A little background on me and on my nutritional journey first:
25, male, underweight, hard time meeting (large) daily calorie requirements, hard-gainer. I've had a fairly mediocre diet for most of my life: grain heavy, not a lot of meat, too much junk food and candy.
Diagnosed with Hashimoto's hypothyroid in the late 90s. Treated based on TSH values with Synthroid until 2010 when I switched to a naturopath. He added additional thyroid tests and tested for gluten anti-bodies (they weren't celiac-bad, but definitely intolerant). Switched to a Synthroid/Cytomel (synthetic T4/synthetic T3) regimen early in 2012 after worsening thyroid symptoms with big improvement.
Gluten-free in summer 2010, with various lapses (once-every-month-or-so beers until early 2011, "gluten-free" oats until end of 2011, etc.) and a lot of poor gluten-replacement food (Quinoa, rice, etc.) until about 5 months ago when I stumbled into Paleo (It Starts With Food). Gluten free generally improved most of my major digestive issues significantly, but many still remained.
My journey with Paleo began 5 month ago, and it's been a difficult one. Although I saw significant improvements in energy levels those didn't last long, and now I keep discovering new foods that cause me problems. Basically it's come down to leaky gut, autoimmune protocol. All grains, nightshades, nuts, seeds, eggs, vegetable oils (soy, etc) and dairy are now gone. Problem is, I have a difficult enough time keeping myself well-fed without having to remove nearly everything that's easy from my diet.
Because of this: I need suggestions for some easy, autoimmune protocol-compliant snack foods that I can obtain (or obtain the ingredients for) from the grocery store (or health food store).
Update (2012-11-27 19:54 EDT) - Thanks to everybody for the thoughtful replies. areyousuchadreamer's point about big, regular meals is a good one. My assumptions here about snacking being a good answer probably weren't so useful. To summarize the snacking options, though:
- Medjool dates, apples, beef sticks, tuna, sardines, bone broth, kombucha, and apple cider.
Update (2012-11-30 13:40 EDT) - Pre-making and freezing beef breakfast patties, a big pot of root vegetables, and keeping the crock pot filled up most of the time has really helped me get big, regular, non-irritating meals. Hooray for beef! Going to make some sort of veal sausage thing tonight to have ready to snack on during the weekend.
Update (2012-12-20 18:10 EDT) - Weight's down. 138 lbs to 132 lbs. Eating enough is harder than I'd expected. I guess one of the problems with eating nutritionally dense foods that help keep you from overeating is that those prone to undereating may eat even less. Lost a full inch off my waist.
Started tracking caloric intake a couple weeks ago and it seems like I was consistently deficit (1200-1800 calories). Doing marginally better since I've started tracking food intake (1600-2600).
asked byGeneralAntilles (66)
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on November 27, 2012
at 05:30 PM
Are you interested in eating snacks because you think it will help you gain weight? It sounds like you have a problem making sure you eat regular meals in general, and I don't know that snacking is going to be the solution to your problem. I would focus first on three big meals a day with adequate protein and a lot of fat. Your largest meal should be breakfast. Make some autoimmune protocol friendly sausages (easy - ground meat, salt, herbs), cook and freeze, and then heat a few up in a skillet along with a pile of veggies topped with a ton of coconut oil (I usually use 2-3 tablespoons). I have a post on my blog (autoimmune-paleo.com) with lots of breakfast ideas because I think it is one of the best ways to be successful on the autoimmune protocol :).
I have Hashis, have been on the protocol for about six months and also had a problem losing too much weight. I started eating a giant breakfast with tons of fat and I now have no problem, and don't need to snack. Snacking is difficult on this diet because the best foods to eat are not really snacky. That's why I think getting away from snacks and getting your nutrients at mealtimes might be better, especially if you have a hard time feeding yourself anyways.
If you are convinced snacking is the answer, maybe try things like coconut water, melting coconut oil and flakes with some honey and making little energy balls? I wouldn't focus on things like raw fruits and veggies, they will fill your belly but not make you gain weight!
Good luck, and I'd be interested to hear what works for you because you are not the only one with this problem.
on December 24, 2012
at 03:12 AM
I found out I'm gluten intolerant 4 years ago (maybe celiac?) and have made many changes to my diet, thinking I'm going to get better. I went to a paleo diet in January and despite some improvements, still had many health problems and cannot lose weight (opposite problem of you). I began working with a naturopath to get to the bottom of things, and got the results of an allergy food panel. The day of the appointment, I kept thinking "I'll be OK with anything else coming off the diet as long as it's not eggs." My jaw dropped when I saw the panel; gluten, grains, dairy, legumes (all expected), but egg whites, egg yolks, beef, avocado, nuts, green beans, raspberries, pineapple, peppers and a few other things I can't remember right now. These things have become the cornerstone of my diet! When I had to eliminate yogurt, cheese and grains I stuck fast to eggs for breakfast and snacks, and nuts and avocado for good fats/snacks. I kept my office at work stocked with Paleo Kits for emergencies. I enjoyed being able to use almond flour for paleo pancakes and breads, which I used in moderation. (I know it's not "strictly" paleo anyway, but I'm more interested in health and well being rather than legalism). I was drinking bone broth every day to heal my gut, mostly beef, but now I'm not sure if that's OK or if it's just beef meat that I need to avoid. I'm trying to wrap my head around this; I already spend SOOOOOO much time on food prep, I make nearly everything I eat from scratch, but my go-to snack and meal ideas will need to change a lot. And as far as eating out, it's nearly impossible to get anything quickly and out of the house that meets AI. I'll figure it out, but wow. Thank goodness for the interwebs, lots of good ideas here and elsewhere; and it's nice to know I'm not the only one going through this.
on November 26, 2012
at 11:02 PM
An avocado makes for a quick, slightly messy wholesome snack. Very autoimmune-friendly, in my experience. Sprinkle with sea salt and onion powder.
Or, make guacamole and use it as a dip for celery/carrot sticks. Crunch away!
on November 26, 2012
at 05:09 PM
i am following the autoimmune protocol and my main snack foods are medjool dates, apples, beef sticks, tuna, sardines, bone broth, kombucha, and apple cider.
i need to gain a good amount of weight, too, and it's been hard since i also have a leaky gut. still trying to repair it.
on November 26, 2012
at 03:07 PM
Hey bud I'm right there with you, I've started Paleo due to hashimotos, chronic hives, and chronic urticaria. I also have a problem gaining weight, but have a six pack and lean so I can't complain that much.
Do you juice? I make a drink with some cheap healthy ingredients, here's what it consist of:
Half cup of Simply apple, apple juice
Half a cucumber
About 3 leaves romain lettuce
Handful of celery
Big pinch of cilantro
A lemon or two worth of lemon juice
Like 3 or so ice cubes
It's actually not bad, you can adjust as needed for your taste.
What snack idea's do you currently have?
on September 16, 2013
at 12:36 PM
Texas210, I have chronic urticaria, 24 years now. I found a hives forum where a Taiwanese guy, Sam, suggested water therapy. I started it & my hives are 90% gone in only a week. DOSAGE: take your weight in pounds. Halve it. That's the number of ounces of PLAIN water to drink daily. Eg: if you weigh 100 pounds, then you drink 50 ounces daily. I drink a cup of water every hr for 12 hrs. It's free, safe, and it's working. Add salt to your water to avoid depleting your electrolytes. Also eliminate diuretic foods/drinks, eg tea and coffee. 1 cup of coffee removes 2 cups water from your cells.
on April 12, 2013
at 11:53 PM
Pumpkin seeds are calorie dense and don't fill you up like nuts do.
on April 12, 2013
at 05:32 PM
I'm looking for snacks too. Primarily for traveling and in between meals. While traveling, I might be in meetings with others who do not allow many breaks, so I'm always looking for things to carry along with me until it is time for a bigger meal. Any ideas would be awesome!