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Post-op Primal journal

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  • Post-op Primal journal

    I've been mostly Primal for about 6 months now, I guess it's time for a journal.

    I had RNY gastric bypass 7 years ago. Interestingly, the post-op diet I was given was similar to Primal--I avoided bread, pasta, rice, sugar, etc. for a year after my surgery and lost 130 lbs. Unfortunately, the advice from my surgeon when I was starting to go below my goal weight was to add "healthy" carbs like whole grains into my diet. I ended up with a SIBO and was on a weight gain/loss rollercoaster for several years. I wore a medical bracelet and carried around a blood sugar monitor because I had serious reactive hypoglycemia. When I ran across MDA and bought the book, I was excited. Then reading Chris Kresser's website (particularly the stuff about SIBO's and GERD) made it click even more and there was no going back for me--all the pain, all the nasty things that I thought were "side effects" of my surgery (horrid gas, unpredictable and painful bowels, reactive hypoglycemia) didn't have to be!

    Switching to primal eating wasn't terribly difficult because we had recently changed our diet to avoid artificial/processed foods, ate mostly organic/local and even bought some grass fed meat from our CSA. My husband is slowly but surely getting on board with me, and our 4yo is on board simply because she eats what we eat. She does get to eat what she wants when we're out/away from home though, and I struggle daily with her tendency to be a fruititarian. I am a SAHM (plan to homeschool) and we live full-time in our RV, so cooking primally can be an adventure sometimes!

    Anyway, here are my stats:
    32 year old female, 5'7

    HW (pre-Primal, my pre-surgery weight was 277) 202
    CW - 177
    GW - 150ish? I was (excess) skin and bones at my lowest weight post-surgery, so I'm not sure where my "fit weight" should be yet.

    Today: I've had coffee with heavy cream and a "breakfast muffin" - local free range eggs, pastured pork sausage, kale, tomatoes, Italian seasonings, and (unfortunately not local) shredded mozz and parm.

    Plans: Lunch will probably be tuna salad or lunch meat w/crudites. Dinner will be a slight cheat--Earth Fare is having kid's eat free night, and we're busy. I'll have either the sushi or salad bar.

    Exercise: Heading to the YMCA once DH gets home from work. Sprint/walk for 30 minutes (modified Ct5k) and then a little weight lifting. We just renewed our membership and started working out this week, it's been great and we look forward to it every day. Plus the childcare gives our 4yo some time to hang out with other kids and get away from us stuffy adults.
    Last edited by meeshar; 02-26-2013, 08:12 AM. Reason: adding username to title

  • #2
    Oh wow. Sprinting is so much better than jogging, but boy does my calf hurt. Only the left one, so I'm pretty sure that it happened when I tried to take a curve too fast (the direction on the indoor track changes each day, today was counterclockwise). Still, I'm glad that I did it--I've never been a jogger, it rattles my bones. I was forcing myself to do it because I wanted to build up some sort of endurance, but as soon as I took off sprinting and started *really* using my natural stride in my minimal shoes, I was home. We did some weight lifting as well, but I'm starting out *very* slowly with that as I have never been one to have upper body strength.

    Dinner was horrid, it's my husband's last week of eating SAD, and rather than making the drive to Earth Fare we went to "the trough" (aka Golden Corral). I figured it would be ok, as they have a salad bar and meat. I was in the toilet not 20 minutes after we got home. Oh well. Not to mention how unnatural these huge buffet restaurants are in the grand scheme of things... I seriously doubt we'll go back to anything like this again. It actually made me shudder a bit.

    Tired, achy, but I can't wait to do it again tomorrow! Actually, I think we agreed to swim tomorrow, but that's still good. I can't wait to sprint on Monday though!


    • #3
      Hi Meeshar! I know this is only a tiny bit of what you discussed, but your mention of "natural stride" and not being a jogger really hit home. Every time I run, I can feel a faster pace that just feels right for me, but I always go slower because I want to be able to run longer without stopping. So that's encouraging; thank you! Good luck with the weightlifting -- I absolutely love it, and it makes me feel super awesome when I'm squatting some weights and some stupid muscle-bound dude is over with the hand weights working on his biceps. Oh well. And I wish you luck with your husband and your daughter; I hope they make the transition to eating primally quite easily (actually, that all of you do!). Have fun swimming!


      • #4
        Originally posted by songhunter View Post
        Hi Meeshar! I know this is only a tiny bit of what you discussed, but your mention of "natural stride" and not being a jogger really hit home. Every time I run, I can feel a faster pace that just feels right for me, but I always go slower because I want to be able to run longer without stopping. So that's encouraging; thank you! Good luck with the weightlifting -- I absolutely love it, and it makes me feel super awesome when I'm squatting some weights and some stupid muscle-bound dude is over with the hand weights working on his biceps. Oh well. And I wish you luck with your husband and your daughter; I hope they make the transition to eating primally quite easily (actually, that all of you do!). Have fun swimming!
        I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one that doesn't get into jogging! I'd much rather sprint, cool down, and do it again. It fits so much better with me than trying to trudge along at a pace that just doesn't feel right. I've never worn proper running shoes (aside from a disastrous attempt last summer) so I'm pretty sure I have a barefoot-ish style--I do know that my heels don't touch the ground when I sprint, I feel light and agile despite my weight. It was awesome.

        I am trying to get into the weight lifting, DH did weight training when he was overseas and has been coaching me, he never got into the muscle-bound stuff, more of a strength training mindset, so I'm following his lead right now. I think he finally gets the Primal diet now, and hopefully we'll be a happy primal family soon! Swimming will be fun, I think we need something active that isn't punishing at least one day a week.


        • #5
          Today was a fail day. Female issues are at a crescendo today--had to force myself out of bed, and even then contemplating anything other than attending to my family's basic needs was out of the question. I have a hunch that this is the result of cheating way too much in the past month when we were on a mini-vacation. I was rather late this cycle, and I know that cysts/PCOS can be related to blood sugar control. We didn't go swimming, DH had to work late and I wasn't really feeling it anyway. Still, I love/hate this day, because ever since I got my IUD and have been off artificial hormones, (and went Primal, of course) my periods are predictable and...honest I guess? I have one really crappy, heavy, crampy day (usually the first or second day) where I want the world to end, and then the rest are cake and it's over in no time. ::crosses fingers::

          Breakfast: Same as yesterday--egg, sausage, kale, mozz, tomato "muffin" and coffee (americano) w/heavy cream
          Lunch: lunch meat, cheese, carrots
          Failed pick-me-up: leftover espresso from breakfast with local non-homo whole milk and a bit of English Toffee flavored stevia drops.
          Dinner: At least I managed a good dinner--Indian chicken makhani (butter chicken) with fresh English peas from the CSA, served over riced cauliflower.
          Period cheat dessert: Dark chocolate Lindt ball


          • #6
            Ok, I totally abandoned this after just a couple of days, fail. But I'm back! At least I didn't completely fall off the Primal wagon, just stopped journaling.

            Here's the hard part...stats.
            33yo female, 5'7

            HW - (277) 202
            CW - 189
            GW - 150ish

            Yes, I gained 12 lbs. despite being Primal. We moved out of our RV and into a house back in July, canceled our Y membership, and promptly sat our butts back down in front of the TV. I'm exaggerating a little--we chose not to get cable TV so in reality we only watch TV once or twice a week (we download our faves like Walking Dead from Amazon or Vudu), and occasionally rent movies. I do regret canceling the Y membership though, as much as we promised that we'd sprint around the neighborhood and do weights in the garage, it's much harder to be motivated to do it, particularly during winter when we want to just hibernate. I also need to cut back on dairy, almond flour goodies, and excess fat (calories). I may eliminate dairy completely, as I've let what used to be a rule of only grass-fed, local, raw, etc. delve back into conventional crap when we can't afford/find the good stuff.

            Breakfast: Coffee (americano) with heavy cream, string cheese, and leftover grilled chicken breast topped with a sauce made with butter, garlic, heavy cream, and smoked paprika. All dairy was sadly conventional except the butter was Kerrygold. ::sigh:: Typing this out is helping me realize that I do seriously have a problem with the dairy.

            Lunch - more leftover chicken (had a cookout for DH's birthday this weekend) probably on a BAS this time. Will try my best to refrain from the cheese, maybe a wee bit of the raw milk organic cheddar we got at Aldi.

            Dinner - grassfed beef and/or pastured ground pork from a local farm. We have half a cauliflower and some broccoli leftover from the veggie tray, so that'll be the side. I'm on Chowstalker now trying to find a recipe...not feeling meatloaf though. Hm.


            • #7
              Ugh, the antibiotics I've been taking for a tooth infection have destroyed my guts in just a few days and I'm positive that I have a SIBO now. The symptoms are unmistakable and I'm having issues I haven't had in years. Just ordered some VSL#3 probiotics yesterday, hoping they come quickly. I'm afraid to leave the house for fear of needing a bathroom and not being able to get to it fast enough... It might be time for me to do a Whole30 or something like that since I'll need to stay away from the starches, sugar, and lactose if I want this to clear up quickly. I hate this, and it's all because of a stupid tooth that I should have had the filling replaced in years ago. Live and learn...painful lessons are good teachers I guess.

              Dinner last night ended up being pork chops that I picked up when we were out, unfortunately not pastured. The local farm is low on most everything right now and won't be processing until spring. I topped them with a quick sauce made with caramelized onions, garlic, chicken stock, and a splash of heavy cream. At this point, I'm just trying to use it up and get it out of the house. From now on, I'm not buying string cheese for my daughter's lunches, just raw milk or grass-fed hard cheese, which I am much less likely to snack on because I have to get it out and slice it. I'm planning on switching to bulletproof coffee tomorrow, hope I like it. I'll try it with Kerrygold and a bit of coconut oil until I can get some MCT.

              Ooh, forgot to add that we restarted PBF last night. I warmed up on our recumbent bike, and then did stage 1 exercises. The over-the-door pull up bar we found at a yard sale works surprisingly well. We've both fallen woefully out of shape since this summer, so we're starting slow, hopefully by the time the weather starts getting nice we'll be well on our way and ready for the multitude of fun outdoor activities in our area--hiking, paddling, etc... There's even a SUP place on the Tennessee River! It felt good to be even just a little active in the evening, and I'm sure we'll be up to speed in no time, especially once I get my guts sorted out.

              Today's food diary:
              Breakfast - Americano w/heavy cream and stevia, pastured pork breakfast sausage, pastured egg, topped with a quick pan gravy made from the drippings and a little chicken stock and cream.

              Snack - banana (failed attempt to get my guts to behave)

              Lunch - leftover pork chop, green beans

              Snack - evil, evil string cheese.

              Dinner - will be meatloaf made from grass fed ground beef and pastured pork, with a side of broccoli
              Last edited by meeshar; 02-26-2013, 11:57 AM. Reason: adding PBF


              • #8
                Welcome back. Hope you start to feel healthier soon as you get back into eating the right things (and not eating the wrong ones). Good luck.
                Annie Ups the Ante


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Annieh View Post
                  Welcome back. Hope you start to feel healthier soon as you get back into eating the right things (and not eating the wrong ones). Good luck.
                  Thanks, I've been Primal for over a year and strictly gluten free for a long time, but letting the bad dairy and starches creep in and letting the exercise fall to the wayside definitely hasn't helped anything. :P


                  • #10
                    I found a gastroenterologist on Paleo Physicians Network that is only a little over an hour away from me, so I made an appointment for next week. The symptoms are pretty severe, like the first time I had a SIBO years ago, and I fear it may require a round of gut-specific antibiotics to overcome it rather than just diet and probiotics. Plus I needed to see a gastro doc anyway because I'm due for a re-check endoscopy on my Barrett's esophagus.

                    Breakfast - bulletproof coffee made with Kerrygold and a tsp. of coconut oil and half the stevia I usually need in coffee. Mighty tasty! And it held me over until lunch no problem, which is good when most food hurts me.

                    Lunch - leftover meatloaf and broccoli. The broccoli hurt me, which makes sense as I spent my afternoon researching SIBO diets and that was a no-no.

                    Snack - whole milk Greek yogurt with a bit of stevia.

                    Dinner - salmon patties, green peas, rice for the rest of the family (ok, I had a smidge).

                    Oh, I ordered raw milk, raw milk kefir, and raw milk cheese for our cat today (haha). Will be picking it up from a drop-off this weekend, excited to see what it's like. Though I guess I may not be having it for a while if I'm going to cure this gut funk...


                    • #11
                      Looks like my thread has it's very own spammer. Joy...


                      • #12
                        Yet another day of intestinal distress, it's amazing how much something like this can drain you. I went back to bed after getting DH and DD out the door, and slept until 11am, which is very unusual for me. I wish my doc appointment were sooner, but I'll take what I can get.

                        Brunch - bulletproof coffee (Americano, tbsp. Kerrygold, tsp. coconut oil)

                        Late lunch - leftover salmon patties, green peas

                        Snack - made DD and her friend some popcorn after school. Non-GMO kernels, popped in a cast iron dutch oven on the stove in a mix of clarified butter and coconut oil. DD had never seen popcorn popping and thought it was the coolest thing ever. I had a handful because it smelled so good, but could tell quickly that my stomach was not going to like it and stopped.

                        Dinner - 3.25 lb. pastured chicken in the oven, butter/smoked paprika/garlic rubbed under the skin. Leftover veggies from throughout the week. Will make stock with the carcass.


                        • #13
                          Still dealing with stomach and gut pain, starting to wonder if I have an ulcer because having an empty stomach (or pouch in my case) is painful. Dinner yesterday was cod, seasoned with S&P and garlic powder and then dusted with coconut flour and pan fried. Served with oven roasted broccoli and cauliflower, I could only eat the cauliflower.

                          Breakfast - Earth Fare thick sliced bacon, nibbled on through the morning hours

                          Lunch - chicken and rice (I will fully admit that the stomach pain has me seeking neutral carbs)

                          Snack - raw, grass-fed Jersey cow milk kefir with a few drops of stevia to soothe my empty stomach while I cooked dinner

                          Dinner - pan seared and oven finished grass-fed sirloin tips, green beans, and scalloped sweet potatoes. (by scalloped, I mean I sliced them thin on the mandoline, then baked them in the oven in a sauce of heavy cream, butter, cinnamon, and a pinch of ground ginger.) The sweet potatoes were a bit much and mine are still sitting there waiting to be a late dessert or something, if I eat them at all.

                          Also, I'm thrilled that yesterday the doc's office called and they have an opening, so I'm going on Monday rather than Friday.

                          I don't mean to be so much of a negative Nancy, but I'm not having happy awesome Primal time right now, and it's a bit frustrating because I know that the anatomy I was so excited to have altered 8 years ago is why I'm having these problems now. If anyone here who happens to be considering gastric bypass reads this, I do NOT recommend it. Go Primal. Realize why what you're eating is wrong. I was a "model" patient according to my surgeon in Alabama, but that took just as much willpower as dieting did. Sure, it helps that I get horribly sick if I eat more than 10 grams of sugar, and even eating bread/rice/pasta made me feel like hell, but it's not worth it. If anything, my altered anatomy just punctuated intolerances that I already had. Serious buyers remorse here.


                          • #14
                            My new gastroenterologist is awesome. While I had to drive about an hour and 1/2 to see him, having a doctor that understands Primal/Paleo (and is paleo himself) is worth it. Instead of giving me a prescription for a PPI before doing any tests like most GI docs I've seen, he scheduled tests (an ultrasound and an EGD) and he recommended trying to repopulate my gut flora using homemade fermented foods/drinks first before going the antibiotic route. He's also familiar with the area farm that I got the raw milk kefir (for my cat) from. I have a friend overnighting a homemade kombucha scoby, so I'll be on my way with that soon.

                            Breakfast - Americano with raw cream (out of Kerrygold, going to the store today), 1 piece of thick-cut bacon, pastured egg, small amount of raw kefir to pad my stomach while taking my morning supplements.

                            Lunch - not sure, out of leftovers and low on most everything. I may stop by Panera while I'm out since they have their new "secret menu".

                            Dinner - I just threw a pound of grassfed ground beef in the fridge to thaw. I have a spaghetti squash and some sauce, so I guess I'm making the obvious.


                            • #15
                              I'm still here, I was sick over the weekend along with the rest of my family, thankfully it passed pretty quickly. Dentist finished my root canal yesterday, so my jaw is pretty achy. I have the EGD tomorrow, while my ulcer/SIBO symptoms have almost cleared up completely with just the kefir, kombucha, etc. I still need to be checked because of my Barrett's Esophagus. My diet has been so-so lately, I need to stop buying rice not just because I cave and end up eating it, but because my preschooler will gorge on it and not eat her meat/veggies. She gets plenty of good carbs elsewhere (fruit, veggies) so I don't think taking it out of our diet will hurt. I'm also back on the conventional heavy cream in my coffee, I bought it to make chicken tikka masala and have been using the remains. BP coffee is so stupidly easy though, so I have no excuse.

                              No stats, I'm not going to weigh myself until after I get things under control again.

                              Breakfast - Americano w/heavy cream and chocolate flavored stevia drops. Not really hungry yet.

                              Lunch - Possibly some leftover Thai coconut curry chicken soup. Hoping that the coconut milk doesn't go wonky with freezing/reheating.

                              Dinner - Just put out some grassfed ground beef to thaw, I'm thinking chili.