A Real Fiber Challenge

256px-annibale_carracci_the_beaneaterI have just completed the most fascinating 30 day food experiment. Well, actually, my husband and kids requested that I cut it short at 29 days, so it was actually just a mere 29 days. I’ve read that what we eat affects our brain, and I believe it, but during this “30 day” experiment, I lived it! It was very uncomfortable, like how I picture walking around hypo-manic would feel.

Experiment

My goal was to eat 50 grams of fiber from real, whole foods, supplementing if I had to with supplemental powders for 30 days. Nothing was counted except fiber grams, and only those as listed in a nutrition facts count on any given internet site or on any given label. No resistant starch was included to get me to the 50 gram mark, so I am sure with resistant starch included, I was definitely exceeding 50 grams of fiber daily.

Foods

I realized very quickly how hard getting 50 grams of real, whole food fiber was going to be, and that my normally vegetable rich diet wasn’t going to get me but less than half of 50 grams! THAT was a SHOCKER! ย I love red cabbage and broccoli, but at 2 grams of fiber a cup, I couldn’t eat enough of that stuff to get me anywhere close to 50 grams! (Most fruit is the same way! About 2-3 grams per cup!)

I didn’t have a set list of foods. I just looked for the highest fiber counts I could. What did I eat all month?

  • Beans about daily
  • Avocado about daily
  • Chia about daily
  • Bananas very commonly
  • Sweet corn in season
  • 100% whole grain/seed buckwheat, quinoa, and seed-based soaked and fermented homemade bread
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Flax
  • Brewer’s yeast
  • Peas
  • Dried fruit: figs, apricots, dates
  • Lentils
  • Nuts
  • Pumpkin
  • Berries
  • Plantains
  • Sauerkraut
  • Peanut butter
  • Cocoa powder/cacao nibs
  • Bulleted list is getting too long: Broccoli, red cabbage, kale, cabbage, cilantro, parsley, onions, garlic, carrots, celery, rice

Results

Appetite: After my mid-morning 25 grams breakfast/brunch of the above foods, I was not hungry. The first week I had pretty intense cravings for sweets, but these calmed down by week two. By week two throughout week four, I was NOT hungry. Nothing sounded good. It was hard to cook for my family because nothing sounded good. I just wanted to hand them more beans and say, “Supper’s ready!” I forced myself to eat more because I wanted to try to hit the 50 gram mark. I literally couldn’t do it. So about every night I had to top off with about 10 grams of chia seed or inulin powder.

Weight: I started with my appetite rather than my weight because some people will find the weight gain disturbing. I started at about 138 pounds, and I ended up at about 146 pounds. I believe my weight went up because I forced myself to eat. Had I let my eating follow my appetite, the numbers may have been different. HOWEVER, my husband gained 5 pounds this month! This is one reason he feels he gets a veto on any diet I experiment on myself (and subsequently my family) with. He didn’t like the high fiber diet. Isn’t that strange he gained weight? I thought so!

Endocrine: My two-hour postprandials ran in the 90s. This is where they ran before this experiment as well.

Neurological: Three days into the diet I developed a severe headache which didn’t go away until on about day four I took an Aleve. I used to take Aleve about three times a week before I changed my diet (four years ago). I now take it maybe once or twice a year. Also, by the third day, brain fogginess and tiredness had set in.

I could have tossed all this onto a stressful life heap, but what was new was a tremor! By about the third day, I developed a fine tremor which made buttoning buttons difficult. I just felt tremulous throughout. The tremor lasted until about week three, when it slowly receded. In this time, I tried changing my coffee, because it felt like you feel when you have too much coffee.

Psychological: Flat. Flat. Flat. Edgy. Edgy. Edgy. Go. Go. Go. OCD. OCD. OCD. Forgetful. Forgetful. Forgetful. (Because I literally felt like my mind was on speed.) My kids wanted me to stop the diet. My husband wanted me to stop the diet. I wanted to stop the diet, but I wanted to see where this would take me. My husband said, “Maybe you’re depressed.” I felt like my face would crack if I smiled, and I said, “I don’t think I’m depressed. I don’t feel like I’m depressed.” So I watched some hilarious YouTube videos and laughed my socks off. I wasn’t depressed.

But my brain was bad. It had a motor and it wouldn’t shut off. My whole body had a jittery motor! No meditation. No prayer. No sitting watching TV. No whatever—would make my brain shut off. I corresponded with some people during this time, and I know they think I’m a raging lunatic. I accept it that I have some of those qualities above, or at least have some of them at various times; they make me me! I like a clean house. I like my to-do list done. But this was taking all those traits and raising them to the 50th power all at the same time!

With that tremor, headache, fogginess, racing mind, edginess—I just was a mess. The second reason my husband says he gets diet veto power!

Gastrointestinal: Iย usually cruise along happily on what I eat, but occasionally, I get it in my head that it’s time to try something new to see if I can get off of magnesium, which I see no end in sight of. I’ll be on it till I die. (Don’t get me wrong! I’m happy that it works! That’s more than many people with severe slow transit have!) My constipation flared up after three days into the experiment (along with that horrid headache), and I had to up my magnesium. Then, I overshot, of course. Then, distended anal vessels flared up from the overshoot and from the increased abdominal distention. Ouchie.

Usually, I take my magnesium about every third day, and it still works “daily.” On this experiment, I had to take magnesium every night. Bummer.

Bloating was very bad the first week. Then, by week two, it actually decreased to less than my normal baseline! That was nice! It came back for some reason the last week of the experiment.

I checked a UBiome right at the start of my little experiment, and then the kit was in the room where they baby was sleeping. So no UBiome after.

Reproductive: At the end of the first week, I was having hot flashes at night and very restless sleep, along with the tremor I already mentioned. These went away by the end of week two. I had Mittelschmerz that woke me up one night, which I’ve never had before, although that’s maybe not fair. I’ve had it during the day a couple of times before like that.

Summary:

At the third day of week one, things were uncomfortable: headaches, brain fog, flatness, irritability, jittery, tremulous, bloating, constipation. I hung in there this way for two weeks. At that point, I decided maybe I’d have to take a day off this challenge. So, I fasted and my head and tremor seemed to improve dramatically late morning and early afternoon. Then, at 3 pm, since I felt good, I decided to get back at it.

All my symptoms returned by late evening. I took to eating a late breakfast/early lunch to have some moments of clarity. By the end of three weeks, I could feel, and my husband noted too, that I was having increased moments where I was more “me” again, even after eating. What was surprising was that this week was a very stressful week in our home, with a common childhood disease making the rounds of the house. Yet, I was feeling calmer. Still not baseline (which, lol, isn’t all that calm to begin with!).

I’m two days off the high fiber diet, and I’m feeling like me again.

Go ahead and criticize my self-study. There are flaws. I DIDN’T put it on the internet to bash high fiber in any way, shape, or form. I am putting it here for us to maybe learn something together. I’ve come up with a differential in my head. What do you come up with? (But be nice. My kids read my blog stuff.)

I’ve decided that I won’t jump into high fiber suddenly. That was pretty painful.

With respectful regards and voracious, healthy curiosity,

Terri

PS: Always be careful! Talk with your doctor or healthcare provider before you make any big changes. Don’t use internet information to experiment without your doctor or healthcare provider knowing and being on board.

Addendum: After thinking on this more and more, I’m thinking that my poor results stem from either sensitivity to the foods I started consuming more of (chia, non-gluten grains, legumes) or dysbiosis of my GI tract leading to these symptoms. I do not believe it was the “fiber” per se.

Image attribution:ย Annibale Carracci [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. Public domain, PD-Art.

 

 

39 thoughts on “A Real Fiber Challenge

  1. Debbie

    Wow, what an experiment. What type of magnesium do you take? I’m got the slow transit constipation too – basically eat a lot of fiber – mostly in potato and RS powder form – and with coffee usually can have a daily result – but it’s with some difficulty. I always worry about anything that might disrupt my routine in the future… but we won’t go there now. I take magnesium daily, but vary the type. I’m wondering if I should just take the Citrate?

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      I use the Magnesium Calm kind. Plain flavor, not that that matters. I’ve tried other kinds, but only that one seems to be effective, at least at a reasonably palatable dose.

      That was quite the experiment! Didn’t feel real good. I have found that for me, reheated potatoes help a lot. So those are a go, and I try to keep those in daily. My experiment kind of started because Tim Steele kept telling me that getting enough fiber was tough, so that’s why he used the raw potato starch to fill in the gap. I’m a real food fan, so I balked at this as a routine. The raw potato starch helped me a couple years ago or so to get off magnesium daily, and then I transitioned to trying to get RS through foods.

      Reply
      1. Debbie

        I’m going to try this Calm you take. I really believe the problem isn’t related to bacteria so much as the actual muscles, that have just stopped working normally.

      2. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

        And/or I think the nerve innervation to the muscles. Or the supporting cells which support those neurons.

        I’m not sure I’ll ever get better than magnesium every other day or third day. I could be wrong, hope I’m wrong. I have a post on here somewhere that talks about the Cells of Cajal being less in STC, I believe. Perhaps an autoimmune issue. Maybe these are it or close to it. I don’t have time to look closely. I’m sorry.

        https://thehomeschoolingdoctor.com/2013/10/16/why-does-my-gi-tract-defy-gravity-changes-in-severe-chronic-constipation/

        https://thehomeschoolingdoctor.com/2013/10/18/but-what-causes-all-of-those-changes-found-in-chronic-severe-constipation/

        I also think there’s a hormonal component for many of us as well. I see a connection. Or course, studies don’t show a connection. But what if they took women who felt there was a connection and then tracked their stool, I’ll bet they see a connection, rather than pooling women with no suspicion of this whatsoever being connected.

        I wonder if by promoting a good bacterial flora then the butyrate-producing bacteria may help with the nervous system re-innervation/regeneration. My GI moves WAY better than it did four years ago! There was even a time I went about 4-6 weeks without anything before my last pregnancy, using Tim Steele’s potato/RPS/RS information. But, alas. ๐Ÿ™‚

        Take care!

  2. kailey

    Why didn`t you count resistant strach as a fibre? Did you make difference between soluble or insoluble fibre? I have opposite experience of increasing fibre intake, but I have not consupted 50 grams a day, probably 20 to 30 grams, including resistant strach and accompied with full fat milk and lactobacillus (asidofilius, gefilus) as they support butyrate production. Also our son, who has congenital gastrointestinal disease has been better after these chances in his diet. I don`t buy the idea that fibre is bad. But remember to drink water when you raise your fibre intake! It well make your constipatiom worse if you don`t remember to drink, and off course, if you get dry that will give you headache. So whats your recommentation for fibre intake? 20, 25, 50…or perhaps non?

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      I didn’t count resistant starch because resistant starch isn’t “counted” in the fiber grams reported in nearly all nutrition facts on the internet, nor on food labels. For convenience, I just didn’t track it. However, you can see that plenty of my foods had RS (beans, potatoes, lentils, green plantains, green bananas, etc). So my fiber grams would be above and beyond 50 grams.

      Also, for convenience, I didn’t track the different types of fiber, but again, I feel I had a gamut with the onions, dried fruits, fruit, garlic, potatoes, avocado, corn, buckwheat, nuts, and so on.

      Like you, I get about 20-30 grams, depending on the day. Although, honestly, I can see some days, I may even be lower! And if I’m low, I KNOW the average American is scary low, not just in absolute value, but in diversity, as well!!!!

      I’m so happy your son is doing well. Interesting about the milk and lactobacillus. I’ve got a post I’ve been working on for forever about different bacteria and butyrate production. I’ve not seen the two strains you mention though. Will have to read about.

      Yes, true about the water. I made sure to rule that out by increasing my water intake!

      I have no recommendation for fiber at this point. The recommended 20-25 grams for women seems reasonable. I have tried NO fiber in the past, you know, or some of you may know–along the lines of Fiber Menace. No change for me. Maybe I should try 30 days. ๐Ÿ™‚ But I need a break from experiments right now!

      Good to hear from you!

      Reply
  3. Tim Steele

    Hitting 50g is hard through real foods, for sure. Out of curiosity, how many cocoa nibes were you eating?

    I did this same experiment a couple years ago, the highest fiber food I could find was cocoa nibs. Within a week, I was having flares of gout that I had not seen in several years! Turns out cocoa nibs are the highest source of theobromine in nature! ( http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4335269/ ). Many citations note that cocoa is anti-gout, but theobromine is a purine. Purines are known to cause gout. I think the problem is that raw cocoa nibs are not fermented, whereas cocoa nibs are fermented before being turning into cocoa powder/chocolate. Maybe fermentation changes the nature of the theobromine in some way.

    Also, of note, my recent experiment with whole grain wheat (Farro and Kamut) also led to a gout attack! I have not had gout in almost 6 years, except after a bag of cocoa nibs and a pound or so of whole grain, non-fermented wheat. The things we do for science!

    Also, beans…I have long-wondered if they, too, should be fermented prior to eating. Were you soaking them 24 hours or so before cooking or straight from the bag? Most societies that ate beans traditionally soaked them before cooking which is a form of fermentation. Personally, I never noticed any difference between soaked/not-soaked and I eat lots of beans.

    Anyhow, I am quite surprised that these additional foods had such a profound effect on you. I’d love to see a repeat experiment using potato starch, inulin, or Hi-Maize, but I understand if you are not up to it (just yet).

    I’m probably in the 30-50g/day total fiber range, and take a spoonful of potato starch, Hi-Maize, chia seeds, flaxseed, and/or oat bran most days.

    If nothing else, you showed exactly how difficult it is to get anywhere near the recommended amounts of fiber.

    Good reporting!
    Tim

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      You know, the first week I probably did over-do it on the nibs (they’re raw) and cocoa because I had that intense sweet craving. So I used that in smoothies to curb that. Between that and the coffee, that could have contributed to the extreme feeling the first week. But I slowed down eating them during the second week. So doesn’t explain it entirely.

      Plus, I don’t know if I mentioned it before, I got the same feeling briefly when I tried consuming raw potatoes in increasing proportions. I tried it at three different times, and each time was the same. A bit tremulous, poor sleep, hot flashes, not feeling great. Decided too much raw potato wasn’t good for me. (And, no, they weren’t green.) But I never had that effect when I used raw potato starch several years back. Just raw potato. And now, 50 grams of fiber did the same thing.

      I’ll read the paper you link to. Someone else I know complains of joint pains with cacao nibs. But, I’ve not heard that with whole grain wheat. Guess you have to ferment it? (I’ve got a good bread process that is soaked and fermented and beyond easy.) Probably would be best to ferment the beans too, I suppose. Some of mine were canned and some were soaked at home. I try to soak them just till I see sprouts.

      I wondered about the lectins/phytates/carb load/estrogen changes with increasing fiber dramatically at once/overgrowth of a bacteria which liked this diet/alternatively, die off (always hated that term, but…)/just overall too much carb for me/nut and seed sensitivity and other stuff I’m not thinking of as I type right now.

      I’ve tried the powder approach before, but I didn’t have any effect. Looking back, I doubt I pounded it high enough! I never really shot for a number. And now, well, I’ll just take it slow! Now that I can slow down!

      Yes, counting actual grams was an eye-opener.

      Thanks for reading!

      Reply
  4. Christine

    I don’t see apples. Or plums or grapes or peaches or apricots or cherries or any of the types of fruits where you eat the skin. Did you just forget them in that long list or did you not eat them? Berries are great & all but the pectin in those other fruits is great stuff, it counts as fibre and those particular fruits are *so* good at getting & keeping things moving. Honestly, I expected to see them at the top of your list!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      You don’t see much fruit because it doesn’t “add” up in the grams very fast. At usually only 2-3 grams per cup, I just couldn’t eat enough of it or some of my favorite veggies to get to 50 grams! So fruit and my favorite veggies rounded out the menu, rather than filled it.

      But left off peaches. Peaches were in-season and delicious. Ate quite a few peaches! Love cherries, but they’re out of season so didn’t have any of those. But when they’re in-season, I eat tons every day. Did eat the dried apricots and dried figs and dried dates; they’d have the pectin, don’t you think? In fact, during this time I read a story about pediatric patients overcoming food allergies by simply adding in dried apricots and oatmeal. So I ate me some apricots so I could maybe eat eggs again one day… Even had a little oatmeal. Which I left off the list too.

      Apples make me look pregnant, and I don’t like that look anymore. So I did have about an 1/8th of an apple I cut for the kids. That way I only looked an eighth pregnant. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Grapes I had a few of with the kids. They like grapes a lot.

      My husband is claims to be a fruitatarian. You think I should try that for 30 days?

      Warm regards!

      Reply
  5. Kathy

    How much of the Calm powder do you take daily? And once or twice – morning and/or night? You’re so brave to stick with the high fiber diet so long- I’m always impressed!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Hi, Kathy! Thanks for the e-mail correction. ๐Ÿ™‚ Got it.

      For the magnesium Calm, I take a tablespoon at bedtime. When things are great, I can get by and take it only once at bedtime and it will work for the next day and the day after. Then I have to re-dose. When things act up, I have to take a tablespoonful every night. When I eat things like wheat, dairy, processed foods—I have to really crank it up to about 2 heaping tablespoons a night. So I try NOT to do that! IF I don’t take the dose at bedtime, then it doesn’t work. I think my greatest movement of my gut happens during the early (3 am -5 am) morning, so it seems to be best to have that magnesium sitting in the gut overnight. I’ve tried splitting the dose up. I’ve tried dosing it earlier in the day. It just doesn’t work. Bummer.

      If something reasonable can get me off magnesium drink every night and also able to eat eggs and chicken again without ill effects, I’ll do it! In fact, I may slowly up fiber over the next year in hopes that a couple of the good things I saw were signs that I just needed longer. I’ll have to think about it. One day at a time, right!?

      Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Good question. Maybe nothing, but I don’t like to take anything every day. Some will say that our diets are significantly magnesium deficient and that we should take magnesium every day anyhow. So, they’ll say it’s fine and it probably is/could be. I just stubbornly cling to the idea that we can get what we need through diet, unless you can’t eat certain things. Like a vegan and B12. Or if you can’t eat iodine-rich foods.

      The magnesium I have to take is dissolved in liquid. So my personal answer is I’m tired of the taste. I’m tired of drinking a glass of liquid before bedtime because then I have to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. (If I don’t take it at bedtime, it doesn’t work. I’ve tried taking it in the day or even dividing doses. No go. I’ve tried different preps. I’ve tried it all. This is the only thing that I’ve experimented with that works.)

      Thanks for asking! Have a good Wednesday!

      Reply
  6. Lesq

    Hey Terri, what an interesting post. I always wondered how a normal eating human could ingest that much fiber in one day. I would be in the hospital– way to much for my STC. I have learned a lot over the past year and fiber is overdone and over pushed. In Europe the certainly don’t eat the kind of non-vegetable and fruit fiber we consume in the states. So much of it is loaded wth phytic acid and arsenic(rice). The food philosophies of the times we live in are out of whack and if people hear something is healthy they jump right on the bag wagon whether it is right for them or not and take at face value it is healthy because they believe everything they are told or read. I am always a skeptic and believe something until I do research and believe it to be correct. Thanks for the post. It comes at a very helpful time for me–more then you know!!! Hope home schooling is going well๐Ÿ˜Ž

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Homeschooling is going well, Lesq! Thanks! I’m still not a processed food fiber fan or a fan of supplements, except as thoroughly investigated and a need is seen.

      I don’t know what’s right at all. Kind of feel like there’s no right. So I stand on real, whole food. Let’s take it from there!

      Reply
  7. gabriella kadar

    I would figure 10 to 15 grams of fibre per 1,000 kcal ought to be enough.

    Just that there’s more to food than fibre. Since my garden has been producing a mega bumper crop of tomatoes, I’ve been eating more tomatoes this summer than anytime in my life. Whatever is in tomatoes, it shor keeps a girl regliar! I don’t measure how much I eat every day but it’s between 1 and 2 pounds. (And I give away a lot more than I eat.)

    Yesterday I ate pork cooked with sauerkraut and of course more fresh tomatoes……good thing I started work late this morning. Doesn’t irritate the ‘roid. That’s all I can say.

    Basically, I don’t bother with fibre. I figure all the cooked greens and tomatoes do just fine. Will be getting back to the lentils, beans, and potatoes once winter sets in.

    I’ll get into the cooked, cooled, and goldenized potatoes once the garden slows down.

    I’d just like to know what’s with the appetite. All summer it’s been horribly hot and humid. I was outdoors gardening and my appetite was low. Now the daylength is getting shorter, the daily temperatures are pleasant, and the appetite is increasing to the point where it’s a problem. I’ve gained 3 pounds in the past couple of weeks. What’s with that? I’m not a bear.

    BTW, Saskatchewan lentils (99% of lentils grown in Canada are from Saskatchewan) are a good dietary source of selenium. Good for thyroid hormone conversion.

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Dear Gabriella,

      Good morning!

      That 10-15 grams per fiber seems to be a nice, natural place for me to shoot for, I feel like, after doing this experiment.

      And I TOTALLY agree it’s more than fiber! Which is why I really wanted to get it through real food rather than added fibers (which I still had to do)! I hate for anyone to think that I think it’s all about one thing, fiber, fat, a particular vitamin or mineral, etc. Life and our bodies are so integrated. I love the food I eat, and I try to keep a love for it—while still knowing that it’s “only food” and to never become controlled or obsessed by any of this. And try to pass that on to my daughters too.

      The only things that have ever done that regular thing to me food-wise was maybe boatloads of cherries. And I mean tons, when they’re in season, and we buy flats of them. So we eat them like mad before they go bad. But even still, needed magnesium. Just a lot less. But Christine did mention cherries and other brands of fruit along similar lines. I’ll mull this over in the back of my mind.

      I had no idea about the Saskatchewan lentils. Are all lentils high in selenium? Or just that kind? Is the soil there rich in Selenium and they pick it up? We do make it a point to eat selenium rich food, as we do supplement iodine because iodine sources are low in our home (low eggs—and I don’t even know if the farm eggs have iodine content or if it’s only if the chicken feed is supplemented with it as it might be in commercial chickens—, low in dairy—-and they don’t even use iodine cleaner anymore anyhow—-, low in iodized salt, occasionally use seaweed but not enough, etc—-so I’ve chosen to supplement iodine and like to make sure we get the other needed nutrients for the thyroid.)

      Well, I’ll tell you. Eating that much fiber, I wasn’t hungry a bit. I felt a little deprived because I had no “food-joy.” I suppose that’s not a bad thing, but I love creative cooking. And I lost any heart for that.

      I love hearing about your garden. We have tomatoes, basil, zucchini, squash coming in abundantly. And now that the frosts are coming on, my cruciferous vegetables are starting to shine!!!! The grasshoppers eat them, so once the frost starts killing those, the plants are happy. I tried a new organic spray this year—-no good. Waste of time and money. Do you have lots of grasshoppers?

      Well, signing off.

      Terri

      Reply
      1. gabriella kadar

        Terri, the soil in Saskatchewan is rich in selenium. Plants don’t need it but they absorb it when it’s around. And seemingly lentils absorb a lot of it. Some areas in the prairies are not good for grazing animals because of the high selenium content of the soil. I wonder if the problem has to do more with removing the sod which appeared to provide good grazing for bison. Getting down to the dirt may be what’s wrong with this picture.

        Are you living in the goitre belt? Do you know the iodine content of your groundwater/well water?

        Back to arsenic: bore well water in Bangladesh is high in arsenic. A Canadian veterinarian thought, well, if arsenic can be used in animals for selenium poisoning, what about using selenium for arsenic poisoning. Pills are difficult to deal with in these communities. She figured since the people eat lentils three times a day, then maybe instead of pills, lentils will do the trick. Initial urine tests indicate that this is a promising therapy. Canada exports most of the lentils anyway.

        My garden is in a Parks and Rec city allotment. We have grasshoppers but not enough of them to create a problem. We also have rabbits, mice, rats, voles, and groundhogs. Coyotes too.

        Cherries are laxative because they contain a lot of sorbitol. Watermelon contains a lot of mannitol… so eat lots and it works like cherries. Beets are good too but I don’t know what’s in them that ‘works’.

        LOL! Thanks to you, I made a pot of Dupuy lentil soup. Thick with lentils. I must have just scarfed down 2 cups of this stuff, maybe more. Oh dear. That’s 32 grams of fibre for lunch. I just love lentil soup. This is the International Year of the Pulses. FAO. I ate pulses every day for the first 4 months of this year minus a couple of days. It wasn’t a bad experiment at 1 serving per day. Spuds for breakfast, beans for supper.

      2. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

        I’m not sure if South Dakota quite makes the goiter belt cut-off or not. But we have a field trip to the water plant coming up for the kids! ๐Ÿ™‚ When I go, I will have to ask about iodine in our drinking water. My water comes from a river.

        I saw that study you’re referring to when I looked up Saskatchewan lentils!

        I wish, for me, it was as easy as adding in a food. Watermelon, I’ve eaten plenty of this summer–SD has a great region apparently for growing great melons that are well-known or something like that…- and beets, I grow plenty of and freeze in my garden. If it was as simple for me as a food, I WOULD not have taken this, what I call, crazy food/nutrition path.

        I do love lentils! Always have. Especially in Indian dishes. I just wonder WHAT it is that made me feel like crap this month. Seed intolerance? Legume intolerance? Too much carb? Too much carb given the current bacteria in my gut? Etc.

        You know, people are starting to come down on Paleo, but perhaps Cordain just hit on people like me who don’t do well with those “excluded” Paleo things. As much as I WANT to eat them. As much as I do good things for my gut, so far, I just haven’t been able to eat them. But, on the other hand, I do fine with potatoes. So, I hate that people try certain diets and then get stuck there thinking it’s the holy grail.

        Anyway. That was my rambling. Have a good one.

      1. EmilyMaine

        I have been meaning to email you actually as I don’t think you have my email since I switched to this blog. We are having tummy troubles with H and I am off a load of different foods. I have been meaning to post about it or write to you as I know you would have great insight for me but TIME. You know how it is ๐Ÿ™‚ We have our ups and downs but mostly we are good. H is a happy little baby. Are you on Facebook? We can always connect there if you are. Xx

      2. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

        I try to hide on Facebook. ๐Ÿ™‚ Except to post my blog stuff and answer comments. But I’ll look for you and friend request you when I’m on next.

        Oh, that elimination stuff is the worst with nursing babies. Frustrating. So. Could be the top 8 allergens. Good place to start. Or it could be those cruciferous veggies.

        And time? Time? I have more thyme than I do time. That was bad. Stupid. But cracked me up. I’m glad H is happy! SO cute, I know!

  8. Katarina Z

    It sounds a lot like what happened when I tried to go grain-free quasi Paleo, and ended up eating more insoluble fiber rich veggies, more fruit, and more nuts/seeds. My head rushes got so bad my vision started blacking out. We are all so individual! I feel best on a vegetarian, whole food diet, with more soluble fiber than insoluble.

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Katarina! I know: “We are all so individual!”

      We sound polar opposites! BUT, I prefer the taste of a vegetarian, whole food diet rich in beans and starches! That’s what I WANT to eat! So, in a way, this month, I was eating what I WANTED to eat! But over the last four years, I’ve found I feel best eating more of the autoimmune Paleo type foods, meat included (even though I don’t even really like meat). I didn’t start that way! But via elimination diet techniques, that’s where I landed! I just keep wondering (darn curiosity) if it’s “leaky gut” and maybe I can shift it. Or is it just what it is?

      I don’t know! But it felt bad! Telling experiment for me! (Even though I don’t exactly know what it’s telling me…ha!)

      Thanks for piping in so people know that there is no one book or plan out there that will suit!

      Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Well, I remember reading that they think some African tribes ate around 100-150 grams daily. American recommendations are for about 25 grams for a woman and about 40 for a man. So I shot for 50 grams at measured fiber, knowing I’d be getting actually more, because of the resistant starch found in the beans, potatoes (reheated), green bananas, green plaintains, strictly 100 percent whole grain/seed bread that I ate. Make sense? No? My husband wasn’t convinced of the reason for choosing my number either. ๐Ÿ™‚ But,man! I couldn’t have gone any higher! All the things I eat plant-wise, which I believe are very good for me (red cabbage, parsley, cilantro, basil, bell peppers, peaches, broccoli, kale, onion, cucumber, lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, zucchini, and so on and on), just don’t add up! You really have to eat starchy foods to get that much fiber! I learned so much, even if it was a bad month.

      Reply
  9. gabriella kadar

    Terri, what about blood glucose? I have a glucose meter and I know that lentils don’t cause any blood sugar increase. If anything they cause a slight decrease. You would have had to check what the high fibre diet was doing to your blood glucose. Maybe it was lowering it too far? Add in the caffeine from the coffee and theobromine in cocoa nibs and yeah, you could get tremour. There’s a LOT of theobromine in cocoa nibs.

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      I did check the blood sugar a couple of times because I thought of that. I can definitely buy into the coffee/cacao/cocoa combo some, especially that first week! Mostly, I have sensitive brain. Haha! I think if you search the internet, you can even find sites talking about that! Lol, but kind of not laughing. Me and my weak blood brain barrier!!???

      Reply
  10. gabriella kadar

    Good thing you are not doing surgery. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I wear 3X mag surgical loupes, field of vision is probably about 4 inches in diameter so even irregular breathing will make the image jump around. ‘Stay calm and carry on’. LOL!

    Reply
  11. Amber

    I just wanted to say I found your blog today. And, that you are amazing!! I saw a nutritionist last week and he said I should follow the blood type diet. I about had a break down the other night feeling like I couldn’t eat anything. Thankfully I regained composure and got a head start on some batch cooking of quick meal ideas for when I make something I can’t have for the rest of the family. I can’t dream of 50 grams of fiber….wow!! I’ll be in the shadows reading all of your past posts and soaking up as much as I can. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Hi, Amber! How are you doing!? Good to hear from you here!

      If you feel better on the blood type diet, then you’ll know it and stick with it, despite ups and downs. Then, you’ll tweak it to suit you best! Good luck! (Or, on the other hand, if, like me and 50+ grams of fiber foods, it’s not working well at all, you’ll feel that too and make adjustments.) Hang in there!

      I hope you feel great soon! If you see me out, I don’t mind questions–but you might not get me to shut up. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Hugs,

      Terri

      Reply

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