Friday, October 5, 2012

Being sick while in ketosis.

Despite all my efforts to the contrary....daily Zyrtec, Flonase, prayer and spiritual dances; I have fallen prey to the same October sinus infection that I've gotten each year since I moved to Houston.  Usually, if I'm dieting, a sickness means the diet is off.  Always, if I'm low carb dieting, a sickness means the diet is off.  I'm free to slurp down as much Chicken Noodle Soup as I can stand, coupled with ginger ale, candy, and crackers---the mainstay of my "sick diet" since I can remember.

But this time I want to remain in ketosis.  I don't want to lose my hard earned work of muscle building since I started working with Yvette, my personal trainer, in July.  That means I've got to get enough protein that my body doesn't start eating my own muscles to give my brain the glucose it requires.

I managed to start the day off right thanks to the love of my life: bacon and eggs cooked in bacon grease.  Halfway through I complained, as usual, that it was too many eggs (3.5 apiece) and got ordered, as usual, to finish it all.  I'm glad, as usual, that I did.  I had a salad for lunch...romaine lettuce, parmesan cheese, a few bits of grilled chicken and my homemade blue cheese dressing. That was around 11:30.

At 12:40 the school nurse took my temp: 99.3---not bad, really, but she laughed and said it would be higher by the time I got home.  Thanks, nurse!  That was just the encouragement I needed.  She was right.  I was having chills on the drive home and got straight in the bed at 3:44.  No appetite.

Now for me, ketosis itself is a huge appetite suppressant, its the biological weapon I need to use if I'm going to lose 240 220lbs and keep it off.  That coupled with a fever, which is also a natural appetite suppressant could be troublesome if indeed I am to get anywhere near the 161 grams of protein that Jenny Ruhl's calculator suggests that I eat.  I have a hard enough time getting there when I'm not sick.  (That is a whole lot of protein!)

During a conversation it occured to me that if I could have a protein shake it would be a quick and easy way to get my body some of the things it wants and needs.  But just last week I discovered that the casein protein shakes I found so yummy weren't just stalling me, they were causing my asthma symptoms to flare up :(

What to do?  The love of my life suggested I try some vanilla whey protein that we've had in the pantry for 1.5 years.  I checked the label.  Not expired yet (What is this stuff made of?).

I just whipped it up in the blender mini-chopper with 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream and some water.  My body was obviously happy to get something in the stomach.  I usually eat every four hours so I was pushing the 6 hour mark that Dr. Atkins says to avoid.  I actually already feel better.   Maybe just because of the mental relief that my body isn't going to start eating my new biceps.  I worked hard for those things.

Now I'm curious about how being in ketosis while sick will play out.  I don't know if I'll be able to stay in ketosis or if the call of the Chicken Noodle Soup will be too much.  I also don't know if the body 'needs' glucose or extra carbs to get better.  I think I've read some stuff about low carbing helping the body heal faster but I haven't done any research on the topic because in general I don't get sick much anyway and those claims always struck me as a bit bombastic. 


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