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Joint trouble - what to give up first?

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  • Joint trouble - what to give up first?

    OK, so I'm 37, and while joints periodically ache or crack, they're not deformed and don't stop me doing anything - apart from my right big toe. It's hurt, on and off, for almost a decade. Since going Primal, I've noticed the joint at the base of the toe is visibly 'arthritically' swollen. I get pain fairly regularly in that and the mid-toe joint.

    I say I've noticed the deformity since going Primal, because it's also since then I've started going barefoot and wearing sandals! So I don't know for sure whether the change in diet has caused a change for the worse, or if this is just general progression that I'm noticing more because I'm moving more.

    But could it be because I gave up grains? Started eating meat, and more protein generally? Started exercising?

    And to tackle it, what do I change first? I could...
    • give up red meat
    • cut back on protein
    • give up nightshades
    • give up dairy
    • change to raw or goat's dairy

    Not that I want to do any of these, but I do still want to be able to walk on this in another 10 or 20 years' time. (Not to mention taking my weight on my toes now for press-ups etc.)

    I could start trying things from the list at random - but some knowledgeable advice would be really welcome. Thank you!

  • #2
    Do NOT give up red meat. Red meat is important - eat more of it. Don't cut back on protein, either.

    Giving up grains should have improved your pain generally. If it's just the one joint, the single toe - have a doctor take a look at it. To me it sounds like it's broken, or been broken and healed badly. I doubt it has anything to do with diet.
    Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

    Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


    Ditch the scale!: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread33283.html

    My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

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    • #3
      Thanks, Griff.

      No, not a break - I know what you mean, I have a finger that was broken when I was a teenager, and that's starting to become a royal pain now (I'm a 'cellist). This is different - started 10 years back with blinding pain in both big toes after walking too far in the wrong kind of shoes. At the time, the doctor said this was just normal ageing (I was under 30 and could hardly walk); I solved the problem at the time with a change of shoes and some essential oils and haven't mentioned it to a doctor since. Could be time to try again, I suppose, especially since the essential oil blend isn't really doing the job any more.

      I also doubt the dietary change has made things any worse, but it certainly hasn't improved matters. Looks like I finally found something that going Primal doesn't cure.

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      • #4
        Are you worried about uric acid - gout connection with red meat / purines?

        I don't know much about that other than what allopathic medical teachers have taught me -- which is to decrease meat when you have gout. That said, I've heard there are other theories about this.

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        • #5
          I know there are some better educated people on here who might suggest giving up nightshades since this involves joints. I hope they'll answer you.

          Also, I'm NOT suggesting giving up meat, btw; I'm just saying that's what traditional medicine would recommend since it involves the big toe and doctors often think anything involving the big toe might be gout.

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          • #6
            My ex-girlfriend is really good at rolling joints. Unfortunately, I'm not into that sort of thing though and it's part of what broke us up.
            http://www.facebook.com/daemonized

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            • #7
              Not really... it's the classic joint for gout, but I'm not screaming in pain or anything, so I don't suppose that's it. Just wondering if I'd done something to make it worse, as well as what I can do to make it better.

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              • #8
                You could ditch the dairy and the nightshades to see if there's any improvement. Ditching dairy is a good idea anyhow.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Daemonized View Post
                  My ex-girlfriend is really good at rolling joints. Unfortunately, I'm not into that sort of thing though and it's part of what broke us up.
                  So you gave up the girlfriend and kept the lamb's liver? Sounds reasonable.

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                  • #10
                    Maybe just giving up unfermented dairy. I am not into milk anymore but I still like whey and cheese.
                    http://www.facebook.com/daemonized

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Daemonized View Post
                      Maybe just giving up unfermented dairy. I am not into milk anymore but I still like whey and cheese.
                      My only dairy is the very occasional bit of cheese, and yoghourt I make from full-fat Jersey milk, with a layer of rich yellow cream. I was rather hoping someone would tell me to eat more of this...

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Hilary View Post
                        My only dairy is the very occasional bit of cheese, and yoghourt I make from full-fat Jersey milk, with a layer of rich yellow cream. I was rather hoping someone would tell me to eat more of this...
                        So yummy.

                        Have you done research into nightshades? I don't know much about this, but I know some people really have problems with these.

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                        • #13
                          Hilary,

                          Before you give up anything---are you taking fish oil and vit D??? I found when I fixed my omega ratio, and raised my D3 levels, all my creaky sore joints started feeling better. I would hate for you to give up yummy things like tomatoes if you like them, and if they're not really causing your problem.

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                          • #14
                            Being a pepper addict such as I am, I find that I can't fathom giving up nightshades.
                            http://www.facebook.com/daemonized

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                            • #15
                              If it's just your toe, I'd suggest having it medically evaluated before making dietary changes. I write as someone with severe osteoarthritis who has been controlling pain for years with diet and exercise--but I knew what I had before I started treating it via dietary adjustments.

                              If it's only the foot, I'd suggest seeing a good podiatrist because I've gotten better treatment from them for foot problems than from orthopedists.

                              If it's your joints in general, you might consider a physiatrist--they are MDs who specialize in rehabilitation medicine and are usually very helpful in terms of appropriate PT, etc.

                              In terms of generally reducing inflammation, making sure I had sufficient omega 3s has been critical. Abstaining from all sugar, including artificial sweeteners, has also been important. If I indulge in sugar at any time (special occasion dessert, for example), I can feel the pain the next day.

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