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Inflammation, vegetables, and neolithic foods.

by 268 · March 29, 2014 at 11:46 PM

Hello Paleohacks!

So last night I was kinda in a funk and decided what the hell, i'm going to order a pizza. Ended up going with my favorite (it's been yearsssss since i've touched wheat and such "evil" processed food (really). Went with my old favorite - sausage/pep/green peppers/red onions. Ate the whole damn thing in one sitting and all I can say is WOW - I felt amazing and looked great. Like seriously great. Better than I do day to day eating my "perfect" diet. Basically ate a huge load of neolithic carbs, vegetable/meat O-6, and run of the mill dairy.

Now this certainly gave me a real WTF moment and I have come to a bit of a crossroad and not sure where to turn.

Please help me out!

My day to day diet is 2 large meals consisting of the following: Small portion white rice/potatoes, a significant portion of various vegetables, very gelatinous bone broth (with very broken down soft bones that I also eat for calcium), beef/lamb/goat/pork (100% grass fed or pastured in the case of pork), shellfish (mussels and oysters normally) and tallow/lard/avocado/olive oils. Now this diet seems from what I can gather about traditional diet pretty darn healthy and similar to my traditional European roots.

I also have found that I can't function well without at least some starch (500+ cal). If I don't have starch I find I can't focus, have little motivation and my work suffers.

Now here's the weird part..

Vegetables in any significant quantity cause me some pretty clear inflammation. I think any soluble/cellulose fiber in general gives me inflammation. I used to suffer my acne however I can eliminate it fully by consuming liver/oysters and enough starch. Vegetables alone don't cause acne but it causes my skin to become quite blotchy and sensitive.. however if I consume dairy and vegetables - dairy (raw milk) will cause my skin to become slightly oily and combine that with the inflammation - that's the recipe for acne.

If I avoid vegetables I notice a stark drop in inflammation - however it feels like a double edged sword as I'm not sure if I meet my calcium needs (every other nutrient is in excess). I currently eat softened stew bones (from a very very hiquality source) but I dont know how bio-available it would be.

Little more information:

I don't do well on fruits as a source of carbs - not inflammatory but not the same boost of energy and motivation that I get from starch.

Sweet potatoes seem to be an atomic bomb of inflammation.

I find I need a fair amount of protein I usually get around 100-120g per day from animal source.

I'm not missing any nutrients so that's certainly not the issue.

Probiotics don't help and depending on my vegetable intake make things worse.

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TL; DR;

Has anyone else had a similar experience with vegetables intake and inflammation?

Eating neolithic poison made me feel and look good.

Are bones good enough for calcium?

Does anyone else eat a diet primarily of starch and animal products?

EDIT:

Should I avoid vegetables if they don't make me feel/look good?

EDIT 2:

Do you think some people work better on a high starch diet (1000+ cals). I don't do a great deal of exercise but I do a lot of mental work every day. At least 10hr of complex thought/learning.

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8 Replies

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1197 · April 30, 2012 at 5:58 AM

Your post is kind of a revelation to me. I have a crush on a coworker, and it's getting to the point now where I need to eat at least a pint of ice cream before I see her. I'm glowing after eating it. I look like garbage most of the time eating paleo. I know exactly what you mean by just general splotchy inflammation, ugh, where every blemish on my face is in this flushed stark relief to my skin.

When I was cloistered in the world of lonely super strict paleo, mostly vegetables and meat (organs, broth, too), I never looked worse in my life, but it had become unthinkable for me to eat something like ice cream. The option wasn't even on the table. I thought the world would explode if I ate a pizza. Every new pimple was just baffling to me. But then, like you, I was in such a major funk, a funk that an unhealthy relationship to food seems to conjure up, and I binged on take-out for a few weeks, and I looked, eh, a little better if anything. According to the principles I had been eating under for the last 6 months, you'd think I'd have turned into Freddy Kruger. Whenever I visit home, my mom has a ton of vegetables in the fridge and over the course of a week, even with adequate starch, I just look worse and worse.

So do we eat what we know by our ad-hoc internet-informed principles is healthiest for us, or do we eat what makes us look best? The "worse" I eat, it seems, the more comments I get about how healthy I look, consistently, although gluten is the exception an doesn't do me much good. I'm at a loss as well. Maybe you were starved of something in the pizza you ate, I just can't think of what.

But anyways, I think you've answered your own question. Maybe lay off the vegetables, pretend that bones/broth are enough calcium, shore up on some nutrients with occasional fruit (since they seem at worst neutral for you) and go from there. You could try grinding bones, or maybe including bone-in small fish. I looked best eating liver/shellfish, some meat, starch, a few root vegetables, and ghee, but it lasted only a few weeks before I somehow screwed it up. Maybe it was sweet potatoes, never suspected them before.

I think I'll be trying a diet similar to this too. Korion is having success with this Peat-inspired stuff as well.

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20 · August 10, 2012 at 1:56 AM

I have been trying to get clear skin for so long now and I couldn't understand why the healthier I ate the worse my skin looked. I have stopped eating raw vegetables and wouldn't you know it, my skin is finally clearing up. I think it is definitely the raw cruciferous vegetables that can cause some people to break out due to not being able to digest them properly. I no longer have distinguishable items in my fecal matter, (sorry I know too much information). I eat lots of animal products, dairy and cooked or fermented vegetables, I know that dairy is not paleo, but I really like the raw milk and cheeses. I had cut them out at one time thinking that my skin would do better but it actually seemed to get worse. I do not eat grains. I have read articles linking low thyroid to acne, so the cruciferous vegetables could also be effecting the thyroid but honestly I think that it is a digestion issue. I don't have a problem with fruit so I don't think it is fructose that I have trouble digesting but I believe it is the raffinose sugar that is found in vegetables like broccoli and brussel sprouts etc. I used to eat huge salads made from romaine lettuce, carrots, and broccoli and my skin looked awful. I hope this helps!

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501 · April 29, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Hmmm...both gluten (in the pizza crust) and casein (in the ice cream that VB feels good on) contain opiates...you may have become extra-sensitive to the effects of these opiates after an extended period of not consuming gluten / casein? Just a thought...

There's also research (not sure how legit) that shows some people are naturally more sensitive to the opiates in wheat or casein than others.

http://www.greatplainslaboratory.com/home/eng/peptide.asp http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/2012/04/wheat-is-an-opiate/

http://www.13.waisays.com/zombie.htm (including this one because it's entitled "Zombie-food"...funny...no mention of eating brains) http://www.nutramed.com/eatingdisorders/addictivefoods.htm

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4540 · April 29, 2012 at 7:25 PM

I've actually found that raw and lightly cooked veggies are some of the worst digesting foods for me. I look, feel, and perform best on a digestively simple diet, which for me looks like: beef, broth, shellfish, egg yolks, ripe fruits (oranges and black-spotted bananas), well-cooked white potatoes and white rice. I do add some non-cruciferous veggies to my broth and cook them very well.

I think calcium is underrated in the paleosphere, so I take about 400mg worth of calcium a day from finely ground egg shells to make up for my poor dietary calcium intake (I have this suspicion that even the best bone broth isn't that great of a calcium source). I'd say you're probably good for calcium with the stew bones.

For the neolithic poison making you feel good part, maybe you're just not getting enough calories and the pizza calorie bolus calmed down some stress hormones? Plus pizza is delicious. Delicious things usually make people happy. Happiness = look and feel good! I'm grasping at straws here :P

Anyway, just my $0.02!

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75 · July 03, 2013 at 5:46 PM

Sorry if i shouldn't but just replying for my own reference.

i have also noticed the same kind of thing.

ie:

The "better" i eat the worse i feel [physiologically anyway].

Just look at the diet of all the centenarians - they really aren't that great - not that it means anything yes i know.

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15380 · April 29, 2012 at 8:10 PM

After going gluten-free I have discovered that I thrive on vegetables. Especially spinach and cabbage family. I even grew to like (ok, maybe tolerate) broccoli. I never get sick or anything of that matter when I am eating vegetables.

I also tolerate fruit well except for... eating fruit makes me hungrier and gives me sugar/fruit cravings. Also sometimes I get an uncomfortable feeling in my stomach after eating blueberries, apples or bananas, but my gut is so screwed up, I feel uncomfortable after eating almost anything... except for veggies.

By the way, have you tried eating ONLY vegetables (non-starchy) for one meal? I have - I actually became a "temporary" vegetarian (I had no access to any protein source for one full weak) and I did great!!! I was craving protein, but I felt fabulous!

How do I explain your feel-good after eating pizza?

I do not buy it that pizza is delicious - I never actually liked either pizza or pasta. Even when we went to pizzeria, I would always order something else. So... we all have different comfort foods, I guess.

However, here is something to consider. Every time I eat gluten-free junk food (like ice-cream) I feel wonderful afterwards. I have been puzzled about it for a long long time. I am not a doctor, not a nutritionist and not a scientist, but this is my guess (so you can take it with a grain of salt).

When I eat healthy home-cooked meals full of wonderful nutritious vegetables and high quality protein, my liver does not have much to work on. However, as soon as I eat some "junk" full of fat and sugar, my liver gets stimulated and it starts working in overdrive.

Now it would be interesting for me to know how you will feel tonight or tomorrow. Will you crash? I would love to hear an update!

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1612 · August 10, 2012 at 3:04 AM

I AGREE!! I used to be strict low-carb and my diet was very heavy in the proteins and fats.. Ughh.. So sluggish. I Felt less than optimal, GAINED FAT, YES GAINED FAT and had no sex drive.. I have lowered my fat ( still keep it as a healthy source of calories though ) Upped my fruit big time. I drink alot of green smoothies with 3-4 bananas, a few peaches and a large amount of greens. My metabolism is getting healthy again and I'm shedding fat and feel great. I also don't eat any chicken anymore. My diet is lots of fruit, some white rice, potatoes ( sweet also ), Lots of free-range eggs and beef. That's about it. Digestion is good. I have to avoid all dairy and raw cruciferous veggies in order to feel good. I also LIVE LIFE everyonce in a while. I don't do well with dairy but HECH with it. I gotta have some ice cream and pizza every now and then. Oh I drink ALOT of Oj too. Life is good, I'm more toward a " Real foods " diet now.

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4395 · August 10, 2012 at 2:17 AM

I think you experienced an increase in dopamine (and other Nts) from the "thrill and excitement" of eating something so off limits and "forbidden". That's my thought.

The other thing that is striking to me in the answers here is all the people having issues with digestion.
Its my impression that healthy GI systems can and should be able to digest any vegetable.
I personally would look at figuring out what might be going on in the digestion of food that is causing inflammation. I just doesn't make sense.

I suspect its an issue of dysbiosis and increased GI permeability (aka Leaky Gut).

Good Luck to you.

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