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For those of you who had bloating issues...

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  • For those of you who had bloating issues...

    How long did it take for you to see improvement once going primal?

    I'm only on week 1 and I definitely didn't/don't expect to see improvement this quickly (or even within a few weeks) but I'm just curious as to how long it took all of you?

    My lower stomach is almost constantly bloated, to the point of discomfort. My stomach sticks out like a basketball - I'm not overweight and I don't think it's visceral fat. I'm fairly certain it's bloating because I have some (rare but happy) days when it's not sticking out at all. I'm hoping primal eating will help me figure it out!

    P.S. I wasn't sure where to post this - feel free to tell me to move the thread!
    Last edited by PumpkinHead; 05-30-2011, 06:08 PM. Reason: added P.S.

  • #2
    I'm new also, so probably not the best qualified to answer, but I experienced the same problem of bloating when I first started. I am just under a month in and the bloating is gone now. It seemed to gradually go away sometime between week 2 and 3. It freaked me out at first, enough that I thought Primal must not be right for me, but it seems to have corrected itself -- whatever "it" was!


    • #3
      All I can give you is what happened with me. And I had bloating getting worse and worse over a period of a couple of years until I was severely bloated every day except maybe 1 day a month. And I mean 7 months pregnant bloated (I know this because I've been 7 months pregnant before.)

      Fixing it was relatively easy, but required eliminating a lot of stuff that for ME was irritating. Back right before I discovered primal I went on an elimination diet with my doc's okay to figure out what was up. I eliminated all grains, beans, dairy, soda, alcohol, etc, etc. for four weeks. Then I added back in things one at a time to see what I had a reaction to. Within the first week my bloating was almost gone. For me... it seems that sodas, alcohol, grains and most dairy are the big culprits. I can do some yogurt, butter (ghee) and sour cream on occasion without any issues, but most cheese I can't (tho I like some goat cheese from time to time). Mostly eliminating the soda/alcohol was a BIG help.

      Now... if you've had a LONG period of bloating, your digestive system needs time to heal. You might see symptom relief in a week or a few weeks, but to really get it all healed up some time is usually needed. Also adding in good stuff like bone broths and good probiotics will help. Look into the GAPS diet-- it's an example of a diet that is very gut soothing, so good for people with long term gut issues.

      I noticed nowadays it's mostly not bloaty, but occasionally I'll drink something I shouldn't and it acts up, but it's the rarity not the every day and for that I am ETERNALLY grateful. I know how awful the feeling is-- but there really is hope. But being 100% at first is going to be key. Remember that your digestive system is compromised-- so you can't do everything that healthy people can, at least not at first. But slowly you can add things back in, see what stuff you REALLY can't handle, and what stuff was just irritating you because your system was a mess. It's a process, but it's WELL worth it!!
      sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid


      • #4
        I saw improvement very quickly too. I think the biggest problem for me was grains. For about two years before going primal I was already eating gluten-free, but even though that did help my digestive problems continued to plague me, with bloating being one of the more annoying symptoms. Once I eliminated grains altogether I was amazed at how much that helped. Within just a couple of weeks I could see definite improvement in my symptoms. I think my system is still in process of healing because I still don't feel 100% normal every day, but I find that the stricter I am about eating primally and avoiding the trouble makers the less frequently my symptoms return. It's definitely a huge incentive to stay on track!
        We must learn to do what the leaf and the whale and the wind do of their own nature. We must learn to keep the balance. Having intelligence, we must not act in ignorance. Having choice, we must not act without responsibility
        -Sparrowhawk, The Farthest Shore by Ursula K. LeGuin


        • #5
          Pumpkin, you didn't really say if you had the bloating issues BEFORE you went Primal. If you did, it is probably the grains like Anave said.

          I found out I was gluten intolerant when starting this diet. I noticed at about week 2 or so that I wasn't constantly bloated any more. Then I accidentally ate some wheat one day (it was flour in some soup) and the bloating came right back along with the fatigue.
          Another thing (if you do notice a connection with the wheat) is that you might also react to casein in dairy. Your body treats casein in the same way it treats gluten. I still had some days of bloating so I've been dairy free for the last week to see if that helps.

          I also learned that the probiotic I was taking wasn't quite strong enough. The GAPS diet website has a lot of good information about that.

          You just have to be really careful about what you eat and read every label. When you eat out you really can't be sure what is in it.


          • #6
            I've also had bloating for a year or two and thought it might be dairy-related or possibly wheat-related. I'm only 2 days in on the PB, so I can't really give any good advice pertaining to the subject, but thought I'd throw it out there that there's another person who has experienced the same thing. After every time I eat, my stomach expands so much that it looks like I'm 7 months pregnant too. I end up wearing loose shirts to restaurants and to work because I don't want anyone to see my stomach bulge. I've also tried laxative teas, suppositories, anything I can think of because I figured it was just because I didn't go to the bathroom that often. I'm hoping by cutting out all grains it will help eliminate the bathroom problem and also the bloating problem.


            • #7
              Jill I completely empathize. I also would wear pants a size larger and baggy shirts because after a meal my stomach would bloat and the waist of my pants would cut into my stomach. With Primal which I have been on a month now, my stomach doesn't bulge out to that extent any longer and the loss of some fat around my midsection has helped too! My pants are all a little baggy now.

              I have to say I love not getting bloated to that extreme any longer and I will never go back to eating grains. I do miss the joy of eating cake or bread but it is just not worth the effects of it.

              On the consipation front, I was hoping this diet would help in that regard but it really hasn't yet. I stopped all the fiber supplements and laxatives and I'm only taking strong probiotics now. I realize that it is going to take a long time for my gut to heal itself after all those years I destroyed it with gluten. Just have to keep plugging on!


              • #8
                Daria... it does take time to adjust the poo after going primal.

                I do take magnesium citrate on occasion to help this along. It works better than fiber (and is easier on the guts), but still can keep things moving so you're not miserable.

                Just an idea!!
                sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid


                • #9
                  The other thing that might help those that have some constipation is to eat some coconut oil in the morning before breakfast and some at lunch too if you feel you need more. I just take a tablespoon in the morning. If you are not use to it don't take too much at once cuz you definitely will be sitting on the pot if you do. I use the Spectrum brand virgin CO. You will find some brands taste better than others.


                  • #10
                    My apologies for the late response - I completely forgot I posted this! Thanks for all your experiences - I'm 1 1/2 weeks in and am finding the bloating is still the same. The bloating issues were definitely there pre-Primal. I'm thinking I just need to give my gut time to heal, but I'm hoping to see some improvement within the first month! According to most of you, that's not completely unheard of.

                    I haven't been able to really isolate any one particular food group in regards to bloating. I've done the dairy free thing in the past (while still eating gluten/grains) and didn't notice a huge difference. Is a casein reaction similar to lactose intolerance? I've gone pretty much dairy free this time around in the PB diet, but I'm still using butter. Should I try cutting that out too?

                    I also think I will try the coconut oil route for constipation! At this point I haven't added in coconut oil, just unsweetened coconut flakes & milk. Thanks for the tip!

                    This is definitely a hard process but I'm excited to (maybe) finally figure out what's causing all my discomfort!


                    • #11
                      This is great to hear! I'm definitely struggling with the same problem....I had to buy "tent dresses" just to feel comfortable, LOL! Glad to know it WILL go away, eventually!


                      • #12
                        I noticed immediate improvement when I went primal. I think it was caused by the combination of both grains and the seed oils which I cut out at the same time. Do make sure that you are eating clean and not unintentionally sabotaging your diet with processed dressings etc.

                        Since then I have discovered a few items that even though they are primal still cause me discomfort, depending on how much I consume of them. Cashew nuts. Cauliflower. Raw carrot. Even raw apple if I eat a large one. I now tend to cook most of my veges pretty thoroughly for this reason. I'm not big on salads.

                        Fortunately I'm fine with dairy because I LOVE it.
                        Annie Ups the Ante