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Health Crisis since going Primal, S.O.S.!

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  • Health Crisis since going Primal, S.O.S.!

    I am a 42 year old female and I need some serious advice, I just don't know where to go from here!
    I am just utterly frustrated, beyond frustrated. I have been doing paleo/primal since January 1st, and my health feels like it is declining. About 7 years ago, My large intestines were removed, so I am functioning with only small intestines and realize I may have some absorption issues. I won't even mention my bathroom issues because of this fact. These are my main complaints: My once exercise induced only asthma is now much worse and waking me up in the middle of the night, my insomnia is much worse, heartburn/acid reflux, I recently treated it with a two week course of omerprazole and I am still having some issues, though it is much better than it was. I think I went from too much acid to not enough acid in the gut now. Elbow tendonitis just flared up again a week ago, as well as other generalized aches, mood swings and depression have gotten worse so I just started a whole bunch of natural supplements including GABA, Taurine, Tryptophan. I take omega 3's, Probiotics, calcium, magnesium, b complex, a good multi, melatonin, digestive enzymes; I take more supplements than I ever have in my life trying to help my symptoms "naturally" and I feel like my health is just going downhill. I did not have these problems when I was on a mostly plant based diet last year. The only problems I had then were cravings for the meat my husband ate. I just don't know what to do and I am losing faith that this lifestyle is the answer for me. It is helping my husband lose weight, so I am not saying it is no good, but all these problems and I have not lost any weight at all. I have wanted to lose about 20lbs, but nothing, not one ounce lost! Can anyone give me some real answers to why I am suffering like this? Help, Please!!!

  • #2
    You have a lot going on right now, but take a deep breath, and another..

    I am only new to primal and don't have any advice to offer as such, expect to say that I imagine due to your health issues that while primal may assist you, it isn't going to be a quick fix, it may take a while. I know it's not what you want to hear, but setting impossible goals and timeframes will lead to major disppointment and dispair.

    You may want to post a couple of typical's day's menu so that some of the more experienced members can provide some advice.
    Achieving goals takes a backbone not a wishbone


    • #3
      I have had gastric bypass, so I'm only missing a small part of my intestines (and the opposite end you're missing) but one thing that I am prone to is SIBO - small intestine bacterial overgrowth. In my case it was specifically blind loop syndrome, as my overgrowth was in the blind loop of my intestines. It made me rather ill, as my already existing malabsorption worsened due to the damage to my intestines. Omeprazole can actually make it worse. Chris Kresser has an excellent series of articles about how antacids are actually bad for heartburn, and I think those of us missing parts of our digestive system are even more prone to these issues. Anyway, here's a link to the articles: Heartburn / GERD


      • #4
        I also suggest telling us a bit what you eat. Maybe you eat too much lean meat (too many proteins?)? Too many fibrous vegetables?
        You say you were feeling better when you ate mostly veggies (not grains), what kind of veggies were you eating pre-primal? And what else? Why did you stop?


        • #5
          My diet now looks like this:
          Breakfast everyday: 3 eggs with 1tsp ghee. Sometimes a tomato with the eggs.
          Lunch: homemade chicken vegetable soup or chicken salad with large 4 cup salad
          dinner: 7-8oz steak with large salad. I use olive oil and balsamic dressing.
          I usually have about 2 fruits a day. Maybe an orange or grapefruit, apple or banana.
          I do drink tea in am with coconut milk creamer and stevia
          about twice a week, I have a glass or two of organic, sulfite free red wine.
          occasionally, I have a handful of raw almonds or sunflower seeds.

          When I ate more plant based, I ate as many fruits as i wanted, I ate large salads as well as vegetable soups with various legumes and occasionally gluten free pastas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, oatmeal, and salmon on occasion.
          I changed to primal because I craved the meat my husband was eating and really wanted to lose more weight. I read primal blueprint as well as other books, and it all made alot of sense to me.

          Thank you much for any advice!


          • #6
            From reading your other posts, some advice:

            1) Forget the scale, throw it away. Seems like you got some health problems which will probably need fixing before you lose weight.

            Please, just get rid of the scale (click link). Promise?

            2) I saw that you're taking digestive enzymes because you're missing your large intestine, BUT, whether or not you can DIGEST stuff, can you ABSORB stuff? Namely, vitamin B1, B2, B12, and K, for example?

            Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't you need to have these put directly into your blood with a injection/shot?
            I mean, can your small intestine absorb these vitamins if you supplement them? Or are they only absorbed in the large intestine?

            If only in the large intestine, then you'll probably need injections/shots, because no amount of supplementation would make a difference at all.

            The reason I bring this up is that you can have many, many, health problems if the nutrients don't go where they need to, regardless if you are supplementing.

            3) Wow, that's a lot of meat. Why so much meat? Even my big beefy boyfriend couldn't scarf down that much meat. (Or maybe I'm picturing 8oz wrong? You also said 8oz chicken breast on your other thread)

            Why are you so hungry that you eat so much meat? Are you eating lean meats? If so, try to eat fatty cuts of meat instead. You know you want them! (YUM!)
            Last edited by abstractpersona; 03-02-2012, 04:26 PM.
            My smartphone makes me about $100 per month
            Updating my journal again after a 2 year break.


            • #7
              eggs are one of the top allergens. Just because a food is healthy and primal, doesn't mean you need to eat it. Dairy is a case in point...many people don't tolerate it. Nothing wrong with adding meat to a mostly veggie-based diet.

              Take everybody's diet advice under consideration....and then figure out what feels best for you. Some people on these boards thrive as pure carnivores. Others lose weight and increase energy with more carbs.

              I can tolerate eggs here and there, but if I ate three for breakfast every morning, I'd start getting heartburn, nausea, aches and pains, etc.

              Grapefruit can cause heartburn also, and interact in strange ways with several medications. Nightshades, like tomatoes, can cause inflammation in some.
              Good luck, and don't listen to me, either!


              • #8
                8oz is NOT a lot of meat... for a steak a typical 8oz cut in a restaurant is a filet mignon. NOT a lot at all...
                “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
                ~Friedrich Nietzsche
                And that's why I'm here eating HFLC Primal/Paleo.


                • #9
                  Hmm I thought fillet mignon was about 4oz or so, my bad. I was thinking 8oz steak would be about half your plate's worth, which would still be too much meat to share between the boyfriend and me.

                  BUT after I posted, I remembered that when I started Primal, I ate a lot more than I do now, I guess I was making up for the lack of meat there was in my diet before. Seems that happens to other people too. So I guess it's not a lot!
                  My smartphone makes me about $100 per month
                  Updating my journal again after a 2 year break.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by theffler View Post
                    My diet now looks like this:
                    potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, and salmon on occasion. + squash
                    My opinion? These should go back from time to time. Along with other types of good fatty fish.
                    You have gone waaay too low carb and not everybody thrives on low-carb. Insomnia is one symptom.

                    Also, you should look into the vitamin/mineral absorbtion (somebody else suggested it as well), get some blood tests done and see where you're heading.

                    But more important, aren't you dehydrated? I believe most of the water gets absorbed in the colon, since you're missing it shouldn't you drink more to be sure the water your small intestine absorbs is enough? Maybe try eating more soups/liquid food and less purely solid ones? If I were you I'd try 1-2 weeks of soup (veggies and meat) and broth. If symptoms improve, you're on a good track.

                    Considering you have heartburn, acid reflux & co, I would consider looking for culprits into what you eat. Maybe think of GAPS. Take a look at this, if you have the time and the patience you could try the introduction diet: INTRODUCTION DIET

                    Good luck!