That’s a big part of it, too. I want to know what it’s like to not feel bloated and shitty every day for a little while
Food just tastes so much better also when you are not shovelling it in whilst trying not to gag!
I’m sure you will drop an inch or so from the waist just losing the bloat and stretched stomach.
Aye I’m thinking that’s exactly what’ll happen. Second day of eating zero carbs and there’s no bloating, no gas, nothing. Love it.
When I do go back to bulking I’m going to try doing it on way fewer carbs. Like waaaaaaaay fewer.
This is kinda what I’m going for here:
Diet seems to be going well in that I’m miserable and losing weight, so pretty much par for the course. Haven’t weighed myself this week but I’m down an inch around my waist, so I’m losing half an inch a week which is exactly where I want to be. Obliques are coming in nicely, so I think a couple more weeks - 3 at most - will get me exactly where I want to be. The plan for this diet was never to get shredded, just cut a little extra fluff and get my insulin sensitivity back, and so it seems to be working.
However! I have also decided to use this time to try and get my digestive health a little better. It’s not been terrible compared to other times in my past, but it’s just never quite where I want it to be. So I’m throwing a whole bunch of supplements at it to try and get it up to par. The main supps are:
I’ve dabbled with the betaine HCL before but never really stuck with it, but it could potentially be the missing ingredient in my gut health (which, although I’d be stoked to finally discover the key thing I’m missing, I’d be pretty mad at myself for not trying it sooner). According to Chris Kresser (even if you don’t like the paleo thing, there’s no denying that man’s a genius) it’s the number one, most important thing when it comes to digestive health. You guys probably remember the old recommendation that you start with 1 pill a meal and keep increasing until you feel a burning sensation, then you back off by a pill and keep going with that dose. That’s what I’m going to do, although I fully expect to get up to 5 pills per meal (which is the maximum you should ever go to) without the burning sensation as I did that in the past. Unlike my past experiences - this time I’ll keep going with the 5 pills rather than just thinking fuck it and stopping. Kresser says most people need to stay on betaine HCL for 3-6 months, so it’s looking like I’m going to end up swallowing about 800 billion of those capsules before I can start weaning myself off.
The interesting thing about the HCL is the fact that I’ve never used it could explain why every time I get my gut healthier, the dysfunction eventually comes back. Without adequte stomach acid you are more open to things like Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), and SIBO is one of the main causes of chronic digestive problems. So I get my shit healthy, but never get my system in place to keep it that way. I dunno; makes sense in my mind.
Probiotics are a funny one as you can actually make your shit worse by getting the wrong one, which, according to Kresser, I might have done. I’m going to keep going with the probiotic I bought as I figure it’s only a month and it can’t realistically do all that much harm, after which time I’m going to switch to a Soil Based Organism probiotic. They’re the mutt’s nuts, apparently. It’s actually pretty unlikely that the probiotic I’ve got is going to make me worse so I might not even need to switch, but if there’s a better option out there then why would I bother with anything else? I don’t know exactly how it works with probiotics in that I’m not sure if you need to stay on them long-term or if it’s just a case of restoring proper gut function and then coming off. I’ll need to look into it a little further, but realistically I’m a couple of months away from worrying about that.
Glutamine is essential for reducing inflammation and healing your gut, so I’m guzzling that down by the kilo. I’ve used it in the past and definitely noticed a benefit.
Obviously none of this will matter a fuck if I don’t keep my diet healthy, so I’ve been keeping away from all that greasy, flowery, delicious poison that’ll keep my gut flora all fucked up. This is why I always do a gut health protocol in tandem with a diet. I’m trying to be smart about my diet foods, too. For example I’m trying to eat low FODMAP foods where possible. I don’t actually know if I even have a problem with FODMAPS, but why risk it? There’s a lot of carrots, peppers and spinach in my life just now. Hopefully once I get my gut happy the ever-decreasing list of foods I can’t eat might shrink a little (come back, dairy. I miss you so much).
So that’s where I’m at just now. Congrats to anyone who read that magnum opus of a post!
Do you drink much coffee?
I was reading that recent article about Eddie halls weight lose where he mentions cutting out all coffee in the morning to help with his gut issues and weight lose, and replacing it with orange juice.
Apparently something about the enzyme called amylase that converts the hydrolysis of starch into sugars
Everything I have read seems state that they do in fact work but, only while you are on them. Might be why it is suggested to routinely eat fermented foods. They can get pricey so, I might have to start making my own damn sauerkraut, kimchi, and kefir.
I wonder if there really is anything that can restore gut biome especially since many people are put on antibiotics without a second thought.
Coffee fucks my stomach up too so I’ve given it the boot also. I didn’t know that about the Oj though so i’ll definitely check that out. Thanks for that.
I’ve heard similar, but, if my understanding is correct, you can kind of use them to prep yourself for things like sauerkraut. Like, if I was to munch a while load of sauerkraut now it’d have some pretty unpleasantly explosive results, but if I get my microbiome up to snuff with my protocol then my theory is that I can then switch out the probiotics for a small amount of sauerkraut eventually, and build from there.
The antibiotics thing is a bit scary. Apparently one course is enough to alter your biome permanently.
I read about pre-biotics as well - making sure the food is there for the pro-biotics. I used Inulin for a while, didn’t notice anything.
Wondering how you notice an improvement in insulin sensitivity?
I’m a little curious about that myself, to be honest. The theory goes you should have better pumps and be growing on fewer carbs. That’s kind of how I’m treating it; like a kind of caloric reset to take my calories down a bit so I can then start adding them in again later.
Potentially quite long, gut-health related post coming up…
So I’ve stopped dieting. I managed in a very short space of time to lose a couple of inches off my waist and sharpen up my abs a bit, so, given that was always the goal, I’m happy to bump the calories back up now and get back to growing.
BUT! Things have come to the surface, largely because I tried to do something new with this diet and for some reason I never seem to learn that anytime I try something different it never works as well as my established practices. Oh well.
So what usually happens when my diet is that I see a real improvement in my digestive health. This comes around from my diet being 100% chicken breast and salad leaves. Nothing hard to digest or inflammatory there, so a few weeks of that has my gut feeling sexy time. This year I tried to be more creative with my food choices and ended up eating a lot of really fibrous and/or high FODMAP foods, so, if anything, my gut health has actually gotten worse.
Case in point: yesterday I had some turkey breast for breakfast and felt fine. Lunch came around and I had some more turkey breast. Then I felt a little peckish and ate an apple. Within about half an hour I had really bad acid reflux, followed by a dash to the toilet a couple of hours later.
Now, I am of the opinion that any healthy man in his prime should be able to eat a fucking apple! But I can’t. I made it worse on myself by eating it on practically an empty stomach which apparently makes it way harder on your system, but who cares? I should still be able to eat a fucking apple. Undoubtedly.
So my diet (as of tomorrow - having a free day today. Mmmm bacon…) is going to be sort of a stripped-down version of the vertical diet. In other words lots of rice, steak and turkey. I know that Stan hates people using meats like turkey but I just really don’t like eating cold steak at work, so I’m not going to. I also know I can digest turkey just fine, so it’s a good choice for me.
The two steak meals I’ll eat per day (I eat 4x a day) will be grass-fed, hormone free steaks which should hopefully make them a little easier on my system. Probably the most controversial aspect of this is that, for the initial stages at least, I will be eating NO VEGGIES.
Look, I know, vegetables are really good for you and you need to eat them, and it’s not like I’m cutting them out forever, but I am having such a hard time digesting them just now that I need to concentrate on getting my system to a state where it can deal with them.
A day’s eating in the initial stages is going to look like this:
Breakfast - bone broth
Meal 1 - turkey and rice
Meal 2 - turkey and rice
Meal 3 - steak and rice (and maybe a fermented pickle depending on my gut)
Meal 4 - steak and rice (maybe a pickle here too)
I will do that for as long as it takes to get my gut nice and calm. Hopefully it won’t be longer than a month or two. The bitch is that the bone broth is really fucking expensive! Like £6 a day. It is what it is. When I’m consistently feeling good, then veggies will slowly come back in.
I will be continuing with the gut health supps, namely glutamine, betaine hcl, deglyccerryzed (or however you spell it) liquorice and probiotics. I will have to play it by ear with the fermented pickles as past attempts to eat fermented foods have ended badly, but I’m confident the fermented pickle will be easier to eat than sauerkraut (which is really fibrous).
So there we go. I’m expecting great things from the bone broth as it’s touted as a miracle cure for pretty much everything, but most especially your gut. Time will tell, I suppose.
I used to work with a guy who had some major inflammatory issues with food. Bone broth helped him a ton. His issue was gut permeability though.
That’s really interesting to hear. I’m fairly certain my gut has permeability issues along with a bunch of other stuff.
He tried a ton of stuff. I think he went super low carb and ditched any kind of processed food and that worked too.
Yeah choosing to keep the white rice in is a moderately controversial choice, but Stan Efferding reports all of his clients improving their digestion on his Vertical Diet and that includes a shitload of rice, so we’ll see.
White rice is pretty easy on the gut, no?
Aye but carbohydrate in general can feed bad bacteria in your gut, so ideally you’d drop carbs for a while.
I think different carbs contribute differently though. Like, refined sugar obviously being the worst and I think fructose is a pretty bad offender too.
Pretty sure apples have something like 13g of fructose per small Apple, if you’re eating a big fucker then that’s a pretty dead give away of why you reacted like that
I’ve read before starchy carbs help with the fact of how absorbent they are.
Have you tried any gut health prebiotic supplements?
Yeah they’re quite fibrous as well which could also contribute. To paraphrase something Chris Kresser said: fibre to an inflamed gut is like scraping a wire brush down the sides. But you’re right - fructose malabsorption is pretty common with leaky gut.
You mean stuff like inulin? I’ve read mixed reports on things like that. A lot of supplements of that ilk are quite FODMAP-y and kind hard to digest.
Fermented food supposedly acts as both pro-and prebiotic so I’m hoping that’ll cover all of those particular bases. I drank a kombucha the other day which I enjoyed and is also supposed to have the fermented food benefits, but honestly this whole bone broth and grass fed steak habit I’m starting is so fucking expensive that I can’t really justify adding a £2 a day Kombucha habit. I could make my own but who the fuck has the time?