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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,
I am a 40 year old male.
I have been vegan about 5 months (straight from omni) and have been getting heart palpitations the last two months. These appear to be mostly PVCs, with also PACs and occasional short periods of afib. These irregular heartbeats are completely absent when I am sleeping or exercising. However, during the day when not exercising, I will experience about 5000-15000 PVCs, i.e. they are present more or less constantly.

I have normal blood results, am not overweight, exercise regularly, normal blood pressure, no diabetes, non-smoker, have now quit all alcohol and caffeine, tried magnesium supplementation, tried taurine supplementation.

I am now looking at nutrition and have three "suspicious" items.
1) vegan multi-vitamin. This includes 100%RDA of iron. Before, I was not taking any supplemental iron.
2) soy products. I've been eating more soy products, but not daily. However, there was a time about three years ago that I was drinking soy milk, and I don't remember experiencing any problems.
3) almond milk. I never drank almond milk before, but am now having it daily with cereal. I don't think I've ever had any problems with almonds though.

I believe those are the main additions to my diet since going vegan. If anyone has any experience with irregular heartbeats in conjunction with diet, I would love to hear about it. I would especially like to know how long it took after eliminating the culprit food for the irregularities to disappear.

I found a previous discussion about this here:
http://www.veggieboards.com/forum/14-general-health-discussion/114552-soy-heart-palpitations.html
Since that was an old thread, I decided to start a new one.

Kind regards..
 

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Out of the veg closet :)
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You should really make sure you aren't drinking caffeine (that agitates them), and definitely get your thyroid checked. This started happening to me (the palpitations and I would get horrifying episodes of tachycardia) a little over a year ago when I wasn't even veg. It was my thyroid. And ask to see a specialist. The regular test they do for this is to measure your TSH levels, but ask for specific tests to check other things, since this test alone can be inacurrate and not show when other thyroid levels are off. What are some of your other symptoms? Do you have any? like sleep problems, energy, appetite? I know my thyroid condition made me absolutely miserable and sometimes unable to even function. If you have any specific questions please message me. To this day I still take a heart pill up to twice a day to control heart rate and palps.

Oh the tests you should request (even if you have to see a specialist, like an endocrinologist):

TSH level
T3 (free T3) level
T4 (free T4) level
Tg test (thyroid cancer test)
Thyroid antibody tests (to test for Graves Disease and Hashimoto's Thyroiditis)

These are all very specialized tests.

I hope you find an answer to your problem. I know how unnerving this can be. I hope it's something that can be easily fixed for you!!!

And fyi I am also a certified Paramedic so I've dealth with many people with various conditions, and someone your age who is otherwise healthy shouldn't be having PVCs and PACs like that. You should do the thyroid thing, and also consult a cardiologist (you should probably do a Holter monitor study and an EKG and echocardiogram). I'm no doctor, but heart arrythmias are to be taken seriously, and be proactive. Sometimes when you are young with no prior history of the issue drs can minimize things or brush it off. Don't let that happen. As a paramedic, my youngest heart attack patient (who never had any heart issues) was only 38.

Best of luck and keep us updated!!!!!
 

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Hi kveggie,

Properly-planned vegan diets are healthy, and are even recommended by Kaiser Permanente, one of the largest health insurance companies in the United States: http://www.kphealthyme.com/Healthy-...ams/Education-libraries/Plant-Based-Diet.aspx

Because this sounds like a medical problem, it makes sense to discuss it with your physician. If you are concerned about the nutritional completeness of your diet, or about food allergies, please ask your physician to refer you to a Registered Dietitian - they can work with you and your physician to quickly straighten things out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hello TGreene,

Thanks for your reply.
I have seen a cardiologist. They didn't catch the PVCs on the EKG, but did catch and identify the afib. I had a recent Holter monitor, but I was having relatively few PVCs that day and the doctor didn't even mention them. (Later I got a copy of the report.) At that time I was mainly concerned with the afib. I was just told to take a small aspirin once a day and not worry about it.

All caffeine and alcohol have been stopped for about three weeks now. I don't have any other symptoms of a thyroid problem. Sleep, energy, appetite are all normal. Also, a recent blood test showed TSH approximately in the middle of the "normal range".

I have a heart rate monitor that logs the time between successive EKG "R" peaks. I'm using it like a poor man's Holter monitor, since I can easily tell the difference between regular heartbeat, irregular, and afib. I see wide variations day to day in the number of PVCs, but haven't been able to discern a pattern. The Magnesium supplement hasn't seemed to have helped. It is also striking how the PACs/PVCs vanish completely when I am asleep or exercising.

Best
 

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Potassium? It shouldn't be hard to get potassium in a vegan diet, but one never knows. ..potassium deficiency often kills people who suffer from anorexia, and in those with less severe cases, it can affect the heart. You can get it from bananas (probably the only reason Freely and Banana Girl are still standing upright), avacados, and many other affordable natural vegan sources, like potatoes eaten with the skin.

It could be anxiety. From what I understand anxiety related to diet could stem from being too low in fat, deficiency in iron (but you take a supplement), B vitamin deficiency (I'm pretty certain you are getting B 12) ...I suppose it could be linked to Omega 3...I hope you know that vegans can eat walnuts, flax seed or oil, hemp products (milk, seeds, candy bars, etc), and that fish isn't necessary.

OR the anxiety is psychological, perhaps issues surfacing now that you've given up alcohol. ..or other things going on in your life.
 

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Lots of things can trigger heart palpitations. I have overhauled my diet so many times because I knew mine were food related, but I couldn't put my finger on it. I finally FINALLY did, after years. It was chocolate (not the caffeine in it either, caffeine has no impact on my palpitations).

My advice, stop each of the three things you suspect, one at a time (starting with the multivitamin) and see if they stop.
 

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I've had all sorts of symptoms when taking supplements and vitamins. My body is highly sensitive to them. Even with B12 i only take it a few times per week as any more and I am jumpy, agitated, nervous, and feel like my skin is crawling. I can't even begin to take a multivitamin as all my attempts in the distant past resulted in all sorts of side effects. I only take calcium/D supplements in addition to B12, and the ones I take have very few other ingredients in them.

Have you tried stopping all supplements for a short period of time to see if the problem improves?

I had major heart palpitations when I was restricting food intake too much, exercising hard, and getting rid of what I ate in other unhealthy ways. It really scared me as I had never had such symptoms before. They were very noticeable. I'm guessing my electrolytes were way off. Thankfully I do not have that issue now. I have never gotten heart palps from any particular food, unless I drink way too much coffee.

Any other non food types of items you might have started using? Like cleaning agents or shampoos etc?
 

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Lots of things can trigger heart palpitations. I have overhauled my diet so many times because I knew mine were food related, but I couldn't put my finger on it. I finally FINALLY did, after years. It was chocolate (not the caffeine in it either, caffeine has no impact on my palpitations).

My advice, stop each of the three things you suspect, one at a time (starting with the multivitamin) and see if they stop.
Wow! I thought I was the only one?! Me too!
:eek:
For YEARS I had skipping heartbeats etc. and I quit coffee, started up again, stopped soy, stopped all kinds of things, tried all kinds of things. Chocolate. Not even just the dark stuff (THAT I LOVE TO DEATH). White chocolate I now eat with abandon and miss the other stuff :crying:but don't miss those episodes!
Interestingly, I recently started drinking tea and it does it to me as well! I can drink a lot of coffee but tea and chocolate (the 'soothing' 'wholesome' choices) mess with my body.

I hope you find out what's going on. It's a horribly uncomfortable feeling!

Oh also, my sister had iron and b12 deficiency (and she's omni...) and that gave her palpitations til it rebalanced:nerd:.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Update

Hi Everyone,

thanks for the replies. Here is a quick update. I tried cutting out different foods/supplements, changing B12 supplement, stopping all supplements, exercising more, exercising less, etc. Nothing made the least difference.

Finally the cardiologist suggested a beta-blocker (Metoprolol). I've been taking it four days now and the "extra" beats have gone from 5%--30% (varying by day) to <0.2%. Also, there have been no episodes of afib which had been almost daily. The side effect is that my already low resting heart rate was sent down to the mid/low 40s, but I'm not dizzy or fatigued. So, I am happy although somewhat disappointed that I couldn't find any "natural" remedy. I suppose some heart cells just decided to go rogue...

Best,
 

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Hi Everyone,

thanks for the replies. Here is a quick update. I tried cutting out different foods/supplements, changing B12 supplement, stopping all supplements, exercising more, exercising less, etc. Nothing made the least difference.

Finally the cardiologist suggested a beta-blocker (Metoprolol). I've been taking it four days now and the "extra" beats have gone from 5%--30% (varying by day) to <0.2%. Also, there have been no episodes of afib which had been almost daily. The side effect is that my already low resting heart rate was sent down to the mid/low 40s, but I'm not dizzy or fatigued. So, I am happy although somewhat disappointed that I couldn't find any "natural" remedy. I suppose some heart cells just decided to go rogue...

Best,
Hi and thanks for the update. :)

That heart rate is pretty low. Can I ask, do you have an eating disordered history? Sorry if that sounds abrupt! Just wondering if you're eating enough...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hi and thanks for the update. :)

That heart rate is pretty low. Can I ask, do you have an eating disordered history? Sorry if that sounds abrupt! Just wondering if you're eating enough...
Nope, no eating problems. My resting heart rate was in the mid 50s before taking this medication. Many years ago I did a lot of cycling and rowing and my heart rate sank and never went back up much, even after I considerably reduced the amount of exercise.
 

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It's been over two months since you have written and I wonder how you are doing with your vegan diet and if you've detected the reason for PVCs.
I arrived at this site because I am experiencing the same thing as I move from a vegetarian to vegan diet. I'm wondering if my electrolytes are off since I've stopped drinking dairy and eat few eggs.
Thoughts? Experiences?
 

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I also have the exact same thing! I eat the starch based diet. Very low fat. Lots of potatoes, rice, bread fruits and vegetables. I also run about 40 miles a week. My resting heart rate is about 42. I also get palpitations and I find that they get really bad if I don't eat bananas or sweet potatoes. I haven't been able to figure out what is causing them yet exactly.
 

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Hi everyone,
I am a 40 year old male.
I have been vegan about 5 months (straight from omni) and have been getting heart palpitations the last two months. These appear to be mostly PVCs, with also PACs and occasional short periods of afib. These irregular heartbeats are completely absent when I am sleeping or exercising. However, during the day when not exercising, I will experience about 5000-15000 PVCs, i.e. they are present more or less constantly.

I have normal blood results, am not overweight, exercise regularly, normal blood pressure, no diabetes, non-smoker, have now quit all alcohol and caffeine, tried magnesium supplementation, tried taurine supplementation.

I am now looking at nutrition and have three "suspicious" items.
1) vegan multi-vitamin. This includes 100%RDA of iron. Before, I was not taking any supplemental iron.
2) soy products. I've been eating more soy products, but not daily. However, there was a time about three years ago that I was drinking soy milk, and I don't remember experiencing any problems.
3) almond milk. I never drank almond milk before, but am now having it daily with cereal. I don't think I've ever had any problems with almonds though.

I believe those are the main additions to my diet since going vegan. If anyone has any experience with irregular heartbeats in conjunction with diet, I would love to hear about it. I would especially like to know how long it took after eliminating the culprit food for the irregularities to disappear.

I found a previous discussion about this here:
Soy And Heart Palpitations
Since that was an old thread, I decided to start a new one.

Kind regards..
Hi, I just ate a cheese steak made from soy products and my h/r increase a whole lot fir the first time. I know it was related to what I ate because it was my first time eating this particular product
 

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Update

Hi Everyone,

thanks for the replies. Here is a quick update. I tried cutting out different foods/supplements, changing B12 supplement, stopping all supplements, exercising more, exercising less, etc. Nothing made the least difference.

Finally the cardiologist suggested a beta-blocker (Metoprolol). I've been taking it four days now and the "extra" beats have gone from 5%--30% (varying by day) to <0.2%. Also, there have been no episodes of afib which had been almost daily. The side effect is that my already low resting heart rate was sent down to the mid/low 40s, but I'm not dizzy or fatigued. So, I am happy although somewhat disappointed that I couldn't find any "natural" remedy. I suppose some heart cells just decided to go rogue...

Best,
 

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Hi, I just ate a cheese steak made from soy products and my h/r increase a whole lot fir the first time. I know it was related to what I ate because it was my first time eating this particular product
Hi I'm a former professional athlete and this happened to me. I have been recommended a short term beta blocker, but I am reluctant. How is it going for you?
Can you exercise normally and drink coffee?
 

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Hi everyone,
I am a 40 year old male.
I have been vegan about 5 months (straight from omni) and have been getting heart palpitations the last two months. These appear to be mostly PVCs, with also PACs and occasional short periods of afib. These irregular heartbeats are completely absent when I am sleeping or exercising. However, during the day when not exercising, I will experience about 5000-15000 PVCs, i.e. they are present more or less constantly.

I have normal blood results, am not overweight, exercise regularly, normal blood pressure, no diabetes, non-smoker, have now quit all alcohol and caffeine, tried magnesium supplementation, tried taurine supplementation.

I am now looking at nutrition and have three "suspicious" items.
1) vegan multi-vitamin. This includes 100%RDA of iron. Before, I was not taking any supplemental iron.
2) soy products. I've been eating more soy products, but not daily. However, there was a time about three years ago that I was drinking soy milk, and I don't remember experiencing any problems.
3) almond milk. I never drank almond milk before, but am now having it daily with cereal. I don't think I've ever had any problems with almonds though.

I believe those are the main additions to my diet since going vegan. If anyone has any experience with irregular heartbeats in conjunction with diet, I would love to hear about it. I would especially like to know how long it took after eliminating the culprit food for the irregularities to disappear.

I found a previous discussion about this here:
Soy And Heart Palpitations
Since that was an old thread, I decided to start a new one.

Kind regards..
I'm a 46 years old male and I'm pretty active I went vegan noticed alot of stomach discomfort/ acid reflux when I stopped meat I took labs when I was about 30 days in. Long story short, I started experiencing palpitations and shortness of breath. I went to the ER and my lungs and heart are good. I started researching that palpitations can come with the change and diet. I hate the feeling though.
 
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