Grok, Primal, Paleo

Sunday, February 26, 2012

For most of my life I've had problems with my guts. When I was 9 I had ulcers - I guess you could say I was a Type A personality before it was popular! At that time I went over a year eating a 'bland' diet. My blessed mom literally cooked me different food than what was served daily to my family. I got potatoes before they were gravied or spiced, I got veggies that had no sauce on them, meat was cooked without gravy, I seam to remember a lot of meatloaf. I had no soda (it was our tradition that we kids could have a tiny glass - I'd say 4 ounces - of 7-Up on Saturday night after dinner) for that same time.

As I grew older, I stressors of moving often, changing schools, of course classes in high school and college were difficult and I worried about tests and grades and friends and boys. Each of these stressors affected me the same way, my stomach hurt. I had a horrible but short - 5 year - failed marriage that took a huge toll on my guts. Until I was married to my beloved John, I didn't know that the pain I felt was not actually my stomach, it was my intestines.

In July 2009 I took myself to ER with a horrible pain in my right side, I thought I had appendicitis but I didn't. After several gross, nasty and disgusting tests later I was diagnosed with IBS - Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Once I started reading about it, all of the symptoms fit perfectly and I had a diagnosis that I believe to be true. I think making sure the diagnosis you are given and the symptoms you have all fits together for you. I believe if your doctor gives you a diagnosis and it doesn't "ring true" or you can't reconcile the diagnosis to your symptoms, then you probably need a second or third opinion...

So, I can honestly say that for most of my life, I've had pain in my stomach. I was little and I said all the time, "Mommy, I have a tummy ache." and she did the best she did with what she was told by the doctors. As an adult, I've seriously spent thousands of dollars on over the counter medications, on doctor visits, on diagnostic tests and prescription drugs that were supposed to help. Now I'm hoping that I know better and I can do better...

I think in the past weeks, thanks to a comment on SP by my friend CHUBRUB3, I started reading about Grok, primal or paleo eating...I've devoured a site called Mark's Daily Apple (.com) and have been turned onto a primal eating SP team and I've been listening to vlogs about eating, reading Sean Croxton and Wellness Underground information and I've started eating primal. I have cut out grains, I've stopped eating flour and sugar. I am feeling better. I won't tell you that I'm cured or that I'm feeling completely better and having no gut pain. But I can say that some of my bodily functions are closer to normal, I feel better, and I feel like I'm on the right track. Like I said before, I think that's important.

I'm continuing to read, I'm learning as I go. Every day I read more, learn more and I try something new. Today was grocery shopping and that was a real experience - we were looking for things we'd never even heard of - like almond butter and almond flour - found the butter, not the flour. I'll try to keep you all posted, I've learned I'm not a great blogger! I have lots to say but I'm not very organized in my thoughts!

Blessings, and I'd love to hear about anyone else who is eating this way or has tired it and abandoned it...I'm all ears, I'm definitely in a learning phase here. Thank you for reading and any comments! Karen
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Have had IBS (while commuting to lawschool with a young family: stressful!!) but didnt' try paleo.

    However, eating the way I do now has completely eliminated the problem. Mostly fresh fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans and legumes, a little lean protein (chicken, fish, low fat dairy) . . . same stuff day after day. Very little processed/manufactured food. Salads, soups.

    Plus exercise: regular cardio, ST, abs, stretching.

    I remember the excruciating pain . . . and it's so wonderful to be free of it. All best to you with your journey.
    2293 days ago
    It is amazing how the Creator designed our bodies! The biochemistry behind so many of these recommendations is fascinating. God's creative genius on the cellular and microscopic level, so many complex processes.

    I have been working on the Leptin Reset according to Dr. Jack Kruse since the first of the year. It has taken me a number of weeks to implement all the processes, but I am very encouraged about many factors.

    The most dramatic result is no hunger. I can truly forget about food, literally for the first time in my life. I also find my emotions are more stable and my energy level is excellent. Less soreness after strength training, also. Weight is holding steady so far, but I have been overweight for 30 years, so I expect I am a tougher case. Keep us posted!!
    2299 days ago
  • _LINDA
    So sorry to hear of the life time struggle you have had with your GI tract, not fun :( I have had some trouble, almost got an ulcer before smartening up. My problem is swinging wildly both ways from plugged up to running for the bathroom. Very frustrating. My diet for the last few years has been mostly fresh (or frozen) fruits and veggies. I am not a meat eater. I eat little or no grains. I find I get all the fiber I need from my fresh stuff and it helps to keep the calories in check. So glad you found natural almond butter (the one I get has nothing extra added, not even salt.) -I love the stuff! So much nicer than that highly processed peanut butter I used to eat. I don't know what this Primal diet it is. But I don't believe in restrictive diets people go on. I just eat healthy what feels good for me foods. And your body does let you know what it does and doesn't like.. My only problem with all the fresh stuff is bad gas and beano helps with that. I use soy milk, not dairy.
    I hope this diet will help ease up your symptoms more. Good luck with it...
    2301 days ago

    Just stopping by to offer you support and encouragement. Angela is a special friend of mine as well and, like Paula said, you are in good hands with her!

    I've been eating Primal for a few weeks now. Even with a few minor slip ups, I feel amazing! My body feels lighter, my brain feels more alert, and I walk with more of a bounce!!

    Keep up the great work! We're here for you!!

    2302 days ago
    The web can be a beautiful tool of healing. I hope this works for you!
    2302 days ago
    Hi Karen,
    I am 50 years old and have never felt better in my whole life since I started eating "real" food. That's what Primal/Paleo is, isn't it? Just REAL food.

    I am now on day 10 of the Leptin Reset and I lost 4 lbs the first week. My food cravings are gone and I am not fixated on food anymore except for a couple days and then the cravings were not out of control--I just ate a little coconut oil and they went away.

    Angela is great friend and she knows a lot about this stuff. You are in good hands. For those of us who have been lucky to have been informed about eating healthy and what that means for our bodies we are blessed. There are millions of people out there who are continuing to struggle and I feel sorry for them. Food, diet, exercise doesn't have to be how we've been brainwashed to believe all because of the $$$$. Forget all the $$$, I want to be like Grok--Live Long and Drop Dead!!

    Anyway, I will never go back to the way I was eating before. I don't miss it at all and I love being in control of my body and mind. Like you said, when you know better, you do better.....I love that one too.
    2303 days ago
    Glad your life is less stressful. Let's hope the new regime gives you some further healing on your journey to wellness. So many people are having to "eat clean" these days, I am all for it.
    best wishes
    2303 days ago
    Hello Karen, So happy that you have found Primal. I am not all primal but have been doing it for many years. I also have a history of gut problems. ugh. Most of the time Dr's do not know what to do for us except tell us don't eat this or eat this and take these pills. I totally believe that fiber is very important for ibs. Did they test you for Gluten allergies? But anyway, the white flour is the best thing to avoid. I also know that stress causes ibs. I was so sick with pain that my Dr though I had crohns disease. NO I had pain but I had lots of stress also. I used to come home while holding my tummy wanting to eat only rice and white bread with butter. No question that I blossomed up to 256 lbs. I don't do any white flour any more. Keep up the good work. Try doing fiber and I certainly hope you feel better every day. emoticon
    2303 days ago
    Yeah Karen!!
    Thank you for listening and giving it a try. I can't tell you how much better I personally feel eating this Primal way.
    Do I occasionally fall off the wagon? Yes, I do. However, the way my body feels after, I don't want to do it again. Some foods that I NEVER thought I could give up, I DO NOT MISS. And when I think I will have it again, I am grossed out by how it tastes and it will not come my way again.
    My Health is improving daily. My energy seems limitless. My sleep is finally a deep, restful one. Many, many more benefits too.
    I wish you well. I wish you health. You can do this.
    I bought my coconut flour and almond flour at a health food store; or you can make your own by grinding them very fine.
    Being a baker by trade I am making treats (in moderation) for my family by substituting the grain flours with the coconut/almond/quinoa flour; and substituting the sugars with natural like honey or maple syrup.
    You don't have to give up everything, you just have to eat clean.
    I would love to talk more about this with you my friend.
    I wish you health.
    > emoticon
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2303 days ago
    Sounds like a grand new adventure - hope it works!
    2303 days ago
    I had a nervous tummy when I was a kid- but it got better as I got older and chilled out! I was such a stressed out child, more stressed out than any child should ever be. I'm okay now.

    I know lots of people on here who eat Paleo and they love it. I can certainly see the benefits but I don't think I'm ready to take that leap right now. I say good for you and let us know how it goes!!!
    2303 days ago
    Good job on finding better solutions to what is going on in your body. I can't imagine going through what you have but still - just look at how strong you are!

    Keep learning - you are doing a great job!


    2303 days ago
    Welcome to my world in a round about way! Here are the things I have to work hard to avoid for the family: wheat, gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, corn, potatoes, oats. My hubby and son are affected completely differently by several of these items and not just a tummy ache. Hugs & Prayers as you continue to navigate this and I pray you continue to see relief!

    By the way, thanks for explaining those foreign "gibberish-looking" terms for me! LOL
    2303 days ago

    Comment edited on: 2/26/2012 10:38:16 PM
    I think you are an awesome blogger. You have described difficulties that so many can relate to, as evidenced by all these responses. What a gift you have given others.

    Don't you love Spark for helping us continue to be life long learners of health and fitness tailored to our own needs and circumstances?

    We'll all be tuned in to see how your new plan works for you. Fabulous!!!

    2303 days ago
    Yeah, Karen! Isn't it great to feel better after feeling unwell for a long time?

    I too had a diagnosis of ulcers at a young age... are you aware that they now know ulcers are caused by a virus?

    And, I was diagnosed with IBS 25 years ago. I never got a lot of relief from medications, and flares were horrendous. After a year if struggling to find a medical solution, and out of desperation, I instinctively started eating 'Paleo' (no processed/refined food, sugar, or chemicals of any kind )'. After a year, I considered myself 'cured'. I haven't had a flare since, and as long as I eat paleoish at least 80% of the time, I can eat anything I want without a recurrance of symptoms... even natural/good foods I could never eat before - corn, beets, bananas, beans, cabbage.

    I'm rooting for you and hope you have the same success I have!
    2303 days ago
    emoticon for sharing this. Reading about your stomach issues was like reading my own story on my stomach issues. I just started eating paleo/primal this past week in hopes of helping my body.
    Keep us posted as I am curious how this works out for you.
    2303 days ago
    Oh my, what an ordeal! I'm so glad you have found something that may help relieve some of your pain and symptoms.
    2303 days ago
    So excited for you. It has really helped our mutual friend Angela and some other friends. I will be joining you all soon. It just makes so much sense. I hope it helps with your ibs. Hugs
    2303 days ago
  • -LINDA_S
    Sounds like you're making progress. Dontcha just love Sean? He really tells it like it is. If you think you maybe need to do something more drastic, check out the GAPS diet. It goes beyond Paleo. Very strict in the beginning but apparently has really good results. I hope you're taking a heavy-duty probiotic. There's also someone named Andrea Ramirez who has a free newsletter and lots of recipes on her site. She's now gotten heavily into the GAPS thing. Just a few things to consider...
    2304 days ago
    Look at you GO ... Nice job finding something that looks like it will work for you! Woohoo ... I am so happy! Keep me posted on how it goes ... I'm totally interested! And try World of Nutrition in the Johnson Square off Caldwell Blvd and Orchard for the Almond Flour!
    2304 days ago
    Best Wishes in reaching all of your goals.
    2304 days ago
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