3

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Weight Gain (Body Shape Change) on Paleo

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 10, 2012 at 5:31 PM

I'm naturally petite, and that paired with a healthy lifestyle and regular, rather gentle walking and hiking has meant I have never worried about my weight. I was a vegetarian for 12 years before starting to eat meat again. Once I started eating meat I did not notice any change in weight, but I was only eating it occasionally. Since starting to eat mostly Paleo, or rather I should say in cutting out grains (I was gluten free before this and only eating quinoa, brown rice, and mostly "healthy" grains) I have noticed a huge change in how I look (I look thick and heavy) and have gained 5lbs. I am not eating drastically different other than eating meat more frequently and protein more frequently.

Do I need to be exercising more with all this added protein/meat... any ideas how eating mostly Paleo could lead to weight gain?

FYI I am nearly 100% sugar and dairy free and 100% organic and have been prior to Paleo. Only thing that has changed is now low-grain, more meat/eggs/fish and probably a bit more fat from butter/ghee/coconut oil.

NOTE: I'm not concerned with being/looking thin but rather wondering why my shape has literally changed in a months time to one I have never had before. I have had phases of eating tons of raw milk, butter, organic ice cream and other fatty/high calorie foods and then phases of juicing/raw food and have done a 30 day juice fast and I have always retained the same shape and weight regardless. So I wonder if there is something happening hormonally due to the increased meat consumption/decreased grain consumption that is literally shifting my body shape....

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 11, 2012
at 11:06 PM

also, i definitely gained weight switching to paleo. after eating years of "diet food" that is designed to trick our bodies into ignoring hunger, once i started eating real food, it has taken me a while to learn which foods worked for me. don't give up!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 10, 2012
at 09:23 PM

totally normal! i was a raw vegan/fruititarian for a few months and i am still relearning satiety signals years later. hang in there!!!

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:12 PM

I'm not trying to lose weight nor do I think of Paleo as a weight loss diet- I think of it as, hopefully, a health gaining diet. I've never counted calories, carbs, protein..so I'm not sure. I do know that prior to this I was eating whey protein in the morning, eggs and raw milk regularly as well as lentils.... but I am still eating those things, minus the lentils and plus the meat so think protein intake has definitely skyrocketed...

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:11 PM

Hey Rebekah....Yes I think this could be it- I'm finding I just don't know how much to eat anymore- before it just seemed natural- so I may be over-eating meat and fat and not realizing it... I'm going to look into how to balance proportions..never had to think about it before!

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:09 PM

Hi Josh, yes it does take a bit to get comfortable eating Paleo after being veg for so long. I have taken Omega 3s for years now and take a high quality fish oil currently (Garden of Life)- same with probiotics (New Chapter) and raw sauerkraut. I've always had a highly nutritious diet the only thing new is the meat- so maybe my body is just adjusting and trying to figure it all out????

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 07:52 PM

Hi Ryan thanks for the link- I suppose I didn't convey my concern accurately. I'm well aware of societal demands to be thin and the fact that we need good fat to be healthy and thrive. However I am concerned because my weight literally remains at a set point no matter how I eat/exercise (even on a 30 day juice fast!) My concern is that suddenly my body shape is literally morphing into one I do not recognize. I am wondering if this could be due to some hormonal shift or something like that due to suddenly consuming so much meat after 12 years veggie....or as you said healthy homeostasis???

1133603ea602c6824da56e8b596c9754

(614)

on July 10, 2012
at 07:51 PM

I am female but not petite and 5 pounds can definitely change how you look. It's about being comfortable in your skin and in your clothes. When I increased my fat intake last fall, I gained 5 pounds that I cannot seem to lose. I think eating the right fats is more important than adding extra fat.

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10 Answers

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0
C45d7e96acd83d3a6f58193dbc140e86

on July 10, 2012
at 07:52 PM

I agree that your body very well could have been slightly malnourished as a vegetarian, and that you have reached a more preferred homeostasis. As far as exercising more, it probably won't hurt, but without further info, can't say for sure. What was your weight before you gained 5 lbs?

4
D8612a7c536e74f9855b70d8e97919b5

(1042)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:56 PM

Maybe some of it is in your head. Even on a petite frame, I wouldn't think 5 pounds would totally change how you look.

Also, it could be you reaching a healthy homeostatis, which for women is a higher bodyfat percentage than media leads people to believe is healthy. Please read this great post from Melissa:

http://huntgatherlove.com/content/why-women-need-fat

1133603ea602c6824da56e8b596c9754

(614)

on July 10, 2012
at 07:51 PM

I am female but not petite and 5 pounds can definitely change how you look. It's about being comfortable in your skin and in your clothes. When I increased my fat intake last fall, I gained 5 pounds that I cannot seem to lose. I think eating the right fats is more important than adding extra fat.

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 07:52 PM

Hi Ryan thanks for the link- I suppose I didn't convey my concern accurately. I'm well aware of societal demands to be thin and the fact that we need good fat to be healthy and thrive. However I am concerned because my weight literally remains at a set point no matter how I eat/exercise (even on a 30 day juice fast!) My concern is that suddenly my body shape is literally morphing into one I do not recognize. I am wondering if this could be due to some hormonal shift or something like that due to suddenly consuming so much meat after 12 years veggie....or as you said healthy homeostasis???

2
8109fc078d6ff5ff05743d448c2d3849

on July 10, 2012
at 06:03 PM

As a previous vegetarian, there is a highly probable chance, that you were previously malnurished and what's happening now is that your body is allocating space to allow your frame to be able to process the nutrients that you have been missing all along, you will soon find that as you move around, excercise and eat right that your weight will normalize and you will feel great. One thing that can't be stressed enough is the fact that you should be eating a very carefully balanced Omega 3 to Omega 6 fat ratio, if anything I'd focus more on the Omega 3 fats like Salmon and Fish roe just to make sure you have a good amount of Omega 3 fats circulating thoughout your body, they are very critical in balancing your weight and mood. Another thing is you should be sure you have enough pro-biotics in your diet such as kimchi, sourkraut,yougurt, and kefir. I hope I was able to help, I've been Paleo since Thanksgiving, and it took me about a month before I felt comfortable eating this way but now I feel great and I have no regrets.

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:09 PM

Hi Josh, yes it does take a bit to get comfortable eating Paleo after being veg for so long. I have taken Omega 3s for years now and take a high quality fish oil currently (Garden of Life)- same with probiotics (New Chapter) and raw sauerkraut. I've always had a highly nutritious diet the only thing new is the meat- so maybe my body is just adjusting and trying to figure it all out????

2
Ca22738a3c3efc400a35c426dfab47a3

on July 10, 2012
at 06:03 PM

Paleo is not a weight loss diet. If someone comes from an unhealthy diet with loads of processed foods, then yes they loose weight, but if you were already a very clean eater, I wouldn't expect you to loose weight. You may be overdoing the calories or not exercising enough.

I'd be interested to know your approximate daily protein consumption before you started eating meat and after.

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:12 PM

I'm not trying to lose weight nor do I think of Paleo as a weight loss diet- I think of it as, hopefully, a health gaining diet. I've never counted calories, carbs, protein..so I'm not sure. I do know that prior to this I was eating whey protein in the morning, eggs and raw milk regularly as well as lentils.... but I am still eating those things, minus the lentils and plus the meat so think protein intake has definitely skyrocketed...

1
31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 10, 2012
at 06:40 PM

this happened to me too at first. it's really easy after being a vegetarian to be accustomed to volume eating, and the paleo diet isn't as easy to volume eat because it's so dense (and you don't need to!). try eating more vegetables and backing off added fats for a while to let your tummy adjust, if you think this might be your issue too!

E45c5a1c8df73da5e03bb6e7e90f8420

(644)

on July 10, 2012
at 08:11 PM

Hey Rebekah....Yes I think this could be it- I'm finding I just don't know how much to eat anymore- before it just seemed natural- so I may be over-eating meat and fat and not realizing it... I'm going to look into how to balance proportions..never had to think about it before!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 10, 2012
at 09:23 PM

totally normal! i was a raw vegan/fruititarian for a few months and i am still relearning satiety signals years later. hang in there!!!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 11, 2012
at 11:06 PM

also, i definitely gained weight switching to paleo. after eating years of "diet food" that is designed to trick our bodies into ignoring hunger, once i started eating real food, it has taken me a while to learn which foods worked for me. don't give up!

0
709babaa39d3f03ac6fe854b8123f6ff

on June 14, 2013
at 03:56 PM

I am also in the same situation. I'm gaining a lot of fat on my stomach which I know isn't healthy. It's gotten to the point where I am considering going back to a more conventional diet of calorie counting and keeping low carb but not necessarily eliminating grains and most fruit.

What is the average amount of time for a body to normalize to Paleo and to shed unhealthy fat? I am currently exercising at least 30 mins everyday with alternating days of running. (In the beginning few weeks of training up to running a half-marathon...) Also, how does everyone deal with the constant weird acidic taste in the mouth that comes with ketonic fat burning?

0
1c67bc28f4e44bbb8770b86df0463df3

on July 11, 2012
at 12:42 AM

You can most certainly gain weight, either fat OR muscle while eating Paleo. IMO, you should work out if you are concerned about your body shape, as only positive results would come from it. Plus, its great for the mind too.

0
3ab5e1b9eba22a071f653330b7fc9579

on July 10, 2012
at 10:05 PM

Also, you said low-grain, not no-grain, perhaps this contributes to you ganing weight as well because if you have enough calories from fat and protein your body will store the excess grain as fat. Of course the whole process is a bit more complicated than that, but you get the idea

-1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on July 10, 2012
at 06:13 PM

THERE ARE MANY SELF SERVING INTERNET SCAMMERS AT LARGE. THEY ARE LIARS MAKING A BUCK OF OF YOU. PROTECT YOURSELF. SCIENCE DOES NOT PROVE ANYTHING. BECOME SCIENTIFICALLY LITERATE. THE PALEOLITHIC DIET IS A HOAX.

STICK TO GENUINE SCIENTISTS

-4
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:52 PM

PALEO IS A SCAM. THIS IS ALL MONEY MAKING SCAM. STICK TO GENUINE SCIENTISTS.

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