Im guessing that perhaps Im having an issue with my gut lining.
I was diagnosed with multiple food allergies before I went Paleo. The test was suspect though as the only foods that came up were also the foods that I was eating.
Ive now been Paleo for around 8 months and although Im better I still get tired, stiff neck/back, and light headache after eating. This was especially true after eating pork and chicken but Im also now noticing it after eating red meat. I eat red meat often so its like Im developing a sensitivity to it. I eat conventional meat but then I also supplement with around 10 grams of fish oil a day.
I know my tiredness, and aches are food related as Ive been doing the Martin Burkhan type daily fasting and feel GREAT in the time running up to my first meal (at 1:00 PM). Then I tank after the first meal of the day. This meal is almost always; some sort of green vegetable cooked in grass fed butter with sea salt and red meat cooked in grass fed butter with some sea salt and black pepper. I also snack on coconut oil sometimes when cooking. I know its not from eating too much as Im often still slightly hungry afterwords.
What is happening here? Any ideas on how to fix it? Ive pretty much felt this way but much worse for over a decade (since I hit teenage years) and although better since going Paleo am still frustratingly feeling like crap daily.
If it helps;
Diagnosed with low serotonin, low dopamine, high histamine (inflammation), lowest glutamate level they've ever seen. This was from a neurotransmitter test about 1.5 months ago.
Supplements; Vitamin D3 (5K), Carlson's fish oil (10 g), Probiotics, Natural Calm (before bed), B-Complex, Norwegian Kelp, L-Arginine, Vitamin K (100 mg).
Random; I took antibiotics and accutane throughout my teens to combat acne. I was a latch key kid so I grew up on microwave meals and milk. Been eating well for 1.5 + yrs and paleo around 8 months.
Any help is greatly appreciated.
One of my maxims is that you can't cancel out shit with fish oil. It doesn't work. Excess PUFAs of all kinds, yes even O3, cause oxidation and other forms of stress. Plus, do you think the hormones and other possible contaminants in conventional meat are good for leaky gut? If you have to eat less meat to buy good meat, than do it. Fasting might also not be a great choose— sounds like your body is awash in stress hormones anyway and that just increases cortisol.
Your goal is NOT to lose weight, but to heal. Try eating regular consistent meals, dialing up the calories to keep those stress hormones low. Stop consuming rancid fish oil and start eating some wild fish, a few ounces a day. Stop eating conventional meat and start buying meat from grass-finished ruminants and supplementing it with yams. Invest in a good refrigerated commercial probiotic. Try going without dairy for awhile until you are not getting these issues.
In cases like this I would actually avoid fermented foods and spicy stuff. They can be helpful, but they are like machine guns. A commercial probiotic is more predictable.
I've had issues like this before and I've been able to resolve them by bumping up the quality and quantity of food.
Also, like others mentioned, a bland diet might help. If I get into a stomach irritation cycle (thankfullly not lately), I often end up eating a diet of mostly bone broths made in my crock pot with egg yolks.
So the idea is that you ate the SAD, took antibiotics and now you're in a leaky gut situation. Or are you celiac and just don't know it?
The Cooling Inflammation blog has some ideas on how to correct the gut issue.
Here are some things you can try, in no particular order. I think many of the suggestions above are good (broth, glutamine, stress), but you're going to have to try several of them. This is unlikely to be a one-off fix.
But if it were, the most likely candidate would be gluten. The next most likely, statistically, is casein. Have you challenged gluten since you started Paleo? If your reaction was negative, be sure that your kitchen and supplements are GF. http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/the-essentials-of-sharing-a-kitchen-with-gluten.html
Getting the casein out of your current impeccable diet is pretty simple, but not cheap. Just swap out the grass fed butter for grass fed ghee. http://www.pureindianfoods.com/
One way to test your supplements for all sorts of problems is to stop taking them for at least 4 days and then add one back each week. I'd test them in this order: Vitamin D3 (5K), B-Complex, Carlson's fish oil (at a reduced dose), Natural Calm.
I'm not sure you need the L-arginine or the K. I think the probiotics can wait for awhile. Several people on the glutenzap board report improving dramatically once they ditched the supplements.
Your headaches may be atypical migraines. The best description I've seen for this is in a book that focused on diet modification to eliminate headaches and migraine: http://www.amazon.com/Heal-Your-Headache-Program-Taking/dp/0761125663/
As a temporary measure, here's a specialized enzyme product that targets histamines: http://histame.com/ I have no idea if this product is gluten free.
Gluten free enzymes http://www.houston-enzymes.com/
If you think you may be having problems with glutamates, check out the fail safe diet. Glutatamate could be an issue if you have more severe symptoms with leftovers or aged meats, such as game.
Glad to hear your thyroid is ok. If these issues run in your family, be sure you had the full panel done, including an rT3. Here's an interesting article on thyroid and gut: http://thehealthyskeptic.org/the-thyroid-gut-connection
What is your vitamin D level?
The food intolerance tests are known for false positives, but they can give you a place to start. Here's a good book for planning an elimination diet and challenge: http://www.amazon.com/Dealing-Food-Allergies-Practical-Detecting/dp/092352164X/ref=pd_sim_b_2 The Brostoff book is also good. If you're still having trouble, look into the 4 day rotation diet as proposed by Theron Randolph.
If you do identify intolerances, many of these are likely to be temporary. plan to test again at 6 months or a year. (Any food I like gets another test!)
If you challenge eggs, be sure to challenge yolks and whites separately. The Joneja book discusses this in detail. Her methods are designed primarily for true allergies, (sudden, severe reactions) but will work for intolerances (delayed reactions).
Just our of curiosity, what sort of grains were you eating when the tests where done?
Do you have a dishwasher? What brand of dish soap do you use? (humor me, I realize this is a strange question!)
Check back and tell us how it is going.
I am glad you are seeing some improvements with the Paleo diet, but if it is gluten, it could take awhile before you feel better. You've had this problem for quite a long time now. And if it is celiac, you may need to be incredibly vigilant to get the sort of improvements your hard work deserves. The disruption to your serotonin levels point toward to gluten, in my experience. I believe you've mentioned mood issues in previous posts?
Interesting that you tested allergic to everything you were eating. I wonder if it is a case of leaky gut and the food you are eating is getting into places that it does not belong, like into the blood stream. Then the body makes antibodies to those things.
One thing to try is eating super bland food for 3 days and see if that helps. I have seen various version of the bland diet, but when I do it, I have a very short list that has become even shorter now that I am paleo. I eat boiled unseasoned chicken, apple sauce with no additives (no sugar, no apple juice concentrate, just apples) and bananas. I used to include unsalted crackers and white rice but those are not paleo. However, if I got really sick and had to do this again, I might consider some of the white rice just for variety. Everyone I know who has tried the 3 day bland diet has shown marked improvement if not full recovery after 3 days. Probs were always bad digestion/nausea/sickness type probs that would not go away and were getting progressively worse. No one has ever shown any bad effects as of yet, although if you have blood sugar issues, you may need to eat less banana and apple sauce and more chicken. Of course, most of these people were eating SAD before the 3 day bland so I don't know if the 3 day bland was the kicker or just the avoidance of SAD. Anyway, might be worth a shot and if you feel better after 3 days, this will be a clue. Obviously, you are not going to want to eat just 3 things for the rest of your life, but for many people, it gives the gut a chance to recover and clarifies that the issue was digestive and not something else.
one more thing about the original posters comments.
Serotonin and Dopamine are decreased (along with other neurotransmitters) via the H3 Histamine Receptor when too much histamine is present. This can be due to the gut lining being irritated by food intolerances or an infection (parasite, bacteria or yeast).
This isn't simply the whole picture, but it seems to be the clearest piece of information I've read, dealing with mood issues and gut issues together.
Histamine itself can cause gut irritation. Some people think it is one food or another causing them problems when the find out that it is foods high in Histamine that are doing it. Especially when dizziness is present.
Finally, Fish Oil whether you love it or hate it, it is very high in histamine and can directly cause alot of the original posters issues. Vitamin B12 and Folic acid also increase histamine greatly.
Magnesium is extremely important to lower this. Also, Turmeric in a form that is easily absorbed has Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Histamine properties and can help.
Is is fully up to yourself if you want to take anything, but at least take a look into this and see if it is relevant to yourself, James
I would cut the black pepper, cut the butter, cut the fruits, cuts the egg whites, cut the nightshades, cut goitrogenic vegetables and cut the nuts and seeds. Oh and also cut the coconut milk.
Stay there for a couple of weeks and eat a lot of broths with well cooked vegetables and lots of animal fat and pastured-meat. I would also increase the probiotic intake and have good dose of lacto-fermented vegetables (probably not cabbage though, carrots or cucumbers are good choices). See if large dose probiotics has any effect. Negative effect could be a good sign if it's die-off. To me die-off is a bit like hay-fever: headaches, sneezing, red eyes, fatigue, moaning... When die-off is in full motion my digestion and appetite is much better.
Now I know your problem is probably completely different than mine, but then again the only way to rule out food is to only eat what's known not to cause problem to almost anybody and the foods listed above have the potential to cause problems to people with a multitude of conditions.
If you feel better after a couple of weeks of eating the simplified diet, you know it's related to food and to one of those you removed and can then start testing them one at the time. I personally think nuts and seeds shouldn't be consumed by anybody and fruits should only be minimally consumed.
You have to be pretty serious about it though and stick with it 100%. I've been dealing with leaky gut/bacterial overgrowth/gastritis and now just a handful of nuts would make me feel bad for a couple of days. I even get an upset stomach from fish oil and this is why I can't recommend it to people with a serious digestive issue even if in theory it reduces inflammation.
My problem is complex and the only way I was able to get better was by trial and error over a period of 4 years and this is what lead me to the paleo diet.
If you do the steps I mentioned you could save yourself a lot of time trying to figure out what's going on.
It goes without saying that stress, sleep and other lifestyle factors are to be well balanced. What I now like to do is take a couple of days off from work whenever I feel tired and stressed. I don't care being short on money or having my boss asking questions, my health and well-being is worth way more than my job or bank account.
I can't really give you a good answer as to what you should do. However I think you should ignore the results of the tests you have had done.
The allergy test, E95 and A95 food panels, are based on IgE and IgG antibodies. IgE is a good marker for real allergies. IgG is not and is often used by alternative health people as a marker for undefined "food intolerances". As most people will have IgG antibodies for lots of foods these people can then sell you special foods and supplements to treat the allergies you don't have and charge you for the tests. While it may be useful in certain situations it is not for screening large numbers of different foods.
Most people will end up with some IgG antibodies to the foods that they eat regularly as the immune system regularly samples what is in your gut. It is not proof that your gut is leaking. These IgG antibodies can also protect you from developing an allergy. Testing for IgG4 against foods is not recommended as a diagnostic tool.
As far as I know neurotransmitter tests are completely meaningless. Bogus Diagnostic Tests. I do not think histamine alone is a good marker for inflammation.
I would also question the fish oil supplements. Buying a quality brand it would be costing you a lot. I'd rather spend the money on some fish each week. If you are eating meat and veg you are likely not getting much omega 6. I do not know if consuming a lot more 3 than 6 is a good idea.
I'm not sure if this is even looked at by the original poster anymore, but I thought I might post for anyone else that reads this.
Get a stool sample done by a lab that tests for parasites. A 3-Day stool sample with fixative ( the fixative is used to preserve the parasites until the lab gets the sample). Yes, it doesn't sound pleasant, but you will most likely get the answer you need.
'IBS' is just some lame excuse for doctors not knowing what is going on with your gut. It IS NOT all in your head, at all. More likely is that whatever is going on in your head, is Caused by your gut.
If you look at current research, or read some of the better forums you'll see that everyone who is currently having success with IBS has found a CAUSE. Not simply adapting their eating, ....although this is important as well.
If you have 'IBS' (with or without mood issues) or food intolerances that continue to pop up (first gluten, then dairy! then corn and soy! Now I can eat nothing!), Even if your Celiac and continue to get worse after removing Gluten.
GET A STOOL TEST DONE BY A PROPER LAB.
Find one that does a '3-Day Sample with fixative' and specifically looks for Blastocystis Hominis and Dientamoeba Fragilis. Chances are you have one of the two, or both. They are NOT harmless, like your doctor (who really doesn't know what he is talking about, in this case) may think, you can even read something as simple as Wikipedia to see this. Then do yourself a favor and read about them both by searching 'badbugs' on google. That sites sells nothing, it is just information from a long term sufferer.
The two bugs are a massive problem, in fact, almost everyone that I've met with 'IBS' -who has ever been tested- has one or both of them. I will say that it is naturally not the cause 100% of the times, but it is the cause Far too often to ignore.
if and when you decide to get treatment. You can try the herbal route, that is your choice. But I will unfortunately say that herbal never fully solved the problem for me, and I have never heard of it completely killing off either parasite. Your doctor may also tell you to take Flagyl, but this horrid med rarely, if even kills either of the bugs. They are hard to treat, but possible. Contact the women at 'badbugs' if you want the best combination of anti-Biotics (she will tell you FOR FREE, don't worry) to take. Then you'll have to talk to your doctor, or a ask her for a doctor that treats them to order them.
Finally, if you get tested/treated and find that this is the cause - SPREAD THE WORD! Get people informed, since the medical community is again dragging it's feet. Better testing and treatment needs to be developed. The only country that knows how to treat this is Australia for sh*ts sake. How can the US and Canada be this far behind?? I can't believe that these bugs can be ignored when you can even find them listed as a possible cause under 'wikipedia - IBS'.
well the seratonin and dopamine will affect your mood/preformance throughout the day, but im not sure how much that can be attributed to your diet because as long as you're getting all of the nutrients your body needs to synthesize those chemicals, you shouldn't have a problem. and eating paleo should help, so in my opinion you should have that checked out unless someone else has a way to stop the other effects, and in doing so, helps your neurotransmitter levels.
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