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    Alyssa's Avatar
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    Gain weight AND reduce inflammation??

    Primal Fuel
    I just recently found MDA, but I've been eating Primal (ish) for a little while now. I have ulcerative colitis, so I've been on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) for a year so far for that. So, I haven't had grains, sugar or legumes for over a year, and have been only eating homemade 1/2 and 1/2 yogurt and raw cheddar cheese. I really don't like meds, but unfortunately I've had to go on azathioprine (Imuran) since the diet hasn't taken care of all my symptoms. I'm also on prednisone, but weaning off.

    Anyways, even on the meds, I still have to watch what I eat (even SCD legal foods) because I'll get symptoms. I would rather go low carb to help the inflammation, which is the root of UC, but the problem is, I'm a 16 year old girl and rather underweight. So it's super hard to balance what my gut wants with what will make me gain! Any suggestions on the best way to gain for me would be? I already eat a lot of fat. I just don't know if I should eat more fruit, less fruit, more/less cheese, nuts, or if I just need more calories in general? Thanks!

    Alyssa

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    rphlslv's Avatar
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    Hmm Id say eat more calories from protein and fat and supplement with fish oil to help the inflammation.
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    Hi Alyssa, I also have Ulcerative Colitis. I was diagnosed in 01 so I'm going on 9 years. It's been a lot of trial and error for me with meds, diet, supplements, etc...but right now I am feeling better than I have in a long time. I attribute a lot of it to my diet and my choice of supplements. I followed a very strict diet to achieve remission and still follow the diet actually because I've felt so good. Here is the website and diet I followed in the beginning. It is 100% Primal. http://www.biblelife.org/bowel.htm You asked about fruits, cheese and nuts. Everyone is probably different but I found fruit and nuts to not work so well with me. If you still have inflammation nuts will be very hard for you to digest right now. Also I don't know why fruit doesn't agree with me, maybe it feeds bacteria in the gut or something. I have no clue but I just know I feel better the less I eat of it. My diet right now basically consists of grass fed beef, pastured butter, eggs, bacon, heavy cream, pemmican, lamb, some hard cheese (0g lactose) and vegetables every now and then. I know it's hard to get past the fact that you might have to give up all the tasty food you love but if it means making you feel better and give you a better life then I think it's worth it. I've been eating like this for awhile now so I don't even miss all the crap I used to have! I know you're worried about being underweight. I know what you're dealing with. At my lowest and sickest I was 105 and I'm 5'10 and I guy so you can imagine how sickly I must have been! I assure you though that things can and will get better. I'm at 160 now. The foods I eat are very dense and they have lots of calories. I can get over 2,000 calories a day pretty easy. Just 6oz of heavy cream is about 500 cals so it's easy to get in enough food. I hope my answer helped you out. If you have any questions about anything feel free to message me. I'm always happy to help a fellow UC'er!

    shawn

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    Alyssa's Avatar
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    Thanks Shawn! I appreciate your reply. I looked at the website you linked to, and it's rather similar to the SCD except that it prohibits fruit and nuts. Also, on the SCD, homemade yogurt is encouraged since all the lactose is eaten by bacteria. Were you able to gain weight on so few carbs? I would love to give up fruit for a little while just to see if it made me feel better, but I'm afraid I'd lose weight. Well, actually I'd hate to give up fruit, I love it, but I would try =) I guess for now I'll just try cutting down on the fruit, and see if that helps, and then go from there. Just wondering, you say you don't get along well with nuts. Have you tried soaking them first? Apparently they have enzyme inhibitors that make them tough to digest, and soaking them in salt water for a few hours first is supposed to neutralize these. Thanks again for your reply, and congrats on feeling good! Oh, and may I ask, what supplements are you taking? Are you on any 'western' meds?

    Alyssa

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    Saosin80's Avatar
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    No problem Alyssa, glad I could give you some input!...I actually gained most of my weight back in the past eating crap. I was on really high doses of prednisone so that allowed me to pack on weight. Now that I'm barely eating any carbs at all though I'm not underweight or anything. I was a fit 160 when I was 20 years old before I was ever sick and I'm at 160 now at 30 years old. I actually became overweight from all the prednisone and eating crappy food. You will gain weight on this kind of diet though, especially since you're underweight. It should allow you to reach the normal weight that you should be at. That's what's cool about eating this way. If you're overweight you can lose weight this way and get to a healthy weight and if you're underweight it should calm the inflammation in your body and allow you to gain your weight back. I did hear about soaking nuts before hand to digest them better. I guess I just was never a really big fan of nuts in the first place so I never bothered trying that. Plus most nuts are really high in omega 6 fats which I like to stay away from since they promote inflammation in the body. For 20 years I flooded my body with omega 6 fats which are horrible especially if you have an inflammatory disease. Since cutting out all omega 6 seed oils, nuts, ect. I feel a million times better. For supplements I take vitamin D, which I think everyone should be taking healthy or not. Vitamin D plays a role in so many things including your immune system and inflammation. I also take a natural anti-inflammatory called Curcumin. I feel like that helps a lot with inflammation in the body. Other stuff I take is vitamin k, resveratrol, iodine, magnesium, vitamin c. All very good stuff for your body!...I am still on meds. I currently take 6pm which is basically like imuran which you are on. I also take 2.5 mg of prednisone, although I could probably wean myself off totally now. I will probably stick with the 6mp for awhile and then lower the dose after I haven't had a flare for a really long time.

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    Alyssa's Avatar
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    Ah yes, the wonders of prednisone. I really hate the stuff though, I'm at 17.5 mg and HOPING to be rid of it altogether soon. I'm hoping I'll be able to heal from my UC pretty quickly, since I started changing my diet very soon after I was diagnosed in September 08. First I tried omiting a bunch of stuff like dairy, gluten, citrus, sugar, refined carbs...not really a specific diet, but just cutting out a bunch of stuff. I was vegetarian at this time too, for moral reasons, so my food was pretty nasty. Then I tried the raw diet to heal my UC and, long story short, ended up in the hospital. On to plan...C? That's when I found the Specific Carbohydrate diet, which I started a year ago, so no 'crap food' since then. Unless you count honey, fruit, and nuts, which I've been very confused about for the entire year as to whether I should eat them, and how much of each. I guess I probably would try eating your way, but I can't really do what I want since my parents are still somewhat in charge of me. They get really worried when my diet is very limited, and that adds a lot of stress to everyone, which I guess isn't good either. I think if I increase my variety of veggies (I have a fear of nightshades and haven't started eating them again yet =) ), decrease my fruit consumption to once a day, and cut the honey completely, that might be a good balance for me. As always, I guess it will just be trial and error. Anyways, sorry for the biography =) It's always nice to talk to a fellow primal UCer! Right now I'm trying to figure out whether to take fermented cod liver oil or regular fish oil for omega 3s. Not sure which has more, but I know the FCLO has vitamins A and D in it. Any thoughts? I still like eating nuts for nutrients, variety, and something that's actually portable, so I guess I need omega 3s to counterbalance them. I stopped eating all the bad veggie oils though, and eat mostly grass fed beef, so that's a step in the right direction! Same here with the meds though, I'll probably stick with the imuran for a year or so after my symptoms go away, and then try to wean off. The first thing I thought when I was diagnosed was "HECK no I'm not gonna be on meds for the rest of my life!!" =)

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    That's ok about your biography, it's good to talk to someone else with the same condition!...I think you should go with the cod liver oil especially if you're not taking in any vitamin d and you're not getting a lot of sunlight. Since you enjoy nuts so much you could opt for the ones that are lower in omega 6 too. I know Macadamia's are pretty low in omega 6. If I ever eat nuts that's the one I always go for. It's good to hear that you are taking charge of your health so soon after being diagnosed. I waited a long time and was very sick many many times before I got my diet in order, so you're definitely on the right track towards being healthy!!

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