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180 Degree Failures

Blog Forums Raising Metabolism 180 Degree Failures

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    Amy, I’m open to everything, but I have had negative experiences with most of it. Most practitioners within a particular “system” seem to have a very narrow understanding of anything that would actually be relevant.

    For example, I went to an acupuncturist a few years ago. I told him my diet (high-saturated fat, high-cholesterol, high-carb, high-protein, high-salt) and what I wanted help with (gaining weight and raising my blood pressure) and I could see his brain quietly imploding behind his eyes. The average expert’s (alternative and mainstream alike) theory of health is pathetically shallow when it comes to reckoning with my physiology.

    Call me biased, but if I am deficient in every essential mineral (as suggested by a hair test several months ago), sticking needles in my legs or taking a few drops of tiger tonic or something is not going to restore to me what is missing. I don’t think those therapies remotely approach the root cause of dysfunction; they’re just providing surface treatment of symptoms while the root cause goes unconsidered just like in the worst of Western medicine.


    You wrote:

    Try using very dark brown sugar on Oatmeal, toast with butter and a cup of low-fat yorgurt with Maple juice.
    That’ll make you go no problem.

    Correction: That’ll make *you* go no problem. You have no idea what will work for me. These are not unknown foods to me, or unknown food combinations. As I said, sugar constipates me. I have mixed results with grains, fats, and dairy. None are a panacea, whether taken together or separately. If it were that simple, this problem would have been solved twenty-five years ago and I wouldn’t be on this forum! :)

    • This reply was modified 10 years, 11 months ago by MikeJ.

    @MikeJ look into this product,

    I worked at a health food store for a number of years so I know about 1,000’s of supplements, and have tried many myself, as well as feedback from people.


    Dear Mike, Did you tried deep medical controls? If you are so decided to find an answer I advice you an integrated approach with all possible medical sciences. Deep blood test, eating intolerance, genetic controls, physiologic controls, neurologic controls, psychiatric or psycologic control (if you have some internal issue that you think could influence you in some degree), thiroyd control, and all others possible test in which I think some evidence could pop out :-). It could be also an ensemble of more problems that isolated are nothing but together can create all of your prolems. Perhaps you already thougt or did all of this, but perhaps no. :-) I hope you can find an answer and a solution! Good luck! :-)


    @MikeJ Yeah,I have no idea what to do about the edema,why it sometimes happens. Definitely was way worse when I also ate starch/grains.I sometimes try to not drink when I don’t have the edema,but I get so warm,thirsty and tired after a while and just like you mentioned I need to drink quite a lot,also with my meals, to keep digestion somewhat going despite using lots of salt.
    I have totally no idea anymore what’s happening with me,my metabolism,everything.

    Do you also find that your digestion/constipation greatly influences your mood/emotions/ways of thinking? I usually feel afterwards more positive,happy&less anxious when I’ve been able to poop.

    The Real Amy

    Mike, homeopathy doesn’t work that way. It’s all based on individual symptoms (which are pretty clear in your case), and is all about fixing the underlying imbalances. A good homeopath doesn’t really give dietary advice, unless there is a specific thing you’re supposed to avoid (like coffee) because it interferes with the remedy. Success def depends on the skill of the practitioner, though.

    I can understand your skepticism, and am not trying to convince you to do it, but just clearing up misconceptions.


    Mike j, you sound like you have some serious gut dysbiosis going on there and have for years. Your gut organisms may very well have been screwed since birth. I would get tested for celiac just to have the piece of mind to rule that out. You are most likely suffering from malnutrition. Your body may not be able to absorb nutrients properly no matter what or how you eat. The hair mineral test may point to that,although I myself am skeptical of their veracity, at least in how it relates to your day to day nutritional balance. In general I think they are another tool for nutritionists to hawk you supplements that you don’t need. Do you get acid reflux and bad stomach bloating? Do you take acid reducing meds? The meds can block nutrient absorption. Two short term constipation remedies for me are eating a big dark chocolate bar( 70% cocao or greater) or a big dose of liquid B vitamin complex. Again these are only short term and won’t work day after day but they have helped me out before. Your chronic constipation could also be due to an inability of your stomach to produce and utilize serotonin correctly. That’s why the dark chocolate helps, it boosts serotonin which causes the contractions to happen in your intestinal tract. My only other real piece of advice is to try to go on a mostly liquid high nutrition diet for a while. Make smoothies with green superfood powder, drink ensure or like products, anything to flood your body with the most easily absorbable nutrients and minerals. On a final note, you sound like you have a very stubborn problem and are reaching a point of desperation were you have tried everything and nothing has worked. Although everyone here has your best interest in mind and are trying to help the best they can, we may not be able to give you any answers that can help. Most people here that have thrown their metabolism s out of whack through extreme dieting still have ” normal” biological systems that can be brought back into line with some tweaking and sufficient caloric and nutritional intake. Others may have medical conditions that no amount of dietary manipulation will solve. Either way keep us posted and let us know if anything has helped.


    Also, I may have missed it in the posts but have you tried probiotics. I’m sure you have but I’ll throw it out there. The fact that you get yeast and fungal problems from to much fruit sounds like a serious problem in the gut micro flora. To much stress can also cause constipation. And nothing is more stressfull than being sick and not finding any good answers from the medical or alternative community. It can definitely help compound the problem. It did for me. Good luck!

    The Real Amy

    Just to add another suggestion, Mike, have you tried Triphala? It’s an ayurvedic herb specifically to repair the digestive tract, and has laxative properties, too. Never tried it, but someone else here on 180 did and raved about how it repaired her digestive system in short order.


    Sounds very frustrating. Have you tried getting on some good liver herbs and staying on them a while? All around I would consider digestion. You don’t seem to be benefitting for your food for some reason. I think dysbiosis is more of a symptom than a cause. If things higher up like the pancreas and liver, stomach acid.. Are working right bacteria should be right.

    Also, have you tracked your food intake? I know you say you’ve stuffed yourself but I e seen lots of people who thought they were eating a lot until they tracked and they found they were undereating. You want to eat about 500 calories over your current TDEE to gain.

    And hate to say it but, there could always be something genetic you simply cannot fix and can only manage.

    • This reply was modified 10 years, 11 months ago by Ashley.
    • This reply was modified 10 years, 11 months ago by Ashley.

    I know you are looking for metabolism-related solutions, but I’m wondering if you have been evaluated for megacolon or possibly Hirschsprung’s disease. Highly unlikely that you have that, but what you describe also sounds pretty unusual.


    Sorry to hear about your constipation.
    I cannot allow myself to become constipated (had hemorrhoid surgery back 20 years ago and so …) and so can’t imagine what it must be like to have bowels so slow to move.

    You mentioned that you have mineral deficency but you do not say what you are doing to correct that?

    Most all Americans are deficient in Magnesium, Iodine and other macro minerals but not Calcium. Calcium can be constipating so you may need to find foods that are lower in concentration of that so that the other minerals can actually work.

    Most folks can find the levels of Magnesium and Vitamin C to induce bowel movements on a nice regular basis. Finding the fine line between diarrhea and constipation can be a challenge.

    For me I know that I can easily take too much or too little and run into trouble (either constipated or diarrhea).

    Another option is to find a good – licensed Herbalist. When you can find a good one – they can help you with a few herbs that will get things ‘moving along’ and get you on a maintenance tea or powder to help your body heal and alleviate the constipation.

    Your symptoms do sound very consistent with lack of minerals especially as mentioned above magnesium, iodine, and a few others. You might want to take a look at the as many of the symptoms you list may be due to low iodine etc. Take a look, it can’t hurt.

    I was diagnosed Type 2 diabetic in 2000 but I have had symptoms of low thyroid function since 1976 after the birth of my first child. Adrenal fatigue symtoms too. Became overweight after being a 100 lb weakling most of my early life. Doctors always told me everything (all labs were normal – yeah right?)

    I’ve been working on repairing this body since 2000. Finally with adding Magnesium, Vitamin D (from sunshine or tanning in winter months), Vitamin C, Iodine and a few other minerals 3 years ago, and recently adding food (as per Matt Stones books just read in March 2013), my body temp has climbed to 97.7 from 94.9 (or lower).

    It has taken me nearly 3 years from the time I found the first holistic MD – online, that helped me figure out the Magnesium, Vit D, Vit C, Iodine to help stop the constipation and to start raising my temps.

    But once I read Matt’s books, I discovered I wasn’t eating enough food. I had been eating Low Carb for nearly 12 years and after the first 5 years of losing weight, I slowly started gaining weight. I was getting colder by the day, sleepy, no libido (poor husband). Finally, over the past 5-6 months, temps are climbing, energy is returning, libido too (happy husband).

    Mind you my diabetes blood sugar levels are higher now, but I’m sure my body is responding favorably to the increased food (starchy carbs) and over the next few months I expect to see my Type 2 diabetes correct itself. (I’ve always felt it was due to a Thyroid problem not an insulin problem – or maybe a combination of all three Thyroid, adrenal and pancreas).

    So, give the minerals and Vit C a chance. Find a herbalist. Once your bowels start moving you’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel. I know I did.
    Good Luck,


    VizzyC, thanks for the recommendation.

    Patch, thanks for the suggestion. I don’t like blood tests for two main reasons: 1) taking blood from the body depletes it of nutrients and energy, which mine is already deficient in; and 2) in the past, I have always been told my levels were “normal,” whether doing a full thyroid panel, sex hormone panel, blood sugar panel, etc.–when I clearly had serious problems in all those areas! But I have certainly tried these and a variety of other diagnostic approaches as well as a variety of therapeutic approaches over the last 4-5 years. I will continue experimenting with approaches that seem rational until I find what fixes me.

    Dutchie, over the past two years, I have worked very conscientiously at maintaining a positive attitude no matter what’s going on with my body. As such and for other reasons perhaps, I do not really experience significant mood swings that follow my digestive rhythms. However, when I have a good, overdue shit, I am generally elated right after. Not sure how much of the apparent feel-good chemicals are released because of the significance I mentally attach to the event vs. because of the physical relief from the event itself.


    Amy, I defer to your expertise on homeopathy. But if I am correct that it doesn’t operate by way of providing minerals and nutrients to the body in relative abundance, I am still fuzzy on how it accomplishes much for a depleted body. I guess in my conception, all “underlying imbalances,” whether hormonal, nutritive, etc. have as their root cause imbalances in mineral levels. So if homeopathy is not working at this level, in my mind, it’s not working at the root. But perhaps it exerts an effect on some other biochemical level that in turn modifies the body’s utilization and retention of certain minerals, thereby bringing balance?

    Also, thanks for the triphala suggestion. I have heard of it but have not tried it. I am weary of anything labeled as a “laxative,” as that term connotes to me forcing out of the body what the body has chosen to hold onto, presumably for some better reason. I think a distinction needs to be made between relieving constipation by supplying what the body truly needs to overcome it and relieving constipation by a kind of “remedial” (as in remedy) force, from which the body will actually become more depleted over time. Not saying which category triphala falls into, as I have yet to look into it seriously.


    Jdubs, you make some good points. Gut dysbiosis is a given after years of antibiotics and refined foods growing up. Probiotics-wise, I have been taking Primal Defense Ultra for the last year, which is a major help. I notice a difference going just one week without it.

    Malnutrition is also a given. The hair analysis and my basic symptoms show that clearly. Also, I am well aware that the usefulness of hair analysis depends on the skill and knowledge of the interpreter, that many people doing hair analysis probably have no idea how to translate this information into effective dietary and therapeutic recommendations, and that it is a newer field in which there is still much that is unknown. It is definitely far from as simple as: “the level of iron in your hair corresponds to the level of iron in your blood or in your tissues.” You could have high or low iron in your hair for any number of reasons, ranging from high intake with poor absorption, to normal intake but with too many iron antagonists, to adequate iron stores but inadequate copper, etc., and the same level on two tests could indicate two entirely different things. The necessary corrective measures will differ depending on the cause, and the establishment of the cause will depend on proper understanding of the whole picture of what’s going on in the body, not on some myopic look at just one factor. There’s great complexity and nuance to it, and where there’s complexity and nuance, there’s usually at least some usable truth.

    As for acid reflux, I never have that; I am on some other plane of metabolic dysfunction entirely.

    Serotonin is either the Second Coming or the anti-christ, depending on who you ask. Ray Peat’s theories on it make more sense to me, and seem to fit better with my experience. For example, bananas, which supposedly can greatly increase serotonin, seriously constipate me.

    I did the ultimate liquid diet three years ago: three quarts of raw milk and kefir every day for thirty-two days. My weight rose from 160 to 175 pounds, but it did not correct my constipation or my low libido, and I later lost the weight.

    Finally, I actually do not feel desperate at all, and probably feel as optimistic and fulfilled as I ever have on a regular basis. So many things are going well for me that simply do not belong on a nutrition forum, so what you see instead is a one-sided portrait of an ostensibly “doomed” creature. But it’s actually not that way at all–at least from my perspective!

    Plus, I have made some truly significant improvements with hair analysis and my own supplemental adjuncts (probiotics, magnesium oil, and more recently gelatin) over the past half-year, and if you read my original post carefully, you will see I was not even asking for help so much as posing an intellectual challenge to this community: if achieving health is only a matter of raising the metabolism, and raising the metabolism (besides obvious lifestyle factors) is as easy as just eating a bunch of food without restriction, how do you explain people like me for whom this approach plainly fails? That was my real question, and I would love to see Matt or anyone else try to grapple with it on a serious and thorough level.

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