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Almost fainted on the train yesterday...

Low in Iron? ... or just low blood sugar?

1 - 10 of 22 posts   1 | 2 | 3  


Madixoxoxo Madixoxoxo QLD Posts: 31
1 27 Oct 2011
Hi,

I've been eating no meat/little dairy for 1 week now. I almost fainted on the train yesterday. Luckly I was with my boyfriend and he noticed and kept talking to me. For some reason that helps. Sitting down helped too. I'd been feeling a bit lethargic/faint since around 2 days after turning vegetarian. I hadn't eaten much all day. I had 2 slices of toast with natural peanut butter for breakfast at around 8:30am, A berri and soy smoothie with oats at 10am, then some Chickpea and Tomato pilaf with brown rice for lunch at around 12pm. Had a headache at 2pm... took some pain medication... slept for an hour. Then went to meet him at 5pm. Hadn't eaten anything since lunch. On the way home on the train, I almost fainted. He freaked out. Now, I'm prone to anemia... (something that slipped my mind... duh!) and have always taken a multivitamin that has about 5mg of Iron in it. According to articles/medical journals I've read, I need at least 15mg of iron a day. So, knowing iron was probably the culprit I bought some Blackmores Bio Iron tablets. That have iron/vitamin C/B12 in it...

So I'm wondering... is it just that I hadn't eaten enough all day, or can iron levels dropped within 1 week? I've been vegetarian for 7 days now. Also, I was going to buy flaxseed oil capsules and Spirulina tablets... just because I wanna make sure all my nutrients are high.

Thoughts?
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Kirsttt Kirsttt NSW Posts: 43
2 27 Oct 2011
Hey! Chances are it is iron, especially if you are prone to it, but i feel more compelled to say it would be about blood sugar.
When my boyfriend went vegetarian he was very overwhelmed and ate very little, he ended up getting sick and very skinny (gross!). Are you feeling overwhelmed and limiting your food intake? Also, vegetarian options are also often 'healthy' ones with low sugar, especially when out. That's brilliant, but make sure you have some sugar in your diet. Keep nomming on that peanut butter! You need to have a balanced diet.

Look after yourself, take your time and don't put too much pressure on yourself. Keep reading and learning! The first time i went vegan i got sick and overwhelmed so just didn't really eat much, the second time after doing months of reading and noting it isn't impossible was much easier. That said, I am prone to anxiety and find that my anxiety goes mental when on a vegan diet...
Do what you can, be careful with that anemia, a sick you for a good cause is not a good exchange. I'm assuming you know about how to get the most out of your iron - high vitamin c, and no coffee/alcohol within 2 hours before or after eating high iron foods (from memory) will make sure you get the most out of it.

Last but not least, WELL DONE on becoming vegetarian, it may be tough at first but trust me it becomes natural and you wont be able to imagine living any other way xxx
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Emilia Emilia WA Posts: 285
3 27 Oct 2011
Most people need a snack between 12 and 5pm, because their blood sugar drops off around 3.

As a vegetarian, you need to make sure you are getting the same amount of calories per day as when you had your meat eating diet. This includes sugar! Make sure you eat low GI foods, that way, your blood sugar level will maintained at a healthy level, for a longer period of time.

If you are feeling run down and tired, go to the doctor and get your iron levels checked. Tell them about your faint spell on the train. The more information they know, the better!
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Madixoxoxo Madixoxoxo QLD Posts: 31
4 27 Oct 2011
Hey thanks for the response happy Yeah, I haven't been limiting myself. Eating almost the same foods just without meat. I do realise because there's less calories etc in the foods I'm eating... I need to eat more. Clearly that didn't happen yesterday, i think mainly because I had a headache when I'd usually have another snack. My sister and her friend are both vegetarian as well, they both said their nutritionist recommended that if you can't always make your diet fully balanced, supplements are easier to include in your diet happy

As for the vitamin C part, Yep... I'm all read up on how Vitamin C allows propper iron absorption. I like combining complimentary foods to make sure maximum absorption occurs in my meals.

I too think it was the low blood sugar, having not eaten for ages. Still... freaked me out too. Made me super anxious that my body NEEDED meat. I just can't do it. What lead me to becoming vegetarian was reading a book called Skinny Bitch, then to further educate myself I watched Forks Over Knives and Earthlings. I was ignorant and never thought about exactly what I was eating, and how it got there. Now I know... I can't go back. I'm fine with people eating meat if that's what they want to do... but to not be aware of what they're getting on their plate kind of upsets me. Like they say a lot on those documentaries, "If the walls of slaughterhouses were glass, everyone would be vegetarian haha".

I really like that there are communities like this one that I can go to with worries/thoughts... it's so helpful.

Anyway, thanks again. I'll definitely make sure to eat a lot more, and make sure my vitamins and minerals are in check. I'm going to get a blood test done in around a month to just make sure everything is fine too happy

Cheers.
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Madixoxoxo Madixoxoxo QLD Posts: 31
5 27 Oct 2011
You're totally right. I think that's one thing I haven't been accounting for. The making up for the vast amount of calories I was consuming in meat/dairy. So I'm definitely making sure I'm eating 5-6 meals a day, as well as always having a low GI muesli bar in my bag. Thanks for responding happy
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Nobody Nobody QLD Posts: 593
6 27 Oct 2011
Congrats for going veg!
I was quite woozy, tired and light headed when I first became veg. It was like a detox. My body was adjusting to the new lifestyle. After about a week, I was full of energy. That may be what you're experiencing.

Do you have low blood pressure?
A drop in blood pressure could be the problem. Sometimes my blood pressure drops and I need to sit down before I fall down. I've fainted twice in my life from it. Hot weather makes it worse too. Nothing can really be done for low blood pressure - although drinking plenty of water, sprinkling sea salt on your meals, and snacking on nuts and seeds helps.

As others have said, low iron or blood sugar could also be the culprit.
It might be a good idea to get a blood test to check your iron. Perhaps also ask the doc to check your blood pressure too, while you're standing up, to see if it is low.

And be sure to eat plenty of fresh, raw veggies!
Hope that helps. happy
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Rainbow Fox Rainbow Fox QLD Posts: 91
7 27 Oct 2011
Not drinking enough water could also be a problem! If you are dehydrated your blood pressure drops, you get headaches, you get dizzy, feel lethargic... Especially with the weather hotting up make sure you always have water on you and sip from it all day!

Dehydration teamed with any of the other suggested problems (low blood sugar or low iron) would just make it worse!
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xAshlee xAshlee TAS Posts: 722
8 27 Oct 2011
I felt like that to when first going veg - not entirely because of what i was eating but because i was hardly eating ANYTHING.

im vegan now and i feel 'fine this way' as einstein once said. ha.

You can totally eat more usually seeing as ur not getting all the trans fats in dairy products etc, and from meat,

I also applaud you in going VEG happy  I agree, low iron is a reall bummer - makes you feel crap. I use to drink alot of MILO when i was vegetarian to get the extra nutrients. Now I just eat heaps of everythin happy
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Madixoxoxo Madixoxoxo QLD Posts: 31
9 27 Oct 2011
xAshlee said:
I felt like that to when first going veg - not entirely because of what i was eating but because i was hardly eating ANYTHING.

im vegan now and i feel 'fine this way' as einstein once said. ha.

You can totally eat more usually seeing as ur not getting all the trans fats in dairy products etc, and from meat,

I also applaud you in going VEG happy  I agree, low iron is a reall bummer - makes you feel crap. I use to drink alot of MILO when i was vegetarian to get the extra nutrients. Now I just eat heaps of everythin happy
I am using the EATING HEAPS OF EVERYTHING RULE now... just so I get enough calories. Don't want my good morals and ethics cause me health problems  scared
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Madixoxoxo Madixoxoxo QLD Posts: 31
10 27 Oct 2011
Rainbow Fox said:
Not drinking enough water could also be a problem! If you are dehydrated your blood pressure drops, you get headaches, you get dizzy, feel lethargic... Especially with the weather hotting up make sure you always have water on you and sip from it all day!

Dehydration teamed with any of the other suggested problems (low blood sugar or low iron) would just make it worse!
Yeah, I felt dehydrated... but I literally drink 2-3 litres of water a day. So yeah, it was probably just the lack of food, maybe low iron that caused it. Definitely being a lot more careful now! Thanks for the tip though happy
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