2

votes

Pain in the right abdomen. Is it low carb flu?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 10, 2013 at 7:40 PM

Hello everyone,

first of all I'd like to say this will be kinda long post, so if you don't like to read, I am sorry.

I started with low carb paleo 2 weeks ago, after 8 weeks of recovery from cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal surgery). I was diagnosed with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and was told by my GP that over past 10 years I've gained over 20 kg. Few years ago my body fat was roughly 25%. I ate mostly flour-based foods, cakes, rice, potatoes, pizza, etc. Simply put - I was overdosing myself with sugar and carbs.

I've decided to change my lifestyle, unfortunately too late for my gallblader containing 2 gallstones in a size of a grape. I take it as a chance. Since the surgery I haf no severe and cruel pain in the right abdomen waking me up in the middle of night, nor any other digestive issues.

Now I am on the low carb paleo, my goal is to wear a t-shirt of a size M instead of XL and feel overall better. I am eating bacon, eggs, all kinds of meat, veggies, nuts and once a day some fruit like banana or apple, drinking only water and black tea. After two weeks I cannot remember what hunger is. I just love to eat like that.

But past 3 days I feel unpleasant pain in the right abdomen again. It's not that cruel like colic pain from the gallstones, yet it's uncomfortable. I've read some articles about low carb flu and liver conversion from processing carbs and sugar to processing fat. Apart of that I feel fine, no fatigue, although I am working at the office 5 minutes afoot from my appartment and I am not excercising at all.

So what do you all think about that? Have you experienced something like that?

PS: Sorry for the grammar, english is my not first language.

STATUS UPDATE:

I've combined all of your advices and results are following:

Go see the GP and get the blood tests. My GP is on vacation, so I cannot talk with him yet.

Jump from the chair to rule out appendix inflammation. Done, no pain at all.

Get some probiotics. Check, I am using some for like 3 days now and I feel much better.

Go easy on eating fats. Check, less bacon decreased the pain as well.

I forgot to mention one more thing before - I was kinda couch potato over the winter so the weekend stroll with twins and all the mandatory excercise with them maybe caused some muscle pain. I assume it was all issues mentioned above plus the muscle fatigue.

Anyway, I found some little bulge right under the skin on the right side of the abdomen some time ago. That was actually the reason why I went to my GP resulting into cholecystectomy. The bulge didn't go away, but it stopped to hurt. If it's somewhat stressed (by kids jumping on my stomach for example) it start to pain a bit. My GP said that there's nothing he can do about it so I am hoping that low-carb paleo will help me. If not, I am already talking with renowned surgeon who can help me.

Sorry for the long post and thank you all once again for all your wise and educated advices.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 02:59 PM

Thank you for the answer. Gastric ulcer also came up on my mind. I am going to see the doc next week. Hopefuly he will help me a bit.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 02:54 PM

Thanks for the quick answer. I eat only one of them, so I should be fine.

76e82f76e7e3ed9747c980b50fc51b25

(229)

on April 15, 2013
at 01:22 PM

1 of each of those or 1 of them? If only 1 total then it's definitely not the end of the world, even with all of them it shouldn't be a huge deal. However with what your dealing with I would cut all fructose until it gets resolved.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 11:34 AM

That depends on the definition of "large amounts". Now I am eating like 1 banana / apple / orange a day. Is it too much?

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on April 15, 2013
at 10:20 AM

If NAFLD is suspected, I'd add avoid anything with large amounts of fructose or even sucrose in it (i.e. high fructose corn syrup, agave nectar, honey, etc.)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 11, 2013
at 11:48 AM

Thank you for the advice. I was jumping from the chair on the morning and I felt perfectly fine, so hopefuly it's not the appendix :)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 11, 2013
at 11:47 AM

Thank you for the insight. From the changes of pain intensity I assume that it's really food related so I am going to need some supplements like ox bile and probiotics mentioned by RK above. I am going to see my GP tomorrow to get some blood tests and we will see what's really happening inside.

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on April 11, 2013
at 01:32 AM

Haha, didn't see Pauls comment, I agree. Be careful

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on April 11, 2013
at 01:31 AM

Appendicitis? Do the jump test. If you can jump off a tall chair or couch and have no pain you can rule that out. Do it everyday to make sure it ain't appendicitis that isn't very inflamed

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 10, 2013
at 09:45 PM

Thank you for your advice. The painful area is slightly lower. When I had the colic, the pain was located right under the ribs, closer to the solar plexus. Now it's lower and far to the right. It's more like uncomfortable pressure with pain spikes during fast moves of my torso (playing with kids, etc.). Hopefuly, the cure will be as easy as was yours :)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 10, 2013
at 09:04 PM

Thank you for the quick answer paleoDoc. You kinda scared me but I am definitely going to see a GP tomorrow. If it will be NASH, is it because of fatty meat which I am eating now? I don't drink alcohol nor using any drugs incl. nicotine so I hope this isn't an emergency.

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5 Answers

best answer

4
4ec121f9af303014d451fb96c94b462c

on April 10, 2013
at 08:46 PM

Iceman, Congrats on turning around your diet. I'll start off this post by saying I'm a surgeon in the US as well as a paleo/crossfit junkie. Paleo/xfit has done wonders and you should keep going with the diet. With regard to the recurrence of the right upper quadrant abdominal pain after your cholecystectomy the answer is simple: go see your surgeon or GP as soon as possible, tomorrow if available. You will likely need blood tests to look at your liver enzymes and possibly an ultrasound. This probably isnt the paleo and needs to get evaluated properly. I never post on these threads but yours is one needing quick action. NAFLD can convert to Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) which is when your liver becomes inflamed. Go as soon as you can. Stop any alcohol and acetaminophen (tylenol) and other hepatotoxic compounds. Likely this is nothing dangerous but after a surgery you must entertain a higher degree of suspicion. Seriously paleo is great, do xfit, but dont go crazy with the bacon and fatty meats. All things in moderation friend. Keep working out and best of luck.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 10, 2013
at 09:04 PM

Thank you for the quick answer paleoDoc. You kinda scared me but I am definitely going to see a GP tomorrow. If it will be NASH, is it because of fatty meat which I am eating now? I don't drink alcohol nor using any drugs incl. nicotine so I hope this isn't an emergency.

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on April 15, 2013
at 10:20 AM

If NAFLD is suspected, I'd add avoid anything with large amounts of fructose or even sucrose in it (i.e. high fructose corn syrup, agave nectar, honey, etc.)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 02:54 PM

Thanks for the quick answer. I eat only one of them, so I should be fine.

76e82f76e7e3ed9747c980b50fc51b25

(229)

on April 15, 2013
at 01:22 PM

1 of each of those or 1 of them? If only 1 total then it's definitely not the end of the world, even with all of them it shouldn't be a huge deal. However with what your dealing with I would cut all fructose until it gets resolved.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 11:34 AM

That depends on the definition of "large amounts". Now I am eating like 1 banana / apple / orange a day. Is it too much?

best answer

1
32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on April 10, 2013
at 09:34 PM

You got a great answer from paleoDoc. Pls update with what you found out from your doc. My only question is that you said you have pain in the "right abdomen again." Is it pain in the same area, upper right? Or is in on the right side, but slightly different location?

After I had my gb out, I continued to have pain in my lower right abdomen (just to the right of my belly button). This pain was always there with the gb pain, but the gb pain overshadowed it. My liver enzymes were normal, appendix fine, etc. I eventually found a doc who figured out that the pain was near my ileocecal valve, likely due to bacterial issues. I started taking some enzymes and probiotics made by Standard Process (after I had spent years trying various other brands) and they WORKED. It took me 2 years, but all the pain is finally gone.

Just another possible rabbit trail. :)

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on April 11, 2013
at 01:32 AM

Haha, didn't see Pauls comment, I agree. Be careful

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on April 11, 2013
at 01:31 AM

Appendicitis? Do the jump test. If you can jump off a tall chair or couch and have no pain you can rule that out. Do it everyday to make sure it ain't appendicitis that isn't very inflamed

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 10, 2013
at 09:45 PM

Thank you for your advice. The painful area is slightly lower. When I had the colic, the pain was located right under the ribs, closer to the solar plexus. Now it's lower and far to the right. It's more like uncomfortable pressure with pain spikes during fast moves of my torso (playing with kids, etc.). Hopefuly, the cure will be as easy as was yours :)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

1
75d65450b6ff0be7b969fb321f1200ac

(2506)

on April 15, 2013
at 12:38 PM

Although "pain in right abdomen" can be caused by many things(, as other posters have suggested,) I seriously doubt "low carb flu" can be a cause. Yes, seeing your doctor is the right course of action. But I think the problem might not be especially onerous. Have you considered that it might just be a gastric/duodenal ulcer? One way to check is by simply taking omeprazole or ranitidine for a few days. If the pain lessens you indeed may have an ulcer; again, a doctor can tell you for sure.

_Lazza

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 02:59 PM

Thank you for the answer. Gastric ulcer also came up on my mind. I am going to see the doc next week. Hopefuly he will help me a bit.

1
96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on April 11, 2013
at 10:22 AM

To add to what everyone else said after you get your doctor to check the pain out, now that you don't have a gallbladder, it's important to understand that bile now flows constantly from your liver to your stomach instead of when needed.

This means that you won't have enough to digest fat properly. So at first, go easy on eating fats, but when you do, take some digestive enzymes containing Ox Bile. You'll need to figure out how much to use, it varies from person to person and from meal to meal. This is critical because without the ability to digest fat properly, you'll fail to absorb vitamins A, E, and D, and of course, fat itself, which will prevent proper hormone creation, as well as bile and cholesterol creation.

You'll find out the next day by the shape of your poops - if they're smooth and long, you're taking enough, if look like grapes, you didn't take enough. The higher the fat content of your meal, the more enzymes you'll need.

Don't panic, but unfortunately, the constant drip of bile means that you're at higher risk for colon cancer, so you might want to space out your meals and include at least a little bit of fat with snacks whenever you can so that bile has something to digest - this doesn't mean you have to eat around the clock, but it's something to be aware of.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 11, 2013
at 11:47 AM

Thank you for the insight. From the changes of pain intensity I assume that it's really food related so I am going to need some supplements like ox bile and probiotics mentioned by RK above. I am going to see my GP tomorrow to get some blood tests and we will see what's really happening inside.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

1
37cc142fbb183f2758ef723a192e7a9d

(1353)

on April 11, 2013
at 12:46 AM

By the way, On Friday I had to drive my coworker to the hospital after she complained of 24 hour + right side abdominal pain, sure enough early next morning they took out her appendix. So not to panic you but you may want to get that tested for if it persists.

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 11, 2013
at 11:48 AM

Thank you for the advice. I was jumping from the chair on the morning and I felt perfectly fine, so hopefuly it's not the appendix :)

Cb707cb9ab8a4ad743638a0c43c3f278

(105)

on April 15, 2013
at 09:07 AM

Status updated.

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