Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Sleep 23 hours a day if I don't eat certain foods...

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 3 Replies
  • Posted By: Alizee
  • November 23, 2009
  • 05:31 PM

This is a very serious problem and I cannot get help!

A few years ago, I became vegetarian for personal reasons and many of my health problems went away, making me elated. However, within weeks, I also began sleeping 23 hours a day with the inability to wake up. It was very hard to stay awake for more than 15 minutes. I became disoriented in school and could not find my way out of classrooms. I had to drop out of school and I couldn't drive because I was too sleepy to stay alert. I just wanted to Zzzzzzz. I saw various doctors, had numerous blood tests and they could not find a problem but always shuffled me onto another doctor :P.

I saw a nutritionist and she said that my diet was very healthy - high in protein and all other nutrients.

Out of desperation, I tried eating baby formula. Suddenly, I could stay awake. I also tried spirulina, a sea algae, and again the symptoms lessened. If I eat 3-4 cups of either of these foods, my symptoms completely go away.

All my friends are vegetarian athletes. We all eat the same, they are healthy but my body has a very unique problem.

It is as if my body does not manufacture a certain nutrient. Rather than resigning myself to eating animal protein, I want to figure out the cause of the problem.

Has anyone heard of a similar problem?

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  • the key things that stand out to me in your post is that you're a vegetarian, you have a lot of fatigue or you lack energy, and eating spirulina helps quite a bit. vitamin b12 deficiency is common in vegetarians, it also is considered the "energy" vitamin, and spirulina is high in vitamin b12.have your doctor test you for a vitamin b deficiency.and you may want to ask for an intrinsic factor test (to see if you have a difficulty actually ingesting vitamin b12, which can cause a deficiency in itself).also, it might be good to ask your doctor what other possible "complications" you need to look out for or actively try to prevent with the choice of becoming a vegetarian (not that i think it is a bad choice). vegetarians typically lack certain nutritional benefits of meats, so you need to be proactive in making sure you take daily supplements or eat certain amounts of specific foods regularly to prevent other possible deficiencies that are more common with vegetarians.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 25, 2009
    • 07:33 PM
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  • the key things that stand out to me in your post is that you're a vegetarian, you have a lot of fatigue or you lack energy, and eating spirulina helps quite a bit. vitamin b12 deficiency is common in vegetarians, it also is considered the "energy" vitamin, and spirulina is high in vitamin b12.have your doctor test you for a vitamin b deficiency.and you may want to ask for an intrinsic factor test (to see if you have a difficulty actually ingesting vitamin b12, which can cause a deficiency in itself).also, it might be good to ask your doctor what other possible "complications" you need to look out for or actively try to prevent with the choice of becoming a vegetarian (not that i think it is a bad choice). vegetarians typically lack certain nutritional benefits of meats, so you need to be proactive in making sure you take daily supplements or eat certain amounts of specific foods regularly to prevent other possible deficiencies that are more common with vegetarians.Thank you for the reply.I have already been tested for B12 deficiency and I'll add that to my first post.A few things of note: Vegetarian diets do not lack B12 - I believe you are thinking of the vegan diet. Secondly, Spirulina is very high in B12 but whether it is digestible is debated. Most people agree the B12 found in spirulina is not absorbable. Via blood tests, I also had my protein levels checked and the doctor said that my results were the best she had ever seen. My family does have a few genetic mal-absorption issues but asking the doctors to investigate is fruitless. It is all left up to me.Aren't there other ways to check for ALL vitamin deficiencies? Doctors have been so unhelpful: One said that vegetarians die from lack of vitamin A, which is completely incorrect. How does one test for ALL vitamin deficiencies?
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 26, 2009
    • 10:58 PM
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  • Thank you for the reply.I have already been tested for B12 deficiency and I'll add that to my first post.A few things of note: Vegetarian diets do not lack B12 - I believe you are thinking of the vegan diet. Secondly, Spirulina is very high in B12 but whether it is digestible is debated. Most people agree the B12 found in spirulina is not absorbable. Via blood tests, I also had my protein levels checked and the doctor said that my results were the best she had ever seen. My family does have a few genetic mal-absorption issues but asking the doctors to investigate is fruitless. It is all left up to me.Aren't there other ways to check for ALL vitamin deficiencies? Doctors have been so unhelpful: One said that vegetarians die from lack of vitamin A, which is completely incorrect. How does one test for ALL vitamin deficiencies?LOL at doctor saying that about vit A- if anything its likely to be too high in vit A!!- Think it shows you have a doctor who either doesn't know or doesn't care (I hope its the former). I think you need to change doctors, demand a full blood test, and say why. Also look up deficiencies of all the vitamins you believe you could have issues with, but also those that if you take to much, do x.y and z. That way you can see the evidence for yourself. Sugar leves OK I presume? (know its an obvious one byt have to ask as baby foods tend to have basic carbs in them for the babies energy above anything else- perhaps very easy for your body to utilise above any complex carbs and or fruit and vegetables.)The only other thing I'd suggest would be a natropath.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 29, 2009
    • 02:24 AM
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