4

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2 weeks off-track...up 8 pounds and badly bloated. How to undo the damage?

Commented on August 29, 2017
Created December 25, 2011 at 2:44 PM

I started Paleo with a Whole 30 in March and just kept going. I would eat non-Paleo foods very occasionally, usually in the form of dairy or rice. In the past couple of weeks with all the holidays and having a week of very non-Paleo company to cook for, I have been off-track more than I have since before I started with some gluten-y holiday treats, probably some corn thrown in the processed stuff, and way too much sugar. When I have been home and able to control what's available, I've been eating Paleo, and would have expected maybe a 2-3 pound gain from what I have done. However, it seems like I am gaining a pound a day even though there is no way I am eating an additional 3500 calories a day. The scale is up 8 pounds from two weeks ago and my belly is so badly bloated that I look like I'm about 14 weeks pregnant. Two weeks ago, it was flatter than it has been since before I had my three kids and I was feeling pretty fantastic. I usually work out 5-6 days a week, but missed 5 days in a row while we had company. I've now worked out the last 4 days even though I really don't feel energetic enough to do it and my belly feels gross. My waist measurement is up 3 inches even with sucking in, and I am pretty sure I am constipated, so I started Miralax yesterday to relieve some pressure and get things moving.

My questions are: 1. Do any of you have trouble like this when you go off Paleo for a bit? 2. What would you suspect to be causing it? Does any one type of food in particular cause it? 3. How do I undo this mess I've gotten into? The bloating is miserable and I want it gone ASAP. Are there any remedies or best foods to help alleviate it? I know I will have to work to get pounds off again. Those 8 pounds have taken me 6 months to lose, so I am not happy at all about seeing them again.

Thanks for your help, especially on Christmas...I really wish I didn't feel so gross today.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:29 PM

yes! looking at your lifetime instead of your immediate struggles helps me so much. i am currently at this stage of fitness, but i dont have to be for my life.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:26 PM

for me, sugar (not fruit, but the "real stuff" like in pudding, gf cookies, lemonade, etc) = water weight gain. my wedding ring gets tight, etc.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:25 PM

might be something in the rub? or in conventionally raised chickens?

0382fa263de4c83328dc34a56e25437f

(4238)

on December 26, 2011
at 03:07 AM

I second the water kefir -- I also do no-caffiene kombucha at home and it's a real lifesaver. I find plain water difficult to drink in winter but I force down a good daily amount, warmish with some lemon squeezed in.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 09:21 PM

Since this is Christmas day, I had some home-made eggnog this morning and, as Stabby said, I HAVE NO REGRETS!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 09:21 PM

:-)) If you've read more than 2 of my comments, you'll have heard that I make water kefir. Others are probably wishing I'd shut up about it, but in fact that beverage happens to turn off my cravings for food. So I have coffee in the morning, water kefir in the afternoon and water any other time I'm thirsty/hungry.

1a65db77c3445729d54bc97cfe1555af

(205)

on December 25, 2011
at 07:11 PM

I am not very low carb as I really, really love fruits, but I definitely have had a lot more sweets than normal, so that could be part of the problem.

1a65db77c3445729d54bc97cfe1555af

(205)

on December 25, 2011
at 07:11 PM

Thanks Nance. What beverages do you do when you're fasting? I appreciate the advice. I wish I were done with being faced with SAD foods, but tomorrow I leave for a week with my extended family and will be the only Paleo person in the group, so it will be a bit tough. I think I am almost glad I feel so bad right now because I will be less tempted to cheat. All I want to do right now is end the bloating. Ugh.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on December 25, 2011
at 05:20 PM

I associate all over itching with increased PUFAs like eating lots of roasted chicken. I crave roast bird a couple of times a month and notice the itching start about 4 hours later. Anyone else?

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:55 PM

I think you know how to undo this.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:46 PM

Me either, not any more. It was one thing when it was bloating, etc., but this week the intense itching all over my body was scary! I'll cheat with ice cream on future holidays.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:45 PM

That's the attitude! Now, if you've been splurging for more than a few days you may have picked up a few pounds of body mass rather than just GI contents, but when I did that in August it only took 3-4 weeks of healthy eating and the extra mass was gone again. 1-2 months can have consequences but they are temporary.

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10 Answers

7
96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 03:50 PM

Hey, as JizGrrl said, this is good news!

It means your body liked the ancestral foods you were eating and it's mad as hell at the junk you've been splurging with. I did that too, last August. Take a deep breath, relax and consider this recent quote by Dr. Jack Kruse aka The Quilt, "No one can go back and start a new beginning at life, but any one of us can start today and make a new ending to our life."

Start today (or tomorrow, perhaps, as today is Christmas and you may have social activities today) and begin your morning in a way that signals you are "going home" to ancestral eating: a first meal of fatty meat OR even a day-fast which is what I'm doing today. I'll enjoy beverages but no food and my system will love it.

Within 2-3 days you should feel much better. Over the next week, much or all of the bloating will work its way out and your measurements should be nearly as they were. This is only a burp in your progress.

Learn my new habit of looking at SAD foods as if they are plaster figurines on display--you wouldn't eat a plaster figurine, would you? Nutrition-wise, how different are SAD foods and plaster?

12267c5a891881dfd23013e0b71cd24d

(0)

on March 01, 2016
at 01:15 PM

This is great advice, and I need it right now.  I have put back on 8 pounds over the last year that I lost with to many cheat days.  It is NOT worth it.  Those few seconds of pleasure turns into pain and hell and my body is not happy.  I just got on scale to find after a few cheats of wheat and sugar I have gained 5 pounds.. I am only 126 pounds so its very noticable. I am not happy with msyelf.  WHY do I do this. Your advice spoke to me.

1a65db77c3445729d54bc97cfe1555af

(205)

on December 25, 2011
at 07:11 PM

Thanks Nance. What beverages do you do when you're fasting? I appreciate the advice. I wish I were done with being faced with SAD foods, but tomorrow I leave for a week with my extended family and will be the only Paleo person in the group, so it will be a bit tough. I think I am almost glad I feel so bad right now because I will be less tempted to cheat. All I want to do right now is end the bloating. Ugh.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 09:21 PM

Since this is Christmas day, I had some home-made eggnog this morning and, as Stabby said, I HAVE NO REGRETS!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 09:21 PM

:-)) If you've read more than 2 of my comments, you'll have heard that I make water kefir. Others are probably wishing I'd shut up about it, but in fact that beverage happens to turn off my cravings for food. So I have coffee in the morning, water kefir in the afternoon and water any other time I'm thirsty/hungry.

0382fa263de4c83328dc34a56e25437f

(4238)

on December 26, 2011
at 03:07 AM

I second the water kefir -- I also do no-caffiene kombucha at home and it's a real lifesaver. I find plain water difficult to drink in winter but I force down a good daily amount, warmish with some lemon squeezed in.

6
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on December 25, 2011
at 03:47 PM

Gluten will do this. Not a great idea to keep irritating your gut lining, anyway. Go on a meat/egg only diet for a few days, drink a lot of water, add in some Magnesium Citrate and you should drop that water weight quickly.

I don't cheat with gluten anymore. Not worth it.

12267c5a891881dfd23013e0b71cd24d

(0)

on March 01, 2016
at 01:11 PM

You are so right.  Sugar is bad, really bad with me.  But when I eat wheat with sugar its horribe, the worst. I ALWAYS gain about 4-5 pounds even just from a few cheats.  Its insane.  I have no idea what wheat really is, but its not food, not to my body. Not the modern wheat we have now adays.  I dont understand why I would ever do it again, It takes me 1 month to loose the weight I gain from a few nights of cheating. People dont believe me but its true.  I really do gain real weight from eating wheat and sugar. I think my body takes it and stores it right away because it hates it!  

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on December 25, 2011
at 05:20 PM

I associate all over itching with increased PUFAs like eating lots of roasted chicken. I crave roast bird a couple of times a month and notice the itching start about 4 hours later. Anyone else?

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:46 PM

Me either, not any more. It was one thing when it was bloating, etc., but this week the intense itching all over my body was scary! I'll cheat with ice cream on future holidays.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:25 PM

might be something in the rub? or in conventionally raised chickens?

4
Medium avatar

on December 25, 2011
at 04:47 PM

Off track? The solution is to get back on track. As for "undoing" the damage, forget about what you ate yesterday that you wish you hadn't. A rear-view mirror is really useless in this context. The way to eat right today and tomorrow is to plan your menus now, for today and tomorrow. "We make the path by walking."

3
Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:55 PM

If you were eating a generally low carbohydrate diet while following a Paleo protocol, it's quite likely that simply the addition of large quantities of carbs has replenished glycogen. As others mentioned, return to your standard diet and you should achieve homeostasis in a few days.

1a65db77c3445729d54bc97cfe1555af

(205)

on December 25, 2011
at 07:11 PM

I am not very low carb as I really, really love fruits, but I definitely have had a lot more sweets than normal, so that could be part of the problem.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:26 PM

for me, sugar (not fruit, but the "real stuff" like in pudding, gf cookies, lemonade, etc) = water weight gain. my wedding ring gets tight, etc.

3
D5a4ff096a452a84a772efa0e6bc626e

(2486)

on December 25, 2011
at 03:46 PM

The good news is the extra weight and bloating will only take about a week to be gone completely once you're eating clean again. I'm willing to bet good money that the largest problem in all you consumed is the gluten- a gluten molecule wants many water molecule buddies = bloat. If you want to speed up the de-bloating process, I find probiotics (yogurt, kefir) to help, along with staying well hydrated and getting some exercise to move things along.

In the future, try to cheat with only one of the three culprits (sugar, gluten, o-6) at a time. Pay attention to how each changes your baseline health, so you'll be more in control of your cheats. I can manage a fair amount of sugar (I'm fairly active), but too much omega-6 makes me lethargic and crave-y, and gluten messes up everything from my head to my toes, especially the stuff in the middle.

3
4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on December 25, 2011
at 03:40 PM

It's unlikely that you just added 8 pounds of fat in 2 weeks unless you were really gorging. More likely it's mostly water weight that will work itself off quickly if you go back to eating whatever you were eating before the holiday binge.

1
492ebe6681773ef79417d27445d441b7

(30)

on December 26, 2011
at 02:15 AM

Your body responds to whatever you consume. Do appropriately as per your body's direction(desire plus response, along with your sensitive awareness to cause and effect, and do accordingly). Quantity is a factor also. Quality, or more importantly (related), how the food is prepared can be another factor. Don't over eat, - which allows your body to keep its strongest digestive fire, so to speak. In sum: be in tune, get in tune, be inspired(....what inspires you)? Success through effort depends on inspiration often times. Have physical body inspirations that depend on your body's performance ability. Your body's performance ability depends on what it consumes, the quantities, frequencies, and condition/qualities, among other things in ones life.

1
41e79168f1df5d656b6c4f3fef8c9b46

(630)

on December 25, 2011
at 03:55 PM

AHHHH! gluten absorbs water! thats great that once i'm done being a fool i can go back to what I was!! I think I gained 10 in 1-2 months. Seriously since the office cookie trays and lunches started I have been a mess. I'm a sucker for italian cookies! Craving sweets not the bread and pasta though! always like that. Good luck and after today I'm back to my normal self! I should be caged though right now!!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on December 25, 2011
at 04:45 PM

That's the attitude! Now, if you've been splurging for more than a few days you may have picked up a few pounds of body mass rather than just GI contents, but when I did that in August it only took 3-4 weeks of healthy eating and the extra mass was gone again. 1-2 months can have consequences but they are temporary.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on June 04, 2012
at 12:29 PM

yes! looking at your lifetime instead of your immediate struggles helps me so much. i am currently at this stage of fitness, but i dont have to be for my life.

1
D3a53502b746c52da462eca805ba19cf

on December 25, 2011
at 03:36 PM

I am going through this right now. I just started primal about 2 months ago and was down 10 pounds. Over the past 2 weeks I have really introduced a lot of junk back into my diet and my stomach is upset, I am bloated beyond belief and in general I just feel bad. It has been a good learning experience because I know what sets me off pretty badly. I have to give up beer completely. Beer started this downward spiral. Just sticking to veggies and protein over the last day and a half has helped with the bloating. So has keeping an eye on my hydration.

0
12267c5a891881dfd23013e0b71cd24d

on September 07, 2016
at 01:08 PM

I just got back from a 5 day holiday, I was good and did not eat any white sugar or gluten, but did eat a lot of potoaes and one night a lot of sugar free jellow shots and I ALSO gained 4 pounds in 5 days!  Its crazy how our body reacts to high carbs in general.  Its weight I CAN see to, I know people say its water, but I dont care WHAT it is, it does look bad and makes me clothes tight.  I guess I am realizing I cannot go off at all more than 1 day a week, ever or I should expect weight gain.

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