I swear, the more I learn the less I know.
I originally was just eating straight up paleo; steamed/raw veggies, no grains/gluten, grass-fed meat, fish, healthy fat, fruit. When I was lifting 3 times a week, and during my crossfit time, I would eat potatoes or sweet potatoes post work out. I have done various intermittent fasting schedules, and now do approx. a 16/8, which tends to work the best for me.
I eventually began to lower my carbs more and more and then cut them out completely for a while. I found that cutting fiber (after reading Fiber Menace) dramatically helped with my IBS symptoms of bloating and gas and distention. However my nice flat stomach and feeling great lasted a short time. I became severely constipated, something I never experienced before although I have had various other IBS symptoms for most of my life. Although it may have related to an increase in cheese intake, I have never had this issue before so I don't know. For 3+ months I had bowel movements few and far between despite all my efforts. I felt full and looked pregnant all the time.
This pain and stress in turn caused me to binge-eat, which certainly didn't help the problem. Now I have abdominal pain, especially on my right side, with a constant feeling of needed to go, but having nothing to push out. This so-called constipation is even more baffling because when I do go, it's not hard stool at all, and it's no great build-up of stool either.
Also very important to note is my history of disordered eating. I am now 22 (female), and have not eaten in a normal way since I was 13. (Anorexia-->non-purging bulimia-->BED).
Right now I need to address this current abdominal problem, and I wonder what has helped other people through difficult bowel problems (assuming this isn't something more serious). I have been to a gyno very recently and ruled out most possible gyn problems (as the discomfort is sometimes in my pelvic area I thought I should check).
Now, I have a doctors appt. next month, but I'd like to start my recover now. Not to mention my inherent distrust of doctors.
I am also more confused than ever on macronutrient ratios, fiber, raw vs. cooked, etc. HFLC? HCLF? More veggies/less veggies? Starches? Rice?
Did I cause myself this abdominal issue?
Why do we binge eat? (I would especially be interested to hear opinions on the theories presented in the Brain Over Binge ebook, and experiences with that).
Also, what specific health problems do years of binge-eating and fasting cause?
God, I know this is like 50 questions in one. But a lot of the people on this website have some good theories and anecdotal experience.
All the conflicting ideas and WOEs that different gurus, doctors, and laypeople come up with leads me to believe we really know very little about the path to good nutrition and health, as well as how variable it can be for any given person. But I guess I could use a little perspective and insight on my own experience, and advice on how to continue from this point on.
Thanks for reading.
asked byEJH (307)
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on September 19, 2012
at 11:18 PM
as a binge eater I can say fasting doesn't work for me, I enjoy eating and its a fight to tell my brain no, too stressful, it was enough to quit binge eating, let alone to expect to not eat at all for extended periods! yes brain over binge ebook is fantastic, really lets you work with your brain to beat binging, to make a conscious decision to eat etc. I am training in powerlifting, so I know from experience that fasting is no good for a strength athlete, and my binging was more because i just wasn't getting the nutrients i needed. I still have a "pig out" now and then on paleo desserts, dark choc or nuts, but my attitude has changed and my decisions are better. Fasting is not ever going to work for me and I'm ok with that, I dont want to not eat, I dont want to go backwards with my training, and I dont want to pretend I live in a cave and can only eat when i find a bunch of berries, I'm modern human simply trying to look after myself.
on September 19, 2012
at 11:09 PM
Hi. I am a 22 year old male who became anorexic at 12, diagnosed with anorexia at 13, and generally spend the next 3 years of my life in and out of hospitals. It was very bad. Of course, when you are under eating your bowel movements will be less frequently simply due to the fact that you aren't eating as much. But, also due to the fact that your metabolism has slowed and is sluggish. This generally goes away though within 6 months of returning to normal eating and exercise patterns.
I think a lot of digestive issues and things that generally undiagnosable but manifest a wide array of physical symptoms really originate in our minds. I absolutely believe this. When you are sick, you want to think that it is everything else but that one thing (an eating disorder). This will likely relieve itself only when you are in a better spot emotionally, which also means physically. So, get into therapy and dealing with your emotions and feeling them.
The binge fast cycle seems like a terrible thing to get into. It is a bad habit, and needs to be broken. So just stop. Yes, easier said than done, but that is the only solution. Just stop. Not tomorrow, not next week, but now. Make the decision and do it. There is nothing FORCING you to keep persisting in your ways- you are choosing to. Exercise some free will and stop being bad to your body. Things will normalize in time, but be patient and keep your eye on the prize. Eating disorders are brought on ourselves, and overcome ourselves.
I would eat a diet that is mainly salads with lean protein and nuts. Add in raw red onions to all of your salads ( I find them particularly good for digestive motility). Occasionally eat a steamed green vegetable like broccoli, but not daily. Eat lean proteins and add in healthy fats from nuts. That is the basis of a very healthy paleo diet. If you workout, add in some starch (potatoes NOT sweet potatoes or even quinoa or some other start you tolerate). Limit fruit consumption. Although it is good for digestion, it is bad for body composition and mental clarity.
Stop thinking that everything can be healed by your diet. Often physical symptoms originate in the subconscious mind. Best of luck.