Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The One Thing My Paleo Diet Hasn't Fixed

Paleo We have a Problem
Over the past 56 days since I've gone paleo I've had a lot of nice things to say about it, but I must confess one thing that has been bothering me. I have headaches, and I don't know why. I never had problems with headaches before, so it's strange for me to get them now. But clearly, it is something I am eating or doing that is making me feel this way. Most people will admit a lack of energy or headaches during the adaptation period (first month or so), but I have certainly given my body plenty of time to adjust to this diet.

Where to Research Paleo Questions
I ventured over to PaleoHacks which is a great website. It is a community powered website where people post questions and other people post there responses and experiences with the question at hand. I love this spin on the typical forum. It is easy to navigate, easy to post and more importantly clean looking. Sometimes trying to read typical forum websites can be daunting because there is so much text. Paleohacks has a fantastic and aesthetically pleasing design. Kudos! Now, on to my problem. These headaches are really bothering me, and I can't pinpoint the cause. After searching for "Headaches" I found a number of responses.

Possible Reasons for Headaches
As reported by the community (yes, some are common sense):

  • Cheese
  • Caffeine
  • Dehydration
  • Too much protein without enough fat
  • Nuts
  • Nitrates (cured meats)
  • Lack of sleep
  • Too much stress

Personal Experimentation
Since lack of sleep and too much stress are not an issue, I am going to focus on my water intake while limiting my caffeine and nut intake as well. I downed a whole jar or cashew butter in the last few days - it's just too delicious, and it's the closest I can get to peanut butter.

I really want to be able to fully endorse this diet lifestyle, but unless I can figure out what is causing these headaches I am going to hold back on the recommendation. Is anyone else experiencing headaches from a transition to a paleo diet? For more on headaches see the resources below.



  1. Did you ever figure out the problem? I to am suffering from splitting headaches. These are not a minor irritant to me they actually limit me in my daily activity. I was told it could possibly be that my body is detoxing from sugar and carbs. After my workout today I ended up drinking a sugary jarred coffee and it worked . Now instead of a headache all I have is the feeling of failure. I want this lifestyle just not the headaches!

  2. I too am curious if you pinpointed the root of your headaches, I'm a Paleo novice. On day 3 now, I've been having trouble getting to sleep but still have more energy in the morning when I wake up. Yesterday I experienced the onset of a severe headache that turned into a full blown migraine. I had to stop working and go lie down in the dark. I've been trying to follow the Paleo plan to the letter and besides a little chili seasoning instead of chili powder in one recipe and some Tylenol yesterday, I've managed to stick with it. I've been hydrating like crazy and I know I'm not dehydrated because I'm urinating just as crazy. At this point I'm assuming its just my body detoxing, but I wonder what people do for these since the second ingredient in the Tylenol is corn starch. I've been trying to find info on how ingredients in medications mess with the Paleo diet as I can't stop taking several of my medications, at least not until the Paleo plan produces some tangible results for me.