I Haven't Felt This Good Since I Was Vegan!

Discussion in 'Testimonials' started by barefooter, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. barefooter

    barefooter Member

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    My journey into health research started around 4 years ago when I was convinced the vegan diet was the healthiest and I followed it strictly for six months. I later found I had believed a ton of lies, but I can never deny that I felt better than almost any point in my life during those six months away from animal products. Maybe it was a good detox coming off a SAD diet, or maybe I had a huge psychological boost from doing something I believed in. When I was vegan my anxiety and depression were greatly diminished, and I felt a sense of calm and optimism about life. I also slept very well and had lots of energy.

    Over the following years, going WAPF and then paleo, I never again found this same happiness. I figured it was just life circumstances, but since starting Peat two weeks ago, I'm beginning to think it was diet. I'm already beginning to feel that same sense of inner peace and optimism about life, and I'm sleeping better than I have in years. I realize the vegan diet would have been a disaster in the long run, but I'm wondering what commonalities it has with Peat that may have made me feel so much better. The two I'm immediately thinking of are high carb intake and low tryptophan. I should also note that I ate about as healthy as you can as a vegan--cooked all my own meals, lots of fruit, soaked grains/beans (mostly rice/lentils), cooked vegetables, good fats, etc.
     
  2. Swandattur

    Swandattur Member

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    What made you decide to stop the vegan diet? Did you start having health problems? Could you give more detail about your vegan diet? At first I got better on low carb and I lost weight, but then my allergies got worse again and other problems cropped up. On low carb I was probably avoiding quite a bit of stuff that was a problem for me such as starch. On the vegan diet, as you say, you were probably avoiding lots of bad stuff like food additives, and you were getting plenty of carbs. Which fats were you eating? Did you have any particular health problems when you started the vegan diet? There are people in India, I guess, who are traditionally vegan, or close. I suppose they do alright on the diet.
     
  3. kiran

    kiran Member

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    I'll just say that Indians tend to be usually vegetarian, not vegan. Most vegetarians here tend to eat milk and yogurt at the very least.
     
  4. OP
    barefooter

    barefooter Member

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    Lots of reading convinced me of the health benefits of eating animal products. I still was having some health issues, so I wanted to experiment. I also went travelling and lived on some farms, where it did not make sense to eat a vegan diet. My health never declined during my vegan experiment, but I became certain that it eventually would and that I could gain better health through the consumption of animal products. Unfortunately, my health has very slowly declined since than. Slow enough that I thought my increased anxiety and depression were more related to my situation than my diet. However, with the dramatic turnaround after starting Peat, I'm realizing my body has probably been starving for these nutrients for a long time.

    It's hard to remember specifically, so here's the best I can remember.
    Breakfast
    Loads of bananas, since I was dumpster diving at the time, and always had bunches and bunches of super ripe ones. Breakfast was usually a green smoothie with 3 or 4 bananas and some kind of raw greens. Maybe some nut milk, or soy milk before I learned it was horrible for me.

    Lunch
    Sprouted grain breads or tortillas. fruit, raw or cooked veggies, rice. maybe lentils or other beans

    Dinner
    I remember eating a lot of lentil soup with various vegetables. Rice, salads, other beans sometimes, rarely tofu, sometimes seitan.

    Snacks
    Can't really remember too well, but I'm guessing nuts, fruit, and some baked goods.

    Dessert
    non dairy ice cream, other sweets, etc.

    I used mostly olive oil. I wasn't as anti PUFA, but I knew about the dangers of vegetable oils and tried to avoid them. I'm sure I was still consuming a pretty good amount of PUFA. I don't think I had started coconut oil.

    Before starting I was about 30 lbs overweight and had issues with eczema and other skin issues, digestive issues (maybe IBS), anxiety (social and general), nail picking, depression. I was living a pretty good life, but just felt like I should be much healthier. Changing the diet really made me feel alive, and helped a lot with anxiety and skin issues. My digestive issues improved a bit, but were still a problem (probably way too much fiber).
     
  5. Swandattur

    Swandattur Member

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    barefooter, Thank you for the diet run down and other answers. For a vegan diet, yours was most probably healthier than the standard processed food diet. I've heard other people say a vegan diet improved their mood. I realize some of these improvements only last until lack of nutrients catches up, but I would wonder what about the vegan diet helps mood.

    Kiran, So, maybe there are really no traditional successful vegan diets? Maybe they were only traditional for one generation? :). By 'here,' do you mean the US?
     
  6. OP
    barefooter

    barefooter Member

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    In my case, I think it's likely an effect of toxins/allergens being removed from the diet, rather than increased nutrient supply. I also wonder if amino acid balance played any role. I was likely getting less of many nutrients, and likely would have ended up with problems down the road. Of course, there are many vegetarians and vegans that live off of junk food, not different than an omnivore.

    I'm pretty sure in "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration" Price talks about how he found no traditional culture living without animal products, and the healthier groups were the ones that ate a higher percentage of them.
     
  7. Swandattur

    Swandattur Member

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    I think low carb worked that way for me. It helped at first, because it got rid of allergens and irritants like starch (for me).
    Yes, I guess the fact that no culture thrived or even survived on a vegan diet ought to tell us something.
     
  8. Peata

    Peata Member

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    I went vegan for six months as well. Prior to that I was vegetarian. I did pretty well as a vegetarian, and it was generally pretty easy to do, as I still ate dairy. But I felt there was something missing in the health component as I was still getting acne as a vegetarian.

    When I went vegan I went all out. Lots of veggies, fruit, with some beans, lentils, quinoa, whole grain cereals and bread. But I was deep on the soy bandwagon. Soy milk daily, tofu shakes, tempeh, soy ice cream now and then for a treat. Even ate soybeans. I can't remember now, but I probably had peanut butter, some seeds, flax.... I used olive and vegetable oils.

    I also experienced the huge mood boost. Like you, I wonder if it was psychological or because I was eating more of something I should have, less of something I shouldn't. At first, my skin cleared of all acne and glowed. The red marks from previous acne were fading - something they never had done before. I was sleek and trim. Lost some body hair. The days were refreshing and glowing.

    You are lucky you quit when you did. It was right around six months of veganism when it all went down the tubes. The bliss was gone.

    I started breaking out in horrible acne. I felt tired -no energy. Depressed. Took to the couch. Cold. Obsessive thoughts, anxiety. As high as I was when I started veganism, I'd now sunk to the other end of the spectrum - as low as could be. Thinking I needed MORE soy isoflavones, I drank even more tofu shakes. Then when nothing helped, I started eliminating foods to try to get down to a basic diet that might stop the rampage of hormone. I was down to basically only a couple organic vegetables, a little rice and water.

    Finally I just ate some fried chicken and was done with the whole damn thing.

    Took years to get out from under the damage it did. Was left with deeper anxiety, less money from dermatologist visits (that never cured any acne), and ended up back on the Pill to control acne, but there was some scarring.

    The only other time I had any bliss feelings on a woe was when I did some IF. Now I know that wasn't a good thing for me, but at the time I thought it was the greatest thing in the world.

    RP eating definitely has improved my moods. Definitely have stable moods, bliss, better rational thought to defuse reactions, etc. The change in me is huge and more consistent and lasting because he has all the what, how and why laid out, I know what the foods are doing for me, and what is happening if my moods start to tank and what to do about it. I'm not damaging my hormones with soy or anti-thyroid foods, I'm healing them.
     
  9. Swandattur

    Swandattur Member

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    Yes, I sure like that about Peat. We have a whole toolbox of tools to work on our problems, and often if one doesn't work, another will. Also, we put on our Sherlock Holmes hats to track down our mysterious reactions and such. Or at least our Dr. Watson hats. Then if we get it all wrong, we can turn to Holmes (Peat).
     
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