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Thread: Using ketosis to deal with excess phlegm. I'd be grateful to get feedback page 2

  1. #11
    Sabre's Avatar
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    edit: let me reply to the other posters a little bit later, cheers


    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfly View Post
    Have you had your D3 blood level tested? My phlegm has decreased considerably since I got my level up on the high end of normal.

    Absolutely no gluten, right?

    Also, google histamine intolerance.

    The low mucus/ketosis thing is a myth, but I can't seem to find the relevant link. I'll post it if I do.

    FWIW, I am loving my ketogenic diet. Have never felt better.
    Glad to hear you're doing well on ketosis. Yeah if you find that link that would be great. I'll look into histamine intolerance, cheers. (edit2: hmmm, very interesting stuff. Chris Kresser has a post on this. http://chriskresser.com/headaches-hi...e-be-the-cause
    This may be very helpful, thank you Dragonfly)

    I haven't had D3 tested. Robb Wolf posted an article a few months back showing that vitamin D supplements decrease the body's own endogenous ability to process it, or something to that effect--so I try to get as much sun as possible. In Ireland that's not always easy.

    And yeah, zero gluten. Though I do have a paranoia about gluten since reading the claim that a piece of gluten the size of 1/8th of yout thumbnail can cause inflammation for 6 months in the body. Intuitively, that seems like an outrageous claim. Could it be true?

    If so, that's extraordinary, and I can't guarantee that I haven't had some cross contamination with minute particles of gluten in the past 6 months. I'm definitely becoming neurotic and for the past few months I've foregone eating at restaurants, even the ostensibly "gluten-free" ones.
    Last edited by Sabre; 06-05-2013 at 06:55 PM.

  2. #12
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    I've lived with the same thing for years. It has abated slightly since going primal, but it still sucks.
    The above should be viewed as complete and utter nonsense.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sabre View Post
    I heard it from a guy called Dave Asprey, he's the "biohacker" guy--I can't vouch for his overall validity, and he's made some dubious claims, but a lot of what he says sounds legit.

    He said he tried ketosis with virtually zero carb for 3 months and, because he didn't have enough glucose to form mucus, it dried up the mucus in his body making him "unable to produce tears", and he developed some leakygut. To him the solution is to occasionally refeed with plenty of (paleo) carbs once a week or so. But it's possible that in his individual case very low carb has that effect, I don't know.

    A link to where he said it: The Bulletproof Perspective on “Safe Starches”

    I had some basic allergy bloodtests done, and nothing showed up. I don't think it's an allergy, because I've lived in so many different countries, places, environments, and it has no effect. I've excluded pretty much every potential allergen you could imagine, for at least 6 weeks, and it had no significant effect. But just to mark it off the list, I'll get looked at by an allerginist.

    I've been planning to get a proper food-intolerance test done, but apparently the science behind it is up for question. It's disheartening. In any case, I strictly avoid gluten, dairy, sugar--my diet is spartan paleo.
    First of all, ketosis=/=ZC. Also he is talking about a carb refeed once a week which I think is a great idea particularly for lean folks. As to any damage being done to the guts, I would be more likely to suspect Dave's huge intake of coffee as the culprit in his diet there. He also is a special snowflake n=1 because of the longstanding thyroid condition he writes about and the medication he takes for it. I'm not sure that his results are generalizable.

    Personally, I eat close to ZC but not completely and I have never had a problem with dry eyes. Also Dave extrapolates from dry eyes to "This must be doing damage to my intestines due to lack of mucus." That is a bit of a leap. Many medications list dry eyes as a top symptom and he talks about increasing his dose during that time frame. Too many confounding variables.

    Dave says, " If I had continued the diet with near 0 carbs I would likely have suffered gut permeability issues when I ran out of mucus to protect the lining of my stomach from stomach acid." He doesn't say he ever had that problem.

    Allergens can be something you take with you, not necessarily something in the place as you say you have moved often. Personal care products, soaps, pets, etc.
    Last edited by Paleobird; 06-05-2013 at 03:20 PM.

  4. #14
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    I had the same issue for a long time. I'd be coughing up nasty mucus and blowing my nose nonstop throughout the day. I couldn't even workout properly at the gym, when i'd lie down to do bench presses, i'd literally choke and gag. I stopped eating wheat and dairy around the same time and now I have no issues, i still have to blow my nose everyday, but i think its a normal amount now. I no longer choke and gag and cough up crap every 15 mins. Im leaning more towards dairy being the cause for me. I added in protein shakes with milk a while back for a few days and the symptoms returned.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Urban Forager View Post
    Sabre, I'd love to find the solution too. I have chronic sinus issues, due partly to narrow sinus and polyps, other than I don't know. I've had fewer sinus infections since going primal 3 yrs. ago but it's still a problem. Whether I'm allergic to things in my environment or the foods I eat I haven't figured it out. I've been on the paleo autoimmune diet for 3 weeks now (it pretty much eliminates anything that's known to trigger allergies) and haven't noticed any difference. I caught a cold 1 week into the diet (the whole family got it) and here I am 2 weeks later and still congested. I haven't had a decent night sleep since it started, when I lie down I can't breath through my nose so it keeps me awake, not to mention the excessive amounts of phlegm.

    I'm taking lots of Vitamin C, zinc, Vitamin D, magnesium and of course eating 100% paleo. i can't think of what else to do.
    That sucks. Let me share what I've discovered from the past few days of looking for answers. You mention you have narrow sinuses and polyps; I presume a specialist did a CT scan and confirmed this to be the case.
    Have you looked into this ("minimally-invasive balloon") surgery

    A 2-minute video on this: Treating Chronic Sinusitis - YouTube

    "Chronic hyperplastic sinusitis" is the name given to it when there are polyps present.

    Have you looked into FESS/Functional endoscopic sinus surgery? I don't know enough about it yet to say either way.

    Sinusitis in general may be a hyper-responsiveness of the immune system in the sinuses to bacteria. Another idea connected to this is that the bacteria or fungi are able to embed themselves in a kind of biofilm that antibiotics/antifungals aren't able to eradicate--this is the gist of the idea I get from pouring over various articles and papers about this--and so nasal irrigating may be the best way to manage it, rather than cure it. That's an annoying idea that I don't like to resign to just yet.

    So, the takeaway from that is: some surgeries might work wonders, depending on the type of sinus issues you have. Nasal irrigation is good for managing it.

    Another interesting idea was mentioned by the poster Dragonfly, histamine allergies may exacerbate this. Check out that Chris Kresser post I linked to a few posts ago.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by namelesswonder View Post
    To the OP, ever seen an ENT? I was told by the doctor that tested me for allergies that an ENT might be able to see something that could be corrected. Post-nasal drip is not an easy thing to cure or pin down the cause.
    I saw one years ago when I was a teenager but he was, how shall we say, a condescending prick. I still want to punch him in the face. I should probably go be seen by a better one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Urban Forager View Post
    I take antihistamines daily and use a neti pot most days.

    NW brings up a good point have you seen an ENT? There could be a physical cause like polyps. Not everything is related to diet, there could also be a genetic cause (not likely) but you may want to look into it. My son has Cystic Fibrosis, it's a genetic condition where the body produces an excess of very thick mucous. Our first clue was that he constantly had a runny nose, the doctors kept treating him for allergies and didn't suspect CF because he didn't have any digestive issues. In most people with CF their pancreas does not function due to excess mucous, but in my son's case his pancreas functions fine. When the pancreas doesn't function CF is diagnosed early because the person (infant) can't digest fats.
    I'm sorry to hear your son has CF, I hope it's not too debilitating for him--it sounds like he's healthier than the average person with CF? What age is he now? I've heard that research into that area is flourishing and the future's bright for CF sufferers. The guy from that band House of Pain, Everlast, his daughter has CF and he was talking about in recent interviews and about the progress doctors are hoping to make.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleobird View Post
    First of all, ketosis=/=ZC. Also he is talking about a carb refeed once a week which I think is a great idea particularly for lean folks. As to any damage being done to the guts, I would be more likely to suspect Dave's huge intake of coffee as the culprit in his diet there. He also is a special snowflake n=1 because of the longstanding thyroid condition he writes about and the medication he takes for it. I'm not sure that his results are generalizable.
    Yeah, I think you're dead right about that.

    One question about the refeed--without going off topic--Does a refeed at the weekend (say) take you out of ketosis making it necessary to start the transition period back to ketones from scratch? Some say the transition to burning ketones can take weeks--if you're in ketosis and you do a refeed, do you have to start the whole transition thing all over again? Ideally I'd like to segue in and out seamlessly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paleobird View Post
    Dave says, " If I had continued the diet with near 0 carbs I would likely have suffered gut permeability issues when I ran out of mucus to protect the lining of my stomach from stomach acid." He doesn't say he ever had that problem.
    Right, but in a later interview (I think it was on the Fatburning Man podcast), he said he did pick up some allergies, supposedly from his zero-carbing, but like you said there are a ton of confounding variables there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paleobird View Post
    Allergens can be something you take with you, not necessarily something in the place as you say you have moved often. Personal care products, soaps, pets, etc.
    Hmm, that's interesting.

  8. #18
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    Full Keto-adaption can take several weeks to several months, but you can still go in and out of it.

    How you feel will depend on your particular metabolism.

  9. #19
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    Several months? Damnn.

    A question to anyone:

    How would one go about getting a "histopathological examination" here, and might it be useful?

    From an abstract of a paper on sinuses, "Many terms related to allergic fungal rhinosinusitis (AFRS) such as [...I chopped out the various complicated terminologies] have bee proposed. The authors define EMRS (eosinophilic mucin rhinosinusitis) as patients with rhinosinusitis who demonstrate eosinophilic mucin on histopathological examination"

    From what I gather, rhinosinusitis = sinusitis

    The language of the abstract is rather horrible. But from what I can break down from it--

    In some cases of sinisitis, a fungus may be involved.

    Patients are diagnosed with having, or not having, a certain fungus in the mucus. If they have the mucus, diagnosis = "eosinophilic fungal rhinosinusitis" (EFR)

    If they don't have the fungus, diagnosis = "eosinophilic fungal rhinosinusitis -like syndrome" (EFR-like syndrome)

    Of the people who have the fungus, there's:

    those who are allergic to it, diagnosis = allergic fungal rhinosinusitis

    Those who are not allergic to it = non-allergic fungal rhinosinusitis.


    Basically, that's a lot of wordy labels. I don't have access to the full paper.

    I'm wondering how fungi would be treated? Would anti-fungal tablets of some kind work, or surgery?

  10. #20
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    Saber, thanks for that sinus balloon surgery video, I think that's what I need. Finding someone to perform the surgery and getting my insurance to cover it is a whole other thing.

    My son is doing really well; he's very fortunate to have a functioning pancreas which means he doesn't have the digestion problems most CF'ers have. He's 15 yrs. old and this year he's started working out, lifting weights, push-up, pull ups and occasionally sprinting, it seems to be contributing to his overall health. He also eats a primal diet.

    I'll check out the Chris Kresser talk you mentioned.

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