3 years vegan, constipation

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veganatheistexjew
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3 years vegan, constipation

Post by veganatheistexjew » Fri Jun 07, 2019 12:38 pm

I know this is an uncomfortable subject, but I really need help. This has reached the point where it makes it very hard for me to function in my daily life.
So here's the scoop, I've been vegan for 3 years, when I started I immediately began pooping easily 3-5 times a day with no effort. While before that I was pooping once every few days. So that was great.
But for the past few months I've been constipated. Don't poop every day, and when I do it doesn't come out easily and I feel it doesn't come out fully. I am often bloated and feel as if I am hungry but can't fit food into my stomach because I am constipated. I haven't changed my diet since I became vegan. Only moved to a different city recently, so maybe my water source has changed.
Some informationg about me:
- I eat a strict whole foods vegan diet (whole grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds)
- I drink loads of water (3-5 liters a day)
- I exercise every day (bicycle, running, calisthenics, HIIT)

It seems I am doing everything right, what could be the cause of my constipation? Anybody got ideas beyond the normal advice of fiber, hydration and exercise?

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Jebus
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Post by Jebus » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:14 pm

@DrDavid
How to become vegan in 4.5 hours:
1.Watch Forks over Knives (Health)
2.Watch Cowspiracy (Environment)
3. Watch Earthlings (Ethics)
Congratulations, unless you are a complete idiot you are now a vegan.

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EquALLity
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Post by EquALLity » Fri Jun 07, 2019 1:37 pm

Have you been to the doctor?
"I am not a Marxist." -Karl Marx

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brimstoneSalad
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Post by brimstoneSalad » Sat Jun 08, 2019 8:08 pm

You may have an underlying condition that going vegan initially treated, but that has become worse as you've gotten older. You may need a colonoscopy. Stress of moving may have set it off or it could be a coincidence, only a doctor (you'll probably need to see a specialist) would be able to tell you for sure

Like if you're genetically predisposed to heart disease, going vegan may give you more time on the clock and lessen your odds, but won't always be 100% if your genes are determined enough.

There are a few things you can try:
  • Prune Juice (a natural laxative)
  • Less natural (but very safe) OTC options like MiraLAX which is fine for long term use (most laxative medication doesn't work in the same way as other medication, since the whole principle is that your body doesn't absorb it; it's like swallowing a marble or something, it just goes right through. Even if you're hesitant to trust other medications that enter your bloodstream and affect you systemically, don't be too wary of laxatives).
  • Glycerine suppository (it works by drawing water into the colon and softening the stool), again it just goes in then right back out again.
These are all things you can rely on long term, and glycerine will be pretty much 100% guaranteed to fix the issue, but still try to see a doctor to rule out cancer or anything like that (not to scare you, but you just want to make sure).

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Post by Amarillyde » Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:25 am

You might have some underlying gut issue that was at the origin of your constipation even before going vegan. You should have your gut microbiome checked, and you want a specialist for that because most doctors are lagging behind on this.
Here are some examples of tests that you might be able to get for free from your doctor, too, if you mention them to them:
https://gojimanstore.myshopify.com/coll ... /test-kits
It's also the page of a vegan nutritionist specialised in gut issues who might be able to help if you get in touch. I don't know if any/which one of those tests I linked is appropriate specifically, but just to say that constipation is a common symptom of disfunctions in your gut microbiome, and there are tests that you can take and can give you a good amount of information before you have to even think to get a colonoscopy. You need to understand what's causing your problems, rather than trying to fix them blindly with drugs.

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brimstoneSalad
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Post by brimstoneSalad » Tue Jun 11, 2019 2:29 am

Amarillyde wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:25 am
You should have your gut microbiome checked, and you want a specialist for that because most doctors are lagging behind on this.
Aside from SIBO which is treated with antibiotics (and accepted by the mainstream), it's not so much mainstream medicine that is "lagging behind" on the microbiome as the science itself just isn't mature yet. Too many weak correlations, not a lot of evidence on interventions.

The best evidence is probably fecal enemas (good feces from a close relative donor), but few of the alt-med people are advocating that.
EDIT: While it has good evidence behind it, there are risks: https://www.fda.gov/vaccines-blood-biol ... us-adverse
Somebody recently died by receiving a transplant with antibiotic resistant bacteria.

You can do all of the tests you want, but if the science isn't there to interpret the results of those tests and prescribe evidence based treatment then all you're doing is wasting people's money and giving them false hope -- one of the most common harms of pseudoscience for its victims.
Amarillyde wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:25 am
It's also the page of a vegan nutritionist specialised in gut issues who might be able to help if you get in touch.
My understanding is that he claims to be a student, but is making bank as a snake oil salesman. I've heard quite a few things about him, most of them bad.
Amarillyde wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:25 am
You need to understand what's causing your problems, rather than trying to fix them blindly with drugs.
Science based medicine isn't blind, quite the contrary. It's the wild guessing on cause and treatments of pseudoscience that are blind and potentially very dangerous.

If you want to take some probiotics there's probably no harm in that and it might help (and that's what a doctor will tell you too), but beyond that any of the speculative approaches to treatment that alt-med offers are not wise when symptomatic treatment is very reliable and will give you a good quality of life... and without shooting somebody else's poop up your butt, which is pretty much the only other thing with actual evidence behind it.

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Amarillyde
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Post by Amarillyde » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am

You can do all of the tests you want, but if the science isn't there to interpret the results of those tests and prescribe evidence based treatment then all you're doing is wasting people's money and giving them false hope -- one of the most common harms of pseudoscience for its victims.
Amarillyde wrote: ↑Sun Jun 09, 2019 12:25 pm
It's also the page of a vegan nutritionist specialised in gut issues who might be able to help if you get in touch.
My understanding is that he claims to be a student, but is making bank as a snake oil salesman. I've heard quite a few things about him, most of them bad.
I do not know whether you have a degree in nutrition – the person I recommended does, and is no longer a student, but a certified nutritionist. And yes, he has a semi-popular youtube channel for which he gets regularly attacked by the carnist community – if you want to join them, go ahead, otherwise please indicate where are these "victims" you speak about. As for the people whom he helped, those are easy to find. Perhaps best not to speak ill of people without knowing much about them?
Testing the gut microbiome is not "pseudoscience", nor it is a blind approach, unlike taking drugs ad libitum to try to solve a problem whose cause is clearly not being addressed. As for the financial aspect, it's likely that some test can be taken for free, depending on the country, but some doctors might not be aware that such tests are useful, especially if you are hoping to get them from a GP. There is nothing dangerous in taking a stool test, or other non-invasive tests, and most people would certainly much rather do that, before going for a colonoscopy. It's hard to find vegan nutritionists out there, and it's simply ridiculous for you to trash professionists you evidently know nothing about, when they could be useful to the vegan community and help people who might have a very specific set of needs related to their uncommon diet.

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brimstoneSalad
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Post by brimstoneSalad » Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:35 pm

Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
the person I recommended does, and is no longer a student, but a certified nutritionist.
A nutritionist is not a registered dietitian, and there are pseudoscience based schools of nutrition just as there are in medicine (naturopaths, chiropractors, functional medicine). That really tells you nothing. The fact that he's all about the microbiome suggests he's coming from one of the pseudoscience schools.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
otherwise please indicate where are these "victims" you speak about.
Anybody who has bought a test from him and been conned out of hard earned money.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
As for the people whom he helped, those are easy to find.
You can also find people claiming to be helped by homeopathy even though it contains no active ingredients and it is impossible for it to have any effect beyond placebo.

If you want to stan for gojiman on anecdotes, that has a lot of implications for everything from homeopathy to christian science and faith healing.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
Perhaps best not to speak ill of people without knowing much about them?
I know he's promoting and profiting from pseudoscience, and in THIS context that's all I need to know.
He may be a good friend who helps you move flats and walks old ladies across the street, but in THIS sense he is a villain who is taking advantage of and profiting from desperate people, and even if it's not intentional and is based off delusions he has it's still harmful.

He's welcome to come here and argue the case for what he's doing not being pseudoscience, you've done a very poor job of making the argument if there is one.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
Testing the gut microbiome is not "pseudoscience", nor it is a blind approach
You understood nothing at all of what I said. :roll:

The tests may be legit in the sense that they'll tell you what microbes are in your feces and in what proportions, the problem is that data doesn't tell us anything that would help us make evidence based diagnoses and prescriptions. If it did, it would be mainstream medicine.

It's like if you were visually blind and I gave you a binary stream of a pixelated image of what's in front of you, technically you would have more information, but if you lack the knowledge or ability to interpret that information to prevent yourself from running into a wall then you are still blind.
That's what we're dealing with here with pro-testing pseudosciences like gojiman's microbiome stuff or the field of functional medicine.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
unlike taking drugs ad libitum to try to solve a problem whose cause is clearly not being addressed.
YOU DON'T KNOW THE CAUSE.
It's unknown. And gojiman can't help you figure it out with his dividing rod and tarot cards, no matter how many layers of scientific sounding jargon he piles on.

It's actually very likely that the medication will resolve the cause (as close to the root as possible) and can be weaned off of, but the OP should see a doctor to rule out anything more dangerous.

A lot of constipation is caused simply by loss of sensitivity. If somebody has a certain lifestyle or habit that leads to holding in stool, it can desensitize things down there and the problem can just get progressively worse and result in a large blockage around which small amounts of poop can leak.
That actually makes sense that the constipation originally went away after going vegan (because the fiber increased bulk and motility) but then came back again because the other lifestyle factors caught up again.

A few glycerine enemas can clear out the blockage, and a few months of laxative and regular enemas can allow sensitivity to return restoring normal bowel function after which the medication can be stopped.
In this case only addressing a root cause (like not going to the bathroom right away when you feel the urge) won't do anything because there's now a loss of sensitivity and blockage.

A specialist would likely tell the OP that much, but it's important that the OP rule out anything worse, even cancer.
Referring people to pseudoscience instead of evidence based medicine can delay treatment for life threatening conditions. You may very well be murdering people with your bad pseudoscience health advice.

Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
it's likely that some test can be taken for free, depending on the country, but some doctors might not be aware that such tests are useful, especially if you are hoping to get them from a GP.
Some countries will pay for all kinds of alt-med nonsense, doesn't mean it's credible.
Bernie Sanders' biggest accomplishment has been free pseudoscience for veterans. Just because idiot politicians decided it would be a good idea to pay for it doesn't mean it's based on evidence, and it doesn't mean it's not harmful.

If your doctor is "not aware" that those tests are useful, it's more likely that they simply are not useful, like how your doctor is also "not aware" of how garlic and lemon juice cure HIV -- because they don't.
When and if more evidence becomes available to help us interpret these tests and offer evidence based treatment to correct microbiome problems, doctors will very quickly embrace and recommend it.

Again, the OP should probably go to a specialist (if it's affordable, anyway). They're not going to be behind on the science, but they will know enough not to waste your time and money on pseudoscience.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
There is nothing dangerous in taking a stool test, or other non-invasive tests, and most people would certainly much rather do that, before going for a colonoscopy.
Failing to diagnose a life threatening disease is very dangerous. Even a delay in months pursuing other non-evidence-based options is a dangerous delay.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
It's hard to find vegan nutritionists out there,
"Nutritionists" have no credibility.
It's not hard at all to find vegan friendly and pro-vegan dietitians who don't have to be 100% vegan themselves to help you and respect your choices.
Amarillyde wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:50 am
and it's simply ridiculous for you to trash professionists you evidently know nothing about,
I don't need to know everything about him to know enough when it comes to this topic.
The very idea that these tests are useful seems to be fundamentally ignorant of how evolution works, but that's another issue.

That said, this is getting off topic. If you want to keep arguing about microbiome stuff and whether it's pseudoscience or not you should probably start a new thread about it. And again, you're welcome to bring gojiman here to argue the case (in the new thread, I don't want to totally derail this one).

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Amarillyde
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Post by Amarillyde » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:10 am

@brimstoneSalad I have never suggested that the OP should *not* see a doctor, please do not put words in my mouth as you did several times here above.
As for the rest, you are entitled to your, I am sure very informed, opinion, and the OP will be able to verify for her-/himself any of your claims, as much as looking into the person's page, channel, rumours, or whatever else they might like, and judge autonomously.
He's welcome to come here and argue the case for what he's doing not being pseudoscience, you've done a very poor job of making the argument if there is one.
Thank you for being, as usual, very kind. I'm not gojiman's PR and I have no interest in defending anybody's business. I really don't have the energy nor the time to fight you on the subject, especially because I'm not trying to convince anybody to do anything, just showing one possible way. I have a different impression about gojiman's content than you, and I'm confident that the OP will surely be able to look more into the whole matter if they want to. That was my advice, you disagree: good to know. Neither of us is a doctor, as long as the OP knows that, we're all good.

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brimstoneSalad
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Post by brimstoneSalad » Thu Jun 13, 2019 3:29 pm

Amarillyde wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:10 am
@brimstoneSalad I have never suggested that the OP should *not* see a doctor, please do not put words in my mouth as you did several times here above.
You have recommended alt-med and had some very disparaging remarks about doctors' ignorance clearly intended to shake the OP's confidence in mainstream medicine, and you've explicitly recommended seeking help from a non-doctor and explicitly recommended against mainstream medication. Your recommendations around doctors were couched in them being able to do the tests you want them to do for free, and the very strong implication was that if they do not then they are incompetent and the OP should go to gojiman for help and ignore their ignorant mainstream medicine prescriptions.

Intelligent design advocates aren't saying to not teach evolution either, but none the less what they're promoting is a waste of precious time and money in education systems. The bottom line is that when you waste time in medicine that can be very serious, and it can and does cost lives. You can't hide behind not having explicitly said some particular thing when the thrust of your argument was very negative about mainstream medication and carried an inordinate certainty that the issue is microbiome related. The implications were very clear to me, and I think anybody reading your post can see that.

Perhaps you did not mean it this way, but that's how it came across.

Any recommendations for treatment outside the mainstream should be explicitly framed as a last resort, not as something for patients to demand from doctors and regard them as ignorant if the doctor will not comply. The doctor almost always knows more than the patient, even if the patient read something on the internet... or saw a youtube video :roll:
This is actually a serious problem with a capitalist driven medical system (I'm generally pro-regulated-capitalism, but it works very poorly for medicine).

I have no problem with microbiome testing or whatever if the specialist (an actual specialist, aka a gastroenterologist, not a quack with a naturopathic nutrition certification) has actually recommended it rather than hesitantly caved to the demands of patients who will go elsewhere for fear of losing their business or worse the patients relying entirely on alt-med. I also have no problem with patients turning to the fringe when they have seen specialists and followed the recommended treatment course to no avail and have run out of evidence based options. The problem is when medication is being disparaged or fear mongered against and doctors are being discredited as ignorant for failing to accept interventions that aren't evidence based.

If you agree with all of that and your intention was not to promote microbiome testing or cast doubt on or discourage conventional constipation treatment then I apologize for misunderstanding your comments. I can only recommend you try to be more clear in the future to avoid such misunderstandings. I understand there's a language barrier here, so maybe that's all it is.

Do try to see this from my perspective though:
How would you react if a Scientologist dropped into the thread disparaging your advice as "blind" and claimed constipation was caused by disease thetans and that if your doctor won't prescribe a Scientology audit then your doctor is just ignorant of the science on E-meters?
Try looking at your original reply and thinking about how that comes across in light of what I've explained in this thread.

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