Hubby and I have been experimenting a bit as of late. Here are our results for adding back things that are either not paleo or in the carefully approved list. Please share yours and maybe some patterns will emerge.
N=2. Myself 30-overweight and overstressed. Hubby 31- in great shape though it doesnt seem to show as well as it could definition wise.
White potatos: I am able to handle them just fine when an ingredient in an overall dish. However when mixed with anything dairy or eaten mashed they become addictive and my body doesnt like it. Hubby cannot handle white potatoes period.
Sweet potato: I like a few a week hubby wouldnt miss them if he never had one again though he can tolerate them physically.
Plantains (cooked with ground pork tomatoes and onions): I dont particularly care for the dish but hubby loves it an eats it all week for breakfast.
Brown rice pasta (low fat/mod protein): This was a disaster for both of us. I went into a bi polar high and he lost his sex drive completely. This is entirely correlation and does not prove causation. We also tried white rice in asian style "fried" rice dishes. Hyper palatable and addictive not to mention the blood sugar fluctuations.
Dairy. We both know that we would prob do best without any dairy at all but that has been found to be unrealistic for long term. When only consuming kerrygold and organic half and half in coffee we are fine. Small amounts of pungent cheese is also ok (hard to overeat that). Any hint whatsoever of your standard shredded/kraft/sad cheese and its very hard to stop. Things become suddenly hyper palatable and overeating insues.
Hummus: we love this and handle it well when eaten with veggies and kept to about 1/4 cup a day. I like to add spiced ground elk to it and use it as a dip=)
Beans (yes I know hummus has beans in it): When added to a high fat soup such as ham hock etc as an ingredient we both tolerate it well. No digestive issues and the fiber seems to be happily accepted. As for refried beans slathered in kraft cheese... ahem much bloating and gas.
Fruit (apples/watermelon/less often tropical fruit mix from produce section): Hubby has to be careful as it seems that fruit can stall him. I seem to be able to eat it at will without issue (weight loss is not stalled). I probably eat it a few times a week but not every day.
Corn tortillas (traditionally made): Perhaps the most surprising but they seem to be fine. I slather them in home rendered lard and bake them into taco bowls or make street tacos. Adding anything dairy tends to make us overeat these but meat/veg/spice recipes seem self limiting.
Nightshades: This is interesting. Neither of us feel any overt side effects however I have noticed that I simply cannot eat past a certain amount. I have a definite "ugh Im sick of those" feeling. I dont mind tossing canned tomatoes into stuff but bell peppers or poblanos become real unappealing real fast. Hubby doesnt feel the same way and can eat them in any amount. Oddly enough he is the one with inflammation issues with his joints so you would think he would "feel it" more when eating them.
So it seems that carbs that have fiber packaged with them seem to be better tolerated than straight starch. Even with the negative properties of beans and debatable status of harmful fructose in fruit. This seems to be contrary to current paleo beliefs. As for dairy and nightshades dosage seems to be most important. Quality also plays a role, I am sure (more than likely gmo) peppers shlepped all the way from Mexico and tasteless irradiated tomatoes are differently processed by the body.
Anyway... thoughts are appreciated and if you have tried stuff out please share!
asked byancestral_stars (1600)
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on May 20, 2013
at 02:27 PM
N=1, 56 male, normal weight and in good shape.
For about a year I was low-ish carb Paleo. I could only accept small amounts of fruit and nuts as a carb source. Excess fruit caused acid reflux. I feared anything starchy would cause a relapse of my IBS. However I have started to eat, in moderation, both eggplant (aubergine) and sweet potatoes without any repercussion .. so far. I also have a touch of psoriasis. I am waiting to see if reintroducing these foods spark a psoriasis flare; so far so good. (There seems to be almost a direct correlation with my psoriasis condition and my IBS condition.)
So I hope that my gut has healed enough to tolerate moderate amounts of starch. If so this would be WONDERFUL.
on May 20, 2013
at 12:52 PM
N = 1, 23, F, normal weight/athletic
White potatoes: absolutely fine. I eat them regularly. I've never had an issue with any kind of starchy tuber.
Rice (white or brown): recipe for massive bloating and gas. Bad news.
Lentils, split peas, kidney beans, and black beans: no ill effects when they're soaked as per WAPF directions (haven't tried them unsoaked) so I'm eating those regularly as they're much cheaper than meat.
Chickpeas: cannot handle them at all; massive bloating and constipation ensue. I have no idea why chickpeas would be so different from any other legume :///
Dairy: I can do goat or sheep dairy but not cow, except for butter. In practice this means I rarely eat dairy because goat/sheep products are so expensive.
Fruit: I avoid it entirely because it gives me massive sugar cravings.
Nuts: I avoid them because I can't stop eating them once I start. And too many almonds in particular mess up my stomach something fierce.
on May 20, 2013
at 05:33 PM
Male, 36, 6'3" 175lbs, reintroduction after at least 4 weeks abstinence from each food
Fail (small quantities -> sick for weeks): Gluten, Coffee creamer (due to sodium caseinate? preservatives? carageenan?), Sulfites, Nightshades
Iffy (dose-dependent, temporary discomfort): Coffee, Tea
Fine (no noticeable symptoms): traditional corn tortillas, white rice, fava beans, whiskey, xanthan gum
New-found cravings: Fermented foods, especially sauerkraut
Untested: Dairy, Most Legumes, Most grains, Most preservatives
Most disappointing failure: beer
on May 20, 2013
at 04:22 PM
Great question. After doing this for several years, and noting people's different experiences on various paleo sites, one thing is clear--there is no one size fits all paleo solution back to health. I'm 54 and normal weight. I avoid nuts, they give me a headache. I haven't done legumes, but added white rice and potatoes back a couple years ago. Feel better than ever. Plantains are practically a staple. Love them for breakfast sauted in tallow or coconut oil with fried eggs.
on May 20, 2013
at 03:01 PM
I was raised eating whole foods (grew up on a working ranch) but that included legumes. I have a number of autoimmune issues, though. I've never 'done' dairy well (knows since I was a baby and this includes our cattle that were free range and we milked).
It took 40 extra years before my Celiac diagnosis! I got off grains and processed foods at that time. About a year later, I started finding a lot of Paleo-themed sites and recipes when I was looking for things that apply to me.
I decided to go legume-free (during this time, I also went nightshade-free) and it helped a lot. I also have lupus...!
I still cheat on nightshades and garlic but I have small reactions. Enough that a Smart Me wouldn't do it. I still crave garlicky tomato sauce and sometimes make it. If my body/gut has been very happy, I can get away with it for a few days. It's better to not go week to week back on garlic and/ or nightshades or my joints start reacting.
As to legume, which are a LOVE of mine, I cannot do them. I've tried -- EXCEPT for soya milk. I know, it's a horror to some but at this time, I require the hormonal help (it's some organic, unsweetened soya or pills from Big Pharma), so I use it and yet, don't seem to have the effects that eating a handful of black beans give.
If I have a square of cheese, say, I my skin reacts within 12 hours.
Some things I can sneak/cheat with a bit; I can put up with the reactions but if I'm smart, why would I do that? (because I really like them and non-dairy, non-legume, non-nightshades, non-garlic, non-gluten because boring, I don't care who you are)
The slightest cross-contamination of gluten will leave me violently ill for several days, so I don't dabble with that!
You may be able to withstand the negative reactions but if you're very smart, you'll avoid them. I'm not that smart all the time.
on May 21, 2013
at 05:50 AM
too much coconut oil makes my heart jump out of my chest - now I only use it to cook eggs and on my skin
removed legumes for months, had black beans to test one night and YIKES - a horror of LOVECRAFTIAN proportions!
never went LC/VLC, I have allowed for white rice and potatoes. Added back non-gmo corn products (mainly polenta, tortillas and CORNTHINS) and seem to do very well.
I cut out dairy except for hard cheeses and heavy cream - recently found a vat-pasturized non-homogenized milk from Jersey cows that doesn't affect me badly! Very happy because I love a little milk at night.
I allow myself a little sugar here and there, and I am surprised that it doesn't trigger binges. Could that be my satiety from more fats? I eat fat fairly liberally - avocados, butter, sardines, heavy cream - and since I've been doing that my sweet tooth is almost nonexistent - I have little bits of sugar to check and see if I can eat and walk away, like a normal person not a binger!
on May 21, 2013
at 01:56 AM
I've had no real effects going paleo. My digestion is a bit improved, but it's nothing to be overly excited about. I've never really ditched dairy, and have added back significant amounts of rice and corn. Holding steady with no deleterious effects.
The only positive thing I've noticed is that liver is worth its weight in gold when it comes to my skin. Always been bumpy (keratosis pilaritis) and dry, only a few bumps remain and my skin is perfect in the amount of oils it produces. I'm approximately 7 weeks in an experiment to increase liver consumption and I don't foresee giving it up in the future, the benefits have been too great.
Not really a paleo intervention, but I've just started supplementing astaxanthin a couple weeks ago. Been getting quite a bit of sun lately and I'm actually tanning as opposed to frying. Could also be the improved skin health from the liver I've been eating, but I'll keep it up regardless.
on May 20, 2013
at 10:46 PM
What didn't work for me:
- Eating a high fat diet where 50% of my calories were coming from refined fats such as tallow and olive oil. I was doing this because I thought I had allergies to other stuff such as eggs, nuts, nightshades etc. So my diet was very limited.
- Lower back pain.
- Low energy
- No sex drive.
- Bad skin.
- Adding back in dairy, in the form of yogurt, and nuts. Yogurt and almonds are packed with B vitamins and minerals such as calcium and magnesium, making the diet overall more nutrient dense than consuming pure oils and fats.
- Adding back in eggs. I have a reaction to them, because my scalp gets instantly itchy after consuming them, but they really seem to help my skin and energy levels. Rich source of choline and folate that I was missing previously.
- Cutting back on sweet potatoes as my main starch. Too fiber rich. I was farting the whole day when I ate 2-3 pounds a day, and they were way to high in oxalates which could become a problem when eating very little calcium.
- Cutting back on vegetables. Energy levels increased ten-fold.
- Eating more white rice as my main starch. I still have doubts about using it as a staple, mostly because of the arsenic.
My new paleo diet is so far doing wonders for me compared to the old one. I have basically cut out all refined oils, and only get my fats from whole foods, making my diet much more nutrient dense and most of my calories now come from refined starch instead of refined oils. This has been easier on my digestion and really helps me succeed as an athlete.
on May 20, 2013
at 06:24 PM
Worked: high fat, fermented sheep/goat dairy, heavy cream, nightshades
Worked: some carbs (about 80g/day)
OK: sweet potato, but only occasionally
FAIL: alcohol of ANY kind
UNKNOWN: legumes. I don't eat them but don't see any bad side effects if I have a little
on May 20, 2013
at 06:20 PM
Win: cultured dairy, cream, butter; green beans; grits; almost all fruits, up to 4 pieces a day depending on the fruit; foods fried in vegetable oil provided they are high-protein foods, served fresh, and not breaded or deep-fried, not swimming in the oil; protein powder as long as it's mixed with something including some fat and the sweetness of the powder is thus diluted; kippers.
Fail: deep-fried/breaded foods, preserved snack foods (including dried snap peas and popcorn), rice, milk, cereal, bread, sausage/lunch meat/cold cuts, juice, margarine, creamer, stevia or xylitol etc. in large quantities, pork, seafood flakes, protein bars meal replacement shakes etc. as entire meals (not combined with real foods), processed fruits and vegetables (applesauce, salsa from a tub etc.), sweets whether sugar or artificial, honey, molasses, maple syrup, beans, peas.