4

votes

Ex-Vegans! What are your experiences to these ideas?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created April 12, 2011 at 6:10 PM

Hej Folks,

i just got a newsletter from frederic patenaude. He is a raw vegan advocate, with focus on a low fat diet. So in the whole thing different than paleo. I dont wanna bash anyone or any diet. More this is a text, or some ideas of someone to give a opportunity to learn some new things.

http://www.fredericpatenaude.com/blog/?p=1878

He explains some reasons, which he heard from Ex vegans who went on a meat diet. Again this is a opportunity to learn something. ITs not about bashing any idea or any style or anybody!

Im very interested on your responds. im sure people can learn from our knowledge. and new interpretations of Frederics view.

Low Sex Drive

This symptom is not common, but happens to some men who go raw. Most vegan men don???t complain about low sex drive. In my opinion, that???s mostly limited to men who follow a fat-free diet (with no overt fats), undereat calories, and exercise too much and too often. This is completely preventable.

Lack of Energy

I???ve met a lot of ???tired vegans,??? and I used to be one of them, although I experienced this symptom on a high-fat, raw vegan diet. People complained about feeling exhausted and needing to have frequent naps to recover.

In vegans, I attribute this mostly to the overconsumption of grains (especially refined grains and flower-based products) and oils, under consumption of fruit and underconsumption of total calories.

In raw vegans, it???s caused by a high-fat diet and the underconsumption of fruit or a calorie restrictive diet.

Lack of Stamina

Many ex-vegans report that when they were on a vegan diet, often after a few years, they lost stamina to exercise. For example, in the past they could work out for 60 minutes on the treadmill, and before they broke their vegan diet, they were finding it hard to do more than 20 minutes, and often needed all day to recover.

I would attribute this in most cases to the same causes for lack of energy, but also possibly to a vitamin B12 deficiency.

Constantly Hungry

This symptom is common in vegans but even worse in raw foodists. It???s easily explained by the fact that plant foods are not as calorie-dense as animal foods, and also carbohydrates don???t satiate as much as protein-based foods.

Vegans and raw foodists need to eat more, but also fill their sweet tooth with fruit, which tends to eliminate most of the cravings by providing the simple carbohydrates the body desperately needs.

Hair Falling Out

This is a symptom that tends to happen mostly to raw vegan women who go on a very low fat diet or tend to drop weight rapidly. To avoid this issue, I would encourage an increased consumption of omega-3 rich foods such as flax, walnuts and hemp seeds, even if this brings you above 15% fat. Lower the fat content in the diet progressively, not overnight.

Depression

This is probably the most common extreme symptom that vegans experience that lead them to change their diets. As we???ll see below, it could simply be caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency.

Ice Cold Extremities

Some vegans and many raw foodists experience cold feet and end and often attribute it to poorer circulation on this diet. I don???t know that it???s the case, but I???ve found that as long as I exercise daily, my body stays very warm (ask my wife if you want proof!)

Vitamin B12 Deficiency

This deficiency is common in long-term vegans, but also common in the meat-eating population.

Besides severe nervous system degeneration problems, a B12 deficiency can cause fatigue, depression and ???brain fog,??? which could explain many of the failures of the ex-vegans who tend to feel instantly better when they start eating meat again.

A good supplement is the best way to prevent a B12 deficiency, but perhaps some individuals cannot absorb the supplement optimally and therefore feel the best results when they get their B12 from animal foods.

Eggs and dairy products are generally a poor source of B12, which would explain why the ex-vegans feel so much better when they start eating meat or fish again (just a few ounces of fish provides enough B12 for about two days). (NOTE: I recommend the B12 supplement over animal-source B12).

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on November 06, 2012
at 02:15 PM

Yes, thankgod for meat! And fat, Oh how I love thee!!

7bab99c303f1e83d3d9722a414dd7b45

(524)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:39 AM

I was an ethical vegan... I now eat meat, but can only stomach it if it's wild, or humanely raised grass fed happy meat. Same with eggs. Fish must be wild... I agree, information and education for ways to eat non-vegan that still feel ethical would be a great start.

7bab99c303f1e83d3d9722a414dd7b45

(524)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:37 AM

I have a similar experience, getting sucked into the fruitarian magic from regular raw vegan. My anxiety and moodiness and energy fluctuations were turning me into a shut-in unable to function in life too... the first night I ate meat I felt like I was on cloud 9

32d2f8a41a121608d07aa68aa17991c7

(597)

on April 04, 2012
at 09:05 PM

I'm a bad person, but +1.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6092)

on April 04, 2012
at 02:14 PM

This guy has made assertions. Assertions are not by default, "true". He needs to cite research demonstrating the effectiveness of these claims in order to prove his assertions. Otherwise, you're just trusting him based on his guru status.

78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

(5519)

on April 04, 2012
at 12:59 PM

Vegans don't even eat dairy or eggs, so I don't know how that comment about those products even makes sense here.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 04, 2012
at 06:55 AM

Cool, ilaeira! What do you eat in a day? Do you take any supplements?

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on January 09, 2012
at 02:12 PM

The six months I was vegan were pure horror.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on January 09, 2012
at 02:12 PM

I had ALL those symptoms :D, though I did have lots of energy if I ate a bowl of fruit. The only problem was that that energy lasted for less than an hour, after that I almost fainted or I became extremely mad for no reason.

A03f0d03067a43c61786481d91e5d3a0

(1078)

on January 09, 2012
at 11:39 AM

Frederic looks like a mannequin.

Bc6aa0b0bcf04c9d937c4393262db8e5

on April 16, 2011
at 02:03 PM

Just doing more research... went vegan/vegetarian for ethical reasons not for personal health. Robb Wolf's book really turned me around, and constant research and readings of De Vany, Cordain, Taubes and Eades has really solidified the change. :) \

Medium avatar

(5639)

on April 14, 2011
at 04:49 PM

his diet sounds really boring, and really artificial with all those industrially made supplements. do you see the faulty logic? he's saving himself from being a "sick vegan"...wait for it...by NOT being a vegan!

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 13, 2011
at 08:42 PM

He was vegan for a couple years but added back in animal products for awhile now he's back for only a couple weeks so far. He's not entirley vegan though as he eats the liver pills but I don't think thats saving him from becoming a horribly sick vegan :P

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 13, 2011
at 08:41 PM

@kim if your ravenous after eating potatoes or fruit that indicates a blood sugar problem. Potatoes have been rated as one of the most satiating foods.

F040035b2008ec80b205481afbd39ad4

(1837)

on April 13, 2011
at 07:46 PM

You have to wonder how good LFRV is if it is so damn hard to get right. And from reading that guy's blog, it looks like a lot of people get it wrong with pretty severe consequences. In contrast, bare-bones paleo is so simple you really cannot fuck it up: "Eat a lot of animal (including offal and use the bones for broth). Add some seasonal vegetables. Eat until full. Do this once or twice a day."

A2fe5bbd09c7804fd321e9e9a9f9d199

(1614)

on April 13, 2011
at 05:20 PM

how is Vitamin B12 deficiency common among a meat-eating population? not eating enough meat?

B4ec9ce369e43ea83f06ee645169cee0

on April 13, 2011
at 05:12 PM

I'm surprised he's not hungry all of the time eating fruit and potatoes, those make me ravenous!

A2fe5bbd09c7804fd321e9e9a9f9d199

(1614)

on April 13, 2011
at 05:12 PM

"My brother has started eating primarily vegan and he blast harder then probably 99% of the people who post here" Well, doesn't that mean his performance and well being is still working from a more meat eating foundation at this point? It will take some time to really see how one does on a vegan diet, no?

B4ec9ce369e43ea83f06ee645169cee0

on April 13, 2011
at 05:10 PM

it's lucky that you became reformed without having those symptoms! :) If you didn't feel bad, what brought you over to the animal side?

F040035b2008ec80b205481afbd39ad4

(1837)

on April 13, 2011
at 05:06 PM

How long has he been vegan for?

E2b9c679315c7c9c7265783dde89f350

(1303)

on April 13, 2011
at 03:15 AM

I never went raw vegan, but I did experiment with vegan meals and days. Lots of soy- I went more or less insane and it took 6 months to get over the worst of the panic attacks and anxiety attacks. Urgh. Soy = evil I actually thought I was detoxing and couldn't handle the detox! Oy.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on April 12, 2011
at 06:44 PM

That's enough reasons right there not to go raw vegan!

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on April 12, 2011
at 06:39 PM

It truly amazes me how many uneducated people post as health educators.

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15 Answers

7
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on April 13, 2011
at 12:49 PM

I had a lot of these symptoms. His solutions for them are idiotic though. Geez, if only some pathetic little flax and hemp seeds could have saved me! I was already eating those things + B12 supplements and they did nothing.

F040035b2008ec80b205481afbd39ad4

(1837)

on April 13, 2011
at 07:46 PM

You have to wonder how good LFRV is if it is so damn hard to get right. And from reading that guy's blog, it looks like a lot of people get it wrong with pretty severe consequences. In contrast, bare-bones paleo is so simple you really cannot fuck it up: "Eat a lot of animal (including offal and use the bones for broth). Add some seasonal vegetables. Eat until full. Do this once or twice a day."

6
Medium avatar

(2301)

on January 09, 2012
at 03:12 AM

I don't know about you, but I'm okay with vegan bashing.

32d2f8a41a121608d07aa68aa17991c7

(597)

on April 04, 2012
at 09:05 PM

I'm a bad person, but +1.

6
F040035b2008ec80b205481afbd39ad4

on April 13, 2011
at 01:44 PM

"Im very interested on your responds. im sure people can learn from our knowledge. and new interpretations of Frederics view."

I took the liberty of exploring some of frederic patenaude's other posts. One was titled "Are Humans Supposed to Eat Meat". Now Frederic is into raw veganism, and in this post he talks about nutrition and the evolution of the brain;

"As for the growth of the human brain, to me it???s completely ludicrous that this came from eating meat. The researchers who came up with that are lost in their own wonderland of romantic thinking about the strong hunter-gatherers and cave-men who dragged their female partners by the hair to their caves, and from whom we supposedly evolved. Come on! Just look at the model in nature. The most intelligent of all apes are the ones that eat the most fruit. Bonobos are the most intelligent of all the great apes and they???re the one eating the most fruit and the least animal products. It seems to me more obvious that fruit eating is has a direct relationship with intelligence in animal species, rather than meat eating. After all, the carnivores are not necessarily the smartest creatures around, compared to the smart frugivores. Think about it: an orangutan most have knowledge of over 150 species of fruit and plants to survive. It not only knows which fruit are in season, but can precisely time its eating patterns to specific trees in a rather large area where it lives. As one fruit tree goes out of season in one area, it knows that another variety somewhere else far away is about to go into season. And that without calendars! To me being a frugivore in nature requires a lot more intelligence than hunting for meat. And that???s why I think our brain evolved."

At the very least it would appear that the growth of the human brain necessitated nutrient and energy dense foods which allowed our gut to shrink and our brain to grow (check out Kleiber's Law). Brains consume lots of fuel and give off a lot of heat for their size (the brain has a metabolic rate nearly 10 times that of the average of the rest of the body).

You would be hard pressed to forage in the wild for plant-based foods that would constitute a nutritionally complete diet. With meat eating (particularly larger animals), you can easily enjoy an energy dense and nutritionally complete meal. The other possibility to increase the energy yield from plant foods is from cooking it.

As this guy is in to raw foods and veganism, he would fail on both counts; of foraging a nutritionally complete diet, and, getting enough energy from raw food to fuel a large brain.

Humans are actually the most intelligent of the great apes and if fruitarianism favourably fuelled intellectual capacity then the tree of life would look a lot different. He seems to confuse basic foraging of the orangutan with temporally-tuned intelligence. Foraging begs the simple question 'can I eat it'.

Hunting another animal, especially one that is dangerous, agile, that might live in an environment hostile to humans (think of the problems in hunting whales or birds), that might follow large migratory paths - that requires a much more complex analysis of the situation and one that is changing all the time as the animal tries to evade predation.

Frederic's grasp of biology and anthropology is appalling. I'd try to put together a more comprehensive answer above, but Frederic is just plain wrong on so many points that this could be a whole essay in itself!

Frederic is lucky that his insular, middle class life affords him a the choice to be vegan. If he had to live by his wits, he'd eat meat within a few months - sooner if it was winter. I'd hate to think of his carbon footprint in eating fruit year round.

EDIT: "Think about it: an orangutan most have knowledge of over 150 species of fruit and plants to survive." From New Scientist "When fruit is scarce, try chomping on a slow loris. That seems to be the strategy adopted by the normally vegetarian orang-utans, which have been spotted knocking the small primates out of trees and killing them with a bite to the head.". There's nothing like science to screw the veg*an delusion!

EDIT2: For those unaware of just how damn cute the Slow Loris actually is, check out these photos (without muttering under your breath "Bad orang-utan, bad orang-utan...").

5
242b6f51761717721115fd464834456b

(160)

on January 09, 2012
at 01:17 AM

I was a vegan for about 5 years, and was constantly sick. I caught every lurgy that went around and last year decided enough was enough. I had massive cravings for savoury things which I appeased with soy sauce and tofu.

My body almost shut down from being a vegan. I was hospitalised when my haemoglobin dropped to 78 (should be 125-185) which meant three blood packs to be brought back up to normal. I also lost a lot of hair, had terrible skin, lost my periods and had such bad circulation that if I crossed my legs, my legs got pins and needles and went to sleep. Despite being exhausted, I could never sleep more than two hours straight. It was hell.

Eventually, I decided that I couldn't deny my biology and the savoury cravings would pass if I ate some meat. I started off with fish and couldn't believe how satisfied I felt. It was like the marrow of my bones was being nourished.

I've been paleo for three months now and the change of eating meat has been alot to adjust to. There have been a few teething problems, I think I have also experienced symptoms of the "low carb flu" because I have some real troughs in energy around three o'clock. I also had some digestive adjustments and wild days of feeling crazy and euphoric!!! But aside from that, I think the paleo way makes sense and I enjoy feeling much better than I did as a vegan!

4
2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

on April 04, 2012
at 11:03 AM

I was a vegan-raw vegan and finally a fruitarian after all the magical preaching on 30 Banans a Day. Extreme anxiety, became a shut in. If it weren't for Paleo I think it might of killed me.

7bab99c303f1e83d3d9722a414dd7b45

(524)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:37 AM

I have a similar experience, getting sucked into the fruitarian magic from regular raw vegan. My anxiety and moodiness and energy fluctuations were turning me into a shut-in unable to function in life too... the first night I ate meat I felt like I was on cloud 9

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on November 06, 2012
at 02:15 PM

Yes, thankgod for meat! And fat, Oh how I love thee!!

3
Medium avatar

on April 13, 2011
at 05:40 AM

I have never been vegan or vegetarian. This is purely anecdotal, but my first introduction to veganism was through a girl I was in choir with at 12 years of age. She was sickly, pale, weak, anemic, preachy and this might sound kind of mean, but pretty dim. Poor girl. It definitely had an impact on me.

I particularly like this response on the blog:

Tussock says:
April 12, 2011 at 5:18 pm
Fred, I have been an avid reader of yours. You make sense. On paper. But I don???t think any one diet is the right one for everyone anymore. I am chronically so ill I know if I don???t turn things around I???m heading for an early grave. I have gone raw vegan, I have juice feasted and every other way of getting mega nutrients from raw vegan. I got more ill. Every time, without fail. I read the book Eat Fat, Lose fat, started inplementing the ???health recovery??? principles, and oafter 2 weeks I have more hope than I have had in many years. I feel healthier, stronger and I can weep for being able to say this, I have more energy. Much of this is due to the fermented cod liver oil which I take religiously every day. My body craves it. I hope you publish this. It may very well help someone who has no hope???

3
1d952d225819b0229e93160a90bf9bf8

on April 13, 2011
at 02:43 AM

I had all these too, plus the soy I was eating made me CRAZY.I became a paranoid shut in.

E2b9c679315c7c9c7265783dde89f350

(1303)

on April 13, 2011
at 03:15 AM

I never went raw vegan, but I did experiment with vegan meals and days. Lots of soy- I went more or less insane and it took 6 months to get over the worst of the panic attacks and anxiety attacks. Urgh. Soy = evil I actually thought I was detoxing and couldn't handle the detox! Oy.

3
F6019c693fc981657b1efa602298bc2d

(429)

on April 12, 2011
at 11:54 PM

i experienced all of those issues while on a vegan diet. i ate about 60-75% raw food. thought i was doing the body good.... hahaha wrong indeed. i supplimented with a multi and b-complex and still felt like poo.

2
78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

on April 04, 2012
at 12:57 PM

I think that some people CAN be healthy as a vegan. But it does take a lot of careful planning and the willingness to pay more attention to what you're eating than the average person. It's harder to eat with abandon, but there are people who are vegan who are physically healthy and fit. Sure, there are "weak and sick" vegans, but there are also vegan body builders and athletes who are strong. If you look at the article objectively, you'll see that the criticism lie within grain consumption, low protein, and low-calorie intake, rather than veganism itself. Eating meat does not automatically make you healthy...lots of paleos on this board post all the time about health issues of concern.

I also think that giving vegans a bunch of facts about health is not enough to "convert" them. It's just like telling someone on a SAD, "You know, eating that much bread is not healthy. You're going to end up all sickly and fat." That probably won't accomplish anything. People who smoke pretty much KNOW it is unhealthy...facts are only part of the solution. You have to give them the tools to make a very big change.

Education is only part of it. Many times, vegans become vegans for the purpose of animal welfare, environmental impact and NOT because of trying to lose weight or live until 38292 years of age. In order to "convince" a vegan to consume animal products, any sort of education has to address those issues as well. Maybe providing sources of humanely raised meat, facts about fish in the environment (sardines are quick to reproduce and OVERpopulation is an issue influencing ocean life) would be a good start.

7bab99c303f1e83d3d9722a414dd7b45

(524)

on November 05, 2012
at 02:39 AM

I was an ethical vegan... I now eat meat, but can only stomach it if it's wild, or humanely raised grass fed happy meat. Same with eggs. Fish must be wild... I agree, information and education for ways to eat non-vegan that still feel ethical would be a great start.

2
Bc6aa0b0bcf04c9d937c4393262db8e5

on April 13, 2011
at 12:21 PM

I was a vegan for 12 months, vegetarian for two years in addition. I did not notice any of these exeperiences. Good for me I guess.

B4ec9ce369e43ea83f06ee645169cee0

on April 13, 2011
at 05:10 PM

it's lucky that you became reformed without having those symptoms! :) If you didn't feel bad, what brought you over to the animal side?

Bc6aa0b0bcf04c9d937c4393262db8e5

on April 16, 2011
at 02:03 PM

Just doing more research... went vegan/vegetarian for ethical reasons not for personal health. Robb Wolf's book really turned me around, and constant research and readings of De Vany, Cordain, Taubes and Eades has really solidified the change. :) \

1
3e762aadbc84870b6ec7277fe32c7b84

(95)

on May 16, 2013
at 09:01 PM

Frederic Patenaude is no longer eating exclusively raw nor vegan. Same with Kristen Suzanne.

Funny how the raw vegan gurus are now eating their own words!

1
0266737ea1782946902fd3f8e60fa0b9

(2504)

on April 05, 2012
at 12:31 AM

Agreeing a lot with Sunny Beaches. I don't love meat, both for taste and ethical reasons, but I believe that for my body (n=1) there are some nutrients that are just a lot easier to get from adding meat to a very vegetable rich diet.

Truly, a healthy vegetarian diet, rich in a wide variety of vegetables, and a healthy paleo diet, rich in a wide variety of vegetables (+ meat) have a lot in common. I genuinely don't understand the animosity between the two groups.

1
Bdc6244bdbd664d2168a8e326018ffbe

(431)

on April 04, 2012
at 07:39 PM

I was a vegan for about a year (except for a few months in which I ate some Fage), and had none of these issues. Well, depression, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't related.

1
929a31b843546eea6635117415d34784

on April 04, 2012
at 06:36 AM

I was a vegetarian for 25 years and after that I switched to vegan. I am a vegan 1,5 years now. In the 25 years of vegetarianism, I had a one-year meat eating break, because I was "convinced" that it would be healthier, but to be honest I felt no difference at all. I was neither healthier nor more energetic or less hungry. So I followed my conscience and switched back to being vegetarian. I haven't experienced any of the problems described. On the contrary, since I became vegan, my blood tests are even better, probably because I eat many more things than I when I was a vegetarian -to be more precise, I literally was a cheese eater. Furthermore, my skin colour is healthy and I feel much better than ever.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on April 04, 2012
at 06:55 AM

Cool, ilaeira! What do you eat in a day? Do you take any supplements?

-2
E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 13, 2011
at 01:11 PM

No offense to anyone but if you couldn't hack it as a vegan you didn't do it right, plain and simple(I Know I'm gonna get flamed for stating that). Being vegan with supplements is easy and sustainable with the right diet plan. My brother has started eating primarily vegan and he blast harder then probably 99% of the people who post here, I pretty much follow the same regimen but opt for butter over coconut oil. He isn't 100% because he eats liver pills but he could easily replace these with b12 supps and nothing would probably change.

Basically he eats a ton of potatoes(5lbs+) some orange juice(8 cups), coconut oil to taste (probably 8-10tbs) and he supplements with mentrenone(k2), zinc, creatine, choline, selenium and liver pills.

The vegan diet only works if you base it around tropical fruits or tubers and make sure to get all nutrients, in my experience. Eating a ton of nuts or seeds will make you fail on any diet.

Does this mean you should go vegan? Not unless you want too, there really isn't too many benefits over his diet and say the same diet but with whole organs, bone broth and some meat. We just don't have the resources or no how to implement those foods currently and what we do is pretty similar in my book. He also has never really been into meat,

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 13, 2011
at 08:42 PM

He was vegan for a couple years but added back in animal products for awhile now he's back for only a couple weeks so far. He's not entirley vegan though as he eats the liver pills but I don't think thats saving him from becoming a horribly sick vegan :P

F040035b2008ec80b205481afbd39ad4

(1837)

on April 13, 2011
at 05:06 PM

How long has he been vegan for?

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on April 13, 2011
at 08:41 PM

@kim if your ravenous after eating potatoes or fruit that indicates a blood sugar problem. Potatoes have been rated as one of the most satiating foods.

A2fe5bbd09c7804fd321e9e9a9f9d199

(1614)

on April 13, 2011
at 05:12 PM

"My brother has started eating primarily vegan and he blast harder then probably 99% of the people who post here" Well, doesn't that mean his performance and well being is still working from a more meat eating foundation at this point? It will take some time to really see how one does on a vegan diet, no?

Medium avatar

(5639)

on April 14, 2011
at 04:49 PM

his diet sounds really boring, and really artificial with all those industrially made supplements. do you see the faulty logic? he's saving himself from being a "sick vegan"...wait for it...by NOT being a vegan!

B4ec9ce369e43ea83f06ee645169cee0

on April 13, 2011
at 05:12 PM

I'm surprised he's not hungry all of the time eating fruit and potatoes, those make me ravenous!

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