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Has anyone reintroduced legumes/grains and NOT gotten sick?

by (2825)
Updated about 10 hours ago
Created June 21, 2011 at 8:51 PM

I've heard a lot about people cheating or accidentally ingesting non-paleo foods and being sick for days. Is this the case for everyone, or just those with guts that aren't fully healed? For example, the GAPs & SCD diets claim that, if followed for 2 years or so, people can go back to eating everything. Do they have a period of regaining tolerance where they'd get sick too?

I'm not thinking of reintroducing these items myself, just wondering what others' experiences have been. We're thinking of taking our toddler off grains for awhile just as an experiment (he's showing no obvious intolerances to them, but we're interested in maximizing his health) but I wouldn't want to create a situation where his gut can't handle grains (Gramma likes to give him crackers, etc.). I don't think it would be fair to "make" him grain-intolerant, if that's what it ends up being.

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2825 · June 22, 2011 at 12:51 PM

I don't feed my kid grains - he gets them at daycare, and I just don't want to put him in that "exclusive snack" category that separates him from his peers yet. He's only two, and I doubt he'd be happy eating carrot sticks while his friends all get Ritz crackers and peanut butter.

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5242 · June 22, 2011 at 2:36 AM

Why would you not eat grains but feed them to your children? It blows my mind when friends of mine have gone paleo, feel amazing, appear to understand the science but won't take the crap out of their children's lives because it might 'deprive' them.

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1138 · June 22, 2011 at 12:57 AM

exactly the same with me and my family. I hear so many horror stories on this site about the evil effects of grains and gluten that sometimes I think there's something wrong with us because we don't experience any ill effects! haha. I cut them out of our diet as much as possible for the carb count and the fact we try not to eat processed food.

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25467 · June 22, 2011 at 12:30 AM

I can eat them without any problem. I cant deal with grain liquor or wine any longer. Coffee and cheese from A1 cows are a problem too.

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2319 · June 22, 2011 at 12:06 AM

change this to celiac or non celiac gluten sensitive and I'll go for it.

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358 · June 21, 2011 at 10:31 PM

Totally agree! I was used to feeling bloated after eating pasta!

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7967 · June 21, 2011 at 10:13 PM

This is ideal I think. I hope to raise my kids as paleo (with starch) in the home, but encourage them to be totally flexible in the outside world. One thing I am wondering is how to teach a young child not to go crazy and gorge on enough sweets etc that it makes them physically ill... I guess hopefully they'd learn their lesson the first time ideally!

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2825 · June 21, 2011 at 9:11 PM

His only "grains" at the moment are graham cracker bunnies, goldfish crackers and 'nilla wafers, so I'm not too concerned about depriving him...;)

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14 Answers

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351 · June 21, 2011 at 9:16 PM

I think it's more likely that after eating well people just start noticing how bad grains/sugar etc make them feel. I used to think a slight headache and sore tummy was "normal".

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358 · June 21, 2011 at 10:31 PM

Totally agree! I was used to feeling bloated after eating pasta!

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970 · June 21, 2011 at 9:02 PM

I have no problem with grains or legumes. I can go months with out eating them, then be at a party and have birthday cake and feel fine. Or make a bean soup when we're super broke and I'm fine with it (ok beans do make me feel kinda tired, but that's it).
The same goes for my kids- they have not had any issues. They eat paleo at home, but there are times in school or at a birthday party they cheat- and they have not had any issues.
Just my experience.

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7967 · June 21, 2011 at 10:13 PM

This is ideal I think. I hope to raise my kids as paleo (with starch) in the home, but encourage them to be totally flexible in the outside world. One thing I am wondering is how to teach a young child not to go crazy and gorge on enough sweets etc that it makes them physically ill... I guess hopefully they'd learn their lesson the first time ideally!

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1138 · June 22, 2011 at 12:57 AM

exactly the same with me and my family. I hear so many horror stories on this site about the evil effects of grains and gluten that sometimes I think there's something wrong with us because we don't experience any ill effects! haha. I cut them out of our diet as much as possible for the carb count and the fact we try not to eat processed food.

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78422 · June 21, 2011 at 9:43 PM

Once a week, I eat something with wheat in it. I would suggest everyone do this, unless they are truly celiac. I occasionally have green beans. Sometimes I will eat a chinese dish that has a little bit of black bean sauce. I make sure I don't get too much of it though. Doesn't bother me. So, I would suggest that after an initial period of weaning yourself from problematic foods that you reintroduce them now and again. While it may be important to severely reduce them, it's also important not to become a Food Fascist when you're out in public. So, I say, come down off of that high horse every now and then and eat these foods.

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2319 · June 22, 2011 at 12:06 AM

change this to celiac or non celiac gluten sensitive and I'll go for it.

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50 · June 21, 2011 at 11:52 PM

The one thing that gives me trouble is beer. I used to be able to down a 6-pack with ease, but now I feel bloated after one or two. I'll get nauseated after something really sweet, like a big slice of cake, but some pizza or legumes don't seem to bother me.

More importantly, I know many adults that have never even heard of "Paleo," but because they were raised by parents who rarely ate desserts, etc, they don't like sweets. So whether or not your kids can tolerate grains and other non-paleo foods, they probably will be so unaccustomed to eating them that they'll avoid them out of habit.

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7967 · June 21, 2011 at 10:08 PM

Kind of. I've been at this for a while and have experimented a lot. I think some people really do have sensitivities to certain foods. Safe to say that if you notice a bad reaction from eating something, it's probably not good for you. Other people do not and should be fine eating things that make me feel terrible, like cake (sob), in moderation.

Too many carbs, even 'safe' paleo-style carbs, make my blood sugar crash and affect my sleep and energy. Low carb isn't great for me either, but I rarely go over 200g per day even when I am very active. I do not notice any effects from moderate consumption of table sugar (which I usually have only in chocolate and ice cream). Neither VLC or high-carb is right for me.

Legumes are pretty much fine for me to eat. I like chickpeas and eat them often. Other beans can give me a little bit of gas and loose stool, but nothing more serious. I don't eat mass amounts anyway.

Most grains kill me and I have learned the hard way that I should not 'cheat'. White rice, however, is a-ok, and corn seems to be fine too (so far - I only really eat corn tortillas). Wheat is the absolute worst. Any other 'whole grain' comes with various side-effects. Everything from sudden severe energy loss with foggy head, to stiffness and muscle pain for days, to eczema flair-ups, to hives, to IBS recurrence, to worsened depression. They throw my body into turmoil. I think I'm grain-free for life. Except for white rice and corn. And that's just me; my cousin is not paleo and eats lot of wheat, but she has a corn sensitivity she was diagnosed with in childhood. It makes her severely bloated, among other things. People really are different.

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305 · June 21, 2011 at 9:13 PM

eating carbs makes me feel EXTREMELY bloated. i used to be able to eat 4+ slices of pizza.. the last time i tried, i felt like a puffer fish after 2 slices. i didnt feel sick though.

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666 · June 21, 2011 at 9:03 PM

After nearly 2 months of Paleo:

  • I can eat grains and not be sick
  • Legumes are fine too
  • Sugar (as in 250ml of Ben & Jerry's) gives me a headache and I feel really tired afterwards (and no sleep at night if it's really bad)

So I'm pretty okay with all/most non-paleo foods. But I'm 18, didn't feel bad before Paleo, nor feel very special on Paleo, and quite fit. That does contribute to the tolerance I believe.

PS: experimenting with your toddler, sounds freaky :P

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2825 · June 21, 2011 at 9:11 PM

His only "grains" at the moment are graham cracker bunnies, goldfish crackers and 'nilla wafers, so I'm not too concerned about depriving him...;)

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986 · February 14, 2013 at 4:55 AM

Any time I try to reintroduce grains (I hate beans, but I've never reacted to peanuts, and still occasionally eat them.) I IMMEDIATELY feel the effects. Even white rice. Not only does my stomach distend, I get the worst digestive issues and if I continue to eat grains for more than a few days, I start to get sick - cold/allergy type symptoms. All goes away when taking out grains. It's not worth it to me.

Does this mean I never cheat? Nope. I'm only human after all, and my sweet tooth is something paleo NEVER cured. I just live with the consequences when I indulge.

Of note: I did GAPs for a while, not the full 2 years it recommends mind you, and many issues I did have went away, but my grain intolerance didn't. I chalk it up to my body reminding me what's healthy and what's not. And that's a good thing - if I didn't react to grains, I probably wouldn't have the motivation to stay paleo.

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726 · February 13, 2013 at 11:17 PM

Yes, I reintroduced white rice after a few months of strict paleo, and it's been no problem. Corn tortillas every once in a while have been fine too.

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2081 · June 21, 2011 at 10:24 PM

Legumes don't bother me - we eat them maybe once every couple of months - but even tiny amounts of gluten or cow's dairy screw me up for days. Once in a blue moon I'll eat a little white rice, which doesn't bother me, but anything more than the smallest amounts of sugar give rotten headaches. I'll probably never voluntarily eat gluten-bearing grains or cow's milk again.

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1023 · June 21, 2011 at 10:04 PM

Not with wheat. Beans give me gnarly gas now, and sugar really hits me - headache, almost tingling feeling in my head (sugar rush?). I'll have corn chips with guacamole without any problems too.

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18701 · June 21, 2011 at 9:06 PM

I have been eating Paleo since October 2010. I would say I'm fairly srict most of the time, probably 90/95% compliant. I do sometimes eat pizza with my family or have store bought cake on a birthday. I get a sugar/carb high sometimes, but I don't get sick. The reason I continue to avoid these foods is that they do cause me to retain water which raises my blood pressure significantly.

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10 · June 21, 2011 at 9:00 PM

I have not got sick at all with legume, but bread really bothers my stomach so i haven't had bread in 4 months or pizza..:)

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78422 · February 13, 2013 at 10:41 PM

i like jerking off with wet beans on the palm of my hand

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