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I need to GAIN weight... and I need your help!!!

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  • I need to GAIN weight... and I need your help!!!

    Hey y'all,

    I'll make this as brief as I can, but it may get long, so I apologize in advance...

    I've been battling some severe digestive issues on & off for about 7 years, but this past February, it got REALLY bad, out of nowhere. Every time I eat, I experience pain, cramping, nausea, gas, bloating, constipation... the works. I'm also having night sweats, heart palpitations, fogginess, "tingly" hands & feet after eating, and mild insomnia (can't sleep more than 6 hours a night). I also have a strange tightening in my throat a couple hours after eating. [NOTE: My mother is hyPOthyroidic, and my dad is hyPERthyroidic. We're looking into the possibilitiy of a thyroid condition or Hashimoto's; still waiting on results.] Used to have on & off diarrhea, but not anymore (sorry if TMI). I've been in & out of ERs and doctor's offices, 2 CT scans, 2 endoscopies, 1 colonoscopy (this past Friday), numerous x-rays, blood tests, & urinalyses, and 1 stool test. All normal, all negative. Have only ruled out Crohn's & ulcerative colitis thanks to the colonoscopy. Waiting on biopsy results. Could be SIBO, but can't confirm yet. All in all, I've gotten the big bupkis as far as a diagnosis, except the ubiquitous "IBS." Boo. >P

    Stats: 31yo F, 5' tall, currently 95lbs. I've lost 20 pounds in a year from not being able to eat much of anything solid w/o having pain in my guts. Been on a liquid diet twice with little improvement. Have tried candida diet & several elimination diets (cut out nuts & seeds, eggs, dairy, even CHICKEN for a while, FODMAPs, nightshades, and pork). Toying with starting GAPS, but I can't take the time off work to really go through the Introduction Phase. I take probiotics, a multi-vitamin, fish oil, and just started L-Glutamine today. I do yoga 3x/week. I would like to say that I'm fully Primal, but I'm really not. I eat flavored yogurt (lactose-free), put flavored creamer in my decaf coffee (though it is pasture-raised cream), and occasionally eat gluten-free baked goods (bread and cookies, mostly). And no, this did NOT all start because I started eating non-Primal foods. I started eating non-Primal foods so that I could gain the weight back. Ice cream may have saved my life last summer; I gained 7 pounds when I started eating it every night. I'm thinking about doing it again, but if I've got SIBO or candida, the LAST thing I want to do is feed the little bastards.

    Bottom line: I need to GAIN weight, but I want to do it right. I'm not in good enough helath to weight train, so that's out for now. I eat sweet potatoes at least once a day, sometimes twice, and while it helps things 'move along' so to speak, I don't think it's doing much for weight gain. I'm reluctant to eat rice since it may make my gut dysbiosis situation worse (if that's indeed what it is). In other words, while I'm waiting for a more solid diagnosis, I want to get back the health & vitality I had when I first started my Primal journey in Sept 2011. I was incredibly happy for those 5 months before this all started. My weight was perfect. I had energy like a 6 year old. Nothing was impossible. And then there was THIS... ANY help would be greatly appreciated. Please remember, I want to gain back my body fat; I don't need to lean out any more than I already have, so a LeanGains approach won't work for me. Thank you all in advance, and Grok on!!! ~Siren
    "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

  • #2
    So ice cream causes you no problems? What about other dairy? What about fruit?

    Are there foods that you know aggravate this condition?

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    • #3
      Can you/are you willing to drink a bunch of whole milk? It's known as a great source for calories in situations where one is attempting to gain weight. Of course, raw stuff from grass-fed animals is preferred.
      The Champagne of Beards

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      • #4
        If you can handle dairy, fresh cheeses like ricotta, cream cheese, cottage cheese will give you some calories.

        A lot of people here drink Coconut cream; I think I saw that one can has 800 calories.

        If you can handle butter, add it to anything you already eat if it's compatible. If not, maybe olive or avocado oil.

        Search the forum for "fat bomb," as Dr. Bork Bork has posted a lot of good high fat recipes.

        Good luck!
        "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

        B*tch-lite

        Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.

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        • #5
          The only thing worse than 'Feeding the little bastards" is dying of starvation. If it doesn't hurt to eat it, it probably isn't causing any trouble. Putting on some weight is what seems to be important right now. So eat the ice cream, drink the milk, eat the coconut and anything else that doesn't seem to bother you.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by workinprogress View Post
            The only thing worse than 'Feeding the little bastards" is dying of starvation. If it doesn't hurt to eat it, it probably isn't causing any trouble. Putting on some weight is what seems to be important right now. So eat the ice cream, drink the milk, eat the coconut and anything else that doesn't seem to bother you.
            Agree fully with this. Also starving candida may very well make it worse because it will spread further in search of food. Try coconut oil, its a natural antifungal.

            Although your symptoms do sound severe so maybe no amount of diet tweaks will help. Im guessing they did but did the docs check you for h.pylori disease?

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            • #7
              I’ve actually developed a distaste for straight milk; never really was a milk drinker anyway, unless it was on cereal, but I don’t seem to have problems with dairy. It’s hard to tell though. I kept a food journal for 60 days, and I spent about a month of that dairy-free (except butter). No change in symptoms. When I brought it back, nothing new started up, except maybe I was a little more phlegm-y than usual (sorry for the visual). No singular food seems to be a problem; as I said before, I kept a 60-day food journal and there was no rhyme or reason to any of the problems I was having, at least nothing food-related. I don’t think it is food related. It’s either functional or hormonal. Now that I think about it, I seem to feel a lot better right after I start my birth control (NuvaRing) and gradually worsen as it gets time to take it out… hmmm… And yes, I’ve been tested for H. pylori. Negative. Sigh.
              I agree that starvation is not a good thing either, so I’m wondering if the ice cream route is really the way to go? It didn’t hurt last time, but if things have gotten worse on a bacterial level (which I expect they have), the added sugar might do more harm than good. I guess the only way to know is to do it and watch what happens… n=1!!!
              "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

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              • #8
                I dont think the ice cream or any other dairy product can do more harm then just not eating. Try a higher carb diet and see if things start picking up, if its hypothyroid related, your digestion could be slow causing excess fermentation in the gut. You could also not be making enough stomach acid or bile and there are things you can do to elevate those.

                If it is related to borth control or hormones then its going to be pretty tricky to figure out. If its fungal, there are plenty of antifungal foods your could try eating like honey, coconut oil and other saturated fats, basil and other herbs. You could try juicing and or taking colloidal silver. Oh course avoid yeast foods, moldy foods, processed and added sugar foods, maybe avoid starches and fiber since it gets fermented in the large intestine, stick to ripe fruit s and dairy for carbs since they get brokendown quicker.

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                • #9
                  Your problems sound similar to mine. Gaining weight isn't going to do much, and it will probably take you a while to get a proper diagnosis, assuming there is something wrong with you. We could commit suicide together?

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                  • #10
                    Don't think I haven't considered it. This whole ordeal has taken my head to some very dark places... but I have kids. I need to live. But right now, I'm not really even doing that. I'm barely even surviving. It's been extrememly difficult to stay positive. But I'm getting through it, one day at a time. That's all I can do...
                    "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

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                    • #11
                      Siren,
                      have you been tested for parasites? I know its not common in the "civilized" world, but they are out there...
                      I hope you get a diagnosis and help soon! Good luck.

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                      • #12
                        I've been checked for parasites (the stool test). Just like all the others: negative. I truly am convinced it's a functional thing, or possibly hormonal, since there doesn't seem to be any visual, physical explanation. My colonoscopy report mentioned something about a "twist," but my doc didn't say anything about it. I've got a follow-up appt with her in 2 weeks, and one with my regular doc today. I'm hoping I can convince my GP to push for another, but more thorough, thyroid test, or at least another referral. I might also ask about having my hormones checked, since I seem to feel better in the days following the start of my birth control cycle. Anything is worth a shot at this point...
                        "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

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                        • #13
                          Good news! My regular doc got me blood tests with both more thorough thyroid panels AND a hormonal balance check! =) I also just had my first bowl of ice cream as the first step on my affectionately-dubbed Ice Cream Protocol. i did this last spring to help regain some of the 10 pounds i'd lost in 3 weeks on a liquid diet. basically, i eat ice cream in quantity, sweet potatoes, some white potatoes, and some white rice as well as banans, squash, and other starchy veggies & fruits. i'm also going to be eating a lot of fat in the form of coconut oil, olive oil, butter, and animal fats (eggs, salmon, beef, etc.) in the hopes that the increased starch/sugar/fat combo will start putting some weight back on me. insulin resistance be damned; i'm starting to look like a Holocaust victim. the LAST thing i need to worry about is my leptin...
                          "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

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                          • #14
                            More good news: got my biopsy results. They came back negative for everything. That means I don't have cancer. That's a good thing =) but... it also means I still have no answers. I'm starting to think this is an endocrine issue. Thyroid & adrenal glands are the most likely culprits if that's the case. Oh well. Back to square one... =/
                            "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf

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                            • #15
                              Hey Siren,

                              I used to and still do struggle with the same problem of gaining weight. You may not be absorbing any nutrients in your gut. Simply boosting calories and/or carbs may not do the trick, or fix the issue. Perhaps eating heaping amounts of nutrient dense, low inflammatory foods such as veggies, healthy meats/fish, and good fats would help. Take it from someone who went from 108 lbs to a stable 134 lbs in 1 year.


                              What helped me most was eating the right foods while avoiding the incorrect foods (sugar, processed foods, bad oils), using BHCL/pepsin supplements, drinking good quality spring water, lots of sleep, supplements and "detoxifying". Detoxifying is essential in today's world, and I believe from my own and other's experience that it contributes to over half of today's diseases. I eat only veggies, meats (antibiotic free/grass fed/lean & fatty), wild caught fish 1-2x a week (salmon or sardines), coconut oil & EVOO & beef lard (from U.S. Wellness meats). Beef stock helps me tremendously. The most I weighed was 140 lbs, when I was eating loads of sunflower seeds & supplementing a good amount of zinc and eating the aforementioned foods.

                              Try either visiting a holistic doctor and/or using supplements. Do you have amalgams? Also, do you live in a healthy home? Or is it "toxic"?? Your environment can play a huge factor as well, cause it sure did/does for me.

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