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#447903 - 07/24/11 12:41 PM New member considering low starch diet
Horsewoman Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 07/24/11
Posts: 128
Hi,
I'm not sure where to start. I have been having joint soreness since 1996. I am gluten intolerant and going off gluten 3 years ago helped a lot but now it is back in full force. I had blood tests 3 years ago which the doctor said was negative (at that time I also had gut issues including reflux and diarrhea, hypoglycemia, weight gain and fatigue which also improved when I went off gluten, but didn't resolve). The doctor then offered me antidepressants which I declined.

The doctor never mentioned the possibility of seronegative arthritis, she just told me I tested negative for rheumatoid factor and then implied that meant it was down to depression.

Recently I have been eating a paleo diet (ie no grains or starches) and found my joint pain almost completely resolved. Talking about this on a paleo forum, another member told me she has AS and finds a low starch diet helpful. Looking into AS I realised that it sounded a lot like what I have except my shoulders and upper back are the worst (I have soreness all over but that's the worst, it hurts when I breathe when it is bad as well). I also have plantar fasciitis. I have often wondered why the pain feels more like it is around my joints than inside them, now I understand that it is enthesitis.

I am feeling quite overwhelmed at the moment, I am having a very sore day and although the lightbulb moment in the end is a good thing, it is a lot of deal with. I don't fancy my chances of getting any help from my doctor although they did at least accept I am gluten intolerant. I guess my case is a relatively mild one and NSAIDs would be appropriate but I can't take them anyway as they make me wheeze.


It would seem like it would be simple for me to go back on the low starch diet, except I have a tendency to low serotonin if I don't eat enough carbs. So at the moment I seem to be facing a choice between suicidal support from hell and sore all over, can't sleep due to shoulder discomfort and so on! It is good to know I have been on the right track going grain free and adding in probiotics, ferments and all that, and considering GAPs/ SCD.

Any advice welcome but I just very happy to connect here smile
_________________________
Symptomatic since 1996
Gluten free since 2008
Paleo since 2010
NSD since 2011

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#447910 - 07/24/11 04:46 PM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: Horsewoman]
naj Offline
Diamond_AS_Kicker

Registered: 10/04/07
Posts: 1725
Loc: U.S.A.
So nice to meet you and glad you found your way here.

I feel as though if you really *listen* to your body you can't go wrong.

Re: carbs and serotonin: me, too! radiantrecovery.com has helped me so much.

When you do paleo, do you eat meat, veggies, fruit and something like a sweet potato to give you that slow carb steady supply of energy?

In the NSD area there are lots of recipes, I hope this helps! Best wishes, keep posting.
_________________________
______________________
Jan
(naj)

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#447914 - 07/24/11 05:58 PM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: naj]
bobc Offline
Second_Degree_AS_Kicker

Registered: 05/09/06
Posts: 206
Loc: Broomfield, Colorado
Hi there,

One thing to remember is that neither NSD nor Paleo are "low carb" by definition. Lots of folks who are big in the Paleo scene are low-carb, but that doesn't mean you must follow in their steps.

You can get PLENTY of carbs from all of the safe fruit and veggies on the food list. Here are a few good ones:

Melons (cantelope/watermelon/honeydew)
Berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries)
Grapefruit
Oranges
Peaches
Pears
Pineapple
Plums
etc., etc.

I think you can get plenty of good carbs and still be on a nice version of the NSD.

Good luck!
_________________________
Get busy living! www.sickopportunity.com
Bob Connors

Me and my girls

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#447932 - 07/25/11 04:17 AM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: bobc]
Horsewoman Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 07/24/11
Posts: 128
Thanks. Yes I do know Radiant Recovery, I did it for 11 years. Problem is to not get depressed I need a good portion of something solidly starchy with each meal eg sweet potato, potato or rice. Things like carrots, squash, fruit etc don't help with the blues. But it is only cutting out the starches that fix the joint pain.

Well, I am not going to worry too much about that for now, I think the most important thing is to do the best I can to get a diagnosis. I've made an appointment with a GP at my practice who I know is the type who listens and is respectful.

Last time I saw the doctor about it I went with a myriad of symptoms as it was before I went off gluten. This time I am going to focus on only the joint pain and make sure I cover the important points like morning stiffness and the plantar fasciitis etc. If she does blood tests and again says everything is normal then I will be brave and ask her to refer me instead of nodding and smiling at the suggestion of depression and then not going back, like I did last time! That is reasonable I think? I don't have to accept the "your tests are normal so it must be psychological" line do I.

I've managed on my own with all my medical issues for years, so if I have to carry on like that then I know I can do it. But AS is not a game is it, and if I do have it then it would be best to at least be monitored properly if that is at all possible.


Edited by Horsewoman (07/25/11 04:19 AM)
_________________________
Symptomatic since 1996
Gluten free since 2008
Paleo since 2010
NSD since 2011

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#447937 - 07/25/11 07:57 AM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: Horsewoman]
jbirdus Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 04/30/08
Posts: 106
Loc: Kentucky, USA
My first symptom of AS was plantar fasciitis, back in 1998. Since then I've had bouts of terrible pain in about 20 different places, but PF is the one thing that keeps coming back over and over no matter how careful I am. If you had AS you would probably have had some lower back/sacrum pain at some point, but we are all different. It sounds like you need to try a different doctor to me. good luck!
_________________________
"Experience: the most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn." -CS Lewis

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#447953 - 07/25/11 11:28 AM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: jbirdus]
Horsewoman Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 07/24/11
Posts: 128
Hi, thanks, I did have lower back pain years ago, I put it down to pregnancy and being overweight, it was only when I started having soreness in other joints that I started to worry. I remember now I used to do back stretches in the morning as it was sore when I woke up. I guess a lot of women assume symptoms are down to pregnancies, carrying babies around, sleepless nights and so on!
_________________________
Symptomatic since 1996
Gluten free since 2008
Paleo since 2010
NSD since 2011

Top
#448031 - 07/25/11 11:42 PM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: Horsewoman]
SJLC Offline
Iron_AS_Kicker

Registered: 02/16/10
Posts: 1046
Loc: CA, USA
Originally Posted By: Horsewoman
Thanks. Yes I do know Radiant Recovery, I did it for 11 years. Problem is to not get depressed I need a good portion of something solidly starchy with each meal eg sweet potato, potato or rice. Things like carrots, squash, fruit etc don't help with the blues. But it is only cutting out the starches that fix the joint pain.


I guess the trick will be to find a balance between avoiding starch and generating enough serotonin. There are some foods that are low-starch or no-starch but still supposed to help serotonin levels, hopefully you are not super sensitive to starch (unlike bobc and myself) and can get away with eating enough of them to stave off depression:

* free range turkey
* nettle tea
* flaxseed
* walnuts
* avocado
* dark chocolate

http://www.muscle-health-fitness.com/foods-that-increase-serotonin.html

Of the above avocado and dark chocolate are most likely to contain enough starch to set people back, though some KA members do fine with them. I happen to have flaxseed every morning as hot cereal, due to its other benefit of having plenty of fiber, but flaxseed doesn't work for everyone either (some say it irritates their digestion).

Most teas don't have starch (except for any starch that leaches from tea bags, watch out for those) so the nettle tea sounds pretty promising (hopefully it doesn't taste terrible -- never had it myself).

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#448349 - 07/29/11 01:09 PM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: SJLC]
Horsewoman Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 07/24/11
Posts: 128
Thanks very much. I am all geared up to start in a weeks time when I get back from holiday. Thanks for the serotonin ideas, that's great. I am wondering if something like a ripe banana 3 hrs after a protein dinner would do the job. Will have to play around and see what works best. Fingers crossed I can make it work!
_________________________
Symptomatic since 1996
Gluten free since 2008
Paleo since 2010
NSD since 2011

Top
#448356 - 07/29/11 02:46 PM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: Horsewoman]
SJLC Offline
Iron_AS_Kicker

Registered: 02/16/10
Posts: 1046
Loc: CA, USA
I wouldn't try the banana as first choice; recommend it more as a last choice. Even ripe bananas still have some starch, enough that even people going low-starch (e.g. those following "IBS Low-starch Diet" book) have been avoiding them. Have heard more KA members getting away with some dark chocolate than with bananas, and I think dark chocolate has more pick-me-up value than a mushy banana.

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#448877 - 08/07/11 06:02 AM Re: New member considering low starch diet [Re: SJLC]
Horsewoman Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 07/24/11
Posts: 128
Thanks, I hold off on bananas for now then.

I made a start today, I am doing an SCD style intro to hopefully speed things up http://pecanbread.com/p/how/introdiet.html then am going onto standard low starch, also avoiding eggs, dairy, nightshades and nuts as in the paleo autoimmune diet. Once I am back to stable and pretty much pain free, I can experiment with those foods and see if I can tolerate them or not smile.

There's a thread on Mark's Daily Apple about using honey to raise serotonin (timed after a protein meal like the Serotonin Diet or Potatoes not Prozac, like I have had good success doing with starches), so I might try that once I am settled on the regular diet.

It's tricky to balance the different issues, but fingers crossed it will work, and the biggest thing- that I can stick to it and not get too depressed!

I'd very much recommend the GAPs and SCD books for anyone who wants to learn more about diet and gut flora smile. I was planning on doing a GAPs/ SCD style diet before I realised that starch was affecting my joints and that I had AS, because I thought my problems might be down to leaky gut from celiac (I thought my reaction to starches was intolerances to different grains etc). Which worked out well as I've spent lots of time gathering info on the subject already. Glad it turned out to be useful even if the theory I had at the time was wrong, or at least missing the main issue!
_________________________
Symptomatic since 1996
Gluten free since 2008
Paleo since 2010
NSD since 2011

Top
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