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Autoimmune disease? This is my experiment...

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  • #16
    Okay, it's been 4 weeks since I began this WOE. Here is my update:

    Lupus symptoms - I feel fantastic. I get a little stiff and sore at about 10 pm but as I have mentioned earlier, it's gone by morning. One morning last week I woke up and the bottoms of my feet were incredibly inflamed and it initially hurt to walk. In thinking why this may have happened, I did eat out for lunch the day before. I remained paleo/primal and had a large salad with roasted lamb. Delish but I think that the extra salt and probably some type of vegetable oil (not straight olive) did me in. It is so much easier controlling my symptoms by feeding myself! I used to love eating out but know I'm just worried about what it will do to me by the next day. I'm at a point now where I need to know exactly what is in my food, I need that control and am actually embracing and really starting to love cooking for my family.

    Overall well-being - I am feeling fantastic, really! I'm a lot more energetic, my lethargy seems to be something that is quickly becoming my past. I'm doing a lot more, it may be that it's the start of spring but I am more enthusiastic about everything - including housework! I'm getting my kids outside as much as possible (between the rain and snow) and walking a lot more and playing more!

    Weight loss - weight loss seems to be on fritz. I've actually gained a pound since last week. This has made me a little stressed but I know now that it's just not worth it. I've been reading around the blogosphere and most people say to ditch the scale and base your progress on body measurements. I've been weighing myself every morning and evening. ENOUGH!! I now have 3 body measurements that I'd like to share. I have lost a total of 6" in 4 weeks and I think that's pretty great!

    Date Neck Bicep Forearm Chest Waist Hips Thigh Calf
    03/22/2011 -.25" -.5" -.5" -1" -.5" -1.25" -.75" -1.25"
    to 04/04/2011

    Exercise - I am still following the PBF routine and I've been walking a bit more. I have a lot more fun playing with my kids as they are loving the new me!

    All in all, this has been a real eye opener. I'm about half way through Taube's "Good Calories, Bad Calories" and I'm mad but happy I found this WOE and am able to educate myself and my family on what is truly the best way to eat and live for health and longevity.
    Follow my journey: http://paleoforlupus.blogspot.com/

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    • #17
      @paleoforlupus: please ditch the scale and the incessant measuring. It will only add stress when the numbers aren't to your liking. If you focus on wellness, the pounds will come off. I think it's very important for those of us with health issues to give our bodies time to heal and to be kind to ourselves. I totally relate to what you are saying about your kids loving the new you. I've been much more active with my daughter, jumping on the trampoline, etc. I do feel that this lifestyle is giving me so much, and I'm so grateful.
      True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington. ~Anonymous
      The worst carrot is better than the best candybar.--TornadoGirl

      Comment


      • #18
        Hi Paleoforlupus, you are SOOOOO in the right place!!!

        I agree with Shat, ditch the scales except for maybe an occasional check on your progress. Weight loss for me was/is something that came in surges, most noticeable in my pant size Additionally, if you're putting on muscle, the shape of your body will change without seeing a change on the scale.

        OK, because I'm a lazy butt, and technically I should be working right now, I'm just going to cut/paste my story from another autoimmune thread (psoriatric arthritis). I really hope you stick with the PB - the best is yet to come!!!

        I'm 39 and was diagnosed about 5 years ago with rheumatoid arthritis (and IBS; initially it was assumed I had Crohn's disease because of my overall symptoms). My understanding is that PA is very much like RA, with added skin issues.

        I went primal almost 4 years ago. My results have been nothing short of life changing!! I was considering that I might have to go on disability (and I was involved in sports all of my life previously); now I am doing all of the sports I was involved in before and I have an active life with minimal impact from RA! Of course, I still have 'bad' days, but believe me when I tell you that my 'bad' days now are what every single day was like before I went primal!!

        However, it took quite a while for significant changes in joint pain/swelling to appear. Initially, I only noted that if I 'cheated' by eating anything with grains or SUGAR it would INCREASE my pain and swelling the following day; it took about six months of being strictly primal before I began to notice big improvements in joint pain/swelling. (Boy, pain will change your thought process when it comes to 'cheating'.) I did have an improvement in fatigue and IBS within a week of going primal.

        I'll reiterate what others have said about the importance of vit D and strict primal eating. Another huge factor for me has been weight lifting; I believe that the combination of increasing blood flow and strengthening muscles/tendons is key to keeping and improving joint function and mobility. I don't do any 'isolation' lifts, only full range of movement lifts (ie. squats, overhead presses, etc - in other words, follow Mark's suggestions) Start slow, and if you're not familiar with weight lifting, get help from a fitness trainer to make sure you are performing lifts correctly, since you can hurt yourself with improper form. For me, initially, the weight lifting was not comfortable, but I would notice improvement the following day in my mobility, and, like with the sugar/grain, I noted that skipping several work outs in a row would cause an increase in my joint pain. Four years down the road, I'm lifting about 3 times the weight I started with, and it feels GOOD to push my body - I look forward to my work outs!

        I also agree that you should pursue the medical route; RA (and I assume PA) can cause joint damage, and you want to prevent/slow that damage. My insurance made me do a 'trial' with methotrexate before I could go to the more expensive biologics (I'm on Enbrel). Currently, I take NSAIDs (this year I was able to cut to 1/2 the total amount I was previously using) and Enbrel only. Additionally, I take fish oil, vit E, vit D and probiotics (I take the probiotics one week on, one week off, and that seems to work well for me). I'll also totally plug Mark's Primal Calm as an excellent stress management tool.

        Oh, and I had put on a lot of weight initially with dropping all the sports because of RA - now, my body looks better than it did in my 20's!!
        A ship in harbor is safe - but that is not what ships are for. ~John A. Shedd

        Comment


        • #19
          Paleoforlupus, congratulations, it sounds like this is really working for you, as I have found it has for me too. I am also around 3-4 weeks into the process, and I can't see myself turning back. Eating out is not as much fun as it used to be, and I am also really enjoying cooking for my family these days too. I wish you tons of continued success!
          Karin

          A joyful heart is good medicine

          He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

          Mmmmm. Real food is good.

          My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

          Comment


          • #20
            Okay, so I just got home from my rheumatologist appointment. I'm am so freaking mad!! I told her I was feeling great and she commented on how great my hands look and that I have full, painfree range of motion in my arms. I said that since I started a new diet, everything has changed for the better. She asked which diet and I told her "Paleo". She knew exactly what I was talking about and says, "that paleo diet is going to put me out of business," and then proceeds to ask if I eliminated all grains or just some. I tell her "all" and she says, "you must have a gluten sensitivity then".

            She has never, ever, in the many years of seeing her, ever mentioned anything to me about gluten. She knew I was trying to help myself through diet when I went vegan (pumping myself full of wheat, oats, soy and every other carb known to man - to the tune of probably 85-90% of my diet). But never thought to mention the paleo diet. I asked why she didn't mention it to me and she says that most people just don't change routines. Me, killing myself being vegan. It is absolutely her responsibility as a doctor to educate and inform and it's my decision if I want to try a particular diet or follow through on her advice. Ahhhhh! So instead of letting me in on this gluten-free/dietary goldmine, she stood idlely by as I got sicker and prescribed more meds, sicker and more meds. I couldn't get out of bed most mornings, I couldn't pick my baby up out of her crib. I'm just furious. Apparently my blood pressure is pretty low (nurse took it 3 times to be sure), 90/65. It's normally about 120/80, when I asked about that she says that a low carb diet tends to reduce general inflammation in the body and blood pressure usually drops a bit and that it's fine. Even that little nugget would have helped me out and possibly put me on a path to low carb.

            I just think that if my cousin didn't join a crossfit gym and mention the diet to me in passing on a facebook status, I would still be miserable, in tremendous pain, tremendous stiffness, forcing myself to be vegan (being hungry all the time) because that's the CW of what is healthy. You truely have to be your own advocate.

            The good news is that I am starting to titrate down off of the last lupus med I'm on! I'm cutting the dosage in half, so if all goes well, I may be med free in a few months for the first time in 3 1/2 years.
            Follow my journey: http://paleoforlupus.blogspot.com/

            Comment


            • #21
              Well, i can see why you would be furious at your doctor. OMG, i can't believe she said that paleo would put her out of business!!!! Of course, with her attitude, she deserves to be out of business. I had a rheumatologist for several years who only tested my blood and prescribed more and more meds. Never any talk about diet.
              True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington. ~Anonymous
              The worst carrot is better than the best candybar.--TornadoGirl

              Comment


              • #22
                Good for you! Yay paleoforlupus!! I love stories like this. From personal experience, and from what I'm reading on these boards, going primal does really help autoimmune diseases. It is SO refreshing and inspiring! Keep posting on your progress (pretty please).
                No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.
                -Buddha

                Comment


                • #23
                  It's great to hear of your progress

                  I'm hoping to get my dad on this WOE and off of diabetes meds.

                  I've been doing this for about 5 weeks and although I didn't have any medical issues, I've never felt better.
                  Newcomers: If you haven't read the book, at least read this thread ... and all the links!
                  http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread17722.html

                  F/49/5'4"
                  Jan. 1, 2011: 186.6 lbs PBSW Mar. 1, 2011: 175.8 lbs
                  CW: 146.8 lbs
                  GW 140 lbs
                  A proud member of PETA: People Eating Tasty Animals

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Apparently my blood pressure is pretty low (nurse took it 3 times to be sure), 90/65. It's normally about 120/80, when I asked about that she says that a low carb diet tends to reduce general inflammation in the body and blood pressure usually drops a bit and that it's fine. Even that little nugget would have helped me out and possibly put me on a path to low carb.
                    This is unbelieveable. She knows that a low carb diet reduces inflammation? Then WHY DOESN'T SHE PUT ALL OF HER PATIENTS ON A LOW CARB DIET? I want to sue all of medicine for malpractice.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      This is so inspiring; thank you for sharing your story with us!

                      I'll be reading your blog & asking my mother to read it too. She has a form of myositis, which is another autoimmune disorder.

                      Thanks again, and hope you continue to heal!

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by shat View Post
                        @paleoforlupus: please ditch the scale and the incessant measuring. It will only add stress when the numbers aren't to your liking. If you focus on wellness, the pounds will come off. I think it's very important for those of us with health issues to give our bodies time to heal and to be kind to ourselves. I totally relate to what you are saying about your kids loving the new you. I've been much more active with my daughter, jumping on the trampoline, etc. I do feel that this lifestyle is giving me so much, and I'm so grateful.
                        @Shat: You are totally right about the scales. No longer weighing myself but I am going to keep a record of my measurements. I want to monitor my physical progress along with my illness/wellness, state of mind and overall well-being. Healing myself is my main priority, everything else is gravy. Thanks for the check. I need that every once in a while
                        Follow my journey: http://paleoforlupus.blogspot.com/

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          I trained myself away from the scale for the most part but I do occasionally measure. Just try not to do it so much and focus on how you are feeling physically and even how you feel in your skin. This has really helped me not be so number obsessed. My "muffin top" has shrunk considerably and my legs don't rub together as much so I know I'm getting there because I do feel so much more comfortable. I think women, particularly, let stupid numbers ruin our happiness (weight, clothing size, age). It's how we feel and to a lesser extent how we feel about how we look that matters. Self acceptance is important also.

                          Originally posted by paleoforlupus View Post
                          @Shat: You are totally right about the scales. No longer weighing myself but I am going to keep a record of my measurements. I want to monitor my physical progress along with my illness/wellness, state of mind and overall well-being. Healing myself is my main priority, everything else is gravy. Thanks for the check. I need that every once in a while
                          True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington. ~Anonymous
                          The worst carrot is better than the best candybar.--TornadoGirl

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            paleoforlupus: I'm furious, too, just reading about your rheumatologist! Un-freaking-believable!

                            I have also found that CW oils spark my lupus (though not as much as nightshades). Makes me shy away from eating out so much. The inflammatory oils are sooo bad for us. Had a real bad run-in with, of all things, mustard. I'm still learning.

                            (P.S. Yay, no scale.)
                            "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              I just re-read your whole post about your doctor. What a disgusting disgrace. You really need to write her a letter and say everything to her that you just told us.
                              "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by shat View Post
                                I think women, particularly, let stupid numbers ruin our happiness (weight, clothing size, age).
                                and they say that boys are the ones who are good at math!
                                Karin

                                A joyful heart is good medicine

                                He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

                                Mmmmm. Real food is good.

                                My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

                                Comment

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