK YOU for all you do. And for the super sweet comments. Made me tear up! xo Hope we can meet someday too! <3

              3. As I’m reading all these comments (while I should be doing a zillion other things, you know), I was thinking, ‘Gwen is a riot, she should have her own blog’, and then Ann Marie wrote that she was checking out your blog! So now I’ll have to go do that, too. ๐Ÿ™‚


        6. Gwen, it sounds like you have had a rough time of it. First of all, I am not sure if it has been mentioned here but we are all different. There is no way that we all have the same needs. I’m not just saying that because it sounds like the right thing to say, I mean it. Even in my own family I see big differences. I do well on going a little heavier on fat and protein and lighter on carbs but that is just me. My older daughter needs a lot more carbs than me. I respect her ability to listen to her body (because she is too young to worry about weight, etc).

          I just want to emphasize to you that we are all very different and it’s so important to keep that in mind. Unfortunately most of us have no idea about the right way to eat and so if we hear about someone else’s success, we think, oh, that has got to work for me. But that is not the way it works, there is no such thing as the perfect diet for everyone. We have to develop our own perfect diet and it can change. The key is to observe the body, observe the body, observe the body.

          That being said, I would bet money that for you, there are underlying issues that are preventing the weight loss. It could be hormonal, have you had your thyroid and adrenal hormones checked? That would be my first guess. It could be the wrong macronutrient ratio. Or it could be some other imbalance such as neurotransmitters, amino acid deficiency, gut issues, etc. Don’t beat yourself up! Get tested!

          1. Been working with my fabulous chiro for several years on this. I have had blood tests done & thyroid was FINE. Low-ish actually. But we don’t buy it’s “optimal.” Don’t really want to be on a med for the rest of my life, or I’d have done Armour YEARS ago. So… just doing natural Metagenics products for Estrogen (EstroFactors) & Thyoid (Thyrosol). It is helping, I do believe…

            I know it’s not one-size-fits-all. Positive of that. I even think for one individual, our needs change with time, too. What may have worked before, may not work now type of thing. Anyway… I am pretty natural in my ways, crunchy granola. LOL Don’t really have great luck following traditional medicine with stuff, and so I just need to do what you said — LISTEN TO MY BODY & try this. I have nothing to lose. I still won’t ever be a white flour/sugar fan, but I can get more carbs other ways (oatmeal is one of my faves!). I have to try this. I think my low-carb ways have contributed to me feeling shitty & clearly haven’t helped me lose ONE POUND, so I am giving Matt’s plan a try. ๐Ÿ™‚ THANK YOU for your input & help!

            1. Go for it babe!

              You can also get your adrenals tested by testing cortisol and other hormones such as progestrone, etc. (saliva test done 4 times in the day). It can be very illuminating. Cortisol has a big influence on fat, protein, and carb metabolism and blood sugar so if it’s not where it should be you can have real trouble with weight no matter what you do. But trying the higher carb thing is something to try anyway….good luck!

        7. Wow! I totally could have written this! I’m in the exact same boat after my fourth baby. I’ve always been able to lose my baby weight slowly and steadily by cutting out processed foods and sugar, cutting calories, and working out. It worked for awhile, but then it just quit working. I’m a fitness instructor and I play soccer regularly, so I’m fit, but I’m still carrying this damn weight that won’t budge. I’ve never been this strict with my diet in my life, and it’s still not working. Everyone I know says, “Oh, but you look great. Your weight is fine,” but I know this isn’t the weight I used to be, and it isn’t the weight that I’m supposed to be, and all my pre-pregnancy clothes still don’t fit right. So frustrating! I started trying to eat more and add it more carbs, but then I gained a pound and freaked out. I can’t stand to see the scale go in the wrong direction. So yeah, I’m so right there with you!

        8. “Eating waffles & shit is BAD! (PS โ€” Iโ€™ve been LMAO at the people who read your blog who are complaining because you said โ€œeffingโ€ the other day โ€” are you fucking kidding me?!?!??! HAHHAHAHHAHHAHAHAHAHAH!)”

          That gave me a good laugh! ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. I think that’s a very good point: “Once you get healthy, you wonโ€™t put on weight easily.”

        I often think of how some people eat–they don’t pig out–but they eat and they don’t gain weight. Now, I don’t know what else they do, but it seems like I should be able to have a slice of pizza and not gain 3 pounds. And again, I’m not talking about overeating.

          1. @Amy I look forward to that day!

            Thanks for letting people know that it does get worse before it gets better — if this is the same Amy that commented above. Super helpful.

  16. More energy and my appetite have both increased greatly. The red spots look like they are beginning to fade.

    No change yet in low sex drive yet or weight loss or myxedema.

    Oh, and my menstrual cycle has regulated. I had been having 4-5 days of very light spotting then 3-4 VERY HEAVY days with very painful cramping and lots of clotting, followed by 2-3 days of light flow. Awful!

    This month I had 2 days of light flow (heavier than spotting), 2 days of heavy flow with light cramping and much less clotting, and 1 day of light flow.

    1. AM, I was listening to Sally’s talk from the 2011 conference and she said around your period to take 4 T. of cod liver oil daily around that time and that it can drastically reduce severity and amount of flow. Have you tried that?

        1. Check out this article on how high doses of vitamin D can help reduce menstrual cramps and pain:

      1. Alison, I have tried that and it didn’t work for me. AM– I am dealing with that right now… been seeing a homeopath and its gotten better but I had no idea that it could be thyroid related too! I am reading all of Matt’s books and started re-feeding, and just found your post here (I’m a year late on this one). Even the red spots… NO ONE has ever mentioned that but you have me curious to see if mine fade too! I am not much overweight but I have the stretch marks/veins of Cushing’s Syndrome…scary! This metabolism/thyroid thing is so important!

  17. I’m on ArmourThyroid for hypothyroidism… what are your thoughts on this versus the over the counter dessicated thyroid pills? Are they equivalent?

  18. This is very interesting to me since my Mom, sister and myself have always had low temperatures of about 97.2 when we are well. The only problem is my own family is about to begin the GAPS diet to heal ourselves and especially my daughter of multiple allergies so I suppose this will not be doable on that diet…?

    1. The GAPS Diet is not intrinsically low carb. You need to make sure you eat enough carbs — fruit, squash, honey, dates etc. And eat lots of organ meats.

      You may also want to see a doctor about getting on thyroid medication and/or look into supplementing with glandulars.

      1. If fruit and honey is the main source of carbs on GAPS, won’t too much of fructose be a concern? it is recommended to limit fructose intake to 50gm and for me it is a problem. I love fruits and my typical evening is a plate of fruit and TV after I put baby to sleep. I can easily have an apple, orange, couple of clementine and grapes or kiwi at once. Add to this banana and papaya and/or blueberries in the morning and maybe another pear or apple during the day. Do you think that the intake of fruits should be limited because of fructose?

        Also for those who have to stick with GAPS intro for several months or even a year, do you think it will be damaging to thyroid? Intro is a low carb diet.

  19. Great post! I too have been monitoring my temps as well. Do you bother with taking your pulse? I have read that you should take your pulse and your body temp together to monitor your metabolism/healing. The suggested pulse is 70-85 which seems pretty high to me. Just wondered what you thought and if you’ve heard of this ๐Ÿ™‚ Also, do you take your temp at those specific times no matter what during the day? Say if you just ate or just did your workout – would you wait 20 mins to take it or would you take it anyway? Thanks!

    1. No I don’t take my pulse. Hard enough just to get my temps!

      I take my temperature whenever I think about it! I keep the thermometer in the kitchen so it’s there when I go in, which is several times throughout the day.

      I probably would not take my temp right after a workout. But I’m avoiding most exercise now that I am RRARFIing

  20. Thank you so much for this post, Ann Marie! I can’t wait to hear/read more about the symptoms of hypothyroidism. My temps are realllly low.. the kind of low that makes me think something is wrong with my thermometer.

  21. I have been increasing carbs and portions as well after being on GAPS/low carb. For a while I was doing great, but now my digestion seems to be slowing way down again (it was doing so well for a few weeks. Any advice? Did you have any constipation isses w/ all of the starchy food?

    1. Mary, you might want to read up on a sluggish liver. I am prepping to do an herbal liver tincture for many reason, and this is one of them.
      Excellent info here, and the herbal mix they have seems to be the very best out there.

  22. Tomorrow will be week 4 of RRARFing. The first week, I felt blah, but could still the needed stuff done. The second week, my temperature was already much higher and I felt pretty darn good. I had forgotten what it was like to have energy! But then week three came and I went back to blah and this week, I feel like I am dead. My body hurts so badly and my head is way heavy with brain fog. My husband told me I should stop RRARFing, but even though I feel like crap, my temperature is going up. My daily average has been 98.1 for the last 10 days. Coming from the low 97’s, I realize the carbs are doing what they are supposed to by eating this way, but do I ever feel lousy. I do recall Matt saying (somewhere) that it is not uncommon to feel terrible initially because of the physiological changes going on in your body as you make the switch, but should I still feel like crap on week 4? Has anyone else experienced this? Should the crappy feelings be lasting this long? Please give me encouragment to carry on because, quite honestly, I am really enjoying my carbs after being low-carb for three years. I had a plate of spaghetti the other night that almost made me cry, it was so good.

    And don’t even get me started on the weight gain thing. I am beyond a “muffin top” now. It’s more like a Mt. Vesuvious top: It is spewing out all over!

      1. Sounds like a food intolerance, and possible PMS on top of everything? I would ditch the gluten for a few weeks and see how you feel. Wheat, spelt, kamut and barley are the ones that contain problimatic glutens for some people. Rice, qinoua, oats, teff and millet are fine though.

      2. An allergy was the first thing that popped into my head as well. But the same morning I woke up with the aches and pains, my husband did as well. He has been following me on my eating plans for the past 3 years, because, well, I do the cooking. So when I went to RRARFing, he gladly joined in. He’s Italian and was so excited about being able to eat non-stop! So I don’t know if the allergy thing still applies…..It just seems weird that it started on the same day for both of us 3 weeks into the schedule.

        Now, I don’t know if this has anything to do with it, but I do remember that we ran out of Lugol’s a couple of days before our “crash.” I figured there was no hurry to reorder it, so I put it off. It was when my boobs got sore that I realized my body was probably missing the iodine and I placed my order ASAP. It arrived today and I took some immediately. Within an hour my boobs were much better and my body seems less achy. I have no idea if the aches and pains are from no iodine, allergies, or what, but I will play around with it to see what helps. But I in no way will stop RRARFing cause damn it (since we’re all cussin’ around here today), I’m having too much fun eating again!!

        1. Yeah stopping the Lugols was probably a big part of it. Iodine really helps your thyroid, and thus your energy levels.

          LOL love all the cussing! Haha! You guys are hilarious!

          AND YES!!!!! Eating should be fun!!!!!

          I’m so sick of the piousness.

    1. The weight gain for sure is typical of someone who has been low-carbing for awhile. They put on weight like there is no tomorrow when the carbs come back. That’s why I personally always warn people not to even start down the low-carb path.

      From what people like Dr. Schwarzbein say, It is also typical to feel awful while your adrenals are healing. But, maybe you should pose a question to the other commenters on Matt’s site to see if they got through this, too (or maybe Matt will answer). From what I’ve seen, healing takes time but most people have energy gains at least pretty quickly. But 3 years on low-carb is an awfully long time so maybe the damage was greater.

      1. @Amy Thanks for the comment.

        “They put on weight like there is no tomorrow when the carbs come back. Thatโ€™s why I personally always warn people not to even start down the low-carb path.”

        Very interesting.

        I truly think low carb is like prison.

        1. Yes. Unfortunately, from what I’ve seen, getting out is never painless. Matt has said the same thing. It really does a number on the metabolism. But, I recovered from an ED and am still thin, so I’m sure people can recover from LC given time. In fact, ED suffers always put on weight and get really bloated during recovery, too – one of the most painful parts. But it does go away.

    2. Hmmm…might ck for yeast overgrowth. Candida albicans can cause that brain foggy feeling as well as make your body feel Schultz. Ask your doctor to some terazol, or liquid nystatin…once you are 3-4 days into treatment start taking Dr.Thropps “inulation “….3 times a day..this will help clear your gut and digestive track, but not harshly. Also add to that “Threelac Probiotics” these are super beneficial flora bacteria meant to withstand the acids in your stomach. Then once it reaches your will repopulate and kill off the yeast. There is a small detox or dying off effect at 1st, but this will subside. Overall you will end feeling a lot better.

  23. What if you have some of the symptoms but would like to gain weight? I’m tired, low sex drive, no insomnia and always cold. I’m also on GAPS right now and have been on it for 2 months with one of them being intro. I have not gained any weight so far.

    1. I’m also allergic to dairy and just found out I have an histamine intollerance so will have to cut out even more food.

        1. My mom believes I will always have an allergy to dairy. My dad is from Ecuador (South America). She believes that dairy was not a staple food in their diet going back thousands of years and has only recently been introduced, so its not in my genetic make up to tollerate dairy. My dad, brother, and grandmother all have issues with milk. My grandmother’s doc told her to drink milk when she was pregnant with my dad and she was in such horrible pain that she had to go on bed rest. My mom believes that that is the way it is and some cultures will never be able to consume dairy, even raw. Its my understanding that the Asian culture doesn’t do well with dairy either.

      1. As I mentioned above, you might want to look into doing a liver tincture cleanse. Allergies piling up are a sign that the liver is sluggish.

        1. I will look into that cleanse. I was also on Accutane for a couple months so that prob did no good for my liver as well.

          1. Yes, if you have taken drugs that are known to cause liver damage, then a supportive cleanse is good thing to look at. She talks about the reason she created this blend in the article.

  24. Wow! This is so interesting to me. I took a whole class on charting my body temp. before I was married (almost 8 years ago) because my husband and I decided to use Natural Family Planning in our marriage. It has been almost 12 years ago that I was diagnosed with hypothyroid(so I was on meds 4 years before I got married…I had lots of health problems). I slowly started my real food journey in the beginning of our marriage, starting by adding lots of good fats and properly prepared grains. I NEVER ate like that before I got married. I was a low-fat, low carb queen. Throughout my entire marriage, including 4 pregnancies and nursing all my children for at least 16-20 months….my medicine has not changed and I have been on the lowest dosage of thyroid meds. EVERYONE I know who has thyroid problems either continuously have had to up their meds, or have gone up and down like crazy during pregnancy and nursing. I have hope that I can possibly reverse my issues if I continue a great diet and add some proper supplements. Thanks for the post!!

  25. I wonder if it is possible your temps are coming up b/c of the thyroid supplements and not the diet? I eat fairly low carb and it help with my adrenal issues. My temps came up after being properly treated for hypothyroidism. I used to take Armour thyroid but after they reformulated it, I switched to a Canadian brand call ERFA. A while later I began to build up reverse T3 and my temps began dropping again. My adrenal fatigue got very bad and I began to have adrenal crises at home. I had to switch to a T3 only med. Now my temps are back up. My diet has not changed, only my medicine. I wish there was a real answer and solution into why this is happening to everyone. Mine began after a few rounds of birth control pills in the 90s and got worse with each child.

    1. I’ve only been taking the dessicated thyroid since Feb 18 — which is 12 days ago.

      So no, it’s not just the thyroid pills.

      Dessicated thyroid WILL help if you are eating low carb, but eating carb works too. I’m just doing both right now. ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. This is so interesting! I started following Matt’s advice from this article: I knew I had low progesterone because my morning basal body temps were always quite low. My husband & I were thinking about trying to get pregnant so I knew I needed more progesterone! Anyway, I did this for maybe a month and it worked! We got pregnant in January with our first. ๐Ÿ˜€ I might have to try some of your tips here as well. Thanks!

  27. Hi There! This is very interesting! I have a question about your supplements. You are taking all of this, plus CLO and BO? In regards to the iodine, I have read that must take Vit C, Magnesium, and Selenium when taking iodine regularly. Do you follow this, and if so which ones, please? I started back on iodine very loosely because I haven’t found wich accompanying supplements I need to take, and the day I took it, I felt like I had a “buzz”. I took the suggested dose and then painted a smiley face on both my 4 yr old and my arm (very small smiley). Maybe too much iodine when I am no longer used to it.?.? I did this for the cold hands/feet thing. Plus all the other iodine reasons. THANK YOU! I need to get a thermometer… Are you also doing this to conceive?

    1. I’ve been slacking on my CLO/BO. Then when I got sick the other week, I took a bottle and a half within a matter of a week. ๐Ÿ™‚

      You don’t HAVE to take vitamin C, magnesium and selenium when taking iodine, but it helps greatly with the uptake. B vitamins too.

      Yes I am also doing this to conceive.

  28. PS, are the grains you are eating traditionally prepared? or are you easing up on that aspect? What kind of crackers did you have w cheese? : )

    1. For the most part, yes they are. Probably 90%.

      I’m teaching the Healthy Whole Grains class right now!

      Pancakes and waffles are 100% whole wheat sourdough, pizza is 100% whole wheat sprouted and/or sourdough, pasta is 100% sprouted whole wheat, etc.

      I just made some sprouted kamut crackers but I will eat Wasa whole wheat if I’m out of homemade. And I’ll eat white flour (bread, pizza) if we are in a restaurant.

  29. I’m wondering if it’s okay to start taking thyroid or adrenals while I’m nursing.

    I just started RRARFing and feel like I’m so full and not digesting as well. Does anyone else have this problem? Is this just normal at first if your not use to all the carbs?

  30. Anne Marie

    I very much appreciate the work you are doing on spreading the word on nourishing foods and on health issues affecting women. But I have to make a little remark – too often I see you jumping to conclusions, overstating your results or simply exaggerating. Health is a question of discipline and balance. When you write: ‘ Iโ€™ve been slacking on my CLO/BO. Then when I got sick the other week, I took a bottle and a half within a matter of a week’, or when you list your menu of pancakes, pizza, pasta, etc. all in one day, I get worried. You seem to appreciate people coming from rural villages in traditional cultures. And so I tell you that in those cultures measure is of utmost importance. Food is a social event and a matter of preservation of the family. We tend to eat what our ancestors were eating, we try new things only to improve upon them and we do not jump from one type of diet to another like they do in the US – where food is a fade and people embrace a new diet like they would embrace a credo. Of course carbs are important! Of course it is silly to leave out one food group or embrace it like it were the new savior. In my culture there is one day for fish, one day for liver, one day for a quasi fasting, and so on and if I think at what my mother and grandmother cook there is a simple regularity, almost a dance of combination. But not the rigid food combination I read in many blogs. I wonder whether this calm approach to food can ever be reproduced in this country. Perhaps not. It would require that food gets out altogether from many businesses’ agendas. Forgive me the rant and thank you for hosting me.


    1. Jo

      Please don’t worry about me.

      It’s easy to take a bottle and a half of CLO if you’re taking 3-4 TBS per day which is what I do when I get sick. 16,000 IU vitamin D per day will help you kick any cold or flu. I have written about this in the past.

      And there is nothing wrong with eating pizza, pasta and pancakes all in one day. Lots of people do it!

      I post my real honest-to-God truth on the internet in an attempt to share my experiences to help people.

      I don’t post this stuff because I’m asking for advice. If I want advice, I will ask for it.

      If you think I’m exaggerating or overreacting, maybe that’s just my personality. If my personality doesn’t suit you, sorry.

      And it’s Ann Marie, no extra e.

    2. Jo,

      I would love to hear more about your ancestral food routine. I agree that we’re bat-shit crazy when it comes to eating in this country. Truly we’re like motherless children… cut off from our familial traditions, and confused right down to our cells by a life-time of brainwashing at the hands of agri-business, the processed food industry and big-phara.

      Those of us who long for sanity are left to our own devices with nary a clue how to nourish ourselves with simplicity, grace and wisdom. We search high and low for clues to solving the riddle that our ancestors spent thousands upon thousands of years solving; namely what to eat and how to eat it, and in the end we realize that we’re just chasing our own tails.

      We viscerally sense that we’ve been cheated of our birthright, and it leads to the resentment and panic of the orphaned. How many of us learned the kitchen secrets of the generations at our mother’s, grandmother’s or auntie’s side? The link in our legacy chain has been broken, and we’re desperately trying to mend it because we fear that the survival of the next generation depends on it, which of course it does.

      This is why the indigenous cultures studied by Dr. Price made the passing down of nourishing tradition to the next generation the number one priority of the group. Their wisdom had a broad and long-term agenda; they didn’t want the next generations to languish in ignorance the way of our modern culture.

      It is incumbent upon those of us with vision to interview the remaining souls on this planet who still maintain the food wisdom of the ages. We need to kneel at their feet and learn the secrets that have been lost to us. Science is not going to fix this. Only a return to tradition, ANY tradition, is going to save us.

      Please share the jewels that remain in your family coffers Jo, so that we might steward them for the benefit of our children’s children.


  31. Ann Marie,

    I was not worried about you, am sure you know how to take care of yourself, but perhaps readers should know that balance is important. I am a researcher by training and appreciate your honesty but also rigorous scientific facts.


    1. I think my readers are smart enough to be able to be discerning.

      I’m not perfect. I do my best to share what I can in the best way I know how.

      Please feel free to start your own blog if you think you can do better.

      1. As someone who tends to exaggerate (I just informed my doctor that I had passed, with emphasis, THOUSANDS gallstones and he just stared blankly at me and said “I…don’t think that is possible…”), I know how easy it can be to say kind of things and have people assume you’re exaggerating. Ann Marie, I don’t know if you’re exaggerating or generalizing or whatever, the point I don’t really need to know. Posts like this, and your general attitude, are a breath of fresh air. A Godsend. I am so grateful to you and Matt Stone for making eating “ok” for me. Better than ok – finally enjoyable again!

        I’m coming from a 2-year zero-carb Paleo stint in which I eliminated basically all foods from my diet. Not only did I become physically sicker as time passed, the psychological affects were devastating. I developed a binge-eating disorder, severe restricting tendencies, and a crippling case of orthorexia. Crippling. I became afraid of ALL foods, and thanks to a “cultish” Paleo mentality I can now justify why any given food is dangerous to consume. Yay me!

        I transitioned to the GAPS diet this year, which unfortunately just didn’t work for me (at least right now). I couldn’t move past the first stage of intro, and I felt incredibly sick after eating even that limited diet of 5 or so foods. After two months looking and feeling like I was on death’s door, my father begged me to “start eating again”. I truly believe GAPS is a healing diet, it just wasn’t for me. Unfortunately, through GAPS I got roped into a whole new hell of “you can’t use shampoos or toothpaste or deodorant or cleaning supplies or pre-made almond milk or microwaves ect ect.” Of course, I understand the implications of all these harmful things, but all of this fear started to take over every second of my life.

        That’s why I’m so glad that, for the past week, I’ve finally been eating again. And not feeling guilty. So in effect, I and other people know where you are coming from with posts like these. Please keep at them! It is incredibly helpful for those of us who have been depriving ourselves, RRARFing, or getting over a dieting mentality. I’ve seen blogs that kind of advocate “eat like a fatass without any regard to your health or wellbeing”, and this certainly isn’t one of them!

        PS – I’m enjoying some pizza and ice cream tonight holllaaaaaa

        1. You said you transitioned to GAPS and couldn’t move past stage one. So how did you add the grains back? Was it over a period of time or just the next day after you decided to stop GAPS? Why didn’t it work for you?

          1. Natalia,

            One day, I was making my mother whole-food cookies (out of bananas, pumpkin, almond meal, coconut oil, ect) and I was just so darn sick and tired of GAPS that I ate a cookie. And then two. And then three :).

            Ironically, I didn’t feel sick. I bloated up pretty badly, but I didn’t experience the stomach and intestinal pain that occurred whenever I drank bone broth or ate boiled chicken. I still don’t know why the simple GAPS foods hurt my stomach so badly. But I do know that when I ate some pizza a week later, the same thing happened- I got the bloating that accompanies any meal that I eat and a sense of “fullness”, but NO pain or discomfort. I actually seem to fare well with “junk” food, so I completely transitioned off of GAPS and went back to eating a Paleo type diet. Then, I just added back all food. It’s important for me to say that I don’t seem to experience horrific symptoms when I eat grains and such. With “junk” food and grains, I still have some of the same symptoms as always (bloating, severe constipation, hormonal problems, chronic fatigue) but I felt SO sick doing GAPS. I certainly ate enough, but everything I consumed hurt my insides and made me double over with pain.

            Right now, I’m doing a “no foods banned” diet a-la-Matt-Stone more for the psychological benefits of helping my eating disorder, but I certainly do feel like I at lease have a little more energy!

            OK now I’m SO sorry Ann Marie for hijacking your board!

            1. So you don’t think it was die-off you experienced on GAPS Intro?
              All this is so confusing. I have been thinking of doing GAPS because of my chronic constipation, but I am still breastfeeding and afraid of detox if I do that. So I started sourdough baking, then several weeks ago went gluten free, not progress so far with the exception that my ten months old poops three time a day now vs. once before and has a lot of mucus in his stool and very bloated. I am completely lost right now. I looked into Leptin reset (tried it for three day and thought I would die from stomach ache), now just trying to eat normally, but my constipation bother me and I am concerned about my son. It is so difficult to figure all this out!

              1. Have you tried just eating a big salad every day? That keeps me more regular than anything else I can think of… although I tend to be pretty close to perfect in that regard. If I eat a meal… I have to poop shortly thereafter.
                My step-mom though… she’s spent most of her life constipated. Her bathroom was always stocked with crossword puzzles! Since she came to live with us she rarely has to deal with constipation.
                She came from a *very* SAD diet, lots of coffee and soda, boxed crackers and dips, a dish of candy next to every chair or sofa and velveeta was her cheese!
                We eat a very eclectic diet but the things that are always included are Real salt, pastured butter and coconut oil, properly prepared grains (or none at all… using coconut and almond flours), lots of animal foods, nearly daily kombucha and frequent fermented vegetables… plus daily cooked and raw vegetables and a little fruit.
                I had to teach her how to drink enough water (she ended up in emergency twice because of UTIs and one doc said too concentrated urine can be causal). I bought her two tall hard plastic beverage cups with lid and straw and at first I used stevia drops to sweeten the deal a little but now she keeps her own cup refilled with just ice and water. You really can teach an old dog new tricks. ๐Ÿ˜‰
                The other thing that I am sure helps is magnesium. We have been taking oral mag supplements for a few years and Grandma gets hers too. I have started bathing in it! (Ancient Minerals mag flakes) Magnesium definitely keeps things moving. ๐Ÿ˜‰

                1. I do eat salads every day, yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kombucha, soaked oats, fruits (a lot of them), broth, water, animal fat and butter, coconut oil – are all in my daily diet. Maybe I need to look for some hidden problems, not sure which ones, though.

  32. I’m sorry but I think I’m going to have to rant a bit too. I’m just so confused by all this.

    “Iโ€™m one of the most sedentary people you will ever meet. Like Mark Twain, writing all day lying in bed (at least I heard he did that).”

    Really? Your list of 2012 resolutions where you detailed what was going on with your busy work life made my head spin. You said you hired a nanny/housekeeper. You said you had a virtual assistant but now you needed to hire an additional local assistant. You said you were writing 2 e-books. You said you were homeschooling your child. You said you were preparing to give online classes. You said you wanted to get camels or something but that you’d be too busy to deal with them so you’d hire another assistant. I don’t know – this doesn’t jive with my image of someone lying in bed.

    But I was still ok until you said this about giving up on the kettle bells:

    “I had a SUPER stressful couple of months โ€” crazy stressful with work. And I got sick from overwork. So thatโ€™s why I ended up not kettlebelling. I wasnโ€™t going to push myself when I just could not handle it…I donโ€™t think the answer is exercise. I think itโ€™s healing our hormones and correcting our metabolism.”

    Well, that just irks me a bit because I almost entered that challenge. LOL. And your answer for quitting is really good, really smart. Except it makes the people who participated seem really…stupid. I mean – how were we to know it isn’t about exercise? And now knowing you feel this way there are going to be “winners”?? That seems a tad hypocritical to me.

    I understand blogging and I understand that you have to post things that will get people talking, buzzing and commenting. I admire your ambition and I think you work really hard. If I were a blogger I would want to be one the likes of Mark Sisson or Joe Mercola or many other top bloggers. You have every right to try and get up there with them. But I do think you’re throwing out a lot of mixed messages and confusing information. I used to blog too but it was mainly about eating cannolis (ladies…before you get excited I can ASSURE you this will make you gain weight) so I wasn’t very popular.

    I think the comment that pushed me over the edge was the person who wants to know what type of crackers you eat. WHY would someone want to know that? Well perhaps (my opinion) it’s because she can get them and feel good thinking “these are the ones Ann Marie eats!” That’s great. But if they cause her to put on weight it’s also great because she can blame YOU instead of herself. “Hey…my Ann Marie crackers are making me fat!!” This is why on my last comment I was encouraging people to think for themselves.

    Readers: today I learned that I am reading WAY too many blogs with WAY too much conflicting info and it’s all just noise. Figure out what works for YOU and do it. Jump on someone else’s bandwagon at your own risk – trust me, they aren’t trying to jump on yours and we’re all pretty much the same with a lot of common issues. Rant over. Thanks.

    1. @Kelly

      I’m VERY busy but my work (mostly writing and doing stuff on the computer) requires me to be very sedentary. I don’t get to move a lot. In fact, lately, I hardly ever even leave the house!

      Why does it irk you that I was not able to complete the kettlebell challenge? I’m not proud of it. I wish I could have finished it. But like I said, it was an extraordinarily stressful month (or 2) and I got sick from overwork.

      Why are you calling the people who participated stupid? A lot of them lost weight and inches. I don’t think that is stupid.

      I think exercise is good. Which is why I did the kettlebell challenge in the first place!

      Re: the crackers. They just want to know if the crackers I am eating are soaked/sprouted and whole wheat. They want to know if I am eating white flour storebought crackers. So what? They know I don’t recommend those foods, so that’s why they are asking.

      Sorry if you think my blog is just “noise”. A lot of people find that it helps them.

      1. Oh they aren’t stupid…no way. As stated earlier I’m a big believer in exercise – at least for myself – I was trying to say (did a poor job) that I FELT stupid that I almost participated in an exercise challenge where the challenge leader later said that the answer isn’t exercise. I don’t know – it just rubbed me the wrong way.

        And I didn’t specifically say that YOUR blog was noise – I’m saying that there currently is a lot of noise – in all areas because there’s so much info now – on all topics, not just health.

        I was just watching a movie set in 1970’s NYC and it’s striking how thin everyone is. Like skinny, baggy clothes, skinny. The stars and ALL the extras. And there’s a lot of extras in NYC background scenes. I was thinking about this – if you were around in the 70’s – think about what you were doing (or not doing). I was young but as I recall there were not a lot of convenience foods, there was pretty much what you ate at home or in a restaurant. I could leave my apt right now and get you 6 different kinds of donuts in a 10 block radius. The fancy/artisan/expensive kinds (2 places) – Krispy Kremes at the bodegas, a 24 hour Dunkin’ Donuts down the street and pre-packaged donuts everywhere else. Couldn’t do that back then. And there weren’t even any blogs!! How were we so THIN without our bloggers helping us figure out what to do, eat and think! Shocking.

        Haha! Just have to challenge the whole thing sometimes. I appreciate your response and hope everyone finds the answers they are searching for.

        1. @Kelly I did not mean to say that exercise was worthless. I just realized that I was working too hard, AND trying to heal my hormones. Something had to give. I could not stop working so hard b/c that is just how life is right now.

          Interesting about the 1970s movie.

      2. Ann Marie…… you do work hard. I get exhausted reading your posts. LOL. I don’t think I could possible keep up w/ you and I thought I had ambition.
        But……….. thank you for all of your hard work. I do appreciate learning from you.

  33. Well done! I have been following a similar process, although without the grains, and reintroducing root veg and fruit as my main carbs…taking it slow is the key, according to Josh Rubin and Ray Peat

    I am taking temps and pulse 20 mins after each meal, to determine whether the macronutrient ratio in my meal were optimal, and to help identify food intolerances, as suggested by Josh Rubin. I am doing his course “The Metabolic Blueprint” which is suited to lay-people and practitioners alike, and it is wonderful – I highly recommend it, and am sure you would find it very interesting and informative!

    Good luck in your quest for 98.6!

  34. I went on a low carb/high protein diet a few years ago to lose weight. I did it through the assistance of a naturopath who specialized in weight loss. I did lose weight, however about 6-8 weeks into the program I started to experience extreme nausea and all over aches and pains. I went to emergency because I had never felt so ill before. My blood results showed extremely elevated liver function. Subsequently the nausea died down, but it was replaced with chronic all over body itching and fatigue. I was a mess. My liver function results continued to be of the charts. Test after test could not figure out what was wrong with me. I stopped the low carb diet in the meantime because I found it too hard to organize a strict diet while being so sick. Eventually (after many months) the itching went away and fatigue lifted. No one was ever able to tell me what had been wrong. But I am convinced that it was to do with the dramatic change in diet. I know that I will never ditch carbs again. But through blogs like your Ann Marie I am learning to prepare these foods so they are beneficial to my body.
    Thank you for a great article.

  35. Hi Ann Marie,
    Thanks for sharing so much good information on this site. I’m a relatively new reader, but I’ve felt right at home with your material. Yes to real foods! I also recently discovered Matt Stone’s site and read Diet Recovery and am starting RRARFing this week. Wow, I’m so full!!!

    I also have low thyroid and quite likely low adrenal as well. I find the whole hormonal thing to be very confusing, at times overwhelming, so I like this approach of healing “from the ground up” by focusing on metabolism. I think there’s a lot to be said for letting yourself enjoy food, all types of food and also letting go of the stress and fear around gaining weight–not an easy one for us women! But, I’ve decided to increase my carbs with well prepared grains, beans, root veggies and some fruit. I wasn’t particularly low-carb before this, but I also rarely ate to overful, so that feels interesting. I’ve been keeping track of my temps for a few days, and they definitely can stand to go up some. I have a feeling this will help.

    So, best wishes with your health journey, and I will let everybody know how it goes for me since I know people are curious about this rather controversial RRARF thing!

  36. Thanks so much for sharing! So good to hear. I have Hashimoto’s. My doctor had said that I most likely wouldn’t recover from it because of my age and the severity. However, this year, I have seen a huge turnaround. I know you are a Young Living gal . . . so you might look into the Thyromin. I started taking two pills a day, and only need one now. My Doctor even told me to use that instead of any prescription!!! In combination with that I am taking BioSuperfood (BSF) F3 micro algae ( )

    Wow. I think this stuff is what is healing me! My hair stopped falling out. I have begun to lose weight. Those icky white bumps have disappeared. Cravings are down. Mood is up. I am much warmer. Sleep better.

    So all that to say, thanks for helping me on the right course. I did all the supplements on the Mood Cure — that you suggested or rather the book suggested.

    Once I stabilized . . . I began the BioSuperfood. My hope is that each of my systems will continue to heal and then I can jump down to a lesser BioSuperfood that isn’t geared entirely towards healing.

    Thanks for sharing what you are learning. BTW, my mom loved grain class today!!! She doesn’t want to soak flour . . . because soaking grains are more fun!

    1. oh, sorry for being a “this is my story” commenter. Sigh. At least you know my heart. (I think. ๐Ÿ™‚ And I forgot two other oils that will make your thyroid happy . . . myrtle and myrhh . . . if you need something to add to your YL order. ๐Ÿ™‚ OK. I’m done now.

  37. I really appreciate this! I attempted to go grain-free recently, with disastrous results. I was hungry constantly, even with a high-fat diet (butter, cream, coconut oil, etc) and after a couple of weeks I had gained two pounds which on my small frame, feels awful. I also felt bloated. I finally decided this was ridiculous and added back my whole, gluten-free grains. I never eat refined or artificial stuff. What a difference! The hunger went away, as well as the two pounds, My energy returned, Perhaps low-carb is really about getting people off the HFCS, and other junk, rather than wholesome properly prepared grains?

  38. Just curious… Are you also eating beyond appetite?
    I’m on GAPS and have been trying to make a point of eating more squash, fruit, and honey. I’ve also been eating even after I’m full per Matt’s advice for raising temps. It’s been 2 weeks and I’m getting chunky around the middle, BUT my BBT is gradually increasing. ๐Ÿ™‚ (TMI: Cervical fluid is also a lot more this month.)
    I’m so thankful for you and your blog!

  39. I started charting my temps after my husband & I were having trouble conceiving. I started
    reading the informative book, “Taking Charge of Your Fertility”. Even before I saw a doc, I figured out I had a thyroid, low progesterone issue just by charting my temps & cycle. I had average temps of 96-97ยฐ & no raise in temp during my suspected ovulation time! After seeking an endo & discovering most western docs don’t do proper testing, I took matters into my own hands. I paid out of pocket for proper tests to be done @ a compounding RX. I am thankful for charting. I now use the app LILY for IPhone. You get a perfect insight to your health. Turned out, I do have a low thyroid, low progesterone issue. Adrenal fatigue is suspected.

  40. Hi Ann Marie,
    I know that Matt has a whole book on RRARFing, but can you just give a brief overview of what it is?

  41. I’ve been dealing with auto-immune thyroid disease and adrenal fatigue for 2 years. I take NatureThroid (a prescribed desiccated thyroid med) and supplements for adrenal support. I’ve read several books/blogs on hypothyroidism and a few state emphatically that gluten triggers an auto-immune response, even if you’ve tested negative for gluten sensitivity (which I have). The main book I refer to is by Dr. Datis Kharrazian/Why Do I Still Have Thyroid Symptoms When my Lab Tests are Normal. I don’t know if I believe this!

    I know I should bite the bullet and go on the GAPS diet to heal my gut, but I don’t know if I can commit to the “no grains/no potatoes” part of the diet for that long. I drink lots of homemade broth and do not eat refined sugar, take probiotics;use sprouted flour if making bread/pancakes. I’m hoping that will help.

    I guess my main comment/question is if anyone knows definitively if gluten must be eliminated from your diet for life if you have Hashimoto’s.

    P.S. A really great book that has helped me is “Stop the Thyroid Madness.”

  42. It would be nice to know the name of the author of this article. Is it here and I’m missing it? Is there only one person writing all the articles on this site and it’s from all that same perspective? Good article. I just I knew who was writing.

  43. For those who are eating low carb because they are controlling their blood sugar, eating more carbs to raise basal body temperature is not an option.

    1. I will never forget on a Robb Wolf podcast I was listening to a few months ago he said that going low/no carb will cause greater insulin resistance, but that it is okay and healthy because you aren’t eating any carbs anyway.

      This always stuck out in my mind. I thought ‘I don’t want more insulin resistance! That is what I am trying to HEAL’.

      Ever since deciding low carb was not for me anymore, that has been one of the big reasons why I have decided adding back in carbs is a GOOD thing.

      Also, it goes along with Matt Stone’s reasoning that your body adapts to how many carbs it can handle. So feed it more and it will handle more!

      But my big question remains…. “What messed up out bodies in the first place??” Not food?

  44. Ann Marie, great post once again. Thank you so much for being open and honest about your health. It helps so many. Question: I have been on Synthroid for over 10 years. What do you know about taking Iodine along with thyroid medication? Is there a site that you would recommend with this info? Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  45. Hi Ann –

    You were very kind to respond to a comment of mine over at Healthy Home Economist and we exchanged a few emails about my concerns with wheat. I told you I needed to research more ๐Ÿ™‚ During that time, I discovered Matt’s work and saw a comment from you about the refracto-meter. I am ready to recover from a year of Full Gaps/Lo Carb and this is my third day of high carb (before I saw this post – interesting timing, eh?). My husband already said I am warmer but my temps are in the low 96’s!! My kids have low temps too ๐Ÿ™ I have the thyroid book on order from the library. I have an autoimmune thyroid condition so we will see what happens. I must saw I am enjoying white gluten-free bread and oj and oatmeal. This morning I woke up and didn’t immediately head to the coffee pot – went straight to OJ and it feels good. I am putting on some weight around my belly – could be candida raising its ugly head until I eat more sugar!! Anyway, I am excited to be on this journey with others. Thanks for stepping out! Pam

  46. WOW! Talk about a lot of comments. So, I got all excited and went to Matt’s blog and joined the start up thing. And can’t get it to work (followed the link and directions in the intro e-mail – won’t open). ๐Ÿ™

    I’m kind of laughing at (little with) all of you who are worried about gaining 5 lbs. We’re talking about food things (and other things) that are so anti-establishment and against the grain of acceptable standards for nutrition and health here. And yet, most of us base our ideals on weight based upon current acceptable standards (set by the government and skewed away from true health).

    That said, by any standards I’m fat. I went vegetarian in my 20’s for about 7 years and gained quite a bit of weight. I was active (played hockey and skated for 3-4 hours most days, swam for an hour a day and walked MILES every day -no car) and I ate whatever I wanted when I wanted to (w/o the meat) because I was always hungry. Then I bought a car, and couldn’t afford to play hockey or pay for a pool pass and ate Taco Bell on the cheap all the time. and a LOT of Ramen Noodles. Uh… yeah… gained a LOT of weight. I also come from a long line of large women (old farmer family, the only skinny woman in my family is bulimic – not interested in that route). Even when we’re not seriously obese we’re full bodied women. Anyway, It just burgeoned when I was pregnant (all five times – I have four kids, one miscarriage) and now I’m huge at 40. We have mostly followed Nourishing Traditions in our house for 6 years. We drink raw milk, sprout (off and on), lacto-ferment, and cook from scratch. We’ve got excellently sourced meat and milk and veggies.

    But… still I stay at the same weight. And then I read Ann Marie’s blog about 180 degree health. Uh… yeah, my daytime temp is always around 97.4. I’ve been tested for thyroid problems. Nothing. I’ve been seeing a fantastic chiropractor for about 18 months and my spine curve is all out of whack. He’s working on that. I certainly have more energy and will to try now. So, I’m hoping that putting more focus on properly sprouting and soaking my grains will help drastically improve this. I avoid eating breads b/c we don’t always get the sprouting done.

    One question Ann Marie, can we get in on the class even though you’ve started it already? I’d like to see your tortilla chips recipe. We’d eat those all the time if they were better made than the store bought ones! Thanks

    1. Yes you can still get in on the class. All the classes are recorded so you can jump in anytime:

      I have a spring special for 20% through March 31 — use coupon code SPRING

  47. Ann Marie, Thank you SO much for your blog. I’ve been following you for a few months and have learned a ton. I have been dealing with thyroid and adrenal issues for years, but only just figured out what the problem was last Fall. Your posts and book recommendations have kick-started me on the path to healing. Keep it up. You rock!

    1. Hey All – I am thoroughly enjoying reading all the comments and I just wanted to clarify one thing… in Matt’s Basics of HED ( RRarfing) document section 4…( from his free PDF) he says NOT to eat alot of fructose and definitely no added sugars including maple syrup honey etc…. he also states more starchy vegetables as opposed to bread-type grains. Not to be a Debbie downer but did something change from that publication?
      I am also a Mt. Vesuvius top ( LOVED that comment! lol) and have battled the belly bulge most of my adult life with mixed results. I tried WW, and got annoyed with points – ended up eating the same items every day, then got so sick of it & quit.. tried low cal, which did work but god i was miserable, looking like a hungry dog at anyone else enjoying one of my ” forbidden” foods, then recently tried 17 day diet which starts as no carb and was literally road rage ANGRY without carbs and said , ok dammit i just want some PIZZA and that was the end of that.
      So recently came across this real food movement & decided to try RRARFing, I am on my third week… instantly felt more alive and even a little thinner the first week, but I have to admit in the 2/3rd weeks I am “using up” my Dead/ processed foods & that has bogged me down some, feel a little more sluggy.. BUT temps steadily & slowly climbing ! I started out at 95..yeesh!! Once I get through using up the “bad” stuff I think I will return to feeling more peppy again, and hopefully start shedding some pounds.
      Thanks Ann Marie for the insights & info and everyone for the non-pious and hilarious comments !! I’ll be following along ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. @TGB

        Hmmm…. I don’t know where you read that.

        According to Matt’s ebook, Diet Recovery, he does not say that starchy veggies are better than grains:

        “Starch is probably the greatest single tool in increasing metabolic activity, as almost all of it metabolizes into glucose or short-chain fatty acids โ€“ both being the almighty metabolism stimulators. Root vegetables, corn, and rice tend to be the best tolerated overall. Potatoes and yams are the best friends of the HED freak. Corn and corn products (cornmeal, corn tortillas) are fantastic. Rice, white or brown depending on what you fare best on, is at the top of the list as well. Amaranth, quinoa, buckwheat, and other โ€•out thereโ€– hippie-ish grains are also top choices.”

        He goes on to say:

        “The simple sugars โ€“ from fruit, juice, blackstrap molasses, and maple syrup (and of course that found in ice cream and gelato) can also help people out a lot. There were years of masturdebating about whether it was preferable to get most of your carbohydrates from starches or sugars, and in actuality there are tremendous individual differences here. The original version of the HED recommended all starches and no sugars, as there seemed to be complications from eating lots of sugar in the context of intentionally overeating. I have found stopping the overfeeding at 2pm and eating a light dinner with no sweets to completely solve this problem for a lot of people, myself included. I gain excess fat eating to appetite if I regularly eat heavy at night with sweets, and get lean quickly eating to appetite when eating big earlier in the day and coasting into the evening with a full belly. It always boggles the mind what big differences small changes can make.”

        I have been eating too late which is making me gain. I need to eat more in the morning and at lunch!

        1. Oh, and re: wheat, he says:

          “Grains like whole wheat, oats, barley, and rye are a little more iffy. Gluten sensitivity, although overblown by a lot of Paleo-oriented nutrition authors and bloggers, is not make-believe (although I and many others feel best on a high-wheat diet built around bread and pasta).”

        1. HM,,,I read that info here : PDF Rrarf! An Introduction to
          180DegreeHealth – found on the site. There seems to be a conflict of recommendation between the 2 docs -the guide has on page 41:

          “4) Low in fructose… (content reduced for space) … I am MUCH more confident recommending a very low-fructose version of RRARF โ€“meaning very little fruit or none at all, no fruit juices, and absolutely no sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, white sugar, agave nectar, …” – the IFFY line about all my personal favorite grains and the (sometimes) listed next to the wheat stuff on the food list seemed to me to say, not as much of these!

          In your quote from the book, this key line which gives me a hint: The original version of the HED recommended all starches and no sugars…

          Sounds like the free guide information may have been revised in the full book. Well then I don’t have to eat plain pancakes!!

          RE:Lori – go to his site here: and click on the orange box on the bottom right called ” starter Kit” – enter your email & you will get a password to the intro book at no cost. Very interesting reading, although sounds like a bit of revision may have taken place since publishing given the info above-

  48. What perfect timing you have! I’ve never had an issue with my temperature, but losing body weight? Absolutely. I spent so much time focusing on eating enough veggie carbs, that I stopped eating grains altogether. I never felt satiated and never lost weight. I then started eating small amounts of grains (properly prepared of course!) with my veggies, proteins, and fats and I feel better and I’m slowly starting to lose weight again. Great article!

  49. I’m confused ….. Women are supposed to have a low body temperature in the first part of their cycle (follicular phase= before a women has ovulated=body is making estrogen) & a high body temperature in the 2nd part of their cycle (luteal phase=after a woman has ovulated= body is making progesterone). I have a lot of experience practicing NFP (Natural Family Planning) & teaching FAM (Fertility Awareness Methods). It is very typical to have minor “ups & downs” in temperature during either phase of the cycle- this is not indicative of a health problem. For example, in the follicular phase you might have 97.1 one day & 97.3 the next day & that’s ok (totally normal). I agree that major “ups & down” should not occur during the cycle (except for of course when the body is transitioning from luteal phase to follicular phase & vise versa, which is actually an indicator of health that the temperature rise & fall dramatically). For NFP & FAM it it not recommended to take your temperature 3 times a day & take an average (this would be viewed as very inaccurate & misleading). The Basal Body temperature is regarded as the most efficient indicator of hormonal health (and it must be at the exact same time every morning on a good night’s sleep- also sickness & alcohol can interfere with body temperature readings, FYI). You say, “Ideally your temperature should be a stable and steady 98.6 degrees Farenheit.” What is that based on? And what phase of the cycle does that refer to? Just wondering your thoughts? Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I know in Matt’s book 180 Degree Metabolism he does say exactly what you’re describing– that there can be a .5ยบ difference in the two parts of a woman’s cycle. The suggestion to take the temperature 3 times a day is based on the recommendations by Dr. Broda Barnes, the endocrinologist, who did this with his patients– and once also before going to bed. It is Dr. Barnes who developed this theory of health being related to the thyroid and that body temperature was one of two main indicators of hypothyroidism. Dr. Barnes also stated that 98.6ยบ is the healthy body temperature and that is a fact within the whole medical establishment (and not really up for argument!). Hope that helps clarify and give credibility to a much researched and studied topic by an expert!

  50. I am looking into doing the diet recovery to help heal my adrenals, hypoglycemia, hypothyroidism, hormones, etc. I am on a slow released t3 medication and was wondering if I should continue to stay on it or get off while doing the diet recovery. So my question is, would your temps have risen without the raw thyroid supplement? Would upping your carbs and following the diet be enough or is supplementing necessary? Also do you plan on using the raw thyroid for a while? Sorry if this was already asked in the 202 previous comments. If so please direct me to where. Thanks

  51. Wow, I just spent the last hour reading this and all the comments and I’m a little overwhelmed about what to do next.

    I absolutely have low body temp. I know I have stressed adrenals (which I thought were healed, but think too a hit durring a recent pregnancy). I just found out thyroid disease runs in the family, my mother was just discovered to have huge growth they think is cancer and are removing her thyroid today. I feel like I’ve had thyroid symptoms for years, but never tested for it. That being said, once I started doing WAP my energy soared and adrenals seemed to do way better.

    Now though, I’m 4.5 months postpartum and have gained 20lbs while breastfeeding. I feel sluggish (although I’m not getting great sleep yet). Also, I got my period, which is strange while still breastfeeding a baby this young. After reading all these comments I feel I am on the same path as you.

    So I don’t really know what to do first. Should I just wait and see if my body finds a balance on it’s own? Should I start carbing it up? Should I start taking my metagenics adregen again? Should I take thyroid supplements too? Are taking these supplements safe while nursing? I don’t have med insurance, so seeing a Dr isn’t an option.

    If I start eating more carbs, what’s a good rule to know if I’m getting enough? I definitely cannot eat gluten but I don’t think I’m low carb as it is. I love potatoes, as they are a great butter delivery device. I eat corn tortillas a lot. But, I don’t eat carbs with every meal.

    If sure, the answer to my problem is some where in all this information I’ve just read, I’m just not sure what to do with all of it. Suggestions?

    1. Hi Ann Marie. I really appreciate this posting and I’m very curious how your experience with RRARFing is going. I really resonate with Gwen who posted above. I am so frustrated currently and have been trying to lose 15-20 pounds before my trip to Hawaii. Well, my trip is next week and I’ve lost maybe 1 lb and no body fat at all in the last 7 weeks. I’ve been working really faithfully with a personal trainer and trying to limit my calorie intake. Guess that’s not working, so I’m thinking pretty seriously about giving Matt Stone’s diet recovery plan a try. I have never had trouble losing weight in the past (when I put my mind to it) but after having twins in 2006, my body has just not been the same. I did lose about 55 pounds in a year when my boys were about 12-24 months and I did it by doing the no-grain, low-carb thing. It worked really, really well for me and I didn’t even exercise. It doesn’t work for me now however. I totally believe now that this has messed up my hormones and metabolism. I struggle greatly with low blood pressure, low adrenal function and hypo-thyroid. I’ve been working with a good naturapath but I haven’t really seen any significant changes. My stress levels are off the charts and I sleep terribly. I wake up every day feeling like a truck has just run over me. I’m taking a bazillion supplements and it’s putting me in the poor house. My teeth are also decaying really badly (probably due to too much cortisol). I am nervous about gaining more weight at this point because I’m running out of clothes to wear. I do value balancing my hormones and raising my metabolism, so I’m just wondering if you have noticed a shift in your metabolic function? Have you gained weight? If so, how much? Has it shifted and are you now losing weight?

      1. I am very glad that I could find this post and also matt Stone’s blog and found abour rrarfing and so on. After a year of putting myself into crazy diets, low carb, famine mode… I was so tired of feeling low energy, dizzy, bad mood, I even developed bingeing problems and became scared of eating all foods thinking that everything will make me fat, that carbs were evil and so on… I gained weight around my belly area and I was so shocked that I could not lose it even if I was on diet ALL THE TIME… when I have been always so slim and could eat everything in any amount without gaining more than 1 or 2 pounds which I could lose easily…

        So, my question is this. I am tracking my body temperature these days, trying to take it 3 times a day (7 am, 10 am, 3 pm). Two days ago I had 2 eggs and zucchini and onion for dinner with a piece of Milner cheese (rich in protein low in fat). I ate enough and was not hungry (but I do have strong cravings for sweets at evening night which i try to ignore). I woke up with very low temperature (96.6) and had low temperature all the morning, feeling moody, headache all day, shaking, sleepy and weak.
        Yesterday I went out at night and had ice cream, chips, 2 lamb chops, salad, butter cookies, orange and chocolate cookies and bread with olive oil. I woke up at 7 with a beautiful 97.34…
        Does it means junk food, especially sweet, makes my metabolism go faster and increase my temp??
        I have to say, I am experimenting with eating high carb breakfast, like cereals, soaked oatmeal, even whole gran bread (commercial one,,). For now, breakfast cereals with skimmed milk and a bit of unsweetened pure cocoa powder made me super warm and energetic in the morning,,, since oatmeal and bread makes me neutral or cold,,, I wonder why?
        And also… since I went into ths crazy dieting mode I became a constipated person… before i used to go once a day or every other day but now.. even increasing my carbs didnt improved it yet… I have been around 10 days in rrarfing mode and still constipated… junk food kind of alleviate it but I am so scared of gaining weight and lose my health if I rely on it…
        I am female, 28, 64 inches and 110 pounds.

        Any opinion and advice are very welcome!!

        1. Matt seems to imply that junk food is ok but long term it is not. do more what Cheeesslave does with whole food carbs like sweet potatoes ,squash etc. and also try good fats like grass fed butter, avocados,MCT oil, etc to help stop cravings.

  52. I’ve been following yours and Matt Stone’s work for a bit. I’ve done LC for much of my life and at one time lost 70 lb doing it. Lately, not so much. I read your posts on body temp, mine’s typically in the 97s, and then set up a consult with Matt; a week later I bought Diet Recovery.

    So when I eat carbs, my temps are dropping (like from 97.7 to 97.2) – which isn’t what I would be expecting. Do you have any thoughts on this?

  53. Interesting article. I’ve been taking 4 Grains of Erfa Thyroid, and my basal temperature is still at 97.1. I’m discouraged because I can’t figure out what the problem is. Maybe I’m just not eating enough carbs? I’m also taking Adrenal Rebuilder to rebuild my adrenals after being diagnosed with Adrenal Exhaustion one year ago. It’s pretty discouraging to be spending a fortune on adrenal and thyroid products that don’t seem to be raising my temperature.

  54. I tried this and it made me 15 pounds heavier and that was about it. I am back to low carb, eating great food, feeling terrific and down those extra 15 plus a few more. Great that it worked for you but for me, personally, it was a load of bunk.

  55. Ann Marie, do you take all of the supplements that you listed in your article? I read up on them and some seem to do the same thing so I was wondering which ones you take and do you take them all at the same time or rotate them.
    Thanks and thanks for the article, it was very eye opening for me.

  56. This is really interesting.
    What about someone who has thinning hair (on head) and cold hands/feet but is underweight and struggles to put any weight on? Is that also hypothyroid? I thought hypothyroid makes you prone to putting weight on. So I’m a bit confused.

  57. I have been keeping track of my BBT for the past week. I am using the Vick’s digital thermometer and taking my temperature under my arm. I don’t need to add a degree to the temperature reading do I? ( I had always heard you should add a degree, but maybe that was incorrect information?) I’ve not read anywhere in Matt’s books that you should add a degree. My average BBT so far has been 97.4 degrees F. (If I should add a degree to this, it would mean my temperature is within ideal range, though my body has most of the signs and symptoms of low thyroid/adrenals.) I’m sick of dieting. I’ve been low-carb. for a couple years now, and I can’t stop the weight from climbing back on. Also, I’m starting to develop allergies to all sorts of food, all at the same time. I’ve never had food allergies in my life!
    I want to start RRARFing to fix these issues, but I want to make sure I am reading my BBT correctly.
    Thank you, Ann Marie, for blogging about this, and introducing me to Matt Stone’s work. I may have never found out about it if you hadn’t, and I would still be placing myself on a daily guilt trip and trying to work harder and harder; working myself deeper and deeper into an unfulfilling life.

  58. Diet is truly an individual thing. Sometimes I think it should be called a “low-grain” diet”rather than a “low-carb” diet. We do need carbs, but they come in a variety of foods, and grains don’t have to be included to get them. There are lots of starchy veggies that do the same thing. My celiac gut loves a high unrefined fat (at least 3 Tbs/day), moderate protein, low starch/sugar diet. After being on this for over a year, I had a thyroglobulin test to confirm I wasn’t heading toward Hashimoto’s and the numbers were perfect. I was getting cold but my doc added dessicated Adrenal from Std Process, as well as increased unrefined sea salt to raise my BP and those two things have made all the difference. Also, adding betaine hydrochloric acid (HCl with pepsin) to every meal has done a lot to reduce the bloating, gas and heartburn that re-developed recently. Aside from the act of chewing, stomach acid is what jumpstarts the rest of the digestive process and pancreatic enzyme production. Good digestion and absorption of healthy foods is necessary to maintain good health no matter what health problems are going on.

  59. Low-carb has not been an answer for me, despite so many people telling me it will help heal my gut. What I would love advice on is how to actually SLOW down metabolism! Most are concerned about raising it for losing weight but I have the opposite problem. It works so fast that I have to eat way more than my slow digestive system allows, making it impossible to gain or maintain.
    Would love to hear your thoughts. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  60. sorry i did not read all the entries above and correct me if i am wrong but recently after this “Carbing Up”, didnt Cheeseslave post on FB that she was now trying to loose weight ? i swear i read this in a post

  61. Ok this is what I need to do but how do I handle it if I also suffer from diabetes type two and eating carbs raises blood glucose? Or will that even itself out when my body temperature is fixed? Any suggestions?

  62. Would you mind sharing your spreadsheet/google sheet? I’m having a really hard time being on Nature-throid (3 grain) and recently stopped taking them once my body temps appeared to be in the upper 98 degrees. Well that backfired and now I am back to feeling TERRIBLE and succumbed to taking meds again. I really want to get this right! How are you doing now? Are you on thyroid supplements still?

    1. Hi, Cristiana,

      Yes, most of my links on old posts are no longer working. The site is a mess! My apologies.

      Unfortunately I don’t make any money from this site anymore since the crash of my business… so I don’t get paid to run the site (in fact, it costs me money). I have over 1,500 posts on the site and I need to go back and clean them up but it’s going to take me a while to go back and do that. I am planning on doing a “site audit” in the coming months — but it will take a while to complete it. Thanks for your patience.

      You can read more about what happened to me (and why I no longer make money from this) here: What I Learned Building โ€“ And Losing โ€“ A Million Dollar Company: How Failure Set Me Free

  63. I feel like it's the exact opposite for me. I'm skinny and always have been and if I eat lots of carbs I feel like I'm burning up and I get dizzy. I wonder if there's scientific proof that lowering my carbohydrate intake will help me put on some weight and generally feel better.

  64. Hi,
    pretty much same for me here. I was on very low carb (keto) to low carb like for 1.5 to 2 years. I had cold hands, felt tired etc … Also I was on calorie restricted diet for a long time and exercise extensively.

    I recently bumped my carb intake like by few levels. From average 60 – 150 g of carbs per day to 350-450g day or more. I feel insanely better. My power rises a lot. My workouts are more stable and I do not have the feeling of dying after that ๐Ÿ˜€ … And the body temperature is much better. I was quite cold all day in the work. Right now I feel pretty comfortable even if very cold weather occurs

    If you have similar issues try to do the same thing. It is worth of trying at least..

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