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#518806 - 07/02/18 12:48 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON

UPDATE

It's been awhile since I posted but I wanted to share that my 'weed and seed' protocol really seems to be working!! NSD is amazing for holding the line and getting early relief, but I'm now convinced that it needs to be combined with some kind of antibiotic therapy to achieve actual lasting improvement.  By doing both I've been able to 'graduate' from strict NSD to LSD without any increase in pain and stiffness.

After last posting about my very cheaty Christmas, where I ate copious amounts of starchy food and found myself back in daily pain, I have since done two more rounds of 'weed and seed' with some really positive outcomes:
  • My finger pain is 0 most days, and a scant 1 at most. Even when I occasionally eat something starchy, I don't go above 1. I also have no lingering joint pain. I can hardly believe it. 

  • My daily starch tolerance continues to improve. I'm able to eat more low starch foods without consequence than I could just six months ago: nuts, figs, dates, apples, dark chocolate are all staples again. I also eat a small amount of cheddar everyday now, which was unthinkable this time last year.

  • When I have a massive starch cheat (this week was pizza and donuts for a work thing) the impact is minor and short-lived. Some minor stiffness and bit of puffiness the next day or two. That's it. So I no longer worry about occasional big cheats.
However I am not cured. If I push it too far, as in too many  cheats in a short stretch, then my fingers swell up and the pain starts to linger. And if i keep going, then my tendons flare and my neck stiffness and headaches come back.

'Weed and seed' protocol

I've modified the protocol a bit in the last few rounds, from what I originally posted. During the 10-14 day weeding phase I now:
  • use more than one herbal antibiotic, so along with the berberine I take peppermint oil or caprylic acid or oregano oil to increase the killing power

  • consume small amounts of starch based on my new pet theory that bacteria that are active are easier to kill than starving ones that have gone dormant. (this is a big turnaround, I used to stay strict NSD....but it's just a pet theory)

  • keep taking a probiotic pill a day when it won't overlap with the herbal antibiotic
To be clear, I still regularly eat very low starch, I'm just not as strict as I had to be early on when even carrots would cause me pain. It's really nice to freely eat figs and apples and squash and dark chocolate again and I have no doubt that's all because of the protocol.
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
#518807 - 07/02/18 06:43 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Ann1965 Offline
New_Member

Registered: 06/17/18
Posts: 10
Hi, I love hearing this! I am doing a low/no starch diet the past 3 weeks and I feel amazing. I take Turmeric for the inflammation and pain. No wanting to go back on biologics after severe reactions to Humira. So glad to hear someone else is going the natural route.

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#518814 - 07/07/18 09:22 AM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON
Hi Ann! Welcome to the forum and to the diet! It has been a life changer for me. Happy to hear you're feeling so good after just 3 weeks. I too responded quickly when I started, definitely made sticking with it sooooo much easier.

I'm now at 1.5 years of the diet. I had experienced 8 months of increasing joint and tendon pain with no insight from modern medicine when I started. To get some relief from my diet within a week without any drugs felt miraculous. How about you....what's your story?
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
#518820 - 07/08/18 05:56 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Ann1965 Offline
New_Member

Registered: 06/17/18
Posts: 10
Is there a way to contact you by email?

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#518822 - 07/08/18 10:05 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Ann1965]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON
PM me anytime! It works just like email. I've had lots of side convos with people here that way and find it more convenient than email for me (my email is a business email). I will check back with the site more frequently.
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
#518840 - 07/16/18 11:49 AM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON
In keeping with the rest of my update, thought I would share the NSD survival strategies that have helped me get here:

1. Hardboiled eggs - My biggest and best discovery. I boil a dozen at a time to eat as breakfast, snacks or lunch. They are extremely portable, durable, and filling. I always, always keep these on hand. I dislike cold foods so I often warm them up in hot water.

2. Eating more fat Hitting 2000 calories every day was hard at first without starchy carbs and my weight dropped quickly. I quickly realized fat is key:
  • lots of olive oil to roast or sauté vegetables (asparagus, rutabaga, spinach, kale, zucchini, peppers, eggplant)
  • coconut milk in soups (see my Thai soup recipe in the recipe section) or pureed with  fruit and honey for smoothies
  • fatty cuts like beef blade, pork shoulder, ribs, chicken legs, lamb shanks, salmon belly, etc. - bonus: fatty cuts are usually also high in joint healing connective tissue
  • avocado
3. Quick and easy Eating no starch means preparing most meals. Having options that come together easily is essential. Here are my top quick and/or easy foods:
  • eggs, cooked any way (hardboiled, poached, scrambled with asparagus and salmon)
  • pork ribs - 7 hours on low in the slow cooker and they're perfection, the tastiest cut of pork and full of connective tissue and calories; I also save the broth for soups
  • tuna salad wrapped in romaine lettuce leaves
  • soups with broth and whatever veg and leftover meat is in the fridge (last night was pork broth, leftover ribs, kale, mushrooms and onion)
  • meat and two sides - a pork chop takes 5 minutes or less to cook, and with steamed broccoli and boiled carrots, dinner is ready in 15 minutes. Roasts take awhile but require little effort so I make them a lot in winter, with just a few minutes at the end to cook some veg. Sticking to 2 veg per meal is also a good way early on to figure out what you can/can't eat
5. Frozen fruit - many fruits can be starchy or sweet depending on how ripe they are, and it's especially tricky when they are out of season. I find frozen fruit reliably ripe, convenient, and much less expensive. I eat a lot of fruit to make up or the lack of other carbs, so this is a life saver. I mainly eat strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, sweet cherries and pineapple. I defrost ahead of time or heat on the stove in a bit of water for a quick dessert.

6. Lunches I always make enough dinner to have leftovers for lunch. It's that simple.

7. Eating out - This has been much easier than I thought it would be. I ask for more of the good veg in place of potatoes and rice. Most sandwiches and burgers and taste great without the bun. Worst case scenario I can have a salad with chicken and stick to the vinaigrette. The world is now used to low carbers so my requests don't seem strange.


Edited by Kellybells (07/16/18 11:51 AM)
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
#518901 - 07/31/18 10:35 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Robin_H Offline
Third_Degree_AS_Kicker

Registered: 09/13/15
Posts: 262
Loc: Central Canada
Kellybells, I am glad to hear that the low starch diet is working for you.

After returning to my home country of Canada at the end of June the jet lag combined with the challenge of controlling my diet when I do not have my own home sent me into a fast health decline.

Regardless of what my fundamental issue is -- autoimmunity and/or infectious disease -- I am going to get control of my diet ASAP.

Your good news keeps encouraging me to try and get better control of my starch AND sugar. I have not given it an honest, long-term effort for years.

Cheers!
Robin
_________________________
HLA-B27 neg, vague AS symptoms in 20s and early 30s
1993:fibromyalgia (age 25)
2013.07:Scratched by a sick cat
2013.08:Reverse blockage in a SCUBA accident
2013.09:Strange sore throat then meningitis
2014:Chronic inflammation at the base of the skull
2014 to early 2015:excess NSAID use developed complete axial inflammation, included psoriasis
NSD helped well and but was not perfect
2018.07: weak +'ve tests for borrelia, babesia, bartonella and mycoplasma pneumonia using Armin Lab, ANA=equivocal

Top
#518915 - 08/02/18 06:49 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON
Welcome home Robin H!

Good luck with the diet. Hopefully things will calm down and you can focus on staying on the wagon. I can definitely relate to hard it is.

For what it's worth, I don't actually have any issues with sugar, only starch. If you're having trouble avoiding both you might try focusing just on the starch, at least at first. I find my sweet foods help me stick to the harder parts of the diet.
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
#518916 - 08/02/18 10:22 PM Re: One year of NSD [Re: Kellybells]
MLR Offline
New_Member

Registered: 07/07/18
Posts: 18
Loc: Eastern Washington, USA
Thanks for posting your meal plans. This helps a lot with helping my son out with his diet. I'm curious about something. I was making cinnamon and ginger tea for him but we found out both contain starch. Turmeric also and yet you are able to tolerate them. I don't know what's up with that because they are all anti-inflammatory and I've noticed many take them. I'd like to know if anyone has had a problem on the NSD.

Lori

Top
#518922 - 08/03/18 10:46 AM Re: One year of NSD [Re: MLR]
Kellybells Offline
Journeyman_AS_Kicker

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 131
Loc: Toronto, ON
Turmeric, ginger, and cinnamon are all starchy and I avoided them very strictly - along with most spices - like black pepper, pumpkin spice, cloves, cumin, coriander - for a really, really long time. I can tolerate them now that I've been doing the 'weed and seed' protocol for over a year, though i still keep my intake low.

I'd be surprised if I included turmeric in a meal plan, unless I indicated it was low starch (not no starch). Long before I tried NSD I had tried turmeric for inflammation and found it made things worse not better. Wasn't til I learned about NSD that figured out why!

Other posters have reported success with curcumin extract, saying it doesn't test starchy with iodine.

And one poster shared a genius trick of blending ginger with water and then straining. If you let the liquid sit for a day, the starch will sink to the bottom and you can pour off the ginger extract. You can use this for tea.
_________________________
Suspected SpA. HLA B27, xray, u/sound, blood tests all -ve. Ancient history of plantar fasciitis, SI joint pain, knee arthritis. Recent history of tendinitis, neck pain, debilitating finger pain and stiffness (especially mornings). No diagnosis, no meds.

2010 - stopped eating dairy
2012 - stopped eating wheat
2014 - stopped eating all grains
Jan 2017 - discovered NSD - 98% improvement in symptoms, continually amazed by my results, wish I'd found kickAS sooner

Top
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