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Trouble digesting meat. Any tips?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 26, 2013 at 1:45 AM

I'm interested in trying the paleo diet/lifestyle since I've started getting interested in fitness, and alot of people seem to have been very successful with their fitness routines while following a paleo type diet. My trouble is, perhaps due to being raised and remaining a vegetarian (and later, vegan) for the first 20 years of my life, I have a really hard time digesting meat. Right away it makes me feel tired and sluggish, can give me a stomach ache if I eat more than a palm-size portion, and clogs up the works (if you know what I mean) for two days. Ditto for fish and eggs... eggs are especially bad for stomach upset. The only thing that does not seem to cause me digestive distress is raw seafood, like sashimi, but I can't afford to eat this three times a day, every day.

I've tried eating meat alone, or with large portions of raw or cooked veggies, and neither helps. I've also tried combining meat with homemade kimchi, in hopes of improved digestability, but no luck. I also tried committing to paleo for one month, to see if I just needed to suffer through some sort of adjustment period, but I was MISERABLE.

Has anyone gone through this sort of thing? Any advice? I assume that there is no subsitute for meat/fish/eggs in the paleo diet... they seem to be it's backbone. Correct?

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 02, 2013
at 12:16 AM

Overcooked eggs make me dizzy and nauseous, every time.

7cf9f5b08a41ecf2a2d2bc0b31ea6fa0

(4176)

on April 01, 2013
at 10:20 PM

apparently you should take hcl after meals to encourage your own production of stomach acid

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on March 26, 2013
at 04:38 AM

I second that. Go raw.

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on March 26, 2013
at 02:25 AM

Egg whites can upset my stomach to. Maybe try just the yolks?

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8 Answers

3
2006ccb2b60f9cc5ba5e8eff8a7abc46

on March 26, 2013
at 03:03 AM

what does your dialy diet consist of? you may be combinding foods inappropriately, not getting enough fiber from green leafy veggies, celery, or cucumbers, may not be getting enough water, and also fat. you need more fat than protein, to grease the pipes.

also don't cook proteins to death, ESPECIALLY EGGS! don't eat the whites, eat the raw yolk, use it like a dressing for lightly cooked meats.

if you can stand it try a nice steak tartar, raw meat is incredibly easy to digest.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on March 26, 2013
at 04:38 AM

I second that. Go raw.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 02, 2013
at 12:16 AM

Overcooked eggs make me dizzy and nauseous, every time.

1
Da9968e43890b1507ac968e7c93f96c0

on April 01, 2013
at 11:10 PM

Your body may not be acclimated to eating meat products. I am sure you can purchase digestive enzymes that will help train your body to produce enzymes naturally to help digest meat.

1
7cf9f5b08a41ecf2a2d2bc0b31ea6fa0

on April 01, 2013
at 10:19 PM

you have low stomach acid,, try hcl with pepsin after meals (not before as this apparently discourages your own production of stomach acid)

1
6967518836bd7e2331601a71e937ae0d

(170)

on April 01, 2013
at 03:59 AM

I've never had this problem so I'm speaking ignorantly and hypothetically. If I had your problem I would start with vegetable soups that have chicken/beef stock. Then I would slowly introduce solid meat in the soup in very small amounts. Eventually there would be more meat than plant.

I would stay away from eggs completely and eat as much raw meat as I can afford.

I would experiment with the fat/protein/carb ratio to see what works best. And of course stay hydrated.

Good luck. :)

0
0b7c3e7fd96005f0b2dfd781e512fc2e

(1237)

on April 01, 2013
at 10:15 PM

Your post implies that you eat meat three times a day. I suggest that this much animal protein is perhaps unnecessary, according to your unique physiological make-up (though I could of course be wrong). Experiment eating more raw/high-fibre foods instead of meat, for example:

  • Breakfast: fruit
  • Lunch: big salad with eggs/nuts/avocado or a small amount of lean meat/fish
  • Dinner: typical meat with veg.

I have a similar background to you (10 years vegetarian, 5 years vegan) and when I started eating fish I experienced similar symptoms as yourself. I found that it got better with time as my body naturally adjusted. So you mightn't be doing anything wrong, you'll just have to be consistent until physiological changes occur.

I have also found that taking coconut oil improves digestion. Cook with it, take it in your tea/coffee or mix in a spoonful with your salads (this will also enhance absorption of vitamins/minerals in the veggies).

0
Eccdc4a151a251107ade4d052c3978df

on April 01, 2013
at 06:41 PM

I would check out betaine HCL supplements with pepsin, and take those before each protein heavy meal. Other tips include: taking a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar before your meal or a glass of kombucha, eating your meat with some lemon juice (or you could marinade your meat with some lemon juice or yogurt, as long as it is an acid) and eating gelatin after your meal, (attracts the digestive juices to food). I would also suggest drinking a cup of fresh tea ginger about 3-4 hours after you've eaten protein (or about 2 hours after a low protein meal). This helps to increase the PH in your duodenum, and thereby helps the digestion in that part of you GI.

7cf9f5b08a41ecf2a2d2bc0b31ea6fa0

(4176)

on April 01, 2013
at 10:20 PM

apparently you should take hcl after meals to encourage your own production of stomach acid

0
800e726cb5dff569fd8edf604c3e2793

on April 01, 2013
at 03:24 PM

Try eating meat with papaya, it has enzymes that ease the digestion of meat.

If you can eat raw fish, try ceviche: fish marinated in lime juice, basically.

Try raw egg smoothies, see if they go down well.

0
74786bbe8254844304a33943290c4d6d

on April 01, 2013
at 03:17 PM

Are you doing low-carb? I'd add in sweet potatoes and other soluble forms of fiber to help with digestion.

You may want to try NOW Foods Super Enzymes.

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