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Losing Faith In Paleo

by 78 · July 19, 2013 at 02:55 PM

I hate to say it, but I feel like I'm hitting the end of my proverbial paleo rope. I can't seem to make it work for me anymore, and I've got an ever increasing laundry list of health issues/hurts.

Then again, returning to SAD makes me well...sadder.

I guess the biggest thing is the pain. I feel like I've got constant lactic acid buildup. The brain fog/memory loss is worse. Sometimes I can't make a sentence or words get all jumbled. The fatigue is soul-sapping can't keep my head up fatigue and there are two points on my lower spine that if you brush them I will scream. (TMI) but my breasts constantly hurt---starting taking iodine for this on a whim and felt like I was flying for two days---amazing---then the dry mouth and fatigue kicked in. All the tests are 'normal' according to the doctors.

I just feel like to do paleo properly takes a lot of money, either for food or for supplements.

Everything seems to have drawbacks, like for the short-term VLC makes me feel awesome, but then long-term my insulin sensitivity is destroyed. My last fasting blood glucose I believe was 93? But that was a while ago.

Currently I'll admit that a lot of my meat is conventional poultry/pork because after the greens and veggies there isn't much left. If I could eat meat-only (with perhaps a tuber to keep my carbs at about 30-50g) I would...but I don't know if I can.

Supplement wise currently on:

5,000 IU vitamin D 650 mcg iodine from kelp 200 mcg selenium B complex Bone complex http://www.nowfoods.com/Products/Products-by-Category/Minerals/Calcium-Magnesium/Bone-Strength-240-Veg-Capsules.htm#.UZqxK7VJMnc Hormonal Balance From Femmed (trying to get the PMDD/acne explosion/hair growth under control---not impressed so dropping this one---considering vitex/chaste tree berry).

Guys, at this point I feel like giving up. I get better only to get worse. The fatigue, the nausea and the IBS and all the other problems are driving me nuts.

Please help.

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5814 · May 20, 2013 at 11:38 PM

Sam- Have you posted your food list on other questions? You sound like you have hibernation syndrome to me. Here:

http://drcate.com/going-low-carb-too-fast-may-trigger-thyroid-troubles-and-hormone-imbalance/

Dr Cate recommends even going back on SAD to get your carbs back up, then when you feel better start going paleo again, but take it SLOW.

Also, as for the breast tenderness, pain, brain fog, etc, there are 2 things that cause that in me. (1) Dairy. and (2) any kind of fasting. (Must screw up my hormones).

Not sure how old you are, but if you have a friendly GYN, I would try to get a hormone panel done (saliva testing) and see how your cortisol, etc, looks.

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396 · May 20, 2013 at 11:43 PM

If you haven't explored this already, I would recommend looking into the [Perfect Health Diet.][1][1]: http://perfecthealthdiet.com/. Paul Jaminet and Shou-Ching Shih Jaminet are scientists who encourage a paleo-friendly diet, with the inclusion of "safe-starches," depending on your specific health needs/goals.

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198 · May 20, 2013 at 11:49 PM

What makes you feel good?

Do that.

I know that sounds curt, but for real. If what you're doing isn't working, try some new things. Try eating carbs at dinner every night for a week. See how it goes.

I haven't felt anything so extreme, but I've had some periods where I was in the crapper pretty badly, just feeling like I didn't want to get out of bed and not having brain power to do much more than stare at the wall. I got better quality coffee and started doing Bulletproof coffee, and I feel a lot better. When I start to feel a bit wrecked from pushing weights, I eat some carbs, and I feel a world of difference.

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5264 · May 21, 2013 at 01:21 AM

“Then again, returning to SAD makes me well...sadder. “

Paleo’s like the Mob, Sam…they never let you go, no matter how hard you try, they pull you back in.

“I guess the biggest thing is the pain. I feel like I've got constant lactic acid buildup. The brain fog/memory loss is worse. Sometimes I can't make a sentence or words get all jumbled. The fatigue is soul-sapping can't keep my head up fatigue and there are two points on my lower spine that if you brush them I will scream. (TMI) but my breasts constantly hurt---starting taking iodine for this on a whim and felt like I was flying for two days---amazing---then the dry mouth and fatigue kicked in. All the tests are 'normal' according to the doctors.”

You mentioned doctors, was this a holistic doctor or just a run of the mill GP? You also mentioned brain fog…what are your carbs sitting at a day?

“I just feel like to do paleo properly takes a lot of money, either for food or for supplements. Currently I'll admit that a lot of my meat is conventional poultry/pork because after the greens and veggies there isn't much left. If I could eat meat-only (with perhaps a tuber to keep my carbs at about 30-50g) I would...but I don't know if I can.”

Oh no, you’re not eating grass fed? Guess there’s no hope for you! :)

There are a lot of opinions of whether grass fed is measurable better for you than conventional meats. I’ve seen a lot of consensus in that if you’re really worried about the quality of the fat, remove the excess if it’s not grass fed, but I’ve seen others who don’t agree with that either. Remember this isn’t a black and white way of eating, there’s many shades, from the Lacto Paleo’s to Mexi Paleo’s…buy what you can afford, cook with the best fats you can, and if you want to be a meat and potatoes person, do it! There are other articles here that detail all the nutrient you receive and those that you might have to watch out for eating that way, which is how I personally eat!

“Supplement wise currently on: 5,000 IU vitamin D 650 mcg iodine from kelp 200 mcg selenium B complex Bone complex http://www.nowfoods.com/Products/Products-by-Category/Minerals/Calcium-Magnesium/Bone-Strength-240-Veg-Capsules.htm#.UZqxK7VJMnc Hormonal Balance From Femmed (trying to get the PMDD/acne explosion/hair growth under control---not impressed so dropping this one---considering vitex/chaste tree berry). “

Do you live in a place with seasons? Or are you in the sun at all?

I try to get the most of the vitamins and minerals I need from the food I eat, but I do supplement D3, I use 10,000 a day, Magnesium I use 600 a day, and calcium 1200 a day, and that’s it, I know there’s one or two things I could take in addition too, but I’m happy right there for now.

“Guys, at this point I feel like giving up. I get better only to get worse. The fatigue, the nausea and the IBS and all the other problems are driving me nuts. “

I’m not sure if it’s because I picked up on Robb Wolfs Primal Blueprint first, but something about the title struck me, it’s a blue print, and like most blue prints, they’re mostly unique, like me.

Some people here seem to have out of the box success and go on to live life never seemingly having another problem with health or wellbeing, every day is sunshine and roses, while others, need a long time to figure out their own building blocks and what really works for them…unfortunately, this can take a lot of time and energy, and that energy usually becomes frustration and hopelessness…my advice to you, if you haven’t already, try a whole 30, it’s basically an elimination diet and you monitor how the foods you’re eating during those 30 days make you feel. At the end, add back a food that you were eating previous and see how it makes you feel, and so on. I enjoyed this because it gave me a base line as well as a failsafe of foods that I KNOW are not causing me harm. I would also encourage you to Search the data base here which has an almost overwhelming amount of info! There are a lot of super smart people here and you’re bound to find someone or something that might help you shed more light on what it is that’s keeping you in the fog.

Truth.

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173 · May 21, 2013 at 01:48 AM

  1. What is your sleep like? Are you getting 7-9 hours, dark room?
  2. What is your exercise routine like?
  3. How much water do you drink?
  4. Are you eating low carb all year around? Low carb paleo isn't for everyone all the time.
  5. Are you stressed? Work on that stress.

Basically, you need to tweak things until you find what works for you. A good start is getting your overall lifestyle factors in check. It's not all about diet necessarily. Also, you don't need expensive supplements, all grass fed, or organic. Do the best you can. But I can tell you regular eggs and nonorganic veggies for a breakfast omelet are better for you than Captain Krunch. Do your best and eat real food.

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952 · May 21, 2013 at 12:57 AM

Agree with the other poster who said to play around with what does make you feel good.

For me, it was adding back a lot of fruit and potatoes. I feel so miserable low carb, and VLC made me a very bad word! Haha.

Just do something different than what you're doing and judge how you feel. As long as you're eating REAL food, you'll still be 100% "paleo".

I did notice in one of your comments that you're only eating 1/2lb of meat. Is that accurate? I'm female, 5'3", 120lbs, and I need just about a full pound of meat/day to make me feel my best. Perhaps try upping the protein too?

Overall, try not to stress. Just tweak things a little at a time and see how your body responds.

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2316 · May 20, 2013 at 11:44 PM

stop freaking out...

I think i went through something similar to you a year and a half ago. It was winter so my fingers and nose where always cold, I felt sick, all i wanted to do was come home and pull the covers over my face, My workout recovery went downhill fast, my muscles and body in general was just sore.. I was loosing tons of muscle... I slowly began to realize that I was not eating nearly enough carbs.

don't be paranoid that carbs are going to screw you up or make you gain fat, just eat them (preferably in the form of tubers and white rice). You'll feel better. i did have an initial feeling of euphoria and crazy energy while on VLC but it only lasted a couple of months before I crashed. I'm now 15lbs heavier (probably mostly muscle glycogen) and much happier with much more energy.

and for IBS i strongly suggest making some homemade sauerkraut..there's tons of instructions online.

*In addition to the carb increase I also started adding salt to every meal, I see youre already taking iodine so I don't know if that's an issue.

*Also, are you eating a lot of greens? You might have oxalic acid build up. I would suggest cutting all greans for a week or so. Just eat meat, fat and starch and see if that helps.

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381 · July 19, 2013 at 02:55 PM

OP have you ever tried a very high carb low fat paleo diet? I wrote a thread recently talking about How I switched from regular type paleo eating to a diet comprised of 95% fruit and around 200-250 grams of fish a day.

I can fall asleep at night for the first time in years. I am not fatigued and exhausted throughout the day. I am melting fat, getting stronger and look better than I have since I did the same protocol years ago while abroad.

eat as much fruit as you can stuff into your face, the higher in carbs/sugar the better. Eat only fresh fish, my favorite is cod or haddock.

This is doing wonders for me, someone eho for the longest time was always tired and needed huge amounts of stimulants just to get through the day eating regular paleo.

Please before you give up give this a go. Coupled with some moderate exercise it is fantastic.

The fat is good for everyone dogma some paleo followers have does not serve people like me and maybe, you, very well.

Today I got 5 gram of fat, 36grams of protein and lots of carbs. I feel so energized it is unreal.

Don't give up and don't fall into the trap that some paleo p[people do of stressing about this nutrient they could be deficient in or that or this supplement or how to get organic blah blah.

Fresh fruit and fish worked for this fatuiged sob, it could certainly work for you.

All the best and good luck :)

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353 · July 19, 2013 at 07:08 AM

Yes, boost the carbs, but I'm pretty sure one of your key problems is a shortage of magnesium, a problem endemic to folks doing paleo &/or high protein and exacerbated by oxalic acid on raw spinach. Your symptoms --the body aches, brain fog, fatigue, etc--are classic, too. I had them until I started supplementing with magnesium (and ascorbic acid, B vitamins, and later seaweed for trace minerals) . I urge you to look into this.The good news is that mag citrate or maleate don't cost that much at all. Finally, look into the GAPS diet for gut healing. The SAD diet is hell on the body, and gut repaid necessary for you to absorb the good food you eat. My best to you.

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168 · June 17, 2013 at 05:48 AM

  1. Meat and dairy increase your acidity. Fruits and vegetables reduce your acidity and increase your alkalinity. The body functions optimally in a slightly alkaline state. If you feel acidic you could try cutting out dairy and eating more fruits/veggies. Leafy greens are great but you need to eat brightly colored fruits/veggies of different colors to get the full range of micronutrients.

  2. Supplements are expensive but you could replace many of your individual supplements (D, B complex, etc) with a single set like Primal or Jigsaw Complete.

http://www.amazon.com/Jigsaw-Health-Complete/dp/B000QHBILC

  1. You could try eating paleo carbs like sweet potatoes, yams, quinoa, or wild rice.

  2. This is all completely up to you. Its good that you're listening to your body and thinking for yourself.

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78 · May 26, 2013 at 05:37 PM

Don't despair. Okay to give up on Paleo, just don't give up.

It took me a lot of tweaking to finally get my adjusted Paleo diet in a position to do my body good. My family is plagued with a host of autoimmune diseases and conditions. My test results didn't right themselves until I finally found out what works for me.

For starters, I did include safe starches between 80-120 grams per day - before I even heard of Jaminet. Not only did my mood improve, but my health as well. I also didn't gorge on meat like I previously did.

A lot of the Paleo community go crazy when it comes to red meat. Crazy.

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75 · May 21, 2013 at 06:32 PM

I think I could have written your post a few months ago. I seemed to be going down hill after 18 months of Paleo eating. Went to a Functional Doctor and she tested my thyroid and adrenals (cortisol) levels. Turns out my adrenals aren't functioning properly. So for about 2 months I've been working on treating that issue and I finally feel like I'm human again. Aches, pains and skin weirdness are disappearing and I've got tons of energy that I've never, ever had in all my life. I want to cry just thinking about all the years I spent dragging myself through a mental and physical fog to just meet expectations of my family and friends. Now I'm running circles around them. I'd recommend a functional doctors before giving up. Nothing to lose except a few dollars.

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0 · May 21, 2013 at 04:00 PM

I relate! At 50 the same symptoms hit me like a train. Went to the doctor and took all the tests to make sure it was not something like cancer or I was dyeing as that is exactly how I felt. All good according to the doc? REALLY?

By chance I found "Anatabloc" within 2 months it literally gave me back my life. At that point I was able to really feel like I wanted to change other things. That was last Nov now I am working out cross fit 5 days a week, eat paleo refining it constantly. I have not lost a ton of weight but the pain, fog and other systems are all so much better life is worth living again. I also take Estroven daily get it at Costco for best price. This also helps with these changing hormones.

I don't think "Anatabloc" is the cure all but it sure did help to set the train back on the track and now I am conducting again. Hope it helps

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579 · May 21, 2013 at 01:58 AM

Here's a thread about ankylosing spondylitis.

http://paleohacks.com/questions/125180/ankylosing-spondylitis#axzz2Ts7szFQK

I don't know that that's what I have, but I still have flare-ups of pain when I eat starch, which is what the people with this condition limit. The flare-ups sap my strength and lead to other symptoms such as fatigue.

It's tough because I also get exhausted when I eat sugars, but I just have to make sure I'm eating them with a complete meal.

If you don't want to try low-starch, perhaps you can try to track your symptoms relative to whether you've had a lot of starch.

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