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dairy issue

Blog Forums Raising Metabolism dairy issue

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    I added lots of dairy into my diet the last 2-3 weeks. And I also added more bread with butter and honey and refined foods instead of my previous diet which was lots of oats, sweet potato, quinoa, coconut milk, honey, maple syrup, dates, salt?It was eat for heat but on relatively healthy foods. My temperature has not improved and this last week I am starting to have insomnia which I haven’t had in a year. I actually went for these foods because I’ve gotten good results prior to the dairy change, lowering water content, eating dense foods. I was sleeping like a baby through the night 9pm-6:30am. It was a dream. Now I gained lots of weight in less than a month and am not sleeping well. And I have to go on a trip tomorrow. Upsetting since I feel strung out and sleep deprived ):

    • This topic was modified 10 years, 3 months ago by Christinam.
    • This topic was modified 10 years, 3 months ago by Christinam.

    Matt told me to try and push through it. I hope it works and I’m fine in a couple of weeks!!
    I have a lot of noise and judgements in my head about foods like white bread, sugar, cream?being foods that people eat who end up looking like honey boo boo’s family. They are heavy and don’t seem like they would ever go on a diet. How come their metabolism isn’t top notch?


    Hope you can push through it and see some light on the other side!

    My guess on the honey-boo-boo heavies? They aren’t listening to their body signals, and eat way past when they’re full. Their metabolisms might be fine, but they keep resetting their weight setpoint higher and higher.

    But… I could be wrong.


    I have been eating past my hunger signs. Sometimes I’m cold and not hungry at all. So I make myself eat to warm up.
    I tried to google june shannon diet history- honey bb’s mom and didn’t find much on a yoyo diet past. I would much prefer to eat when I’m hungry instead of eating large meals but that would not amount to that much food. I am really only hungry say 5x per day and eat between 1 and 3 fists. That’s not really eat for heat style in my mind.
    I wish Matt would take the time and answer this one.


    Matt said that Honey bbs family probably eats loads of PUFAs. Makes sense. I should have thought of that myself. I mean they eat all these packaged foods like chips and greasy treats that are full of canola oil etc.. It’s easy to throw eat for heat into one basket with a junk food diet. After all Matt recommends junk foods to a certain extend. But when you look at the details, you cannot go to the store and just buy any packaged item. The only thing I was buying that had sunflower oil was tortilla chips and he even said it would be great if I would make them myself with coconut oil, esp. if I eat them a lot. He also stresses not to become obsessed and to go out and eat whatever you like. But I must say, if Pufas have such bad effects, I will find the items on the menu with the lowest levels. But if i only eat out infrequently, I guess, it’s of no importance.

    • This reply was modified 10 years, 3 months ago by Christinam.


    I see that many issues have been brought up on this post, not just dairy. But I wanted to comment on the diary thing.

    Dairy is trouble for many with poor digestion and dare-I-say ‘leaky gut’ after chronic malnutrition. If you feel dairy is bothering you, you could always just go away from dairy for now, wait a few months eating everything else (and potentially supplementing some calcium citrate or malate to get calcium), and then retry dairy again later.

    On a personal note, milk was always fine and dandy for me (and every other dairy thing). After years of a low carb paleo thing, yogurts and raw milk were still totally ok for me. But, at some point, they all of a sudden were no good for me. My rosacea flared bad with dairy, digestion sucked–IBS type stuff, and I would get especially cold shortly after consuming it. This is one of the changes that alerted me to change my ways. So, I started to ‘recover’ and Eat The Food. But dairy still didn’t work for me. Not milk, not ice cream, not yogurt. So, I stopped all dairy and just ate whatever else (but I still ate cheese). After 4 months or so of Eating for Recovery, I tried yogurt and not only did it NOT bother me, but it actually seemed to HELP my digestion. I now eat ice cream and yogurt and they are cool with me.

    My personal point is to add one more anecdote to the pile of how dairy tolerance does often improve in time with recovery, even if dairy is a major issue while sick. I think I did better avoiding dairy for those first several months of recovery, but others think just forcing it works better. So consider both options and see how it goes.

    Keep us updated with your progress.


    Thank you for your input. I noticed the last couple of days that I seem to tolerate dairy better and am hopeful that I already am over the hill.
    I guess I’m taking the push through it approach


    Celtic, I looked back at your post and think I might need to scale back the dairy after all. I seem to have a histamine reaction to cheese. Why do you recommend calcium citrate?


    Hey Christinam,

    I think calcium in decently high amounts (1000-1500mg daily) is important. I know many people disagree with this. But many papers suggest how important it is to balance calcium with phosphorus. Since phosphorus is high in grains and beans (phosphorus from phytates) and from meats and eggs (and dairy), most American diets could do well to add calcium.

    I can’t find it now, but I have somewhere an old paper paper showing how dietary Calcium:Phosphorus ratio impacts metabolism greatly. The liver turns thyroid hormone T4 into t3 (activated thyroid hormone) when times are good, and deactivates T4 into reverse t3 (rt3) when times are bad. t3 speeds up metabolism, while rt3 slows it down. The study shows how, as long as the calcium:phoshorus ratio is >1.0, the liver increases T4 to t3 conversion, but when dietary calcium drops below dietary absorbable phosphorus, then the liver slows T4 to t3 conversion and increase rt3 creation.

    Of course, Danny Roddy has written about this a lot. I’m not sure about all his conclusions, but I agree calcium is important.

    There are many sources of calcium. Calcium Carbonate is the most common supplement and Danny Roddy, for instance, prefers this via egg shells. I am not a fan. This form of calcium is somewhat alkaline and can buffer (reduce) stomach acid which is bad news for somewhat already having issues. Tums, an ‘antacid’, is calcium carbonate.

    The more soluble the calcium is–up to a point–the better the absorption. Calcium dissolves well in organic acids, so calcium citrate (from citric acid) and malate (from malic acid) absorbs well. These forms of calcium are on par with dairy calcium for absorption. Calcium Citrate Malate (CCM, a patented combo calcium salt) absorbs perhaps a little better than diary calcium. Dissolving eggshells (calcium carbonate) into tomato juice or orange juice (for citric acid) should theoretically yield calcium citrate with released CO2 gas. I’ve tried this: it’s kind of like a tomato fizzy or orange fizzy.

    But calcium citrate supplements are likely easier. Trouble is, I have only found one without weird fillers or other stuff.

    GNC’s calcium citrate only has cellulose tablets, which I have done fine with.

    Calcium hydroxyapatite (a source similar to bones) dissolves ok. You can find that all over. Here is one:

    I prefer calcium citrate to this, since hydroxyapatite has a decent amount of phosphorus. Since balancing calcium and phosphorus is part of the point of supplementing calcium in the first place, I don’t like the hydroxyapatite version for meat and grain eaters.

    Those are my thoughts.


    Your take reminds me of something I read in Water Last’s book. I speaks of high calcium to phosphorous ratios being preferable in most cases. And in the section on hypoglycemia and sensitivity to sugar, he states that some of us don’t have a proper sugar metabolism and end up using alkaline materials like calcium to buffer the resulting acidity. He recommends a diet that stops this process. It is contrary to eat for heat since it rules out sugars incl. fruit, but one can freely eat gluten free grains, butter, coconut oil, veg, animal foods etc.. He mentions the symptoms of someone with this conditions, one of which is cold hands and feet, irregular menstruation, depression…, rather similar to a low metabolism. Well, he sais that this person produces acidity where a healthy individual does energy. I used to see myself in his description but it was just too hard for me to swear off of sweets entirely. I wonder if his approach paired with some of Matt’s ideas like drinking less, more salt and eating good amounts would produce superior results for some of us. Or, if this would just be another diet devoid of pleasure and too low carb to heal the metabolism. I’m interested in your take celtic. and anyone else’s of course (:


    Thanks, Christinam. I have read of acid/alkaline balance–though not the particular approach you mention–but I am not in agreement with it at this time.

    I personally think potassium, though important, is not a prime metabolic simulator like calcium. Let me explain.

    Humans, like any carnivore or omnivore, must have a body that is metabolically flexible to be able to push through short famines without dying, but also be able to turn on the growth switch after meals to renew tissues and grow. One of the ways the body ‘senses’ this is by the flux of nutrients through the blood and hepatic (liver) circulation. If you are fasting, muscles are being broken down into muscle-meat amino acids and phosphorus and your liver is using the amino acids to make glucose and the phosphorus is mostly excreted. It would be foolish to ramp up the metabolism in a time of fasting and metabolic breakdown, so muscle meat amino acids and phosphates help signal to the body to slow the metabolism. Since potassium is mostly an INTRA-cellular ion, potassium increases in times of catabolism.

    Some say too much dietary muscle meat is therefore metabolically damaging, and I agree. If a hunter-gatherer killed a buffalo, and ate of it, there would be more than an increase in muscle meat pouring in from the meal; there would also be collagen amino acids from the bones and skin cooked in the cauldron, and there would be calcium from the bone broths. There may also be carbs if the humans ate some sugar or starch along with the meat, and the pot may be seasoned with salt or cooked in sea water.

    Thus, the distinguishing features of a meat meal versus fasting catabolism are the balance of amino acids (collagen aminos IN ADDITION TO muscle meat aminos), and calcium from the bones. Carbohydrates and sodium from the meal would also help signal to the body that a meal was eaten, since carbs and sodium are not speedily broken down by any tissues during fasting.

    In summary, calcium, glycine (collagen), carbs, and sodium help the body distinguish between having just eaten a meal with nutrients to help rebuild the body (the ‘GO’ signal) versus a time of fasting with an out-pour of muscle meat aminos, phosphorus, and potassium.

    Based on this approach, the following ratios are important to help promote a ‘growth’ metabolism:

    Calcium : Phosphorus
    Carbs : Protein (generally)
    Glycine (Collagen) : Muscle Meat
    Sodium : Potassium

    Looking through this lens, eating too much potassium in a meal without a proper balance of sodium could be slowing to the metabolism. This is where, I think, the ‘alkaline’ focus loses (and where vegans suffer). Of course, our bodies need potassium and phosphorus and protein. But having salt with your fruit and tubers, and calcium and collagen with your meats and proteins will help ‘tell’ the body a meal was just eaten, and now it is time to grow. Otherwise, the body may go on presuming its is still fasting and continue to increase the stress hormones.

    My $0.02.


    I want to thank you guys as this was a very educational thread to follow. I too started eating dairy and gluten after a fairly solid, though not entirely strict (2.5 years) absence from them. I have noticed some benefits namely a bump in temps by a degree or two and my hands and feet are definitely more consistently warm. I also have been playing around with more salt and less liquid, so it is hard to say exactly which is causing the shift, likely the combo. I haven’t noticed big issues with the dairy and gluten in terms of how I feel but I do think that my body reacts in an allergic manner. I say this because I have noticed that those lovely water bags under my eyes are worse with increased dairy/gluten consumption. I actually feel better as a whole, better energy, no horrible digestive challenges, but look kind of hellish. So this tells me my body is not quite there with using these two foods as often as I am and that I should maybe slow it down or trying again later.

    Or is it a water balance thing? That is what I am trying to decipher. I started doing the less liquid more salt quite a while before I reintroduced dairy/gluten and didn’t see increased bags under my eyes until dairy/gluten came into the equation. Any thoughts, ideas or opinions on this would be appreciated. Also, what do you think about anit-histamines and their impact on water balance. Is it correct that histamine plays a role in water balance in the body and if so, what would taking antihistamines do to that balance?



    I think the bags under the eyes are parallel with ‘extra-vasation’ of fluid anywhere, such as when people get swollen feet on a plane or after a long day on your feet. Factors ‘causing’ and/or promoting this include:

    ***Weak capillaries (due to prolonged elevation of catabolic hormones, and or nutrient deficiencies)
    ***Immune differentiation/expansion within lymph tissue (due to dietary or air-borne toxins, often exacerbated if not outright triggered by absorbed bacterial endotoxin)
    ***Slowed lymphatic drainage and re-uptake of extracellular fluids (due to poor overall metabolism and/or low activity)
    ***5 trillion other things.

    In my own experience, fasting and/or low carbing would make this go away short term, and it would come right back upon eating carbs. But the more I consistently ate carbs the better it got; and the longer I consistently went without carbs, the worse it got. So, gut flora problems, stress hormones, and so on obviously play a role.

    As far as histamine, I think histamine is one player in a large cascade of things, and it is often overemphasized. That said, anit-histamines (pharmaceutical or other) often seem to help people a lot in the short term, so clearly there is something to it. Histamines are needed for the migration of immune cells out of the blood into the lymph and/or extra-cellular space, which pulls fluid with it via osmosis and results in swelling. So anti-histamines will reduce swelling and congestion (and even reduce air way constriction in an acute allergy/asthma response). But histamine is also needed for gastric acid secretion, gastric motility, and differentiation of immune cells; thus, long-term anti-histamines will screw up digestion and immune cell refinement which could lead to autoimmune conditions in the worst cases.

    Of course, there is a difference between lowering ?already-excessive? levels of histamine versus lowering ‘normal levels’ of histamine. Various nutrient deficiencies and/or other hormonal imbalances can cause exaggerated histamine responses.

    Some factors controlling this include:

    Thiamin (vit. B1):



    The point here is that everything influences everything and besides correcting nutrient deficiencies, I wouldn’t mess with anti-histamines for long term therapy. I think the increased swelling in your case is due to the digestive disagreements you are experiencing from dairy and/or gluten. You could try avoiding these for now and then re-check your response every so often. Or you could try plowing through. I personally think endotoxin and intestinal issues are not worth playing around with, so I would pick the ‘avoid now, check again later’ approach, but others have done well doing differently. But you may only be reacting to dairy OR gluten, so don’t automatically throw both out. And if you do avoid these, I would recommend MAKING SURE you get your calories and nutrients from elsewhere; many people spontaneously cut food intake restrictive diets.

    And keep us updated on how it goes.


    woops! correction. that would be a tenth of a degree or two (from 97.7/97.8 to 98.0/98.1), not a full degree. That’d be awesome!



    Thanks again for a very thorough response. I would love to have your brain.

    All three of these reasons for puffy eyse make so much sense to me as I first noticed them right after training for and running a marathon. I am guessing that I basically greatly lowered my metabolism during the training/marathon process and that of course caused the cascade of effects that we know to result in impaired digestion, increased endotoxin so on and so on. To make matters worse several years later I hiked for 5+ months straight (on the PCT) and took antihistamines much of the time I was out hiking. So not only was I damaging my metabolism because there was no way in hell I could keep up with my daily caloric demand while hiking, but I was exaggerating the effects of a lowered metabolism on digestion by taking antihistamines! Damn! I have had this hunch for a while now and you just helped me connect the dots. Thank you!

    Funny enough when I first returned from my hike I eliminated gluten in a desperate attempt to figure out the mental/physical hell I suddenly found myself in. The past 2.5 years I have been convinced that gluten makes me a crazy woman. Then I got to my fukitol stage very recently and decided to give it a go. It hasn’t made me crazy emotional like it seemed to in the past. In fact, my mood has been more steady and even than it has been in a long while. Gee that seems to coincide with a bump in metabolism. Anyway, I still agree with you, it’s better to be safe than suffer the negative impacts of endotoxin. I am going to back off of the gluten and play around with dairy and see. Dairy never seemed to affect me as badly as gluten so I may be better able to handle it.

    Thanks again for all your helpful information!

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