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Troubleshooting Side Effects of a New Diet: Low Blood Sugar

For those who are not used to eating a low-carb diet consisting of 50 or fewer grams of carbs a day, you may occasionally experience hypoglycemia, or known as low blood sugar.  Whenever this happens, it may be a little bit alarming if you haven’t experienced these low blood sugar symptoms in the past:

The first step to dealing with low blood sugar is to recognize the symptoms of hypoglycemia (low sugar):

Symptoms of Low Blood Sugar

Clammy Skin
Nausea (sick to your stomach)
Shaking, jittery, or nervous
Unsteady, difficult to walk
Feeling “off”, but not a cold
Heart may beat fast
Feel like you are going to “pass out”
Feeling “sick in your stomach”

Remember that phentermine work very well to suppress your appetite, so if you’re used to eating every 4 hours, and suddenly you take phentermine and don’t eat for 8 hours stretches, you may be more susceptible to some unwanted side effects like feeling jittery, nauseated, or get sweaty since your body isn’t accustomed to fasting for longer than a certain amount of time.

However, if you’re used to regularly going 6-8 hours without eating a meal, you may not get these symptoms at all because you have trained your body to even out blood sugar spikes and falls over long stretches, that means you are quite the expert at regulating your own blood sugar level and won’t have any side effects.

What do you do when you think your blood sugar is running low?



Quick Treatment of Low Blood Sugar

A cookie
A handful of candy
A small cup of juice
A few big gulp of regular soda
Pictured here is MaiLan helping us get our blood sugar levels back up.  No, not really, all that candy is for her.

Basically, eat anything with sugar to quickly get rid of your hypoglycemia.  The recommend  intake is 20-40 grams of simple carbohydrate.  The fastest acting simple carbohydrates are sweet drinks, like lemonade or juices with sugar added, or even regular soda.   Other options are just anything you can quickly grab in the pantry, such as crackers, candy, or a cookie.  Often, sugary beverages or snacks will take roughly 15 minutes to work to correct your blood sugar issue.

Having low blood sugar is quite an annoyance, but at least it’s a decently fun problem to fix.  Remember to recognize early symptoms of hypoglycemia, such as feeling jittery, shaky, nauseated, or sweaty, and consume a small bit of sweet food/beverages to rapidly bring your sugar level to normal.



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Let’s Talk About Poop

A constipated face, 2016.

Growing up we are taught that everybody poops, however if you are new to a low calorie/low carbohydrate diet you may find this isn’t always case. In addition to the effect of diet on your “movements”, one of the most common side effects of phentermine, or Adipex, is constipation.  Since roughly 1 in 3 of our clients will experience this issue, We want to take some time to address what can be done to keep things “going”.

When you begin to eat lower calorie meals and consisting of healthier foods, you’ll likely be consuming far less volume than you normally would.  As a result, you may produce less waste, and that translates to less quality bathroom time.  For those adhering to our diet program, it is relatively common to go to the bathroom as little as once every 2-3 days, instead of every day like you are used to.   For the individuals on the HCG diet,  your calories are much more limited, so you may use the bathroom every 3-4 days and still produce normal stools.

Let’s discuss some things you can do you can maximize your chances of going to the bathroom:



At least 1 gallon of water a day Drink enough water
Don’t wait to use the bathroom Go as soon as you have the urge
Obtain enough non-soluble fiber Eat green, leafy vegetables (low-carb)
Increase physical activity Get some exercise.  Move around
Walking after meals helps with digestion and going

When you are dehydrated, your body absorbs water from the intestines, making your stool firm and hard to pass.  Essentially, you need enough water to soften the stool for a bowel movement.  Also, you need enough bulk, easily supplemented with additional insoluble fiber, so there is volume to pass. It is important to note that you should always try go to the bathroom as soon as you have the urge, rather than waiting for a ‘more convenient’ time to avoid exacerbating the issue.  Lastly, getting some post-meal exercise by taking a 30 minute walk down the block can really help the body process your food and more readily eliminate the waste.  It’s nice outside and there are a few PokeStop down the road, “gotta pass’em all” right?

Finally, if after all that effort you still can’t go,  we suggest picking up some Magnesium Oxide tablets from any pharmacy or grocery store.  Magnesium is a naturally occurring element that is very poorly absorbed when taken by mouth, which means it doesn’t spend much time in your gut and helps carry stuck waste out with it.  One of the actions of magnesium is to keep water in your intestines to soften the stool, and it does a very good job of that.  It is one of the safest remedies for constipation and is non-habit forming since is it an osmotic laxative.  Osmotic laxatives retain water in the bowels without stimulating the intestines to contract, so there are no long term health consequences.  These type of laxatives do not get absorbed into your body, but instead exert its actions on the bowels and then moves on during your next bathroom stop.

Treatment for Constipation Treatment Rating Directions
Magnesium oxide, 400 mg or 500 mg tablets 5-stars Take 2-3 tabs daily for 3 days, then 1-2 tabs daily after
Miralax (generic version is fine) 4-stars.jpg Take 2 scoops dissolved in water daily for 3 days, then 1 scoop daily after (flavor your water to hide the powdery taste)
Fleet enema 3-stars.jpg Take as directed on the bottle for instant relief.
Magnesium citrate 3-stars Drink 1 bottle once.  Does not taste good. This will most likely cause abdominal cramping before a movement.
Milk of Magnesia, Cherry or Lemon Flavor ONLY 2-stars.jpg Follow dosing instructions according to the bottle.  One of the worst tasting medications out there. However, very effective.

We don’t really recommend taking Benefiber because it does not seem to work that consistently compared to the listed options, and also it has unnecessary calories and the taste was not worth it.  We hope this article will help to clear you out.