SCD, Leaky Gut & palpitations?

Answered on January 01, 2014
Created March 10, 2013 at 7:13 PM


I'm hoping that someone might recognise these symptoms & help explain SCD to me a little. I AM seeing my doctor about it, but with overworked UK GPs only getting eight minutes per patient, it helps to go armed with some ideas!

After heart surgery in 2011, I've been following a Primal version of Paleo (ie. including some dairy & 80/20). It's helped me massively.

A recent heart monitor showed frequent & very frequent ectopic beats (extra ventricular heart beats). I noticed unpleasant palpitations after eating, so I've been experimenting a bit, eating/drinking things in isolation & even eating some stuff I generally avoid just to see the effect.

That makes me feel there's something going on gut-related. I know everyone & their dog self-diagnoses as Leaky Gut - would it make sense in this case?

As well as palpitations, I experience loose, urgent stools (but only once or twice a day), cramps, migraines, depression, inattentive ADD, bad memory, lactose intolerance symptoms (much better since Primal & raw milk), & every year about a month of crisis point where every meal involves a doubled-over run to the toilet. (I'm not saying all these are related, but you never know)

I've started the SCD diet but noticed the recommended ground beef gives me mad palps. Other than that, carbs gives me bad palps, dairy mild ones & even a strict Paleo meal sometimes causes mild ones.

Anybody experience similar? Does an immune reaction due to leaky gut cause palps?

I'm a little (a lot) scared by the palps, so all & any advice is gratefully received.

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11 Answers


on January 01, 2014
at 02:45 PM

I think your symptoms are caused by Histamine intolerance, so try to stick to low histamine foods and dont eat leftover meals. Also you could try taking additional digestive enzymes with your meals.

Google histamine intolerance for more information.


on August 29, 2013
at 10:04 PM

I also have palps with gluten. Doctors didn't know what was causing it but I went very strict paleo and it cleared up gradually after a couple weeks. I've notice re-exposure causes them to come back (how I miss beer!).

On a side note - I heard about taking magnesium and have included 400MG dose a day. I don't know if it help stop the symptom or not.


on August 01, 2013
at 08:04 PM

I have palps with gluten. I didn't associate the two until speaking to a person with a celiac who experiences the same thing. Meat: I have to eat three times the amount of vegetables and fruit with any kind of beef or pork or I get horrible gas. I do not process protein very well which results in, well something very noxious. Ha! I have found out that I am gluten intolerant, have/had leaky gut (Diagnosed by a blood test)and I have Hoshimotos. My diet is gluten free, soy free, dairy free, alcohol free, no corn and no white potatoes and as sugar free as possible, which is very difficult. Natural sugars in fruits is fine for me and I need them because I am also hypoglycemic. I tend to stay away from the nightshade vegetables as well (eggplant, tomatoes, etc). I had started to add certain dairy products back into my diet. Specifically those that are lactose free - Greek yogurt and some hard cheeses. However, my mistake in doing that is, I need to be casein free not just lactose free. I do not eat fast food anymore.

Since starting the diet, I have cleared up two yeast infections in my gut, got rid of a non-human parasite, more focused, memory is better, energy is better, psoriasis is gone!, bowel movements normal and daily...

I had not heard about the urine test for leaky gut. That is way less than the blood test at $195 a pop. I will need to look into that test.

Good luck with everything.


on June 25, 2013
at 12:40 PM


I have Postural Othostatic Tachycardia Syndrome that also affects g.i tract, your symptoms seem simarlar, http://www.patient.co.uk/health/postural-orthostatic-tachycardia-syndrome do you get palpations & breathless climbing stairs (not quickly)? That site info written by STARS.org (uk/usa) also have a very good helpline(uk) run by a lovely lady ring them first as you have had heart trouble. Their very good with all heart rate probs if they think its possible they may say a gp needs to test you instead of try it yourself. But most gp's don't know about it its very underdiagnosed. The basic test you can do is called a "poor man's tilt table test" after checking out the 1st link & if you think at least some symptoms match, HR rise after eating is one due to blood being diverted to stomach for digesting which leaves less elsewhere so the heart naturally auto tries pumping more to move the blood (with PoTS you need to help increase blood volume by drinking 2-3 Lts depending on size. Read & then follow the next link on page at http://dysgirl.com/2012/06/18/united-we-tilt/ But check out the previous 1st link beforehand & if there's any chance you'll feel faint or do faint (30% faint/syncope) have someone with you or near by & tell them, Hopefully you have a good & willing gp (be armed with good info printed from good sites they know & trust, patient.co.uk should be) nhs site on PoTS is very limited on it & dated when I looked last but may have to do as a backup! PoTS on DWP site is pretty good. But you'll need at least a double appt as it needs to take min 15 mins, really min 10 mins laying down (if feel relaxed enough) 20 is best beforehand, but saying that the gp (not my reg one) only checked mine sitting but as it was high he sent me for 24hr holter monitor (that showed it but only if you have gone upstairs from sitting for long enough etc mostly worst when get up in morning. Mine is prob mainly linked to my Hypermobility ("double jointed") syndrome (with symptoms) also known as H-EDS, also affects g.i. (also grossly underdiagnosed & just 3 specialist centres in the UK, London being no.1. simarlar with PoTS specialists & nhs wait for London Prof is very long & with private insurance you will need to pay more on top. STARS can direct you to others that know about it just won't have all the facilities. So I saw someone slightly nearer to me (bot much) as my works insurance would pay for them. Surgery & pregnancy can trigger full symptoms of PoTS, but can happen at any age male or female mainly? under 50. Don't worry about link saying to check BP as its the HR only that will diagnose it, as latest info confirms different type's of PoTS, BP doesn't have to drop, 10% rises, (as does mine) or can fluctuate. Hope this either helps you or others that suffer & can't get answers, please do message me with questions I'll try to answer or give a link. I tried to limit info overload & for it to make sense, not easy for me as another big symptom for me is "brain fog". Just starting being tested for possible SIBO with hydrogen breath test done part 1 (fructose positive) of upto 3 next lactose then if that's positive, then glucose, if positive its SIBO (she had to explain it twice due to "brain fog" lol). So far! diet (g.i hypermobility specialist has referred me to dietician for FODMAP, don't known how SIBO could affect that & I have a sweet tooth argh!) just min 97% gluten free as seemed to be sensitive to mainly wheat, coeliac neg on testing had 4 biopsies samples tested. As 1st thought my symptoms matched that. Many with H-EDS are either sensitive or some have coeliac (coeliac isn't known to be linked).



on May 30, 2013
at 03:46 PM

There is a very simple answer to this:

There is a cheap and effective ($75 - $150) urine test you can take, which can objectively determine whether or not you have a leaky gut. The test is the lactulose/mannitol test, which has been used in various celiac studies, and is widely accepted as the most reliable test for measuring intestinal permeability (leaky gut).

In my opinion, skip the food intolerance tests. They are expensive and the results are scientifically questionable at best. Take the permeability test, and if it comes back positive for leaky gut, then you can do an elimination diet to determine which foods you are reactive to, and must avoid.



on March 12, 2013
at 11:06 PM

I have rapid heart beats after eating coconut oil - are you cooking your meats and vegetables in it? I've read of others having the same issue. For me, it isn't unpleasant - it feels more like a burst of energy, but if I have more than a tsp at a time the palpitations can be stronger and last longer. Just a thought...

Medium avatar

on March 12, 2013
at 10:27 PM

This would all point to a magnesium insufficiency in my mind. Have you tried supplementing with 100mg magnesium glycinate with each meal?


on March 12, 2013
at 09:52 PM

Cheers Lazza (sorry - i cannot seem to see how to reply to a specific answer. We'll blame brain fog!) I think you're right about the fat, it does sometimes cause a digestive reaction, altough butter never seems to have the same effect (not that I'm going near it right now....).

PHD supplements page is very interesting and ties in with a few other suggestions of things that people with autoimmunes, etcs, are often deficient in.

Also had pain exactly where my thyroid is all day yesterday - I'd always put it down to skeletal trauma from open heart surgery, but now I'm wondering if I dismissed it too quickly....

Off to the doctor tomorrow to do my best, 'I'm not an insane attention-seekingmummy I promise' face.



on March 11, 2013
at 12:34 PM

If ground beef is giving you grief then your problem might be with digesting fat. You might trying things like HCL and digestive enzymes.

As an aside, I think it is prudent for folks with digestive issues to take vitamins/minerals. Please read Perfect Health Diet (Jaminet) and consider taking the suggested list of vitamins/minerals. You might find they help with your various symptoms.



on March 11, 2013
at 09:02 AM


Thanks for some very good ideas. It does all seem to be pointing towards food intolerances & hopefully the palpitations might be a reaction to years of abusing that intolerances/autoimmune response.

It can be difficult to get food intolerance tests done here - my son was in agony as a newborn due to lactose intolerance & cow's milk protein intolerance, but to get them to agree to even letting him see a consultant, I basically had to refuse to leave the surgery! I will push for it though as it definitely makes sense.

Re the lactose intolerance my symptoms initially cleared up when I went Primal & started using raw milk. It's very hit & miss - sometimes I can drink a mug of milk straight up & be fine, other times one sip & I can feel my insides rumbling. But yeah, it's definitely out of the picture for now!

Thanks again - lots of reading to do now!


on March 11, 2013
at 04:03 AM


No similar experiences re palpitations, but...

I was in a similar position re stomach pains. I went gluten free- and whilst things got better they didn't totally ease.

So I cut out all other grains, got my food intolerance blood test done (York Test)- found that I was reacting to milk, eggs, almonds and brazil nuts. Cut out those. Got a lot better but still not totally. Realised i was pretty much at Paleo anyway so read some books and switched overnight.

Did a fructose malabsorption elimination diet. Felt immensely better and dropped 5 pounds in 5 days when I cut out fruit and upped the veggies to replace. Started "testing" vegetables by doing veggie mono-meals- eating meat or fish plus 1 type of vegetable (in quite a large quantity) as a meal. And paying attention to my digestive system after. Spent a very painful night after eating a lot of romaine, looked up lettuce intolerance and found it is more common than you would think.

Found out about the Paleo autoimmune protocol and decided to do that as I was just about there anyway- I had been suspicious of nightshades since I heard that they can have the same effect on stomach villi as gluten.

At the same as doing the veggie testing, I started taking large doses of fish oil (started with 4 capsules after each meal- or 5g of epa/dha a day) and worked my way up to 2 teaspoons of liquid fish oil after each meal (or 17g of epa/dha a day). Also take L-glutamine as supplement. And a probiotic once a day. Find that a bit into that I can tolerate some vegetables better, ones that were borderline for me at first (broccoli, cauliflower- I do still have to be careful re quantity at a time but I can eat them now without feeling awful for ages.

Drink mint tea before a meal (so my intestines are relaxed) and after it (so they stay relaxed).

Realised that I might be able to reintroduce fruit with a good fructose/glucose balance (berries, maybe citrus) if I build some muscle mass, so started some High Intensity Interval Training and yoga to counteract it.

Viewed this and realised I am on the right track http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLjgBLwH3Wc

Can I just ask you why you stick with dairy if you have lactose intolerance symptoms? Your doctor should be able to arrange a lactose intolerance test for you, or if you can afford it, I thoroughly recommend the York Test.

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