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Paleo, cheating, and massive incongruence with my gut (poop) problems.

Answered on December 05, 2013
Created December 04, 2013 at 2:13 AM

Sorry in advanced for a potentially long winded question:

Backstory: I'm a 28 year old male. My whole life I ate SAD and my whole life I suffered from chronic diarrhea. From 8-18 years old I went to several doctors without any concrete diagnosis, Acid Reflux, IBS, or Stress is what doctors usually claimed was the issue. I tried several different diets that the doctors recommended with no help. From 18 to 24 I learned to live with this IBS, my love of food and constant travel had me eating a diet of all foods and a few beers a day (on and off since I was about 13 I went through long periods of imodium use, which I assume crushed me even more). Needless to say, my stomach was not cured, but at least now I had an excuse and I was fine with living a life of indulgence and paying the consequences.

Around that time I went to the doctor and got diagnosed with fatty liver, I was now chronically feeling like shit outside of pure gut issues, and I gained about 40 lbs.

Vegan and Raw vegan didn't help, Pescatarian didn't help, finally I found Paleo and the concept just clicked, I lost 25 lbs in less than a year on paleo (I had already lost a bit of weight as a vegan), my sleep went from terrible to amazing, but after a year of this the diarrhea was still constant. I tried an elimination diet, adding bone broths, and cutting all alcohol with no results. Finally I decided to take a 6 day vacation to the beach and let loose, I drank beer, ate burgers, and had fun, within 2 days I had no diarrhea and it didn't come back until the week after I went back to paleo (I'm talking 2-3 watery bowel movements per day and almost always within 20 minutes of eating). A few months later I took a 3 week vacation and again, I ate like a madman. Beer and Pizza as the first meal of the day, high end restaurants, pork buns, tacos, cheese and all sorts of meats. Within 3 days my diarrhea was gone (not just gone, but my poop was great and healthy looking) and again resumed when I went back to Paleo.

I'm now very confused. I've searched everywhere without finding anything on this topic. Has anyone experienced this? Any guesses of what this might be? At first I guessed maybe it was a food intolerance so I went through a mental checklist of things that I didn't eat during my vacations that I normally eat at home. Not much outside of eggs and coconut products, I cut those out and still had the same issues. I went to a full GAPS type diet of beef/chicken/fish broths and still had the issue. Could there be something in bread that is helping me? I know that if I get food poisoning or something I tend to do well off bread and chicken and not so much off red meat and veggies. Could it be a low carb/high fat diet that causes this and a high carb/medium fat diet that fixes it? Is it time for a food sensitivity test (I've heard Kresser say that it's useless because food intolerance is just a symptom), a Metametrix/Genova stool test maybe? I'm more than willing to work with any specialist at this point (so I'll take recommendations) and I'm close to going back to antidiarrheal meds if nothing else helps. *for the record, I sleep 9hrs+ per day, Vitamin D is good, I take probiotics, have taken enzymes, manage stress pretty well, etc.*

All help is greatly appreciated!

-J

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3 Answers

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Dd50e07d41629054d948230537a0311a

on December 05, 2013
at 12:30 AM

Interesting stuff about the resistant starches and Soluble fiber. I'll make sure to try both of those out if things don't get better.

However, I'm still left wondering if anyone has any idea of what the link might be between the pizza and beer diet and the miraculous cure of my stomach?

0
0fc8fd207c2744746598feb870c3d06b

(0)

on December 04, 2013
at 05:41 AM

@jcar9

I also was diagnosed with IBS and have had horrible digestive issues with most healthy foods such as wheat, soy, raw veggies, fiber, etc. I was getting massive gas, bloating, and debilitating cramping that caused me to faint and end up in the ER.

I've read that there are different types of IBS and that not one treatment fits all. I was desperate to figure out what it was, since the doctors keep telling me to intake more fiber. It was getting frustrating trying to figure out what was happening, without costly doctor visits that just sent me running around in loops.

I know everyone reacts to foods differently, but here's what worked for me solely based on trial and error.

I eliminated trigger foods that caused gas and excruciating cramping: whole wheat (brown rice and oats were ok), raw broccoli, raw spinach, most raw veggies, spicy foods, and soy. Oh, and stress seemed to be a major trigger for diarrhea!

I'm also on a high protein/low carb/low fat diet. I think high fats and sugars typically cause diarrhea, so maybe try to cut down on those? Also, try to get soluble fibers into your diet, rather than insoluble fibers.

According to WebMD: "Soluble fibers attract water and form a gel, which slows down digestion. Soluble fiber delays the emptying of your stomach and makes you feel full, which helps control weight. Slower stomach emptying may also affect blood sugar levels and have a beneficial effect on insulin sensitivity, which may help control diabetes. Soluble fibers can also help lower LDL (“bad”) blood cholesterol by interfering with the absorption of dietary cholesterol.

  • Sources of soluble fiber: oatmeal, oat cereal, lentils, apples, oranges, pears, oat bran, strawberries, nuts, flaxseeds, beans, dried peas, blueberries, psyllium, cucumbers, celery, and carrots."

I'm obviously no professional, but I personally was so desperate for relief that I've researched extensively and tried numerous remedies, so this is just my two cents. Good luck!

0
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on December 04, 2013
at 03:24 AM

have you tried resistant starches? there's tons of info on the internet about the benefits it has on our gut flora. i wish i could remember where i read it, but one site said that adding 33 mg of RS a day changed the gut flora in as little as one week and by one month, the good bacteria had multiplied 10x to what it was without the RS.

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