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Raising Temperature While Breastfeeding

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    A little over a year ago I had my daughter. When she was a few months old I discovered 180 Degree Health and began eating lots more food (I wasn’t deliberately restricting prior to that, but I made a point to eat more), sleeping as much as possible, and not drinking too much. At that point I lost the last few inches that were keeping me out of my prepregnancy clothes. Since then things have plateaued. I’ve still been eating to appetite and only drinking as thirst dictates. I don’t feel the need to nap every day like I used to, my skin is less dry (though still a bit dry), and my hands and feet don’t get nearly as cold as they used to. This past winter I didn’t feel the need to always have a sweater on under my coat like I always have before. However, my BBT is still in the low 97 range. My cycles resumed a couple months ago, and my preovulatory BBT is 97.1-3 and postovulatory range is 97.4-97.9. I know that low progesterone is normal while breastfeeding and that prolactin cools the BBT. Prior to pregnancy my charts had about the same temperature ranges that I have now, though my luteal temps did get a bit higher. I read recently that charts like mine are indicative of low thyroid function and that it can be difficult for someone like me to carry a pregnancy to term. I’m apparently one of they lucky few. I wonder if that is a major contributor to the postpartum preeclampsia that I ended up with. Okay, so my main question is is it reasonable to expect to see an upward move of around .5 degrees F while still breastfeeding? My daughter is 1 and is starting to nurse less, but is nowhere near ready to wean yet. I do plan on having at least one more child, but I would like my metabolism to improve before getting pregnant again. I’ve decided to start including 3-4 Tbs of coconut oil in my diet to see if that will help. Or is it likely that my temps will stay low until weaning and then make a jump?

    Matt Stone

    I would take in more carbohydrates, sugar especially, not necessarily coconut oil. That’s a lot of coconut oil.

    You should still be able to raise your temps some without too much difficulty. If you are feeling pretty good and you’ve seen some improvements it’s probably just a matter of few adjustments. And if you are feeling and functioning pretty well the number on the thermometer shouldn’t be something to stress yourself out over. The objective is to feel and function better, not score perfect numbers on a thermometer.


    I do eat a lot of carbs and sugar. That’s why I thought I’d give the coconut oil a try. I’ve been doing carbs and sugar for quite a while without significant temp improvements. I realize that how I feel is most important, and I do feel better than I did in the early days postpartum, though I was pretty sick, so that’s not saying a whole lot. I seem to have stalled out a bit, though. I saw improvements in the dry skin/cold extremities bit, and those have stuck, but haven’t continued to improve to the points that you describe in your books that you indicate happen in a month or two and for me it’s been a lot longer than that.

    So, for the coconut oil, I probably didn’t get quite that much in today, but I feel warmer than I have been recently. I have some coconut oil fudge that I made and it’s pretty yummy. If eating that daily is what it takes to keep my metabolism going, I’m not going to complain. :-)


    Hi YarnJess, I’m bfeeding my 8 month old son too, and also only recently made the connection with low thyroid (TSH and T4 bloods all normal range, but I know from Ray Peat that’s totally meaningless). My BBT is around 36-36.3C (around the same as yours) though I’ve recently started seeing some improvements in the afternoon. I’m seeing some success by splitting up my meals a bit- having ‘2’ breakfasts (half an hour apart. Protein based followed by sugars-based) and a low-carb lunch followed an hour later by a bowl of fruit, cream or coconut cream, molasses, salt, gelatin and a few squares chocolate or a macaroon. The few times I have done this, I have noticed a much higher peak in temps and sustained for longer. I’ve only this week made the decision to go starch-less, as I wanted to see if it would help my Candida. Only a week in, but I’ve been interested to see the results on the thermometer.


    I am nursing a 9 month old and trying to raise my temps too. My low metabolism symptoms get much worse while I breastfeed – blood sugar issues, insomnia, weight gain and lethargy (Baby sleeps through the night so my tiredness does not stem from midnight feedings). I do not ovulate while breastfeeding. I am doing what I can to keep my temps up now, but I assume I will heal much faster when I wean. Breastfeeding just stresses my body out.


    So, a little update and another question:

    So far my luteal phase is already longer than last time by several days. Not sure if that’s just normal things evening out, focusing on more hormonally supportive foods, or a combo. My temps have stayed steady at around 97.9 waking, but have gotten up to 98.8 after meals and such. I’ve been taking my temp fairly frequently for a few days to see how different things affect me and how what I feel reflects on the thermometer. I’ve been using more coconut oil (an by more, I mean more than the 0 I was using before this week), I’ve added gelatin for its pro-thyroid and anti-inflammatory effects, and tried to get in as many carbs and sugars as I can. I feel pretty warm in the morning after I get up and during the day. It seems to be in the evening that I feel cooler. Perhaps I’m drinking too many fluids at that point in the day (I rarely drink anything early in the day, and if I do it’s not much). I do find that my coconut oil chocolates quickly pull me out of feeling cold. They’re yummy and less expensive than what I’d buy at the store, so that’s good.

    Matt, you suggested focusing on sugars. I did a quick calculation of what I’ve eaten today and think I got in somewhere around 200-250 grams of sugar today. It was probably a high sugar day because I had sodas twice. But, does that seem like a good amount? Should I try for more? Thinking back it seems like I was seeing the most improvements when I ate a spoonful of honey at night before bed. Perhaps I should start that again.


    Thanks for this thread. I’ve been ETF + BF for the last 5 months or so and have stopped tracking temps for now, but I’m going to use some of the stuff in here!


    I am ecologically breastfeeding an almost 15 month old. The only symptoms of low metabolism that I remember experiencing before eating more sugar and carbs were occasional cold feet and hands, acne (which is still here), and waking up once every night to use the bathroom before immediately falling back asleep. While slowly implementing this over two months, my morning temp has rise from around 96F to 96.7-97.3F over the past two weeks. I am enjoying warmer hands and feet, have noticed that I can work out harder if I wake up closer to 97 than 96 and of course, enjoy eating everything. However, I am still waking up in the middle of the night to use the restroom before easily falling back asleep, and seem to be stuck temp wise. I am considering pulling back a bit starch wise because I am not enjoying what this slowly doing to my thighs.


    I appreciate hearing from the other breastfeeding moms. Maybe we can make this our own little update thread. :-)

    So, here’s what’s going on with me. My preovulatory temps are much higher this cycle than last, between 97.5 and 97.7. I had a low day yesterday (96.8), but I also slept horribly a couple nights before. I find that I usually do okay the day after not sleeping well, but the day after that I feel like crap, even if I get good sleep. So, that was yesterday. My temps were low all day. Plus, I’m fighting off a cold that my daughter and husband both have gotten, so I’m wondering if the stress of that also contributed to the low temps. Today is already better, though. I woke up at 97.7 and have been there or higher so far today.

    I’ve been focusing on getting in lots of sugar, a good amount of protein (favoring dairy, eggs, and gelatin over muscle meats), and some coconut oil each day. That usually takes the form of coconut oil chocolate or using it in cooking. I have for several years had a visibly enlarged thyroid gland. I noticed this weekend that it is less noticeable and seems to be shrinking, which I take as a good sign.

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