The last week or so I have been feeling quite tired. Last night I sat down to go over what has been going on to see if I can come up with a solution. I jumped on the Net (my source of all things information-related) and did a look up of fatigue relating to a vegetarian diet, just in case I am missing something. Here is what I came up with.
Sleep - I have been getting a reasonable amount of sleep, for me. Anything over 6 hours with 3 hours uninterrupted sleep (I have lots of night time toilet stops) is good for me. I have actually been getting about 8 hours with a couple of 3 hour stretches, so that is good.
Vitamin D - I am confident my Vit D levels are returning to normal. I have been taking my supplements (due again next week) and have been getting actual sun on my skin without sunscreen (in moderation) and without long sleeves.
Protein - This could be a problem. I do not think I have been getting enough protein in the last couple of weeks. So I need to increase my intake of eggs and legumes. On days when I don't have these I need to have a protein bar or shake. While this is not my preferred source of protein, it will do in a pinch. It is grocery shopping this weekend, so I will stock up on eggs, nuts, seeds and legumes, and I will then make sure I cook them as often as possible!
Iron - I have always struggled with borderline low iron levels, ever since I stopped eating red meat coming up on 20 years ago. I never actually made a decision to stop eating red meat, it's more that I was quite ill for a couple of years with Glandular Fever and after I recovered meat made me feel sick, so I stopped eating it except in very small amounts. Over the years I have trialled every iron supplement there is, including kids doses, and they all result in the same thing - constipation. :o( But.... I think I will try again. I figure if I take half a dose every second day it will have some impact on my iron levels, and hopefully have no impact on the *other issue*.
Iodine - This is a tricky one, but one I know I can self test on, as I have had a naturopath do it before. Just get some iodine and put it on your skin in an area where the skin is soft (crook of the elbow or sole of the feet is best). If in a couple of hours there is no stain from the iodine you are low (as your body has sucked it all in). If the iodine is still evident your levels are okay. The good news is if you are low you can continue to put iodine on the skin to absorb it that way.
B12 - I need to start taking my supplements again. Along with my multi vitamin. I have put a reminder in my phone and I am taking todays dose mow.
I have also decided that after the end of my 3 month trial if I decide to become a vegetarian, I will go to the doctors and have everything checked, just to make sure I am doing okay.
On to slightly other, but related news, Ross & I have enrolled in an exotic vegetarian cooking class next year. It is a 4 week class and you learn vegetarian recipes from all over the world. I am really looking forward to it!