Anyone else have very slow results with paleo?

Answered on April 11, 2014
Created April 10, 2014 at 7:19 PM

I started following a paleo diet about 3 months ago largely because of digestion issues. In October 2013 I started experiencing extreme bloating, gas, constipation and overall great discomfort every time I ate a meal. From this (and probably the holidays) I gained about 20 pounds (was 137 early October and now about 150-155; 5'9" and 26 yr old). I had some serious life events that caused a lot of stress, so I think that has been the main cause ??? have been addressing stress with meditation (huge help), sleep, etc.

While I have definitely noticed improvements since going paleo ??? no more constant congestion and sinus infections, my eczema is almost non-existent and I definitely feel better emotionally and have more energy ??? I find the digestion recovery is better but slow going and reversing the weight gain is also taking its time. My clothes are fitting somewhat better, but it's been slow in improving.

Adding betaine HCL and digestive enzymes helped immensely to get digestion going again, but if I don't take them things slowly go back to horrible bloating and general unhappiness in that department, so I think I have to have some patience with healing my gut?

A typical day food-wise looks like this:

IF from about 10 pm - 12 pm

Throughout morning have a thermos of coffee with some coconut oil/grass-fed butter

Lunch: 2 chicken thighs (organic) cooked in coconut oil, 1/2 sweet potato w/ EVOO and some sea salt (I notice that if I don't have this or a banana each day I get terrible muscle cramps in my neck, upper back and armpits), about half my plate is always veggies like brussels sprouts, saut??ed kale, or mixed salad greens.

If I get hungry before dinner I'll have some baby carrots, hard boiled eggs, a spoonful of coconut oil, or a small piece of 70%+ dark chocolate.

Dinner looks much the same as lunch, minus the sweet potato. Usually with a different protein (eggs, fish, etc) and sometimes an avocado. If I want something sweet after dinner I'll have a spoonful of coconut oil or another small piece of dark chocolate (small meaning about 10-20 g).

I take some Great Lakes gelatin in the morning and at night, eat some kimchi or wild brine with each meal and supplement with fish oil as well.

I track food on cronometer and tend to average around 1900-2000 calories, about 60-70 g protein, 60-70 g carbs, and about 110-120 g fat.

I also exercise frequently ??? weights at least twice a week, interval training about twice a week, 1 each yoga and pilates class, rest day.

I've never done paleo before and am not sure what a normal progression/rate of change is (this is also my first post on here, so my apologies is this is a redundant post). My main questions:

- Am I eating too much or not enough?

- Since I'm not starting from an overweight place, will it just take me longer to see physical changes? I mostly just want to go back down a pant/dress size. I can tell I have more muscle in arms, abs, legs.

- Can it just take a while for digestion issues to go away?

Thank you so much in advance and sorry this is super lengthy.

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2 Answers


on April 11, 2014
at 03:30 PM

Hey there. My eyes didn't glaze over, for what it's worth ^

Some possible ideas as to digestion issues - coffee is a digestive irritant, and it sounds like you're doing bulletproof coffee. I've tried that, and it causes me so much P.A.I.N. I lost weight, sure, but mostly because the coffee was so irritating that I HAD to intermittently fast just to want to eat. It could be an idea to remove coffee (and any excess chocolate) for a few weeks and see what happens.

Other possible digestive irritants that I see there are eggs. Doesn't bother everybody, but there's significant evidence that eggs are one of the main contributors to digestive upset in people with digestive problems, dysbiosis, leaky gut, etc.

As for weight loss, well, losing weight slowly is a good thing. The body is in a state of homeostasis and repair, not going "WTFDROPWEIGHT".... which can result later in "WTFGAINWEIGHT!!". It can be a more stable and long term loss if done slowly. That said, sometimes these paleo/bulletproof macros don't work for everybody with weight loss, anyways. It's a n=1 thing.



on April 10, 2014
at 08:33 PM

Didn't read the whole thing, my eyes glazed over.

I would go check your calorie requirements with an online calculator to get an estimate of how much you should be eating, I use cronometer.com.

Assuming you do not have a lot to lose you should expect it to take much longer, usually going into diets with a good amount of extra weight you can easily drop 10-25 pounds in the first few weeks, after that it becomes more of a slow grind, the best you can really hope for is 1-2lbs a week at best. Also have to keep in mind when looking for results, as you lose weight and trade muscle for fat it can be quite difficult to see the slow incremental changes as your body tends to lose weight very uniformly.

Digestion issues don't seem normal... if you're experiencing them for more than a week or two I would look into fixing that as a seperate issue.

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