So I started my paleo diet 5 days ago hoping it would treat My IBS and give all the benefits i have been reading about.
The first two days on it i got pretty choked up because it seemed as though a condition i had been suffering with for two years was coming to an end. Without the help of any fiber suppliments I had two of the most regular bowel movements I had ever had.
But on the morning of the third day i only managed to pass a few little droppings that sank to the bottom of the bowl, not much of anything. My meals have consisted of Breakfast:two or three eggs and some bacon, Lunch: Chicken breast with some apples or other fruit with a salad of red leaf lettuce and Kale with some carroat sticks. And for Supper: Salmon or more chicken with some nuts and a little fruit for filler.
How long should it take to notice an improvement? has anyone else relieved their gastro issues with Paleo? Any Advice is super appreciated.
Here's some reasoning behind why Paleo might work for IBS/bowel problems, and why it might not work, depending on how you implemented it. Note: I have Crohn's (inflammatory/autoimmune bowel disorder) and a low-starch, low-fiber Paleo diet seems to be working for me.
First, we need to talk possible causes. The overarching theory that ties all of these together in the neatest package is fairly simple: your diet is causing a pathological mix of gut flora to arise, and your genetics then determine your response to that pathological state. Maybe you only get IBS, maybe you get Crohn's, maybe you get Ulcerative Colities, but underlying all of this is some level of dysfunction in your gut ecosystem. There is some experimental backing for this hypothesis: google "Ebringer starch" for some information about a researcher who discovered linkages between a certain bacterium and Crohn's, and read this from Kurt Harris about a guy who has discovered linkages between malabsorbed carbs and IBS.
So why might Paleo work? Well, if your take on Paleo has lead you to a diet heavy in meat, low in starch and low in fiber, at least in theory, you should now be eating in such a way that the bacterial actions that underpinned your disorder should be significantly reduced. In the case of IBS and FODMAPs, if you are avoiding excess fructose and various hard to digest poly-saccharides, then you should be reducing the amount of small bowel/colon fermentation, and so reducing the triggers for the disorder.
And that should give you plenty of hints as to why it might not work. If your Paleo take has you eating a lot of fruit, vegetables like onions and asparagus, then you might be simply swapping sources for FODMAPs.
If you did google Ebringer, then you might have come across the London AS Low Starch diet. You will notice that this focus on starch restriction, which also covers FODMAPs but does not focus on them. If you interpret "low-starch" as "lots of veggies", you may fail. If you interpret "low-starch" as "lots of meat", then you'll probably get it right. If my n=1 experiment has any weight, it seems that a VLC diet works. It may work by accident; that is to say, it may work because it restricts the problem foods as well as harmless ones. I don't know.
I can't say whether mere low FODMAP would work, and indeed there are other researchers out there who will tell you that you need to eat more inulin and fiber so that you can grow gut bacteria. My own experience would disagree with that interpretation. Fiber and fermentable carbs give me gas and cramps. Oddly, when I challenged myself with a pile of mashed potatoes, I felt fine - but eat some brussel sprouts, and I'm farting like crazy. So watch out for any food that might not be readily digested and absorbed.
One final note: My own success only started to appear after three months of digestive turbulence. Do not waver on day five. Set a goal for yourself to eat this way for six months regardless of how things go.
I hope you get it under control!
It takes quite awhile to heal from IBS. I think it took me 6 months to get into good condition and 2 years before I could say it was gone, but I know things now that I didn't.
Please consider ditching
When you eat chicken or salmon, make sure to wrap in bacon, braise in coconut milk, or otherwise add fat. Fat makes the tummy happy.
Here is what I feel keeps my IBS at bay
It would help to know what type of IBS you have. Mainly constipation or diarrhea?
I have to second the NO NUTS thing.....I also suffered from terrible IBS and nuts did not help at all. Bone broth everyday, one cup to heal your poor intestines. Water kefir too if you can tolerate it. But above all, squat pooping improved things immensely. I got me one of these babies - http://www.lillipad.co.nz/ and my IBS episodes dramatically decreased since, and bowel movements became "normal"
It would be helpful if the OP was more specific about the TMI stuff... is your IBS typically characterized by D (diarrhea) or C (constipation)? If it was the first, cut back on the veggies, if it's the second, increase them. It's also really likely that your system will take some time to adjust and you might have symptoms all over the place. After months of D (celiac disease), after the first two weeks of a GF (gluten free) diet, I was constipated. Now I eat a nice balance of meats, fish and veggies and I rarely have any problems, despite a medication for fibromyalgia that can cause C.
Also, you might want to look into something called diatomaceous earth (FOOD GRADE ONLY) since it's helped a lot of people with IBS.
I think it took me a while actually (maybe 1/2 months) Now it is 95% gone. It would be 100% gone if I stopped having some creme fraiche and decreased my nut intake. Also, my digestion really improved after taking NOW Foods Super Enzymes.
Remember that lack of sleep and stress plays a big part in it as well. Just keep on rolling, and you'll be fine : )
I'm approaching two months in, and I'm still adjusting my digestive system. I have days of -- pardon the overshare -- really awesome poos, and then days of, "Eh, is that all I get?"
Another thing to consider is that since our food is more efficient now, there's less waste, which may lead to smaller, fewer BMs.
Here's a question: does it hurt when you don't go anymore? For me, it used to be agony when I couldn't defecate. However, despite my smaller bowel movements, I don't get that lower-abdominal distension and pain anymore. This is such a novelty to me that I, too, wept big fat tears of joy. :)
Also, try squatting on your toilet (if feasible). Believe me, it helps. And meditative breathing, since if you're anything like me, you may get anxious you can't go which might actually prevent you from going. Fully relaxing helps wonders.
Offhand, one the biggest culprit for you is that it looks like you don't eat enough fat. Your lunch looks like "diet" food to me. Perhaps you should sauté your kale in butter or coconut oil and switch to a higher-fat cut of meat, such as skin-on chicken thigh? It's much less expensive, too. :) Don't be afraid of steaming some broccoli and dousing it in butter for dinner (or leftover bacon drippings, if you save them).
Good luck! I know how important this is to you, and I wish you the best! :)
Having suffered from a very similar problem I would agree with the above posters in increasing fat (most important), fermented vegetables and bone broth. I also take magnesium citrate when things flare up (read: constipated) and also the Ayurvedic triphala which strengthens the gut and peristalsis. Magnesium can give you the runs if you overdose but otherwise it also helps with muscle fatigue and general metabolism - hurray!
Good luck !
I had been dealing with daily painful bloating for several years, and 3 days after cutting gluten, I was fine (I had an endoscopy a couple years ago, negative for celiac); I was overjoyed. I had some ups and downs, and ended up going pretty paleo about 6 months after the initial gluten experiment. I feel about 90% better, but things aren't always great in the ol' BM department. Probably depends on how long you've been sick and how much damage has been done.
I was called in to my GI office for an IBS study, and told the doc how much better I feel when cutting grains, especially gluten; he replied that since I tested negative for celiac, there was no need to cut it out. Oh rly? That was disappointing to hear from a GI "expert", but my nurse practitioner is very supportive of what I've been doing. Definitely give it some time; I bet you'll feel so much better!
For the last five weeks I've been on a primarly meat-based diet. I don't eat any fruit or nuts. I rarely eat veggies. For the first 2 weeks I had diarrhea. The next two weeks I had steatorrhea. For the last week my poops have been normal.
I used to have horrible gut problems. Nausea, heartburn, GERD, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, endless burping. Five weeks later my symptoms are mostly gone.
I feel normal for the first time in years.