Bad Carb Cravings when you are sick

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mrs_jones

Joined: Oct 10
Posts: 10

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Posted: 31 Oct 2010, 13:08
I just read in a forum.... that when you are sick your body craves carbs.. Its not for comfort, it craves them because the virus or bacteria need carbs to live off of... and create another infection. The site also said there is a reason you don't want to eat, so drink lots of fluids, get rest, and stick to LOW carbs, and dont worry about not wanting to eat either, you will feel better soon. So there is really NO excuse to stray from a low carb/atkins diet while sick... actually gives you more reasons to stay on the diet itself! Its tough though... fight those cold and flu bugs off! Tiss the season!
Brenda Groth

Joined: Oct 10
Posts: 190

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Posted: 01 Nov 2010, 14:18
i just told my hubby who is NOT on low carb but has been fighting an antibiotic resistant infection for several months (pseudomonas)..and is on a special very expensive antibiotic to try to clear it up before his surgery Thurs. He said, I'll have to lay off the carbs (like that will happen)
Brenda
http://restfultrailsfoodforestgarden.blogspot.com/
Lowering my sites for 2011 to losing 1 pound a week or 52 pounds in 2011 having 82 pounds to go I should be 30 pounds from my goal this time next year.
Cireena

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 44

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Posted: 04 Dec 2010, 09:47
thanks alot for the post Mrs_jones, i never knew that !! .. but i already don't feel like eating when i'm sick.. laying around, drinking soup is my favorite thing.. especially when i can't left a finger and in a desperate need for anything hot and delicious to clear my throat.
Jennie-o

Joined: Jan 11
Posts: 119

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Posted: 23 Jan 2011, 14:06
I was surprised when I learned working in the laboratory that eating simple carbs in the form of sugar is not good whether you're sick or well. Sugar kills the immune system. The best way to get sugar is from fruit and complex carbs!

A great reason to keep ourselves and our kiddies from taking in too much candy, soda, and other sweets! Great motivator to put away the goodies and opt for something more healthy!

However, the body does need carbs when you're sick, but it's to boost the immune cells' capacity to fight back. It's just the FORM of carbs needed. Complex carbs to keep insulin levels even which is what's needed for glucose entry into the cells for fuel. Too much insulin keeps the glucose wandering in the bloodstream before it's shuttled off to be stored as FAT!

Foods that are best when fighting viral OR bacterial infections are soups made with brown rice or whole grain noodles, meat and veggies. Soup-- because it's easier for the body to digest; also for the electrolytes and hydration.

I'm not dissing the Atkins diet. Lord knows I've done my fair share of it and enjoyed the yumminess of it -- I'm just speaking from a medical and scientific point of view.


Every day do something that will inch you closer to a better tomorrow-- unknown.

Weight Loss is Hard. Being Fat is Hard. Choose Your Hard.-- Heather @fightingfatty.com
Olivia70

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 257

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Posted: 15 Jan 2012, 21:22
If sugar killed the immune system, then everyone who.drank cola would kill their immune system and get sick.

I would not believe everything you read. Bacteria and viruses cannot live off of Carbs. They do no have digestion systems.





kanan123

Joined: Dec 09
Posts: 324

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Posted: 15 Jan 2012, 21:52
I hate to be negative here, but this logic doesn't make sense. The body when sick needs extra calories because it needs to have the energy to fight off infection. Fruit is considered a carb and provides many of the nutrients proven to help fight illnesses. To deny your body any one of three components carbs, fat, or protein, is like building a structure with the wrong components. Everything in moderation. Complex carbs are great for your digestive system and will help keep the good bacteria in your gut active.




Ingria

Joined: Oct 11
Posts: 530

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Posted: 15 Jan 2012, 22:59
Kanan, if all your carbs come in the form of fresh fruit, vegetables, preferably those in season, raw honey, berries, and you are a healthy person with no yeast infections, you do not need to worry, these carbs won't compromise your immune system. If you eat 22+ teaspoons of sugar a day like most Americans, you can give your immune system a break at least when you are sick. Also initial post was about bad carb craving, not about cravings for a fresh orange. In addition to that this is Atkins thread, so people who are on Atkins have to stick to their diet when they are not well to.
~~~~~~~~~~
The first thing you lose on a diet is your sense of humor. ~ Author Unknown
It doesn’t matter what diet you follow… What matters is what makes you follow your diet. ~ Tom Venuto
Dani_Suave

Joined: Dec 11
Posts: 94

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Posted: 15 Jan 2012, 23:33
When I'm sick I just want the easiest thing that comes to my hand and used to not even care what it was. Thankfully I haven't had a cold since I've been on Atkins but now I know I can't use illness as a way to skate. Thanks for the info!
"I choose to be on the positive side because negativity sucks the color from my world - and I like my rainbows." Me
Olivia70

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 257

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 07:34
Ingria,

The problem I have with some of the statements here is that people do not have proof. Anyone can come onto the forums and state that colas cause inflammation. I tend not to believe statements like this because I want proof. Show me the study that was done that proves that colas cause inflammation or any of the statements here and I'll be more apt to believe the statement. Anyone can say that sugar kills your immune system, and there are plenty of people who say that it does. I'm not saying that I think sugar is healthy, but moderation is the key. Unless someone can tell me how sugar kills the immune system and where that study was done and how, I cannot believe everything I read. I need proof.
You say a lot of people could be healthier if they did not drink soda means nothing to me because anyone can say that. Show me where you have proof that that statement is true and I'd consider believing it.
Ingria

Joined: Oct 11
Posts: 530

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 09:34
Olivia, you can go to nutrition.com enter any food item and it will show you very detailed nutrition information (much more detailed than just percentage of fat, carbs and protein) including the inflammation factor, which is based on glycemic index among other things. I have no reason to believe that they faked all the data in their database just for the purpose of misleading health conscious dieters. The goal is to balance your daily food intake in such a way that you keep inflammation factor low. So one spoon of sugar a day won't kill your immune system and won't cause diabetes either. I agree with you that moderation is the key, but it is a key that has been lost by the majority of population and tossed away by food industry. Do some reading, there is a lot of research that was published in recent years, you don't have to believe what other people write in forums. You have to learn about nutrition and form your own opinions. As scientists have their own theories and agendas, you will find that even results of research are not very reliable. Still would like to find one that states that cola and added sugar are good for your health. By the way, I am personally not following Atkins. I strive to stay healthy, but am also a foodie, enjoy cooking, enjoy eating out in new good restaurants, which means I do ignore that extra spoon of sugar every now and then. Enjoy your food, stay healthy, and have a happy a successful weight loss/maintenance journey. We are in it together.
~~~~~~~~~~
The first thing you lose on a diet is your sense of humor. ~ Author Unknown
It doesn’t matter what diet you follow… What matters is what makes you follow your diet. ~ Tom Venuto
Hoser

Joined: Jul 10
Posts: 2,052

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 10:21
I heard that when you're sick your body craves proteins because bacteria and viruses are made of protein and they need protein to grow on. If you stick to complex carbs when you're sick then you'll recover faster.

(OK, I didn't really, but the assertion as presented is just as valid.)

Don't believe something just because one person states it semi-authoritatively on the internet-- that's a surefire recipe for ludicrous behavior.

Personally, based on nothing more than intuition, I'm a firm believer that you should listen to your body when it's sick. Well, perhaps that's not the best idea if it's telling you to drink a two-liter bottle of Coke, but if it wants a glass of orange juice and a bowl of oatmeal then maybe it's a good idea to indulge it?
Olivia70

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 257

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 11:37
Ingria,

I'm a researcher. I do a lot of it. As you say in your post, "As scientists have their own theories and agendas, you will find that even results of research are not very reliable." One must consider the source and form their own opinions. I think you and I are on the same page, but my point is that you cannot believe statements made at random in a forum; it's great when people can post links to back it up. And even then, you have to consider the source of that link. And of course, form your own opinion. For instance, where does nutrition.com get its information?

When someone makes a statement that those who don't drink coke are healthier than someone who does, it doesn't make sense to me. In all research, consider the other factors. The person who drinks coke may be healthier because the person who does not may have other health issues. And then there are genetics that affect this. Look at George Burns, the late comedian. I think he was close to 100 before he died and he smoked. Good luck to you and cheers!

Hoser, I agree with you. There's an old saying that sometimes a craving is something your body needs, like oatmeal and oj--which btw sound delicious right now. :- )
mikefarinha

Joined: Jun 11
Posts: 443

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 20:45
Here is a long, but great, presentation on the dangers of sugar. In particular the fructose in sugar.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM

-Mike
"Eat as if your life depends on it!"
gnat824

Joined: Jul 10
Posts: 1,699

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Posted: 16 Jan 2012, 21:11
Hoser, I'm with you - especially if you're having trouble eating in general, feed your body whatever tastes good and then get back to your normal eating habits as you feel better. I have no idea if this is true but I've always thought that your body might crave stuff that's easy to process when you're sick so that it can focus it's resources on fighting the illness- along the same lines of how feeling bad when you stand or sit encourages you to lay down, minimize movement and conserve energy there, too. When I'm sick, I find myself craving things like white bread and juice that I never eat, or even really want, otherwise.

It's tricky to know what cravings to ignore because they're pushing you into bad habits and which to listen to because your body is actually pushing you towards nutrients it needs. If you have your carb cravings under control before you get sick and then they hit, my gut reaction is to trust those signals.
- Natalie
Hoser

Joined: Jul 10
Posts: 2,052

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 00:13
Nataline, I'm thinking about several years ago when my gall bladder decided it was going to pitch a fit. The day after I wound up in the emergency room, I went to the grocery store. I hadn't gotten a whole lot in the way of eating instructions from the ER staff (except avoid fatty and spicy foods) and decided that I was going to walk through the store and buy whatever kinds of foods my body said that it wanted.

I wound up with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, some whole grains, nonfat yogurt, and some shrimp. It didn't surprise me at all to learn that this was exactly what I was "supposed" to be eating-- low-fat, high-fiber. I think my body knew what it wanted.

Olivia70

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 257

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 08:59
Mike,

Will have to watch this after work, but will definitely do so. That said, I do personally believe that anything can be dangerous in large quantities. Even eating just veggies is not a good idea IMO. So it stands to reason, for me anyway, that if someone is consuming a lot of sugar in a day, it will affect them negatively. I do not believe that sugar, in small quantities, is bad for you. But I do think you can get addicted to it, like I certainly believe I was.

So is the best thing just to give up refined sugars for the rest of your life? Eeek! I'm totally considering it, but if I don't see that scale budge again soon, I'm going to have 2nd thoughts. Please scale, I beg of you, move! ;- )

Hoser, this is totally OT but you made me think of it bringing up shrimp. I made an awesome shrimp dish last night, with all the good stuff...butter, lemon, feta, dill. nom nom nom

Oh, and my hubby had Texas Toast with his and it only bothered me for 1/2 a second. Very Happy
Nimm

Joined: Dec 10
Posts: 669

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 09:06
Olivia,

If you consider the video about fructose, you may also wish to consider a reubttal:

The bitter truth about fructose alarmism

and a followup discussing the reactions, including some debate with the maker of the original video.
gnat824

Joined: Jul 10
Posts: 1,699

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 09:40
Our bodies are smarter than we give them credit for sometimes. I've heard of cases where people developed sudden cravings for red meat only to find out later they had an iron deficiency. There's even a theory out there that obese people are driven to overeat because they are also malnourished- eating way too many calories but still not actually getting the nutrients their body needs, so the body keeps sending signals to eat in hopes that these gaps will be filled. We think ourselves beyond such instincts but they are there, only most of us have forgotten how to listen to them.
- Natalie
Rowanfair

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 662

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 10:18
Please consider watching this youtube video by researcher Robert H. Lustig, MD, UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology called Sugar: The Bitter Truth . He explores the damage caused by sugary foods. I found his discussion of the pathways that different types of sugars (and alcohol) take technical but fascinating.
http://pinterest.com/rowanf/recipes-mostly-low-carb/

Let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, mirth and reverence within you.

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." -- Maya Angelou
Olivia70

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 257

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Posted: 17 Jan 2012, 10:19
Nimm,

I'm worn out. Too many studies to know anything for sure. Listen to your own body. Smile

The jury is still out on whether Atkins will work for me, but it's only been a little over a week.



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