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Thread: Paleo diet and IBS page 2

  1. #11
    Alykat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BestBetter View Post
    I've had IBS on and off for 6+ years. The two biggest triggers that make it resurface are traveling or going low-carb. I could never figure out why the 'better' my diet got, the worse the IBS was - I've literally gone more than 2 months at a time with no BM (my husband didn't believe me until we lived together and he witnessed it first hand). I'd get terrible pain and bloating after eating avocado and meat dishes and lots of veggies, and I was always like 'WTF!!!" I definitely got worse after going Paleo, which was such a kicker. Then, I figured out why.

    Since I've typed some pretty extensive posts on this topic, I'm going to cut an paste my previous responses below, with a link to to the thread:


    I've have 6+ years of experience with constipation and abdominal pain/bloating..went to gastroenterolosists, took just about every OTC laxative and old wives remedy (prunes, etc...) and increased my already reasonably high level of fiber, none of which helped, and fiber in particular made me consistently WORSE.

    It wasn't until I discovered the gutsense website and started reading about how damaging fiber is that I understood what was going on with my digestive system. I highly recommend reading FIBER MENACE if you are serious about improving your long term digestive health.

    I was hooked on the CW nonsense that fiber was healthy, until I realized that it made no sense - by definition, fiber is INDIGESTIBLE to the human system. We do not have the enzyme, cellulase, which breaks this down. As a result, fiber must be fermented in our guts, which can lead to gas, bloating, inflammation...

    In a nutshell, the best things you can do are:

    1) Reduce fiber (ESPECIALLY INsoluable fiber). The Fiber Menace recommendation is a max of 10-15g/daily, unless you have a serious acute problem, in which case you'd want it as close to zero as possible.

    2) Take a good quality probiotic, eat plenty of fermented/cultured foods like yogurt, kim chee, etc...

    3) Make sure you are eating enough good quality animal fat.

    4) You may want to supplement with L-Glutamine, if you suspect you have leaky gut/digestive inflammation issues.

    ***Remember, this isn't a quick fix, and it will likely take weeks or months to heal, depending on how much damage you've got. Don't give up if your BM aren't perfect within a few days!

    5) Hydro-C. This is a gentle form of Vitamin C - I ordered it from the gutsense website. It stimulates BM, but with none of the bad effects from laxatives like gas and bloating, and it is not addictive at all. It was the first thing I tried that actually consistently works - it has been a godsend suring the process of healing my IBS.

    I've been doing all of the above and I've actually made dramatic improvement in healing my chronic constipation/IBS, which I never could have done without the info from gutsense.

    Anyone who claims you need fiber is completely misinformed.

    Your problems may not be as severe as mine, but damage from excessive fiber takes years to accumulate, and it's better to fix the situation before it gets past the point of no return. Fiber Menace does a beautiful job of explaining why people experience constipation when switching to low-carb diets, and why increasing fiber 'seems' to fix the problem, at least short term.

    The links below have lots of great information:

    GUT FLORA

    Gut Sense: How to reverse and prevent constipation in children and adults

    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread60555-2.html

    BestBetter :-)
    My gosh i sound like you - but still working on the fiber (the whole diet thing with meats added in/X-vegan now) so i have to ask you some things:

    1. how is hydro-C any different, in how the body responds, than regular vitamin C powder?
    2. Please Please give me an example of your daily diet now so i have some idea of what it should look like for someone (me) with IBS constipation. Did meats help? Fats, and which ones? Do you cook all your veggies, or can you do a salad without problems?
    3. what foods have been key for keeping you regular and comfortable?
    4. now that you cut out most of the fiber, can you do low carb (suppose higher fat?) without constipation result?

    thank you BestBetter!!!

  2. #12
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    I can answer #1 for you. It's "buffered" C, meaning it also has magnesium and potassium. You take those to avoid dehydration, I believe. You can see the ratio of C to mag and potatssium in Hydro-C on the gutsense site. I bought a buffered C powder on Vitacost with the same ratios.
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    Currently trying to figure out WTF to eat (for IBS-C).

  3. #13
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    Thank you! I have regular vit c crystals off vitacost by the soloray brand. I find water retention issues if I accidentally have too much. Maybe the buffered C helps that.....

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alykat View Post

    BestBetter :-)
    My gosh i sound like you - but still working on the fiber (the whole diet thing with meats added in/X-vegan now) so i have to ask you some things:


    2. Please Please give me an example of your daily diet now so i have some idea of what it should look like for someone (me) with IBS constipation. Did meats help? Fats, and which ones? Do you cook all your veggies, or can you do a salad without problems?
    When I was doing an elimination diet to figure out what the hell was causing my IBS, I decided to eat almost a 100% meat diet for a few weeks, because as far as I knew, meat was not likely causing my problems, and I suspected FODMAPS issues. During those weeks, I was eating a lot of meat, fish (fresh and canned stuff like sardines and oysters and clams), and avocado. I was also only eating one huge meal a day, because I was operating under the 'primal brainwashing' that eating fewer larger meals was the one right way to eat, and I figured the down time would be good for my digestive system. Nothing against IFing,the science behind it is sound, and for some people, it can be a good thing. However, it is notoriously bad for IBS, and the mindset on this forum tends to lean towards fanaticsm when it comes to eating fewer, bigger meals vs. more smaller meals.

    During those weeks, I still had all the same problems, and I think it was due to 1) eating too much at once, which is a common trigger for IBS peeps and 2) some days eating a lot of avocado, which I didn't realize were such fiber bombs. I was trying to eat high fat and high protein, but those extra fats didn't help as long as I was also eating too much fiber and too much at once.

    My diet has changed somewhat radically over time. I'm still gluten/dairy/soy free (for 5+ years), and I still avoid omega 6 crap oils and HFCS like the plague, but I discovered that I personally feel better on a higher carb/lower fat diet, mainly due to what I'm assuming are hypothyroid issues. Now that I'm in 'IBS remission', I still eat the same meat/seafood things I was eating before, I still eat plenty of fruit (though everything is peeled and deseeded, if possible, and I don't eat a lot of berries).

    I eat a good amount of starches (like tubers, white rice), but the main difference is my vegetable consumption is lower. I used to eat tons of big ass salads, but now I'll have a small salad only occasionally (and usually only if I'm at a restaurant and there aren't better options). A small salad isn't a problem. When I was still healing, I was very strict about avoiding all insoluble fiber. Now that I'm healed, I can get away with having some, and I could probably eat a little more than what I do now, but I don't want to push my threshold, and as time passes, I have less and less interest and desire to eat fibrous vegetables.

    I used to eat tons of leafy grean stuff, like kale and chard and spinach and collards, but I rarely have those now, and if I do I eat only a small portion. I tend to stick to lower fiber stuff like bell pepper, zucchini and other squashes, onion, carrot, etc... Also, I rarely eat any veggies raw - everything is cooked.

    I still am extremely careful to consume only good quality saturated fats, and I use coconut and palm oil (and ghee, since it doesn't contain casein) for cooking. I think these fats are really important, and probably help with some of the behind the scenes repair work, but my personal experience was that they didn't make any difference until I got the other pieces in place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alykat View Post
    3. what foods have been key for keeping you regular and comfortable?
    When I was suffering with IBS, nothing kept me regular. When I first started my little protocol of bone broth, probiotics, L-glutamine, smaller meals, and low fiber, it was more about NOT eating certain foods. Dried fruit was a real problem, so was anything raw (except for fruit) or anything high in fiber, like most of the vegetables I was eating at that time. The only thing that helped me to produce BM was Hydro-C.

    NamelessWonder mentioned on another thread that it works by the same action as Magnesium does (did I get that right?) but for some reason, Magnesium never worked for me back then when my IBS was really bad, I don't know why, I'm just a weirdo, I guess. I've noticed that increasing my starches and eating stuff that contains soluble fiber (now that I'm healed) works well to keep me regualar, in addition to probiotics. Also, now magnesium and regular vitamin C work for me if I miss a day or two, where none of those things used to work before (maybe I had too much inflammation and messed up gut flora?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alykat View Post
    4. now that you cut out most of the fiber, can you do low carb (suppose higher fat?) without constipation result?

    thank you BestBetter!!!
    I can eat whatever levels of fat I want without IBS worries; for me, fat doesn't seem to make any difference. It neither causes constipation, nor improves it. I've heard that eating high fat helps some people get regular, but again, I'm a weirdo who never seems to respond to things the way other people do.

    My motivation for eating low carb paleo was for health reasons, which ended up backfiring and causes me even more health problems (IBS flares, severe hypothyroid symptoms like lower body temp, fatigue, depression, etc...). It's a little frustrating to keep hearing all these glowing endorsements from people who magically got healed by primal eating (I'm happy for them, but a little bitter it wasn't my experience). I've never been able to lose my little bit of extra weight by eating low carb, so I have no reason to return to that way of eating.

    If I wanted to, I could probably reduce my intake of starches and eat more eggs and organ meats, and more low fiber veggies, but i think that keeping vegetables limited would make it more difficult to have enough variety, though in theory it could probably be done.

    Just remember that IBS is really a n=1 situation. What I've done may or may not apply to you. You might be able to get away with more fiber than me, or certain things might be problematic for you that weren't for me. I had to go through A LOT of self-experimentation before I finally figured out what my problems were and what I needed to do to fix them. And once I figured it out, it still took months before I saw serious progress.

    Don't give up, I guess is what I'm trying to get at, and don't forget to look at other factors that could be causing problems aside from the actual food. For example, for me, stress is a trigger, as is eating too much at once (which never used to be a problem until I started IFing and eating one gigantic meal a day, which probably triggered something).
    Last edited by BestBetter; 11-05-2012 at 03:26 PM.

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    Also wanted to throw this out there:

    SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth) from what I've been reading is relatively common and is closely associated with IBS and autoimmune disorders.

    I've been researching this lately because I think it's what my husband has (his IBS symptoms are totally different from mine).

    It's something that is worth looking into, especially because it seems to be extremely easy to treat (a round of antibiotics that only have localized action in the small intestine, so they don't have the systemic problems that most other general antibiotics have). It's an easy thing to search online, here's one website I found helpful:

    Symptoms - SIBO- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth

    Associated Diseases - SIBO- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth



    Also, if paleo/primal has made your health issues worse (or created new ones) like IBS and low blood pressure, among other symptoms, and a low fiber/probiotic diet doesn't seem to be helping, you should look into histamine intolerance. If that's your issue, it should be easy to tell by avoiding foods that contain or trigger the release of histamine in the body. It's another easy thing to search online, here's a quick link:


    http://www.histamine-intolerance.info/
    Last edited by BestBetter; 11-05-2012 at 02:30 PM.

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    BestBetter...please make room in your pm's..
    A Woman's Place Is In The Revolution.

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    Well I know I can relate to the stress, and ibs in itself leads to more stress.
    Some days are better then others.

    You gave a lot of info :-)
    though still a little confused on what typical bk, lunch, dinner would be that does not
    Leave you curled up on the couch in pain. Yet I know we each have different triggers. I used to have huge salads nightly for years, now I can't. It all changes.
    I personally hope I don't have to go back to higher carbs, I was always hungry :/ so I'm not sure how you are able to do that. But if I read you right it was really fiber and too much food at once ? Yet it looks like you eat primarily plant foods?

    Bottom line is to not look so much outside yourself for answers. Although I have to admit others successes are helpful :-)

  8. #18
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    Paleo diet and IBS

    Hello Community,

    IBS is a disease of exclusion. In other words, IBS is not ONE condition. if your doctor can't find anything that is anatomically wrong with your intestines, such as celia disease, Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis for example, you will receive a diagnosis of IBS. It may be a convenient way for your doctor to label your symptoms and push them aside, but it is definitely not very enlightening for you in your quest to feeling better. If you have IBS, you were probably recommended to increase your fiber intake and eat more whole grains, vegetables and fruits, but in many instances, it only makes things worse and this is why some people with IBS don't improve or even feel worse on the Paleo diet. To better understand how you can improve your IBS symptoms, you need to first identify the cause. The cause and symptoms associated with IBS is different from one person to another.

    Best Regards,
    Mithel Jone

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    I suffered it once long time ago for a short time

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by meeme View Post
    BestBetter...please make room in your pm's..
    Done.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alykat View Post
    You gave a lot of info :-)
    though still a little confused on what typical bk, lunch, dinner would be that does not
    Leave you curled up on the couch in pain. Yet I know we each have different triggers.
    My IBS issues were both chronic and acute. I was chronically constipated and bloated (with some periods of time where I'd inexplicably be more regular), and then seemingly at random I'd get those curled on the couch acute pain attacks. Because my issues never seemed to be tied to a particular food, everytime I tried an elimination diet, I never got closer to answers, because in my case there were several issues going on (for example, maybe the food I was eating was okay, but I was just eating too much at once, or maybe I was eating smaller meals, but since I was chronically inflammed, anything I'd eat would give me problems). Maybe, what I was eating during a particular 'trial' was okay, but my chronic stress or messed up gut flora was wreaking havoc.

    So for me, it wasn't that I'd eat a particular thing and ALWAYS have a bad reaction to it. Sometimes, eating a certain meal would repeatedly give me pain, but eating the individual ingredients in that meal never bothered me. I still don't know what it is about that combination of items that hurts my digestive system so much, or even if it was just a coincidence. Likewise, sometimes probiotics seemed to help, other times they had no effect. Sometimes accupuncture worked short term, sometimes it did nothing. It seemed like every time I attempted to test for some new trigger, my results were always inconclusive.

    In general, from the info I gathered from various IBS forums and sites, it's best to stick to low fiber foods, eat smaller portions, and not to eat too many things in one meal. An example of an IBS meal might be something like white rice with tuna and some oil and salt; I found one website belonging to a guy who's had IBS for like 20 years, and he discovered that was the one meal he could eat everyday with no problem.

    An example of typical things I ate while recovering:
    -A bowl of homemade bone both with white rice noodles
    -white rice with lime and white fish or shrimp
    -peeled boiled potatoes with salmon or some red meat
    -omlettes with some peeled zucchini and onion
    -fruit (melon, banana, apples, pears)
    -if I ate dairy, yogurt, kefir, and other cultured milk products would be good


    Quote Originally Posted by Alykat View Post
    I personally hope I don't have to go back to higher carbs, I was always hungry :/ so I'm not sure how you are able to do that. But if I read you right it was really fiber and too much food at once ? Yet it looks like you eat primarily plant foods?
    I think that for me, it was/is a combination of things. My epic chronic constipation was triggered during a 4 month road trip during which I just stopped having any BM at all for months and months. Likely, that was due to stress and maybe other unknown factors at the time. Since that point, my flares have probably been due to some combo of stress, too much fiber, messed up gut flora, inflammation, and later on meals that were too big.

    I had the same fear about returning to higher carb eating, because my hunger levels were much lower eating lower carb, mainly because I have a history of binge-eating that I've only gotten totally under control within the past year. However, my fear proved to be unfounded, because now that I'm eating more carbs, I actually think about food less and my hunger levels are about the same. It's helped me to realize that my food issues were purely psychological. I know that's not the case for everyone, and a lot of people probably do have hunger that is purely driven by blood sugar issues.

    For example, even though I let myself eat as much sugar as I want (try to make sure it's organic when possible), i have a strict no HFCS and no omega 6 crap oil rule, which prevents me from eating most candy and junk food, because it's extremely hard to find anything without HFCS much less crap oils these days.

    And somehow, now I have some sugar and I'm fine, it doesn't send me into a tailspin like it used to. But another big difference is that I don't look to food to provide emotional comfort; it's just food, which is very liberating, and for me more importnat than more carbs/less carbs in terms of my hunger. Again, everyone is different, but I think that as long as most people are still concentrating on healthy foods, having some more potatoes and rice shouldn't be a huge problem.
    Last edited by BestBetter; 11-06-2012 at 11:48 AM.

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