Important Note: I originally wrote this article over two years ago. While the information is useful and accurate, I have since had some major breakthroughs in understanding the nutritional needs of gifted individuals. If you’d like to be alerted when this article is updated, please consider subscribing to the newsletter.
The Problem: Hyperactivity, Mood Swings, ADHD, Exhaustion, Adrenal Fatigue, Addiction
A while back, a specialist told me that gifted children are prone to adrenal fatigue. Her theory was that the gifted brain uses more energy than the digestive system can produce. Therefore, to make up the difference, the body will rely on adrenal energy. Over time, this leads to a profound sense of exhaustion that normal people cannot relate to.
I’ve been holding to this theory for a few years because it seemed to make sense, but I think that it contains an error. I’m not sure it’s true that the gifted brain uses more energy than the body can produce. I think the real issue is sugar and insulin resistance, not adrenal fatigue.
I agree that the demands that a gifted brain places on the body can be significant. I think that perhaps gifted children tend towards sugar because it gives them an immediate boost of energy which the brain can use. However, this can lead to intense mood swings and contribute to exhaustion and poor health over time.
Thankfully, there is an elegant solution to the problem, one that will help gifted individuals feel better, focus better, and have better health over the course of their lifetimes. It’s comprised of three parts:
(Note: all of this information is based on the work of Dr. Eric Berg)
I. Healty Keto™
What has been an incredible discovery for me has been, after relying on various forms of sugar all my life, to experience my body converting to “ketosis” or simply put, fat burning. Through this process, the body is literally converted from burning sugar to burning fat. And the more you wrap your head around this, the more it will blow your mind.
Fortunately, there is an incredible, completely free resource to to help you navigate this transition if it’s something you’d like to try. Dr. Berg has over 3,000 videos on YouTube. Here’s his introductory video to his Healty Keto™ way of eating:
II. Intermittent Fasting
Dr. Berg also talks about the power of intermittent fasting. In my own case, I was able to completely disappear Type 2 diabetes (insulin resistance) using Healthy Keto and IF – losing 25 pounds in only six weeks. The idea that we have to eat three meals a day is just nonsense as you will discover.
The key with Healthy Keto and IF is that once you convert to burning fat instead of sugar, you’ll feel much more steady, be able to focus better, and be able to go for long periods without eating. These are all side effects of your internal engine running on fat instead of sugar.
III. Understanding Electrolytes
Another critical topic that Dr. Berg covers is electrolytes. Did you know that the body needs 4700mg of potassium per day? Other important electrolytes are magnesium and sodium.
Because most people eat so few greens every day, they are usually deficient in magnesium and potassium. In adults this can lead to fatigue, tension, hypertension and irritability. The same is also true for children and teens.
IV. The Steps
Having gone through the process myself, I’ll share the stages I have gone through so far:
I. Stress Reduction
As I was discovering Dr. Berg’s Healthy Keto diet, I was in a state of severe stress and overwhelm. I ordered his Adrenal & Cortisol product which was the first adrenal product I had tried that had any real effect. And it was immediate. I went from sleeping two hours a night to sleeping all night within 3 days.
I also started taking nutritional yeast tablets which provide B vitamins. B vitamins are important for dealing with stress. In my case I had been deficient and noticed a significant calming effect from taking these tablets (3 before bed, 3 on waking). According to Dr. Berg, B vitamins are also critically important in helping the body convert from sugar burning to fat burning.
II. Learning How to Eat Heathy Keto
It took about a month of watching Dr. Berg’s videos and experimenting to dial in his Healthy Keto way of eating. There was some challenge during the first couple weeks as my body transitioned from burning sugar to burning fat. What really helped was using electrolytes to replace snacking as I took the intital setp of cutting down to three meals a day with no snacks.
Within a few days, I experienced my first state of ketosis, and I was immediately hooked. Suddenly there was this calm, steady energy and my head was clear. I’m not sure I had ever experienced this in my life!
III. Major Weight Loss
I lost 25 lbs in six weeks. For about six years, I had been trying to lose weight with exercise with absolutely no effect. The problem was the presence of high levels of insulin in my system which prevents fat burning. In just six weeks, as I started to get to down to two meals a day and doing at least 30 minutes of walking, I dropped from 215 lbs to 190 lbs! I was blown away to say the least. My health started improving markedly and I started having more energy to work out.
IV. The Discovery of Healthy Keto Sweets!
After about six weeks of eating bacon, eggs, and avocado for breakfast and giving up one of my favorite things to eat: Scottish Oatmeal, and eating a giant salad every night for dinner, I was very excited to learn that it’s still possible to have sweet foods! The first discovery was almond flour pancakes with fresh whip cream and 0 sugar maple syrup substitute. I was in heaven.
V. Fat Bombs
I never though I’d have this issue, but as I rapidly burned off my stored fat, I had to start eating “fat bombs.” Now that the body’s reserve of fat was gone, I had to start eating more fat. Fat bombs are eaten after a meal, like a desert and make it easy to go from one meal to the next in intermittent fasting without craving a snack.
As a gifted individual who has been through lot, I’ve found that B12 supplementation is something I need. Methylated B12 is best as it is most easily absorbed by the body. I personally take 10,000 mcg tablets. I’ve also gotten B12 injections which are great for recovering from trauma or extreme, prolonged stress. If you do want to try shots of B12, make sure it’s methylcobalamine. If you’re not deficient, you won’t really notice much, but if you are, it’s like having liquid relaxation pumped into your system. B12 injections helped me get out of a stress hole that I had been in.