Biohacking update: 40 days on the Wahlspaleo+

Bison heart

Quick summary

  • Loving it? Yes;
  • Hungry? No;
  • Reduced stamina for high-intensity exercise? Currently hacking that.

For a review on what’s legal on the Wahls Paleo Plus see this post.

Energy

For the first month on the WahlsPaleo+ my energy for daily life seemed lower & my stamina for exercise was definitely reduced.

So I decided to experiment with scaling back my exercise. I walked most days. Did a couple of easier hot yoga classes. A couple of run-walks.

Just to see.Chard 2

I thought, maybe my usual regime is just a counterbalance to a higher carb diet, and a more gentle approach will be amply sufficient for me when I’m eating mostly green leafy things.

But I missed the intensity.

I’m a super intense person. And somewhat-intense physical exercise seems to be cathartically necessary for me. A way to transmogrify some of that intensity.

After a month of daily walks, I was slumping on my ball-chair at work. Losing my core strength. My stress levels were higher. I was fidgety & discontented. That was enough data for me.

On day 31 I decided I’d resume my usual pattern of exercise & if I didn’t have my usual stamina, I’d just modify.

At the same time I added Upgraded MCT oil into my diet, and almost immediately my energy was back up.

I’m LOVING the MCT oil.

I’m having it in coffee & I’ve been quite the green tea purist for a bunch of months now. But it’s just really good in coffee, it almost seems to want to be in coffee & also seems to mitigate the negative effects that coffee has on me (including a spike & crash in energy).

As far as my energy for daily life goes, so far it’s increased significantly since the MCT: 2 tablespoons a day.

Another hack I’m going to try to increase my endurance is adding higher-carb vegetables twice a week after I exercise. So far I’ve excluded all high-carb vegetables (roots & squashes), but they are legal on the WahlsPaleo+ twice a week (as long as you can maintain ketosis) and I want to see if I can use them to leverage my stamina further.

An offal update

In April, I  made a Paleo New Year resolution to eat organ meats. So far I’ve had bison liver, chicken liver and bison heart, and it’s not even mid-May.

I’m feeling pretty proud.

That’s me & Frida & a bison heart at the top of this post. Ventricles, aortas & all.

I made cinnamon beef stew with that bison heart & some lamb (minus the carrots). It was completely yummy, but I admit I did do my best to unremember the aortas while I was eating it.

A sad story about cashews

Unlike the AIP, the WahlsPaleo + does allow small amounts of soaked nuts & seeds.

I included a quarter of a cup of my beloved cashews (soaked & dehydrated: I bought them that way) a few times during the first month. I wasn’t sure how they were affecting me, so on day 30, I thought I’d test them. I ate 2 cups of soaked & dehydrated organic cashews (& nothing else) for supper.

Would they kick me out of ketosis? Would I have any adverse reactions?

The answer was Yes.

I was in an absolutely foul mood the next day and a pretty bad mood for 3 days after that. My energy levels also tanked.

Conversationally, I told my vegetarian teenager what a bad mood I was in and she said smugly, maybe it’s your diet.

Because (according to her) that’s what I always say to her.

She is a little bit right. But I still think I do admirable job about keeping my mouth shut about her abominable vegetarian food choices most of the time.

In any case, she was a little surprised when I agreed with her. It was my diet that was making me so cranky.

Sad as it is, I think I’m removing cashews entirely.

 Coconut oil nauseacoconut oil

65% of daily calories come from coconut oil on the WahlsPaleo+.

Though Dr Wahls doesn’t mention ‘Upgraded MCT Oil’ in her book, I’m now an MCT- devotee, so I’m including it my coconut oil quota.

But adjusting to that much coconut oil can take a while.

I did experience coconut-oil induced nausea at first, and woke up in the middle of the night with wicked stomach cramps a few times in the first couple of weeks when I consumed a lot of coconut oil before bed.

But I’m adapted & no longer have any trouble.

Two more month 2 adjustments:

Oil pulling

If you’ve never tried oil pulling, you should.

At least once.

It’s an old Ayurvedic trick.

It’s weird & wonderful & makes me feel good. I used to do it, but fell out of the habit. Now I’m back at it.

Just pop a big spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth and let it melt. First thing in the morning is best. Swish the melted oil around your mouth for 20 minutes (set a timer).

Then spit it out. Don’t spit it in the sink because it’ll harden up as it cools.

I rinse my mouth with salt water after.

Warm lemon water

This is another habit that fell by the wayside that I’ve reinstituted in month 2 on the WahlsPaleo+. Just because it makes me feel good.

That’s my criteria.

Squeeze a lemon into a mug. Fill the mug halfway with cold water, then top with boiling water.

Drink it up.

 

 

 

12 Comments

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12 responses to “Biohacking update: 40 days on the Wahlspaleo+

  1. All that coconut oil has been the main roadblock for me trying it so far – I remember trying to up my intake in the past and it didn’t go too well, and it was far less than what you eat a day. I really should, though – it sounds like such a good idea.

    • Maybe your body could adapt in time. On the bottles of upgraded MCT oil it suggests starting with 1 teaspoon and working up from there.

      • Ooh, yeah a slower approach would probably work better. I don’t know why I hadn’t considered that.
        Do you know why the MCT oil works better than regular?

      • The MCT oil I use is 8x & 16x as strong as regular coconut oil. The 8x version is body focused, & is effective for for weight loss apparently, & the 16x is brain focused. I honestly don’t completely understand all the biology, but maybe more 16x ‘brain octane’ MCT oil will help me to understand it better!

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  5. Ulrike

    What kind of MCT oil do you use? I could use some energy!

    • I use Bulletproof Executive brand MCT oil, both the body & the brain versions: 1 Tablespoon of each a day (most days). I haven’t tried any other brands, though, I’m sure others are good, too. For energy, I’m coming to the conclusion that bone broth might be #1. But also getting the right balance of vegetables (according to the Wahl’s Protocol) seems to be really important for me. As is oil pulling with coconut oil, weirdly, & more expectedly: hydration & sleep. But overall, I think the conditions for increased energy are present when gut health improves. Then MCT oil is just lubrication for the already available awesomeness…

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