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    Heather L

    I am 40 years-old. My temps are still around 97.7 (pre-ovulation, if I still do that). My hands and feet are either cold or hot (no just normal). I am coming off of GAPS to heal up leaky-gut (which I believe is now healed). I have had low temps and blood pressure as long as I can remember. Our family eats according to WAPF principles and never eats out. The REAL problems began in 2011 (when I did the homeopathic HCG diet to a tee). After that my weight kept creeping up, and I put on cellulite where I never had it before. It just keeps coming even though we eat real food (and plenty of cheese, coconut oil, raw milk– and no grains for the past 4 months). Since I’m already eating “right”, and still gaining, is there any hope for me???



    No harm done. I’ve spent a lot of time experimenting with diet and looking for answers for my health problems, just like others here at 180 (no doubt including yourself). I think we all basically have the same goals–to look good and feel good.

    I got a kick out of your last sentence, because naturally I would choose to be both chill about food and hot for the ladies. It seems to me there are more options than the two choices you presented. Just this Wednesday, I taught my freshman composition class the fallacy called “false dichotomy” or “false alternative,” and I think my students could now recognize that your question is guilty of it! ;)

    I’m chiller about food than I have been in years, and I’m getting more attractive too. My wife is pretty honest about when I look good and when I don’t. She flat out told me she wasn’t attracted to me when I got fat, and now that I’m getting fit and muscular, I can tell she’s changed her mind, not only because she tells me so, but because of the response I get in the bedroom (sorry if TMI). I’m also glad she’s honest, because she was right and I needed motivation, and now I know her compliments are sincere.

    I may be chill about food, but I’m not chill about exercise. I work out hard every day: 90 minutes in the gym before work, and then usually a casual 45-minute walk home. But there are obvious, measurable benefits after working out, so it’s worth the obsession. I never got anything out of my obsessions with food, except maybe some worthless factoids to pass around at parties.


    Heather- Yes, there is hope. How much time a day could you devote to exercise? Even 30 minutes a day could be enough to counteract mild weight gain. You’ll probably need some carbs, though.

    Heather L

    Well, until GAPS (4 months ago) I was a very devoted HIIT girl 3-4x a week and another day of boxing. (prior to my 2011 slope I was a very athletic build). Oh, and daily walks in 3 our of 4 seasons. When the weight and cellulite just kept creeping on, I became disheartened and threw in the towel. I am now under the impression that heavy workouts are detrimental to healing metaboliism. ??? I would love to know how to raise it rapidly and get back to looking fit.


    If heavy workouts were detrimental to healing metabolism, what should we expect serious athletes to look like? In real life, athletes are models of physical strength and vitality, despite (or because of) all their heavy work-outs. When faced with challenges, the body adapts to meet them. That’s how you get stronger and fitter.

    Your old work-out routine sounds great, but the GAPS sounds horrible.


    David, I’m with you on the workouts and that it’s great to look good for one’s partner!

    Heather, Matt does suggest checking if temperatures drop the day after a workout. If they do drop, it is important to step away from working out except for short walks and infrequent weight workouts.
    Whenever you do a diet that is as extreme as HCG, you will probably at least gain the weight back that you lost. And like Matt says, these types of diets make you lose fat but at the same time also decreases muscle mass and changes hormones in a unfavorable manner. When the fat comes back on, it’s pure fat and looks worse. It’s inhumane that so many people are getting trapped in this cycle. I would suggest you get yourself balanced and eating properly for quite a few months. Do some weight training to gain a bit of muscle back.It takes a while for the body to change from starvation mode to normal again. I’ve got to tell you that my digestion has improved since eat for heat if that cheers you up (:

    Heather L

    Thanks for your input! I will say that I can’t even get my temps up yet (for example, today was 97.1). I don’t just want to eat and eat and accumulate the pounds. Then there’s the question about WHAT to eat because I am NOT willing to putting GMO and high fructose junk into me/my family. Not to even mention that I am not even hungry outside of the 3 squares that we eat. Lastly, I remain constipated and have to rely on enemas. (I KNOW the HCG completely messed with my hormones– all of them. I would never ever have done it had I known what was in store: weight, cellulite, skin tags, and melanoma in-situ skin cancer ALL surfaced within a couple of months of ending HCG). Yet we continue to eat nourishing food and that was 3 years ago. I just can’t seem to budge my temps/ relieve constipation, or comfortably gorge myself.


    Poor girl. I remember needing enemas years ago when I came off a juice fast. That wasn’t fun. I couldn’t digest most food and seemed very sensitized. Go easy on the cheese and have more grains like oatmeal, starches and continue other milk products and coconut milk. Cheese is hard for somebody with a compromised gut and can plug it up fast. Have some good honey and make sure you are having salt. And try to eat more and stop doing enemas. If I were you, I would use Vitamin C to go to the bathroom if you really need it. 1000mg with a meal. Otherwise I mostly don’t believe in supplementation. I promise you will feel better over time. But eating less is not the way out of the discomfort. It’s like a trap that threatens to close in on you. I got most of my problems that way ): But am almost all the way better nowadays.

    • This reply was modified 10 years, 4 months ago by Christinam.
    Heather L

    Oh, Christianam, thank you!!! I really needed to hear those words and advice. This is SUCH big help for me. I will follow your advice!


    Great advice, Christinam!

    On you previous question (morning temps) – I started two temperature charts – I’m an engineer…so – must have data!! :)
    Based on this:

    1) morning temperature – I try and take this as soon as possible after getting up, but sometimes it’s after I’ve walked around and poured my first cup of coffee… but the first temp was 98.0, and it held there for 5 days and then jumped up to 99… I think due to a cold… now, it’s dropped down to 98.6, but again, not necessarily “first thing” out of bed.

    2) daily average temperature – three readings spaced ~3 hours apart (11am / 2pm / 5pm) – these started at 97.6 and rapidly trended up – to 99.3 (the “fighting a cold” period, which lasted a few days) and now are hanging around 98.8.

    I do sleep with LOTS of covers – and 150lb mastiff up against me, which keep me toasty all night long. :)
    and, I sleep well, 7-8 solid hours a night.

    I’m doing better getting breakfast within an hour of waking.

    I tried intermittent fasting – basically skipping breakfast – and it took me a while to enjoy breakfast again, but my body does MUCH better on this plan.

    I don’t really eat much in the evenings, but we’ve been eating dinner late – like at 8pm – just due to work schedules recently. I’m trying to get that back to 6:30-7pm. Then we might have time for a desert! :)


    I’ll chime in on the exercise deal to – based on what I took from Matt’s books – you don’t want to do extended cardio sessions. That leads to convincing your body you want to run a “marathon” and will need to run more efficiently – and lower metabolism.

    Weight training and HIIT methods fit the metabolism-boosting ideal better.

    Getting outside for a leisurely stroll as often as possible should also be good – more as a stress reducer and to support breathing more fresh air, than as exercise, but good also to just be moving. My dog likes this plan, too. :)

    I’m still trying to incorporate more exercise in my plan.

    I need to practice tennis for a tournament coming up, so more work against the ball machine will be in my near future. I would think tennis would fit the HIIT philosophy and be good for long-term metabolism… I hope so, anyway.



    I agree completely about the benefits of weight training, HIIT, and leisurely strolls. No doubt, a person can get into great shape with just those activities in his or her training regimen. I think it’s great that you’re finding success with your current plan, and I wish you luck in your tennis tournament.

    As you probably expected, there is a “but.” I disagree with your claim that extended cardio lowers metabolism. We all have different personal preferences when it comes to exercise, but you’re making an objective claim as though it applies to everyone. If someone enjoys cardio, they shouldn’t feel scared to do it because they’re worried about their metabolism.

    You’re right that marathon training increases physiological efficiency, but a big part of that efficiency is a stronger heart, deeper capillary beds, greater lung capacity, and the proliferation of mitochondrial enzymes. You benefit from these adaptations not only when you’re running (or biking or swimming or whatever), but also when you’re performing day-to-day tasks. A physiologically efficient body makes people more energetic. This isn’t a bad thing.

    It’s also worth looking at people who do a lot of cardio. In my experience, endurance athletes don’t seem to suffer from low metabolisms. If someone can run a marathon, there’s a good chance they have plenty of energy for housework, yardwork, or whatever else they need to do. Not everyone has to do cardio if they hate it, but there’s tons of evidence that it’s beneficial. I’ve read dozens of testimonials of people who have turned their lives around by taking up running or some other endurance sport.

    That being said, I’ve also seen severely underweight people destroying their bodies on the treadmill, and I’ve seen people who over-train and injure themselves. Just like with any exercise, cardio is only helpful if you get the rest and nutrition you need to recover. But it can still be a powerful tool for people trying to regain their health.


    Tina, I had to grin imagining your mastiff sleeping in the same bed. I think Matt would sweat just thinking about a large dog next to him lol
    Your temperatures are up. That’s great!
    I love working out but am careful not to overdo it. I used to run and do kickboxing, power yoga? and it would give me a high. But since then I’ve struggled with low adrenals, I try to keep cortisol in check and don’t do too much endurance workouts anymore. I walk for 30min to an hour per day and do weights or some short cardio, bodyweight exercises.I do feel that my body loves it and gets excited to move.
    I grew up always doing lots of exercise. Tennis was my sport of choice, Tina. It’s lots of fun!


    I don’t really disagree with anything you said, David… I was pretty much just regurgitating what I read in Diet Recovery 2.

    But, for someone with health issues and a low metabolism to start with, more jogging is not going to help your body heal and recover.

    It will keep your body in “hunting” mode – i.e. save energy until you can make your kill and haul it back home for dinner. Make sure to hoard any calories in case you come home empty and have to go out again tomorrow. Being physiologically efficient = low metabolism. (I found this article, which has some interesting commentary on that:

    There’s also the “bear run” mode… meaning, if you and your friend are out “hunting” and you come across a bear, how fast do you need to run? Only fast enough to out-run your friend (HA!). To be able to do that, you need to be swifter (and lighter) than your friend. Convincing your body it needs to be able to sprint FAST will scare it into losing excess weight – I think this is where HIIT comes in.

    Neither of those scenarios is a “heal and recover” period for the body, and this is all mental games, in any case…

    I agree there are definite physical benefits to cardio – all the ones you mention. So, if it makes you feel good, do it!

    How you apply all this stuff – eating/refeeding, resting and exercise all depends on where you’re starting from (i.e. do you need to “Recover” first?) and what your goals are… so… I’ll go back to my big takeaway – make this a personal experiment and do what works for you – because it’s probably going to be something totally different than what works for the person next to you.


    Tina- Thank you for the respectful reply and for further explaining your point of view.

    It’s true that my experience won’t be relevant to everyone. For people who are suffering from chronic illness or fatigue because of some kind of malnourishment (perhaps because of an eating disorder), a heavy exercise program would probably be disastrous. These people might not have the muscle and physical reserves for any kind of physical work, and in that case, it makes sense to focus on eating more and getting some rest–and only to begin exercise gradually as they regain their strength.

    But I think there are plenty of people with chronic fatigue that have the opposite problem. In my opinion, the obesity epidemic in the United States (and worldwide) is pretty convincing evidence that most people eat too much and exercise too little. For the average person, lack of exercise seems more likely to cause fatigue than lack of food.

    Like so many people who frequent this site, I tried for years to fix my health problems through special diets, such as WAPF, paleo, low fat, low carb, gluten free, etc., etc., etc. For most of these years, my weight was in the normal range, and I thought of myself as reasonably fit despite my chronic fatigue. I couldn’t have imagined that my problem was a lack of exercise, because I looked fine and I had a reasonable level of strength.

    Because of my years of orthorexia, I thought I was a perfect candidate for overfeeding, and when I tried it, I felt better for a little while, but I also ended up overweight, and I started to have new problems like high blood pressure and shortness of breath. I think there are others who have also had this sort of experience, and I want to make sure people hear this side of the story. For many people, overfeeding will just make their problems worse.

    I’m glad my orthorexia is gone (and I appreciate this site for that reason). I don’t waste time googling about diet anymore, because I’m pretty sure there’s no perfect diet, and that restricting normal food isn’t going to make me healthier. And in way, getting fat from overfeeding was the impetus I needed to start exercising hard and get into really good shape, because I realized how out of shape I was. When I was thinner, I wrongly believed I was in good shape because I looked okay.

    And now, I’m a helluva lot less likely to get eaten by that bear…

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