Facts: 5 weeks on Paleo (true Paleo, dabbled a bit for a week or two prior) did crossfit for one month 5 days a week, had to take a break for schedules and travel, back into it 3 days a week, 2 weeks now. My days off with no crossfit are filled with dog walks, hard yard work, and I do I yoga one day a week. I have an autoimmune disease, kept pretty at bay most days. I have asthma I have allergies I used to have severe heartburn/GERD but it has been nonexistent for the last 3-4 years I am 5'5" and 123.2 pounds and a size 6. I very much prefer myself at about 117-118 and a size 4 (always achievable under my normal calorie dieting, and maintainable for fairly long periods; working out is not new to me, but weight lifting and endurance is)
Pros: Energy level up No afternoon crashes Asthma feels better, very little difficulty getting through the workouts I feel healthier in terms of energy I had a mild autoimmune flare up last week and I was still able to get through the exhaustion, something I don't think I would have been able to do prior
Cons: I have had to add probiotics - I cannot get regular - it's not helping. I can only relieve this about once every 3 days, no matter how much water or probiotics I take. My heartburn has returned - pretty badly. It kinda feels like my gall bladder is acting up too. After I eat anything too high in fat: chicken skin, coconut oil, avocado, I hurt. I keep gaining weight. I started at 125, went to 120, and steadily continue to gain a pound every couple days. I can't sleep
I consume about 1200-1300 calories a day, about 40-50 (sometimes 60) grams of fat, and almost equally that in protein, and my carbs come mainly from lettuce, some berries, and the occasional piece of watermelon. My carbs typically are at 30-40 g, and on some days, I dip into the 25 range.
Typical Day: Breakfast: 2 eggs (usually microwaved because I am at work) a piece of bacon (nitrate free uncured) or a piece of left over meat from dinner. Snack: usually about 15 almonds, or cashews Lunch: A piece of meat, usually a chicken thigh or a turkey burger patty (made from home - organic, free range) a salad, no dressing Snack: Something Paleo, and mildly sweet - I have mastered cooking with coconut flour, so I have a little bread I make with coconut flour and almond flour, and I will have a small slice of that with a piece of fruit. Sometimes I add 1-2 tsp of organic sunflower seed butter (unsweetened). Sometimes I will grab a Larabar, and eat half, and save the other half for another day. (They are high in carbs) Dinner: a piece of meat, a salad, no dressing, sometimes some avocado and/or harboiled egg. I will often eat dinner with a handful of pistachios. If I need sweet, I melt organic unsweetened dark chocolate, and I eat it with some chopped fruit. Or I will use 1 tsp of local honey on my fruit or paleo bread (again only if needed, and only maybe 1 or 2 in the first 30 days). On my paleo, I have even been reading spices, and trying very hard to make everything homemade, natural and organic.
What is wrong? Why can I not stop gaining weight?
Why is my indigestion so bad?
Why is my poor intestine not able to get regular?
Why can I not sleep?
Has anyone else had a similar problem that they have resolved?
asked byMDHappy (0)
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on June 18, 2013
at 09:30 AM
Hi MDHappy. I'm sorry you are having so much trouble. When I changed my diet, and started training more heavily I encountered similar problems, but instead of cutting myself slack I restricted further which doubled my issues. I had undiagnosed gastro-intestinal problems for a few years - to the point I could only seem to eat plain grilled chicken or an egg without making myself sick. I had reflux so bad that my teeth were suffering and some days I only ate ant-acids. I was basically being a stubborn fool!
From experience, I would agree with Ryan here that your weight gain is likely due to adrenal fatigue and you need to feed up and support your body. Everyone is different and you need to work out your 'normal'. This is what I've learned and I hope its useful!
I'm not sure what a 'salad' looks like to you but my visions of a few leaves make me nervous. You need to make sure you are eating a great variety of vegetables. Definitely something green with every meal and pack colour onto your plate.
A big thing for me was that I really couldn't tolerate a lot of nuts and seeds. I basically don't digest seeds at all!! I make 'biscuits' with nut flours, dried fruit, a spoon of honey and an egg, and eat as a snack. But beyond that and the occasional handful I tend not to eat as many nuts as I used to. I loved making the 'breads' too but I found they backed me up. Ugh.
For a long time i wasn't taking in near enough carbs to support my daily activity. By adding in roasted or mashed sweet potatoes a couple times a week (primarily post training) and generally eating more did me a lot of good. I drink water with fresh lime which and I supplement with Hydrocloric Acid now and then if I feel my stomach is unsettled. (I used to do this with every meal but don't need to now)
The other thing to bear in mind is that your body takes time to adapt to big changes. A sudden drop in carbs or drastic diet change overnight will make your body wonder what the heck is going on. Increase your carb intake and reduce gradually to a level which supports your activity. Also play around with when you are eating! I seem to digest quite slowly and I have to eat a good 90mins before training or my stomach churns horribly and I'll be in bits afterwards. Hard training stresses your stomach too!
TL;DR - Eat more! Big veggie variety and up your carbs. (Sweet potatoes FTW) - Try reducing the amount of nuts for a while to see what happens. - Read up on HCL for digestive support - Adjust your eating times to help reduce stomach stress in training - Be proud! You are working really hard and it will pay off!
on June 19, 2013
at 06:10 AM
You're burning too much energy for the amount and quality of nutrients you take in. You really must up your carbs. Up your carbs and you'll feel much better. Sweet potato or white rice. Also, I'd cut out the flours and stuff. That too could potentially irritate your tummy. The whole coconut flour or almond flour angle just doesn't seem right to me. My instincts tell me that flour by it's nature, is a very concentrated food substance and that fact alone, can easily be the root of some distress. Stick with real food. Up carbs. I hope you get better. I see a lot of Crossfit people go crazy with perfecting their diets and exercise programs. I'm not saying that's you or anything but Paleo and exercise can easily turn unhealthy the minute it starts to morph into an obsessive compulsive thing.
on June 18, 2013
at 01:21 PM
I had a lot of Indigestion, constipation, insomnia, and dermatitis. Then I found the autoimmune protocol as described on thepaleomom.com website. I felt a whole lot better after cutting out nightshades, nuts, eggs, etc. Now I eat those foods only on very rare occasions.
on June 18, 2013
at 12:22 PM
Thanks. Yes...aip=autoimmune protocol. I tried to cut out the eggs, but I really needed the extra protein, as I was having a hard time getting enough meat. ( not a huge meat fan). Thanks so much for the feedback! I'm going to watch that and incorporate some changes.
on June 18, 2013
at 06:49 AM
up your carbs, no wonder your feeling like crap. Your doing hard physical labor, you can't run on ketones and keep your carbs around 40 grams O_o get to 100-150. You probably have gut problems because your eating tons of nuts and seeds which are loaded with anti nutrients which can irritate your gut lining. Cut out the nuts/seeds and almond flour/coconut flour if you want and swap it with sago, yam flour. Try to also stay away from nightshades, add liver to your diet and if you decide to eat potatoes boil them whole skin on 33 min and peel the skin off after to get all of the anti nutrients out. This is why your not feeling regular, your not getting enough calories or enough carbs to function with intense workouts. If your going to be extremely active you need to up your carbs and calories, i wouldn't be surprised if you were gaining weight because you are overtraining and are adrenal fatigued.