Hi @Ozeph . It looks like you’re getting better sleep. How is your libido and sex drive? How are your muscles and energy? Your brain fog?
Libido is back to normal, as well as sensitivity, erection and refracrion period (which is proven less than 4 hours, but propably less)
Muscle tone is high, I’m 51 and I’m climbing ropes and trees like when I was 21. Energy is high also. I’ve got plenty all day and don’t feel tired before bed time.
Yesterday, I did my training and rode a 1000 cc speed bike for 6 hours.
Brain fog has been replaced by highly focused thougths and cognitive functions are good again. I’m solving the problems that went over my head after the crash, problems I just couldn’t figure out. My skills at speaking Thai has improved also.
I’m now working on the last piece of the puzzle, which is rebooting the production of allopregnanolone and sleep will be back to normal.
Aside from sleep, I haven’t felt as active and my brain as acute since I was in my 20.
I also don’t seem to have food reactions anymore. I can eat carbs, I just don’t push it.
I don’t know how much of this is artificial, because of the supplements, and how much is my body having rebalanced itself. I believe it’s a little of both. I’d be easy to test, I would just have to stop the diet while still eating healthy (which is almost where I’m at) and stop the supplements.
I will taper down only when sleep is restored without drugs.
This regimen is working for me. I believe it can work for some others, but I can’t be sure with who it would work, and with who it wouldn’t. Plus you have to be very commited and disciplined. There’s no cheating. Pfs is always waiting for an opportunity to get back in.
That’s awesome man, congrats. So this treatment of yours is working, and I hope it stays like that.
I’m not asking you to come off your supplements, but I wonder what would happen if you tapered off. I wonder if PFS would come back or what. Did you ever lose vascularity during PFS and has it come back, @Ozeph? Could you tell us if shrinkage improved, too?
I just come back from a six day trip where I ate what was on the menu, and plenty of carbs. I continued to take most of the supplements, but couldn’t take Carnitine, Betaine and Choline because I mixed it with my electrolyte mix of magnesium chloride and potassium chloride along with lemon juice. First day of the trip, I drank a glass of that mix and got diarrhea 8 times in the next 2-3 hours; too much electrolyte, the body just shuts the guts off so that no more can come in.
So I didn’t take any magnesium, Carnitine, Betaine and Choline for those 6 days.
The result of these 6 days and what I learned:
1- I can eat carbs and normal food and I have no ill effects at all (except the six pack has sunk in a little bit of fat. Carbs really does equal fat while saturated fat makes you thin. go figure). I had tons of pancake for breakfast, with maple syrup and glasses of orange juice. I didn’t went out of my way and order Coke or Sprite, which is basically half a cup of sugar per can, but at every meal I had fries, or mashed potatoes or rice. I did chose the meal that had the most meat and I took protein shakes often. So I can say my protein intake remained high, saturated fat intake much much lower and carbs intake much higher.
That means coming OFF the ketogenic / carnivore diet (after 7 months of doing it) had no effect in regard to pfs symptoms. I can’t say if it would come back if I started eating junk again, and taking on extra fat. I can only say a 6 day break did nothing.
2- I did take 2.5 gr. of collagen before leaving, than 1.5gr on the first 2 days,then 1gr. a day for the duration of the trip. This help keeps the guts in optimal shape in regards to NOT letting food allergens go through. At the very least, it keeps my joints in good health and gives me a nice, still wrinkle free skin (at 51). I’m such a lady…
3- Sleep did deteriorate a bit the first two nights so I increased clonazepam to 4mg and Hydroxyzine to 10mg. (an antihistamine, 10mg is a single pill, the recommended dose for sedation is 50-100 mg). After that sleep was good. The last six nights were all around 6.5/10 to 8/10. The deteriorated sleep is due to being in a different environment, which slightly elevates my stress.
4- Sex drive got a bit lower, but sensitivity really took a hit. I masturbated and just couldn’t finish. I think this is due to the lack of Betaine and Choline, both of which flush out bad estrogen and leaves a healthier testosterone / estrogen ratio. At first, I attributed the return of sensitivity to vitamin A alone, now I believe it’s both vitamin A and a higher testosterone to estrogen ration. We’ll know soon enough, I’ll resume taking Betaine and Choline at recommended dose along with 10000 IU of vitamin A and if sensitivity returns within a few days I will have hit the spot. I doubt it has to do with Carnitine, as Carnitine slowly builds up AR in the muscles. I believe stopping it wouldn’t have an effect in only 6 days.
All together, the trip is a success in regards to pfs, considering the last two 1 day trips I took I was sick and couldn’t sleep. Also the single and only symptom that was present was the deteriorated sleep (waking up frequently at night, especially toward the end of the nigh). In the day time, I was focused (no brain fog), was in a good mood, was confident and calm and had plenty of energy, even with an empty stomach and after being hungry for 2 hours while still climbing rocks and being active.
Business wise, the trip was also a great success, I ended up with more gains than I was hoping for and that’s related to pfs because it shows I had no neurological symptoms and was confident and focused enough to inspire confidence in the other company CEOs present, which resulted in them giving me a larger market share for my companies.
So that’s a victory toward pfs. Again, my main thing now is to raise 3a-HSD in order to produce the anti-stress neurosteroids Allopregnanolone and Tetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone, which should fix the sleep issues. I wouldn’t be surprised it would also fix lower sex drive and maybe sensitivity, as the stress hormones Adrenaline and Nor-Adrenaline also shuts down all non essentials (like digestion and sensibility to pain) to get us ready to fight (or flight).
Day 85: I lowered Clonazepam to 3.5mg and Hydroxyzine to 7.5mg and had a 9/10 night. I’ll lower again to stabilize around 8/10 until I can take Sulforaphane.
Today I’m starting Betaine and Choline again. Let’s see if sex drive and sensitivity gets higher.
I’ll keep you posted.
By vascularity, I assume you mean erections. Yes I did after the crash and before the diet. I had no night erections, zero sex drive, very low sensibility and because of the absolute zero sex drive I had no desire to masturbate so I couldn’t say if I would have had an erection or not.
I never had shrinkage but I did have constant testicular pain. I believe shrinkage could have happened to me, as the testicular pain is, in my opinion, caused by the immune system attacking the testicles. I believe because I started the ketogenic / carnivore diet just a month an a half after the crash, testicular pain slowly disappeared and I think I avoided the worst.
This is all speculations. It could also be that I just didn’t get as affected as others by pfs.
Wow what a write up! Thank you so much for the summary. I’m going to add choline to my diet too to see what it does. Thank you ozeph. Happy travels to you.
Day 86 Sleep was not very good. 5.5 / 6. I think it’s because of a lack of carbs as I went full ketogenic yesterday. I had lots of carbs in the last 6 days and I wanted to “decarbs” my body. So, I ate less than 5 gr of carbs and didn’t take honey before sleep.
Fasting and ketogenesis are important to fix the brain and kill off unhealthy cells. But I guess once that is done (especially after 7 months of ketosis) a little carb is more helpful than detrimental.
Today, I’m eating 50gr of oat for breakfast (in oatmeal) which will provide 33gr of carbs. I’ll have 1 tsp of honey before sleep which should get me a total of 43gr of carbs if I include the carbs in the Kale and 3 tbsp of milk with the honey… That is near the upper limit to stay ketogenic (50gr.) but I’ll go straight to weight lifting to burn some of those after writing this. I don’t feel good having carbs in my body. I mean it feels gross but the body is Ok with it. It’s in my head.
I think I’ll try eating some carbs 2 hours before bedtime to see if it improves sleep. 20/25gr per day should be enough.
I’ll keep you posted on that.
And great news !!! After taking 800mg of Choline Bi-Tartrate and 800mg of Betaine HCL sex drive have returned and sensitivity is normal again (or close to normal. After 20 years of fin, normal is very far in my memory) Those two methylate estrogen and helps the body flush it out. As a result, testosterone is increased and its ratio toward estrogen is more healthy. Earlier I though it was vitamin A that increased my sensitivity, but I can now see it was in correlation with Choline and Betaine and a higher testosterone to estrogen ratio.
According to this article https://drknews.com/hormonal-imbalances-estrogen-clearance-vital-healthy-hormone-function/
Among others, common symptoms of estrogen dominance include:
- Thyroid dysfunction
- Decreased sex drive
- Breast swelling and tenderness
- Brain fog
- Weight and/or fat gain (particularly around the abdomen and hips)
- Irritability and depression
- Sluggish metabolism
(Anything seems familiar ?)
Men may experience some of the above symptoms, as well as:
- Larger hips
- Male breasts
- Crying fits (I had that once. I couldn’t believe it)
- Low testosterone
Nutritional compounds to support healthy methylation reactions include Choline, trimethylglycine, MSM, beetroot (cdnuts was right), and Betaine HCl.
One more piece added to the puzzle.
What are your thoughts on Alpha-GPC?
Alpha-GPC is a precursor to acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitters that, among other things, regulates the vagus nerve. Alpha-GPC does not methylate estrogen.
Some of the Choline we take transform into Betaine which methylate estrogen. Choline also helps the liver to clean out fat (in a similar way as Inusitol, which is why they are often combined)
So short answer, Choline does more than Alpha-GPC, but does also what Alpha-GPC does.
Day 88: I had a **5.5/6 night ** 2 days ago, 6/10 and because I had lots of carbs on the island and didn’t manage to get anything near ketogenic since I came back. I tried very low carbs and had a day without more than 5 gr yesterday. I took 2 tbsp of coconut oil before sleep as well as my usual sleep stuff (vitamins, supplements and drugs) but couldn’t fall asleep at all.
I was heading for another bad night, so I though, fuck it, I’ll try something new. I went to the kitchen and toasted 2 slices of whole wheat and grains bread on which I put tons of butter. Went back to bed and slept like a baby without waking up until morning. I’ll give that night 8.5/10. It would have been a 10, was it not for the lost 1 hour and half before I decided to make the move. We get used to staying in bed, not sleeping and just waiting for time to pass don’t we ?
Anyway, I’ll change my diet to something like less than 5gr of carbs all day until 8:30 pm, and then eat either toasts (1 and half slices) or oatmeal (22.5gr), both with butter, for a maximum of 15gr of carbs. That should keep me at the limit of ketosis while giving me carbs for the night. Oatmeal seems to be the best choice.It’s a unique complex carbohydrate that takes up to 4 hours longer than any other cereal to metabolize. Considering other cereal takes about 4 hours to be completely burned, oatmeal in contrast would last the night.
If I can’t be ketogenic AND eat carbs before sleep, I’ll just do what it takes to sleep good. Anyway, with the protein shakes I take, I’ probably not in ketosis. (last I checked my ketone levels was above one, the test was no more precise than that, and ketosis benefits are in the range of 1 to 3. More than 3 begins to be dangerous)
I’m not allergic to carbs like I was on the first 4 months after the crash. Maybe I can just go a a very low carbs diet, with lots of protein and saturated fat, without being ketogenic. I can always do an intermittent fasting, once or twice a year, 20 hours fasting / 4 hours of eating in which I eat no more than 20gr carbs in the last hours. I would do that for a week or two.
Do you still feel that the low carb diet had the most positive impact of any single thing you’ve tried?
Yes. But a low carbs diet is below 100 gr of carbs a day, while a ketogenic diet is below 20 gr, people often taking as little as 5 gr.
I think it obviously fixed things in my body since I no longer have the long list of symptoms I had after the crash and before the diet; and I can now eat normal food after 7 months of diet. ( although I still follow the diet if it’s not impossible to do it)
I think Ketogenic diet, or pure carnivore diet (beef, salt and water), intermittent fasting and fasting all have the similar effect of killing off diseased cells. Some of these diets have the added advantage of fixing the guts and healing food allergies, fixing the vagus nerve responsible for mood and digestion, fixing the brain (even from actual brain damage) and balancing the hormones.
I will loosen up the diet once I fixed the sleep disorder. It’s my last symptom. I think the diet is important when we’re plagued with multiple symptoms all at once, but it runs its course and after a while (like 4-6 months), just eating healthy, with less than 100 gr of carbs is fine. I can’t be sure of that, but I’ll try once sleep is fixed and I’ll share my results.
Experiment tonight: I took my sleeping pills and supplements at 8;45pm. Then at 9pm I had 50 gr (dry weight) of prepared oatmeal with a small tsp of sugar and 1 1/2 tbs of ghee. Altogether 350 calories, 190 from fat and 160 from carbs.
The objective: considering oatmeal takes up to 8 hours to change into glucose and saturated fat also takes time to break down, I should not wake up, fully awake, after 4-6 hours of sleep. If I don’t, it means without carbs I wake up because my body falls short in energy and produces Cortisol, a stress hormone to release energy, or if I have adrenal fatigue (the adrenal glands produce Cortisol) than the body replaces it with adrenaline. Which is a spontaneous stress hormones that wakes you up and make you ready to attack or run for your life in a few seconds. Not a good thing at 4am !
Technically, because I overslept last night, it should be hard to fall asleep and I should toss and turn all night. So let’s see if the oatmeal makes a difference.
(so far, I have a small headache. In my case, it means some carbs have started circulating in my body. I think next time I’ll cut the dose in half. I mean, 350 calories for the mere task of sleeping is quite a bunch. 175 calories would certainly do the job.)
Day 89: Ha ha ha. Failure. Fat Oatmeal is not the cure to pfs. Who would have guessed ?
So it took me a long time to fall asleep, I did toss and turn all night and had superficial sleep with lots of dreams. My dreams were mixed with reality: I dreamed I was exploring Antarctica as it was melting due to climate change, and I was in the researcher’s lodge and having insomnia. I was turning and tossing as I did.
Verdict: sleep 4/10. Too much calories, too close to bedtime. I think I kept producing serotonin all night and although I did have insulin to change it into melatonin, there was just too much serotonin. But what do I know. I don’t have a brain monitor attached to my bed that keeps track of what’s going on…
However, I can tell it did change the sleep pattern. So maybe adjusting it a bit will yield results. So, I’ll have Jasmine rice, in low qty, 4 hours before sleep and see what happens. (the rest of the day, I’ll remain low carbs.)
Update. It’s almost 6pm and I’m having 21 gr of carbs in the jasmine rice (that 100gr of cooked rice), along with a ketogenic beef/pork/saturated fat recipe, in contrast with 33gr of carbs in the oatmeal right before sleep.
Considering I had a slice and half of bread this morning, 1 tsp of sugar in my coffee, and 200 gr of kale, that’s 60 gr. of carbs today. Holy crap !!! Quick let’s do some push ups…
Day 91: So I’ve tried jasmine rice and did a tiny bit better 5/10. Carbs don’t seem the be the solution, plus they give me slight headaches. It can’t be good when the body is sending pain signals.
Yesterday, I tried heavy cream and cheese 2 hours before sleep, and I compressed my sleep night to 7 hours instead of 9, by going to sleep 2 hours later and waking up at the same time as usual. Sleep was 8/10. I did this because I noticed If I sleep completely knocked out for a full 9 hours, I feel grumpy all day and have low energy. But if I have a medium bad night of sleep when I wake up and toss the last 3 hours, I have a wonderful, positive day, full of energy.
This is not the first time. It seems as if I wake up after 6 hours because that’s all I need. If I sleep more, I mess up my body. So I wanted to test this theory and my friend @shellnyce wrote to me that “certain sleep therapies restrict sleep down to 6 hours to help your body consolidate sleep. Insomniacs tend to keep going to bed earlier and earlier trying to get more sleep. They are in bed longer but the quality of sleep they are achieving is not as good. So the therapy says you start with your desired wake up time and work back 6 hours. Then go to bed at that time.”
I wanted to test this but shortened the night to seven hours instead of 6. It worked well, except I took the sleeping pills later and they were still active when I woke up at 6:30 am. I woke up feeling a bit like a zombie, but still drove my kid to school.
So that’s a nice experiment, but I think I’ll take the pills around 9pm, go to bed around 11:15 pm and assuming I fall asleep in 15 minutes I’ll get 7 hours and wake up not too sticky.
Nonetheless, this is still not addressing the main issue: The problem started by suppressing 5ar and 3a-HSD (which, by the way gets even more destroyed by fin than 5ar). So obviously I’ll have to operate on those two enzymes to fix iinsomnia.
I’ll use Sulfotaphane, which I’m still waiting to receive. It lowers serum Testosterone and DHT, but I think it does so because it raises 3a-HSD, which in turns lower 5ar. Not because it directly influences Testosterone and DHT. Well, that would be true for DHT anyway, not sure about serum testosterone.
I think Sulforaphane is safe, at least in low doses. Otherwise we couldn’t eat broccoli. I can start with 1 mg and work my way up and see what happens, stop or reduce at first sign of trouble. The recommended dosage is 195 mg on the bottle I bought. Those “health” companies are really out of their minds…
I also bought Creatine and Tribullus Terrestris to boost testosterone and 5ar. The idea is to boost both 3a-HSD and 5ar so they can convert progesterone into allopregnanolone and tetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone, the two calming neurosteroids, the two things we lack and cause some much trouble all over the place. I’ll have to also make sure I limit the aromatase that would transform progesterone into estrogen. I’ll post on this if it’s an issue.
I’ve done a lot so far and rebalanced most of my body. But this particular issue is not progressing at all. I’ve heard of guys being “cured” from pfs beside still having insomnia after 5-10 years of being “cured”.
There’s no way around it. I have to dive in and delicately nudge the place where the problem lies. Then I can start gauging how much strength I must use. Is that dangerous ? Da ! But if playing with 5ar and 3a-HSD was safe than finasteride would also be, wouldn’t it ?
Article graciously offered by @shellnyce, thank you for this: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26923074
(and I’ve got DMSO if I really want to kick things off. But I won’t be reckless. It has proven to be unwise)
I’ve found similar regarding sleep. Even if I CAN sleep 9 hours it doesn’t mean I’m going to feel better because of it. 7-7.5 is about right for me, usually
I always feel honored when you take one of my suggestions and add it to your very intense routine @Ozeph . I’m glad you were able to make some type of disovery from this. I think I will be trying to consolidate my sleep as well. I suspect that if you were to do this for 3-5 days in a row, you would start to see a difference in the quality and consolidation of your sleep by day 6 or so. I’m just theorizing about this of course. But i have had more than 1 sleep doctor tell me to focus on quality and not quality. Count back 6 hours from your wake up time and thats when you should be laying down to go to be. They also said… as you do this…dont get freaked out by 1 bad night of sleep. You have the tools to recover as long as you stay calm and let the sleep come to you. Anyway… I hope your successes continue!
On a side note, I tried a passion flower extract powder last night as a GABA agonist and it really seemed to work nicely. Not sure if you can find it in Thailand. Its sold on amazon by a company called “Bulk Supplements” . My goal is to cycle some natural GABA agonists along with the Remeron so I can resist taking Klonopin or Ambien on bad nights. My next GABA agonist experiment will be KAVA KAVA … which I believe grows in Thailand? Maybe you can provide some insight on this root and the best type to try.
I have passion flowers, also from bulk supplements. Great company. However, It reacts badly with Klonopin. They both act on the GABA (A) receptors. I really wish I could stop Klonopin. There are so many herbs that have anxiolytic effects.
Considering you don’t take Klonopin, I could suggest you a few different herbs with anxiolytic effects.
Kava Kava had to be taken with extreme caution. Some people had severe liver damage after only 1 month of use and needed liver transplant. The extract has to be made with water only, and from the peeled roots. If other parts are used or if solvents are used to do the extraction, the product is dangerous.
I bought some but didn’t have time to contact the supplier to ask questions about the extract process.
Aside from that, it’s pretty potent and also have euphoric effects… Ha ha ! But I guess that depends on the dosage. Make sure you contact your supplier and ask questions. You don’t need a liver transplant…
Curious… when you say Passion Flower acted badly with Klonopin… did it enhance the sedative effects or make things worse?
As for Kava, I have been hesitant about trying this for a long time because I did see that preperation of the root has to be very very good. No skin, no bark and no leaves or stems. I found a Kava forum and several people who use it regularly have recomended who they feel are high quality suppliers. Kava is not cheap so I suspect getting safe Kava is why its expensive.
I may also try Valerian extract to see if it helps with sleep. That is also a GABA agonist.
Have you tried Phenibut at all. I tried a very small amount and it made me so sleepy. I had forgotten what it felt like to legitimately feel so sleepy that I just had to go to bed. I’m a little scared to use that more than every 10 days or so.