3

votes

Vegan to Paleo to heal health issues- share your stories!

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 12, 2012 at 8:18 PM

I recently came across a post from one of the users that she was a vegan for many years and cured her immune disorder, and lack of menstruation by switching to paleo. I am in the same place right now as I have suffered for 5 years without a perdiod, low thyroid (although now it is normal due to medication), digestive issues, constipation, after I took a drug that completely destroyed my immune system. I have tried every single vegan diet, raw, macrobiotics, etc, thinking it would cure me but never even thought about paleo seriously until recently. Would love to know how people have changed their health around through this paleo diet! Please share your stories!

089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on October 19, 2012
at 05:01 PM

hey katy. it's great that your IBD symptoms are gone. i'm gonna have to read your blog. i'm trying to heal my UC but i still have a lot of symptoms. i'm doing SCD with a lot of bone broths. i think i need to do the intro phase for a week or so to really give myself a break.

F7cf9588bc47db8b3b7ddeb5172a9311

(455)

on October 13, 2012
at 05:42 AM

Congratulations on your health. I just thought I'd mention that I mentally fist-pumped at "I fired my OBGYN".

A0d4481f4b568e4edc7d8c72102dcfc1

on October 13, 2012
at 03:56 AM

Thanks for reading! I was so entrenched in the vegan culture that I could not admit that those cleanses and extreme diets were making me worse. One of my still-vegan friends just twisted her leg and shattered her tibia, having barrly fallen (she got knocked over by a dog). She had to have reconstructive surgery with pins and rods all through her legs. It is obvious to me that her body is crying out for nutrients and she doesn't get it. Makes me incredibly sad :(

235b077872243d4ee5796c6ace3c0970

(564)

on October 12, 2012
at 09:38 PM

Took biotin; didn't work. Went to a dermatologist for cortisone injections (ugh); didn't work. The only change was living with a nomadic-pastoralist community for two months and having some variation of mutton, vegetables, and sometimes rice two-three times a day. Grew back fast and thick.

0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

(5150)

on October 12, 2012
at 09:25 PM

Taken biotin and consumed 150g of protein a day?

A3c56c85290f748410a6f340ddd552b3

(321)

on October 12, 2012
at 08:46 PM

I wouldn't say your thyroid is normal if you are medicating. Your T3/T4 levels might be in range, but that doesn't mean things don't still need fixing from the foundation on up. Best of luck and welcome to Paleo!

79d9a05714efb2f41cc85a406048e668

on October 12, 2012
at 08:44 PM

Incredible. I just looked at your blog very interesting. Who would have thought that this was the answer when the rest of the world is told to go on vegan cleanses to heal themselves. I am so happy to hear this and excited to start my journey.

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9 Answers

4
A0d4481f4b568e4edc7d8c72102dcfc1

on October 12, 2012
at 08:30 PM

My story is long - and I just happened to post it this week on my blog (linked in my profile). In short, I was vegan for 10 years, and did every type of vegan/vegetarian diet/cleanse and my health kept getting worse and worse. I lost my period for awhile but somehow it came back. My health kept deteriorating until I lost my job and could not function anymore. I started eating meat again and began the slow climb back to health. I have been Paleo for a year, and on versions of the Autoimmune Protocol (I have Celiac and Hashimotos) for about 6 months and feel like I am finally scratching the surface of restoring balance to my body from that phase of my life. I think there are many stories on paleohacks of ex-vegans regaining their health using paleo.

79d9a05714efb2f41cc85a406048e668

on October 12, 2012
at 08:44 PM

Incredible. I just looked at your blog very interesting. Who would have thought that this was the answer when the rest of the world is told to go on vegan cleanses to heal themselves. I am so happy to hear this and excited to start my journey.

A0d4481f4b568e4edc7d8c72102dcfc1

on October 13, 2012
at 03:56 AM

Thanks for reading! I was so entrenched in the vegan culture that I could not admit that those cleanses and extreme diets were making me worse. One of my still-vegan friends just twisted her leg and shattered her tibia, having barrly fallen (she got knocked over by a dog). She had to have reconstructive surgery with pins and rods all through her legs. It is obvious to me that her body is crying out for nutrients and she doesn't get it. Makes me incredibly sad :(

3
B90b7bac59a3b7d57cd39bf1e6242537

(105)

on October 12, 2012
at 08:34 PM

I was vegan 11 years. Thought I felt great on that diet. I started to have chronic musculoskeletal pain (hips, finger joints) not to mention some seriously painful and embarrassing rosacea. Primal diet now for 7 weeks. My chronic pain is significantly reduced and so isn't my rosacea. I'm going to knock out dairy soon to see if that helps totally eliminate the rosacea but I believe it's not completely gone due to some medications I recently started for a short duration. I feel awesome all the time. Tons of energy whereas before I'd hit a wall around 2:30pm everyday. Used to have to take naps after weight training. Don't need that anymore. I used o eat 9 meals a day and was super lean and had a hard time putting on as much muscle as I'd like. Now I eat 4 times a day and am completely satisfied. I used to get so hungry I thought I'd vomit. When I get hungry now it's very tolerable. I'm very very happy I made this change!

1
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

i was vegan for 5 years, doing raw vegan/fruitarianism for 3 years. i started paleo about 2 months ago to help with my ulcerative colitis. my UC is really bad so i'm sure it will take a while to heal, but i have seen some improvements. my frequency is less, i can exercise, i've gained strength, and im not in constant pain all day. i still don't have my period and i'm very anemic, but i'm hoping these things will improve with paleo and lots of supplements. i've been on immunosuppressants for a long time so i'm sure that slows my healing down and makes me prone to getting sick.

i was nervous at how my body would respond to having animal products again because i've heard of people getting sick from accidentally eating them. i did fine though. i had a lot of acid reflux/vomitting issues before paleo and that has all went away.

1
D3ac0beb316838ec9ea4e0c3eabd6daf

on December 02, 2012
at 05:42 AM

I was a vegetarian for 3 years, vegan for 7 months. I got Interstitial Cystitis as a vegan, along with digestive problems like constipation. Took to Paleo, after about 3 weeks my issues were gone! So was my habit to over eat. I did gain weight though. I was on it for 3 months (on and off) and now I'm vegan again, thinking I would do it differently, well... It's been 2 weeks. My health concerns are back. Everything is back. Huh, imagine that d:

1
D41bd7b3d3b962eb0146f471eb632f56

on October 12, 2012
at 09:34 PM

Was never vegan, but even a mostly-vegetarian diet did enough damage on my body. Spent about a year following a real food, "flexitarian" way of eating. Didn't notice problems at first, since most the problems I had existed since before switching from SAD to real food. But then things spiraled out of control. My libido never returned after spending 6 months on the pill, and I was developing daily headaches, irritability, and fatigue. I felt like I was sick and needed to stay in bed every morning, even with regular bed times and 7 hours of sleep every night. Plus, my HDL, which had never been in the "ideal" range, DROPPED 13 points on a super-clean, 80% vegan diet. My severe seasonal allergies, acne, and irregular periods were a norm--never really knew anything else.

I finally had enough last year and contacted my OBGYN with thoughts that I had an endocrine imbalance. He was really unhelpful, telling me my lack of libido was all in my head and all my other symptoms were nothing. I contacted a holistic practitioner and HE was very, very helpful. He ordered some tests for me and it turned out I do in fact have a hormonal imbalance. In fact, I took my results back to my OBGYN and he confirmed that I have estrogen-dominant PCOS. I fired my OBGYN.

After that I immediately followed my holistic doc's orders to drastically cut my carb load, only eat carbs with a protein or fat, follow a gluten-free diet, and do weight-bearing exercises regularly. Then, for the first time in my life, I experienced a regular, 28-day cycle. And then another one. And then another... I follow fertility awareness method, and in addition to regular cycles, I was actually ovulating at appropriate times in my cycle (day 13-15, versus...19 or later). My headaches GREATLY lessened, and my debilitating seasonal allergies disappeared. I wake up every morning feeling far more rested than I used to. Plus, my skin is actually clear. I've had acne since elementary school, so this was a big deal for me. Oh, and my libido finally returned after two years of being off the pill.

It's funny. My holistic doc is a vegan, and this is what he recommended for me. I always knew that I felt better with meat, especially red meat. And you'd think I'd get the clue after many different "diets" that are based on your "type" all suggested I eat in a hunter-gatherer-ish sort of way (not that I think these diets are reliable sources of information, but there's certainly a common denominator of truth). I think I wanted to be vegetarian to fit into the crowd around me. Or for some sense of "blamelessness." I don't know.

F7cf9588bc47db8b3b7ddeb5172a9311

(455)

on October 13, 2012
at 05:42 AM

Congratulations on your health. I just thought I'd mention that I mentally fist-pumped at "I fired my OBGYN".

1
235b077872243d4ee5796c6ace3c0970

on October 12, 2012
at 08:31 PM

I did the raw vegan thing for some time a few years back. Started losing my hair; NOT normal for a relatively low-stress 23-year old. I'm talkin' distinct, unmistakable bald spots on my scalp, ranging from 1-3 inches wide. Went vegetarian (lactose/gluten intolerant and therefore free from both things) and occasionally (monthly, let's say) enjoyed fish/chicken. Still no progress with my hair.

Wasn't until I was living in another country where we had no choice but to eat red meat on a daily basis that my hair started to grow back with a bloody freakin' vengeance. I'd heard of paleo before, but this dramatic change led me to read up on it and make the switch. Now I have a lovely abundance of the stuff (and great skin/nails, to boot).

235b077872243d4ee5796c6ace3c0970

(564)

on October 12, 2012
at 09:38 PM

Took biotin; didn't work. Went to a dermatologist for cortisone injections (ugh); didn't work. The only change was living with a nomadic-pastoralist community for two months and having some variation of mutton, vegetables, and sometimes rice two-three times a day. Grew back fast and thick.

0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

(5150)

on October 12, 2012
at 09:25 PM

Taken biotin and consumed 150g of protein a day?

0
0b7c3e7fd96005f0b2dfd781e512fc2e

(1237)

on December 02, 2012
at 05:40 PM

I've been vegetarian, conventional vegan (fake meat, soy, whole grains, etc) and raw vegan (both high fat and low fat).

I'm still vegan, but now focus on incorporating paleo principles (gluten free, more fats, O6/03 ratio, etc). Compared to raw vegan which is gluten-free anyway, I now have increased satiety and better mental concentration.

0
8bb3b54661ffc6850c21614a8bac8abe

on October 22, 2012
at 10:10 AM

I find the debate between paleo and vegan incredibly frustrating. They are the two diets that are most responsible for advocating the consumption of unprocessed foods, but they are at each others throats about their differences. If half the world went paleo, and half the world went vegan, the whole world would be much healthier than we are today.Excessive sweating

0
629b9895e282d0ef15b465b064100f83

on October 19, 2012
at 02:39 AM

I was vegetarian for about 3 years. I strongly believe that my vegetarian diet (very heavy on the "healthy" whole grains) contributed to an imbalance of gut bacteria that lead to serious digestion issues. I don't think it was the cause*emphasized text* of my Crohn's disease diagnosis, by any means, but it was likely a contributing trigger among many other things. I have a blog (linked in my profile) that describes my experiences in using diet to control my symptoms. I have had wonderful success and I currently do not have any GI symptoms! My other symptoms, such as fatigue and joint pain, are slowly, but surely improving. I started off by following the specific carbohydrate diet and GAPS diet, but my diet is more in line with Paleo now that I'm not symptomatic.

089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on October 19, 2012
at 05:01 PM

hey katy. it's great that your IBD symptoms are gone. i'm gonna have to read your blog. i'm trying to heal my UC but i still have a lot of symptoms. i'm doing SCD with a lot of bone broths. i think i need to do the intro phase for a week or so to really give myself a break.

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