Paleo hack my gut - please :o)

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 10, 2013 at 10:18 AM

HI everyone I hope someone could help.

I have been paleo for a few months and most of the expected benefits are there, feeling more energy, etc etc but the one thing I am finding which is really spoiling the whole paleo thing is that I get an ache in an area about 1-2 inches below my sternum, i guess almost 1/2 way between sternum and belly button about 2 hours after eating. This ache is not a severe pain but it is very annoying.

If I eat something it usually goes, if I dont it usually stays for another hour or more then ends up going.

It appears that concentrated protein makes it worse, so if for instance I have something like chicken and butternut squash with ghee for breakfast I get it 2 hours later, if I just have butternut squash with ghee it doesn't happen.

I think the area in question might be the small intestine, possibly inflamed or irritated a bit, as it does not happen when I eat, but hours after.

I have tried hcl supplements, they seem to make it worse. Digestive enzyme caps dont seem to make a difference.

I don't know whether to eat small meals every 2 hours or so to stop the area being empty? after my evening meal I never get the feeling and its not there through the night as far as I know.

I hope I can sort this out somehow as obviously paleo is the way to go for better health.


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3 Answers



on February 10, 2013
at 12:48 PM

Please see a GI doctor. I had pains below my belly button that went away after being treated for H. pylori. Perhaps I had an ulcer of some sort? I should think a doctor would want you tested for H. pylori, among other things.



on February 10, 2013
at 12:10 PM

Sounds like it might be the pancreas, they take care of both protein and HCL.

You don't want to mess with that organ, better see a doctor as soon as possible. But no one can diagnose this sort of stuff online, could probably be a hundred different things.



on February 10, 2013
at 11:28 AM

When you mentioned hcl made things worse, I'm thinking your problem is food combination while not having the most optimal digestion. You see, hcl will help you digest your proteins, but if you've got starch in your stomach as well, you're mixing 2 kinds of digestive juices. Now, eating GHEE+SQUASH+CHICKEN (=fat+carbs(fructose and starch)+protein for people with digestive issues, that's a killer. Try to concentrate your meals around either carbs+fats or protein+carbs from non-starchy veggies. My concern is also to have it checked out whether you can rule out an ulcer or stomach irritation. Both situations would mean a burning sensation in either stomach (sternum area) or small intestine(below sternum area)after taking hcl. I experienced no need for hcl as long as I don't mix my protein with other foods than non-starchy veggies. After a month or 2 my protein digestion improved and can now mix it with some starchy carbs without bloating or burning. Best of luck! :)

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