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Rebelle Engineer

Autoimmune Protocol, Endometriosis and Eliminating Eggs...

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I recently did my first whole30, and so have already eliminated a lot of things from my diet, some were easier than others - as I have quite severe reactions to nuts these were already excluded from my diet, and I actually have an even worse reaction to coconut (can't tell you how irritated I get reading all the recipes with coconut in them that I obviously can't make!) so can't eat these things anyway, plus I didn't really eat seeds (so no great loss there), and I've always hated legumes (just think they taste of nothing and I can't stand the texture) so had no desire to eat those anyway. But kicking the dairy, sugar and grains was tough!

 

Actually I totally disagree with the statement in 'It starts with food' that this program is not hard - as I said, some things were not hard to eliminate, but actually I quit smoking at the same time (which was hard as I was addicted) and I have had no dreams about smoking, but I did wake up more than once in a sweat feeling guilty that I had eaten a ton of sugary sweets - quitting sugar is definitely hard when you're addicted to it! 

 

But anyway, after further reading, I have also been thinking I should completely eliminate eggs from my diet, even though there is a part of me that really doesn't like this idea because it adds a bit more variety to the things I can cook to eat. In the book it suggests that for autoimmune conditions, eggs should be eliminated for at least 90 days. So I am wondering what is the reason for eliminating this food type for longer than 30 days? The book gives no explanation for why it should be 90 and not 30 days, and it doesn't seem to suggest eliminating any other foods for this length of time before reintroduction - so I'm a little confused! When I did the whole30 before Christmas, I was a bit overwhelmed with everything I could no longer eat, so decided not to eliminate eggs. In the first week I ate some tomatoes although after this I stopped eating any nightshades and I've continued with this as I'm yet to try those again, and towards the end of the 30 days when I was getting more used to things I could cook, I actually stopped buying eggs. 

 

After the 30 days I reintroduced dairy first which I'm quite sure I reacted to, and then some things which were not so definitive as they had multiple ingredients, but it was Christmas and I think I've done well so deserved a treat. I will not buy any more bad foods now, and I've mostly been eating whole 30 approved things over the holidays anyway (with the exception of a few treats), as I intend to continue with this diet over a much longer period and don't want to undo all my hard work.

 

I suffer very badly with endometriosis, which was actually the thing that kick-started my change in diet. I had read a book on nutrition for endometriosis which suggested that both wheat and bovine dairy are very likely to negatively affect endometriosis symptoms. So decided I had to try removing these things from my diet (and when I reintroduced dairy I did try goats yogurt before anything from a cow, although I unfortunately I seemed to react to this anyway). I didn't know much about paleo other than the fact it excluded some of the same things, so I asked a couple of friends who I knew had followed this diet, one of them found some internet articles on paleo and endometriosis, and my other friend suggested 'It Starts With Food' and 'Perfect Health Diet' as good books to read. But because my symptoms are intermittent (I'm not in pain every day and when I am the levels of this can vary) it will be very difficult to know if anything in the diet is helping unless I do it over a much longer period of time. I haven't read anything that suggests eggs may specifically have a negative impact on endometriosis, but obviously if I do have a reaction to them after eliminating for a period of time, then I would stop eating them. But just to find out if I have any immediate reactions to foods such as eggs, is it really necessary to cut these things out for longer than 30 days? I'd just like a bit of an explanation as to why is suggests 90 days for eggs and not for anything else.

 

So anyway I just hope someone can help.Thanks x

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A Mod will probably provide you with the best answer, but I'll take a guess.

 

I think this is specifically for folks with autoimmune issues.

 

If you have chronic inflammation, it can take a long time to go down and see the benefits and 30 days may not be enough for some people. I found out I can't tolerate gluten on my first Whole30 and it can take over 30 days for me to completely recover from a big "dose", sometimes longer if my digestion goes out of whack (which is why I don't eat it!).

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Yes I am trying to follow the Autoimmune Protocol because there is a link with endometriosis and a wide variety of autoimmune conditions (and I do have hay fever and allergies), plus it is also suspected that endometriosis itself could be an autoimmune condition (although not proven). Unfortunately the medical profession don't really know an awful lot about endometriosis, they don't know the cause of this disease, and they don't have a cure. I decided to change my diet out of desperation, I do not want further surgery as this doesn't really solve anything and just means I have to take more time off work (I'm a circus artist so really rely on my body working!) and most likely I'll get further into debt as a result (we might get free health care in the UK, so at least I can't rack up insane medical costs, but the government love to screw over sick people with the benefits system that should pay for their living expenses, I don't much want to end up homeless because I can't pay the rent, I'm self employed and a student, so I don't get sick pay, and I still haven't recovered financially from the last operations I have had). I have difficulty getting my head around how alternative medicine can do anything to help since there is no science to back that up, but at least there are scientific reasons that nutrition could help. But I'm just trying to understand the reason behind lengths of time to exclude things, if there is a good reason for excluding eggs for 90 days then maybe I should also be excluding other foods for this length of time. I am happy to try that, but I'd first like to know why before I exclude foods for more extended periods of time. Just hope one of the moderators or someone can give me a good scientific answer to that.

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The 90 day recommendation is based upon experience. Consultants who work with people with autoimmune conditions have learned by experience that 30 days of eliminating eggs is not enough time to sort things out. Dealing with autoimmune disorders is inconvenient to say the least. 

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I was searching on the internet yesterday, and in books, but nobody else I could find suggested excluding eggs for this long so I really wondered where this figure came from, and I think it should be explained better in the ISWF book, but I guess it's worth doing for 90 days just so I know for sure. I wasn't planning on eating any grains or dairy any time soon anyway (pretty sure I reacted to both when I reintroduced last week, although I might test again later to be really sure) although I guess I'm going to have to exclude everything else while I exclude eggs for 90 days, just to be really sure nothing else effects results when I reintroduce egg. :/

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Rebelle, here is an explanation (although brief) from Dr. Loren Cordain. He has references for this in his book, The Paleo Diet, if you want to read the actual studies.

 

http://thepaleodiet.blogspot.com/2010/01/paleo-diet-q-29-january-2010-update-on.html

 

Melissa

 

Thanks for this Melissa, I hadn't read that post yet. Really in-depth reply from Loren, if you scroll down a ways. Also here is the full text to one of his references, should be helpful:

http://cambridgefluids.com/action/displayFulltext?fromPage=online&type=6&fid=S000711450000026X&aid=879396&next=true&jid=BJN&volumeId=83&issueId=02&next=Y

 

Rebelle - 

 

Here is a really good, very in-depth study of chicken eggs:

http://www.proteomesci.com/content/9/1/7

 

Other intracellular proteins may have come from damaged, leaky cells of the epithelium lining the oviduct, or from organelles, such as lysosomes, which occur in egg white.

 

The 'damaged, leaky cells' is certainly relatable, right? It's also why egg allergies effect many people. Other 'things' (in this case, other proteins) go along for the ride, and into the bloodstream.

 

In eggs, you are specifically dealing with the egg white, which contains the protease inhibitor lysozyme.

 

Here is a 'leaky gut' website, which, in the comments, recommends a fiber cleanse of a 90 day length:

http://www.leakygut.co.uk/Dr%20Gilbere.htm

 

The 'Specific Carbohydrate Diet' is a 90 day plan, for autoimmune diseases, that is very similar to a paleo approach.

 

Dr. Mark Hyman also notes a 90 day approach, when referring to food allergies.

 

Here is a health clinic that also advises a 90 day approach, for food allergies:

http://www.indigohealthclinic.com/food-allergy-panel/

 

Not only is the '90 day' advice anecdotal, as posted above, but the science of re-balancing the bad and populating new, healthy, gut flora seems to point to longer than 30 days, especially in autoimmune cases.

 

I truly feel your pain, as my sister has Crohn's disease, and I'm also helping a client with lupus right now (Dr. Cordain has an excellent post on that subject, as well). It can be very tough to restrict foods (I've seen this in my sister especially) even when you know symptoms will worsen if you knowingly consume something.

 

That really is unfortunate about being allergic to coconut. I myself used to suffer from eczema (which paleo has completely cured!) and they will usually recommend a 90 day period of food elimination for that condition, as well.

 

Hopefully some of this helps :)

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