2

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Starting Paleo with already high Triglycerides ... now have Gallstones?!!

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 01, 2013 at 9:36 PM

Hello all - I'm 3 weeks new to Paleo! I want to do the Whole30 but I'm having an issue giving up my tsp of sugar in my coffee :( Its a process and I'm working on it!

I have a few questions. First, some background. 2 years ago I was eating anything and everything and ended up with triglycerides up over 1500! I was hospitalized with Acute Pancreatitis for a week, and this happened 2 more times before I was put on medication for it, Tricor. I did change my diet last year, but as of 3 weeks ago I switched to Paleo. I have to say I love it, the transition was not hard at all and I feel good about it, though I do get stumped on meal ideas and always get stuck when I don't plan ahead for meals, BUT I do like the changes I feel already.

Question 1. With a history of already high triglycerides (last blood test came back 160! I'm off meds, by the way. I have been for a month now). With eating lots of meat and fattier meals, am I at risk here? I DO NOT want pancreatitis again!!!

Question 2. Is about Gallstones. I have them and they hurt ... but I read somewhere that its cholesterol that causes them and that low-fat died (which was my bad pancreas diet up until a few weeks ago) cause gallstones. I also ready that when you switch to Paleo, the gallstones will start to pass through your system, and hurt! But that the stones were caused by my previous diet and the paleo is flushing them out. Thats great if thats the case, but boy does it hurt sometimes. Is this info correct? Is paleo good for flushing out the gallstones or is paleo making the gallstones?!

Question 3. I'm getting surgery done on my torn meniscus in a few weeks, any suggestions on good healing foods for after? I haven't been able to exercise much since my injury and hope to get moving again after surgery for Spring! (plus its Harley-Davidson riding season soon!)

Additional info, I have hypothyroidism - just got my usual blood test today but last blood-work showed my T4 going up. Its at 1.67, up from 1.50 only a month and a half earlier. TSH is at 3.46 too ... going up :( I know that sometimes effects the gall bladder too. So I should know my results on Monday.

Thanks all for reading, any help or opinions would be greatly appreciated!

-----UPDATE!!!----- So yesterday (Feb 11th) I got my Trig test back. Down to 122!!!! Total Chol is at 202 and my thyroid is doing good! =P

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 03, 2013
at 10:57 PM

Thanks! Actually, I had a very VERY bad reaction to Niacin, the side effects ended up being 10x worse with me, even with aspirin. I did have my liver tested because of the meds I was on for pancreas issues, but not recently. Switching PC docs so hopefully the new one will do a full range of tests that I haven't had in awhile. And yes, I agree on the micronuts, I was actually thinking of getting a juicer to make some mico packed drinks!

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 03, 2013
at 10:55 PM

I have been taking 500-750mg of Mg a day for about a week now ... not sure if I'm low, its like pulling teeth to get doctors to do simple full spectrum blood tests :(

32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 02, 2013
at 08:06 PM

I think the Magnesium is key - I tested horrendously low on Mg, and had tons of stones.

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 02, 2013
at 03:09 PM

Thanks! I don't think I am getting enough Vit C come to think of it ... still trying to figure out what supplements I should take to fill the gaps while I transition. The only "medication" I am on still is my Synthroid for the hypo. I take a multi, Vit D, 3g fish oil, magnesium, and probiotics now. I am so gluten free, which I thought was going to be a hard transition but actually its not bad. The gallstone pain has only been for a week, so maybe I just see how it goes and hopefully it is my body just flushing out my 'old diet' :) Thanks!

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 02, 2013
at 03:05 PM

Thanks for the input! When I first had my high Triglycerides and had my first attack of Pancreatitis I also was diagnosed with the Hypothyroid at the same time, so I started Synthroid. With the diet change for my pancreas and the medication for my thyroid I lost about 50lbs in just 2-3 months. Then I plateaued for about a year and now I stuck :( I just cant get my weight to go down. With Paleo I noticed a change in how I feel and how my body feels, not so much my number on the scale going down but the actual 'shape' of my body. Its toning. But that makes sense with the gallstones! Thanks!

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3 Answers

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0
32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 02, 2013
at 12:06 AM

Wow, that is a LOT going on! I can't help you with the triglycerides, but I can share what I experienced with gallbladder. Another data point for you...

I have had many ups and downs with weight over the last 20+ years (starting about age 16). Unbeknownst to me, every time I lost a big chunk of weight (quickly), my body created gallstones. (Of course I was doing it the worst way ever - anorexia). When I started paleo, I felt AWESOME. My weight literally fell off (and I was eating 2000-3000 cal a day - I think my body was literally starving for nutrition). I lost 30 lb in 2 months. Then I had a massive gallbladder attack. Worst pain ever. I thought I was going to die. (And I've had 4 children via natural childbirth, so that's saying something!)

I put up with the gb pain for about 2 years. Took some supplements (soy lecithin to thin the bile, and ox bile to help fat metabolism). Used castor oil packs when pain got bad. I continued eating paleo. I NEVER had an attack after I ate fat (none of that "I ate a big slab of red meat and now I hurt!"). Rather, every time I lost a little more weight, I would have an attack. My body was continuing to create gallstones as I lost weight, and there was no more room at the inn.

Eventually I had it removed. I decided that I really wanted to eat paleo, get healthy, and lose the rest of my weight the right way. The gb had to go for that to happen. I was TERRIFIED that I would not be able to eat fat after that, but my surgeon assured me that not much would change, as my gb hadn't been functional in years. He was right. Now I eat as much fat as I want (it has been over a year since surgery) and my digestive health is the best it has EVER been. The gb had been causing me problems for so long, and I didn't know until it was gone.

So to answer your original question, I don't know that paleo "flushes out" the stones. I suppose it could, if you didn't have very many. Mine was too full for help. And paleo won't cause gallstones just for being paleo ... but if it causes you to lose weight too fast, you may want to re-evaluate and slow the weight loss down (basically, when you lose weight fast, your body dumps cholesterol, and stones are formed from it).

Please ask if you have further questions. It took me a long time (and a lot of picking doctor's brains) to piece this all together. Most of the info out there is useless. :)

As for surgery, the best suggestion I can give you is BROTH. Bone broth is wonderful. Homemade is awesome, but good quality purchased is good too.

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 02, 2013
at 03:05 PM

Thanks for the input! When I first had my high Triglycerides and had my first attack of Pancreatitis I also was diagnosed with the Hypothyroid at the same time, so I started Synthroid. With the diet change for my pancreas and the medication for my thyroid I lost about 50lbs in just 2-3 months. Then I plateaued for about a year and now I stuck :( I just cant get my weight to go down. With Paleo I noticed a change in how I feel and how my body feels, not so much my number on the scale going down but the actual 'shape' of my body. Its toning. But that makes sense with the gallstones! Thanks!

1
657682ed96bc66d0bea7eb7aa40ab123

(153)

on February 02, 2013
at 04:09 AM

The first and the third questions I can't answer, but the second I can, sort of.

Vitamin C as the drink Emergencee and magnesium kept me from forming new gallstones as I lost weight. Then after a year on Paleo, the ultrasound showed that all the stones were gone. I also regularly used an herbal remedy called Stonefree by Planetary Herbals, which may have been what caused the old stones to dissolve, along with the magnesium.

Everyone's body is different, but I most certainly noticed that the absence of grains kept me from forming the sludge that turned into stones. I always thought I was sensitve to butterfat but it was the grain causing the problem.

I think also sweating, heat, sauna on a regular basis may help. Some people also drink apple cider vinegar.

32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 02, 2013
at 08:06 PM

I think the Magnesium is key - I tested horrendously low on Mg, and had tons of stones.

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 02, 2013
at 03:09 PM

Thanks! I don't think I am getting enough Vit C come to think of it ... still trying to figure out what supplements I should take to fill the gaps while I transition. The only "medication" I am on still is my Synthroid for the hypo. I take a multi, Vit D, 3g fish oil, magnesium, and probiotics now. I am so gluten free, which I thought was going to be a hard transition but actually its not bad. The gallstone pain has only been for a week, so maybe I just see how it goes and hopefully it is my body just flushing out my 'old diet' :) Thanks!

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 03, 2013
at 10:55 PM

I have been taking 500-750mg of Mg a day for about a week now ... not sure if I'm low, its like pulling teeth to get doctors to do simple full spectrum blood tests :(

0
E253f8ac1d139bf4d0bfb44debd1db21

on February 03, 2013
at 12:13 AM

  1. Look into a niacin supplement to help you lower TG and LDL.

  2. Is your liver function OK? If not, the gallstone may be being formed by an excess of bilirubin, which means treat the liver to address the gallstones.

  3. Consider a high quality multi micronutrient supplement. Promote an anabolic and anti-inflammatory metabolic state.

6028144172f94f96f0d609d2dfccccf9

on February 03, 2013
at 10:57 PM

Thanks! Actually, I had a very VERY bad reaction to Niacin, the side effects ended up being 10x worse with me, even with aspirin. I did have my liver tested because of the meds I was on for pancreas issues, but not recently. Switching PC docs so hopefully the new one will do a full range of tests that I haven't had in awhile. And yes, I agree on the micronuts, I was actually thinking of getting a juicer to make some mico packed drinks!

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