Vegetarian gets sick after going back on the meat! Help me
I decided to introduce meat to my diet about a week ago, and started out with a few different types of fish. I had no problem whatsoever, so I assumed my body was ok. So then last night I made a chicken stir fry (probably too large of a portion) and woke up this morning feeling like absolute hell. I haven't eaten anything all day nor have I been hungry, and my head feels cloudy.
I'm assuming the meat in my stomach just didn't digest. Anyone have any advice on what I can do to get that stuff out of there? Laxative tea, etc? Thanks
You mentioned in parentheses that you possibly cooked too large of a portion... did you? Maybe you simply ate too much. What was in the stir fry? Maybe you are experiencing the low carb flu. Keep us updated on how you feel over the next few days.
Hopefully some other people with more experience in this area can chime in - but perhaps it would help for you to list the ingredients you used in the stir fry? What type of chicken did you use? (organic/free range/or...?) Also - I have used digestive enzymes which I felt helped, and especially if you are switching over from one diet to another diet completely it may be a good idea for transition phase to look into those. There is an herbal laxative I have used with success in the past too (although not often at all) it is called Swiss Kriss. I hope you feel better soon
Thanks guys, here are the ingredients:
Organic free range chicken breasts from trader joes
Black bean paste
Chicken broth (free range)
Note that all the non-chicken ingredients I have eaten on a regular basis for a long time making a tofu stir fry.
Your body will stop producing as much HCL (needed for meat digestion) if you've been vegetarian for awhile (speaking as a former veggie of 14 years!) Eat smaller portions.
Get some betaine HCL tablets or drink a small amount of kombucha with your meat meals--but no more than 4 oz--you don't want to dilute whatever stomach acid is there...don't drink any addidtional liquid with your meat meals.
it's not not digesting, your body just needs to readjust. digestive enzymes will help. i kicked veg after 16 years and it was a very short transitional period.
Kombucha helped me get through the transitional period REALLY fast. Plus, it's delicious. I bought GTs for like the first week and then I stopped buying it because a) it's expensive and b) I didn't think I needed it anymore to digest meat. I went through like half a bottle a day.
There is no anatomical, physiological reason for any discomfort. The idea that our bodies "forget" to digest something has been debunked. Which is not to say that your discomfort wasn't real, but I would caution against making any connections to any one thing in particular. We have been engineered to eat meat for millions of years. A few years spent not doing so should not make any difference.
Really? Please share your reference!
Originally Posted by Buttercup
My experience and my readings indicate that HCL insufficiency can be very common for vegetarians--not because they "forget" to produce it, but because they are suffering from malnutrition.
I don’t do well with protein foods…they make me feel heavy, gassy or bloated after a meal.
Many people are convinced they can’t or shouldn’t eat meat because it “simply doesn’t agree with them”. Since humans have evolved as meat-eaters and have a strong requirement for complete (animal) sources of protein and various nutrients contained in animal source foods, it is overwhelmingly unlikely that you were “born to be a vegetarian”, as there is no basis in human evolution for this. The most likely culprit is hydrochloric acid insufficiency and/or pancreatic insufficiency (commonly a consequence of HCl insufficiency, overeating and eating overly-cooked foods). These issues are commonly brought on by diets excessively high in carbohydrates (and possibly also excessively low in protein). Zinc, thiamine and vitamin C deficiency may also impair the ability to produce adequate HCl, as may thyroid disorders. Other culprits include overeating at meals, inappropriate food combining (i.e., starches and proteins) in susceptible individuals, alcohol consumption and stress. Even if you emotionally dislike the idea of eating meat, eggs or fish it is a VERY good idea to address this issue. Inadequate HCL also implies an inability to digest and absorb many important minerals, B12 and, of course, protein…which means inadequate amino acids for more than 50,000 bodily functions and structures (and all this implies). HCl insufficiency may also lead to pancreatic insufficiency, as digestion/secretion is such a pH-driven process. Incomplete (plant-based) sources of protein have poor bioavailability and are mostly starch-based foods, leading to a whole host of other issues. Tofu (also an incomplete protein) is extremely high in phytic acid and will promote potentially severe mineral deficiencies. You may use tempeh and miso in moderation, but understand that these do contain goitrogens (thyroid-impairing compounds) and reliance on even fermented sources of soy is NOT a good idea. Herbivores are not capable of producing hydrochloric acid. Only meat-eating animals do. Not only do humans produce HCL, we depend upon it for much more than just digesting protein. See pages 29, 31, and 126 in PB-PM to understand how digestion really works, why hydrochloric acid is good for you (even if you are suffering from GERD), and understand the real role of protein for your health and longevity. The truth may surprise you!
I concur with the other posters above who recommend taking digestive enzymes and HCl tablets with your meat-containing meals. Here is a useful MDA thread on recommendations for digestive enzymes: