Hepatitis C Community
13.4k Members
Avatar universal

Paleo diet and HCV

Any thoughts on this?
20 Responses
Avatar universal
I don't know a lot about the diet, but I have heard from others that it is a very good diet. The only problem I see is that we are supposed to stay away from red meat. Apart from that, the wholesomeness of the food seems to be a big plus.
I would like to know more.
When I was undetected in my first round of trial drugs, I felt so good and though a 45 year vegetarian, I had such a craving for chicken. So I ate lots of very simply prepared organic chicken and some fruit and veggies with no desire for processed foods. It was great. When the virus returned, all that went too.
Anyway, if this turns out to be an inappropriate thread, I would appreciate a note on how you fare with it if you undertake the diet.
163305 tn?1333672171
If you have a healthy liver, it can't hurt.

The main problem is if you are cirrhotic, then you need to avoid red meat. A person with cirrhosis, needs to focus on how to keep protein up and avoid losing too much weight, keeping sodium levels low,  rather than simply following the latest diet.

The one person I know on it loves it. He also eats any kind of meat, will devour a plate of greasy bacon for breakfast, canned salted oily nuts, but won't go near bread. Not sure his version is what I'd call healthy, though he does eat lots of veggies too.

There is no question many people feel better avoiding wheat and dairy.

Personally, I wonder if the problem with wheat and dairy has more to do with how it is currently produced, ( GMO  wheat, for example) than the substance itself.

I don't think hepC cares so much what you eat but your liver does;
Avatar universal
This is a little convoluted.
Years ago I used to try to eat a "Pritickin" diet.  Back in the day, some called it cave man diet.  The diet and philosophy has changed a bit with the times.

I recently watched a few utubes on the Paleo diet, and it looked like it made some sense to me.  I couldn't find those, but I found something link of interesting in the paleo section.

First one out of the gate I clicked on came up on the screen; it appeared to be filmed in my home town.  The odd thing was that the reason i picked it was because it was about the effects of paleo diet on MS.

Since I have a sister in law with Lupus, a friend w/ MS and since most of us also have a chronic disease I was interested;  what type of effects does this type of diet have on a person with a chronic fatal disease?

Paleo diet helps cure MS

Anyway....... it is interesting, not proof, per se, but I think some of this may touch on HCV.  See what you think.

On a second note..... because I noticed it was from my home town, I thought I noticed the name as familiar.  Some of you may notice or be able to identify the name Zach Wahls.  I include a utube that has about 17 million views;



Avatar universal
OUTSTANDING! Thanks for that post.
Avatar universal
Thanks.  At the risk of getting too far off track, here is a little more info.  It sheds light on the concept of paleo diet.  Basically, we are an ecosystem.  We see that we can disrupt our intestines with antibiotics.  That is because we kill off some of the microbes that digest our food.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=gqDWyZej1_U  (about 4 minutes)

In a similar fashion, when we feed our bodies food deplete of nutrients, or feed it over processed, genetically modified food, food laced with pesticides, herbicides, or man made foods we end up harming that ecosystem.  When we knock out the microbes that digest our food, we may experience stomach upset.  There could be many many more consequences of the chain reactions we set up when we take some drugs, eat some foods or otherwise change the ecosystem that helps run our bodies.

(11 minutes)
(30 minutes)
In a sense, the idea of paleo is to eat as man did millions of years ago.
I personally do not believe that this would mean bacon, in spite of being meat, would not be considered a food.  The use of nitrates and current means of curing did not exist then

In a similar way....even the type of meat which we eat is still considered "meat" but the products are incredibly different than existed in past millenia.

We use different breeds, made made breeds: it is said that modern turkeys cannot even walk.  The food they eat is different; we feed cattle grain, after all.  We eat a man made construct of a cow or chicken raised on food that they never ate, given drugs that never existed untill recently, and lets see.....we make the animals eat food that they would never eat if given a chance.  Cows wouldn't normally eat chicken waste, wouldn't be fed ground carcasses of other animals or their waste.

The food we eat is so different that it is no wonder that there are so many new chronic health issues.  If we do not support our ecosystems it is a foregone conclusion that the end product..... out health....will be affected.

Eating a Macdonalds hamburger does not relate to eating protein, nor does eating bacon.  While perhaps it may be *protein*, it is not "paleo", if that makes sense.

163305 tn?1333672171
A note about those turkeys that can't walk, it isn't the feed.
When we were raising chickens we'd buy chicks sometimes from a hatchery. So we decided one year to try raising the commercial meat variety, the Hubbard. These chickens were bred to have large breasts, most people prefer chicken breasts. These birds grew so fast and were so heavy, they could get off the ground to fly up to roost at night. Even without feeding them commercial hormone laden food, they were messed up from the breeding.
We never raised them again.

I do wonder about eating like people did millions of years ago, seems to ignore the changes our bodies have gone through in adapting over the years.

I believe the best way to eat is as locally and organically grown  and as  fresh as possible. GMO's, pesticide and herbicide usage as well as  mono-cropping isn't good for the earth or for our bodies.
Avatar universal
Excellent and relevant posts.  

As to side effects - arthritis symptoms, neuropathic symptoms, swelling, psoriatic symptoms, fibromalgia-like symptoms - they respond and diminish with very healthy eating, and pop up and worsen when poor diet (fries, pizza, sugar, white bread, etc) is chosen.

One can't help but believe that a diet heavy on the dark fruits and veggies and green leafy items improves and strengthens the health of the liver, even the diseased liver.

So also does getting slim.  

Don't now about the greasy bacon, though!

"In Defense of Food", Michael Pollan.
Avatar universal
if you look at some of the links I posted there may be some support of post TX syndrome.  You'll note that I am not calling it interferon..... it may, it may not be, but part of the issue is that according to some of the information passed there is a growing sense that (to *way* oversimplify);
disease 1 + disease 2= synergistic disease #3.

One of the videos suggest that many of these co-morbidities are co-linked.  One also often sees that with HCV; diabetes, cyro, fibro, RA and more.

We seem to have all sorts of germs..... microbes in out bodies, indeed, our bodies depend upon them.   When we TX, we don't only treat ourselves......we treat our ecosystems within our bodies.  Anyway.... probably more the subject for a different thread.
Orphaned.... yes, we are in agreement, about the turkeys and more.  Watch "Food Inc" or "King Corn", or read "Fast Food Nation" or "Milk, the Deadly Poison" and one will understand that what we eat and drink is so very different from what even we had 50 years ago, much less 1 million years
Then look at what Monsanto has in store for us with genetically modified foods.  It is a bleak picture.


2065676 tn?1331426040
I began the Paleo Diet when I started my triple drug therapy with incivek. At week 9 did the ER run immediately followed by the mouth thrush. BTW, i do not eat bacon. Why? I think my system seriously missed the activia yogurt that I ate daily before Paleo or maybe it was the entire change on my system mixed with the meds of treatment. Whatever, My diet which was great before is now a mix of Paleo and a just regular healthy diet with some grains and a bit of dairy. Paleo has some killer recipes and lucky for me, I love to cook. The added protein on Paleo gave me a much more steady and continuous form of energy with far less dips. Was never comfortable with sharing this info after the outburst on this forum about my wheatgrass juicing. BTW OH, your comment to a poster yesterday or so about the benefits of beets to our liver really got me onto some exciting info on some websites that about me me go the garden this morning and hug my entire row of beets.   :)
Avatar universal
While this is but a small part of what the forum is about, I am delighted it has been discussed so well and so respectfully.
I am going to gradually become more proactive about what I consume. It is lovely having something one can do.
Made my day! Thanks y'all.
163305 tn?1333672171
I was never a beet lover but while sick with cirrhosis, I found a way to make them with grated ginger and drizzled olive oil, that I adored.
Mostly, I just juiced them.
Sometimes I wonder if my healthy diet, supplements and persistent walking, despite being so ill, spared me many of the side effects of ESLD.

Of course it could just be genetic.( My mom's 94 and eats junk. Her sister's 97 and still going.)

BTW: I always keep liquid acidophiles in the fridge, it works better than yogurt for me.
2065676 tn?1331426040
As always, appreciate your input. WOW, that is quite the bloodline, no pun intended that you come from. Special thanks!
Avatar universal
This suggests that our ancestors were not big meat eaters;

I hold no opinion, except that we often abuse the quantities which we eat, and that our foodstuffs are often tainted or diminished though breeding, through use of chemicals and drugs  while growing and through their processing.
2111792 tn?1342708227
I started the Paleo diet in March and have lost a total of 25 pounds.  My blood sugar and blood pressure have both dropped back into range. And, until I started treatment, I was feeling the best that I've felt in years.  I'm doing about 90% Paleo... I do love my yogurt... but I figure 90% is better than nothing.  Never really cared too much for red meat, but sure miss pasta.
Avatar universal
Similar to the Huff Post article is "Green for Life."  This "drink green smoothies" book has gotten rave reviews.  I read it, and the author discusses the "chimpanzee diet" which is about 50% fruit, 35% greens and blossoms, 10% pith (plant stems) and 5% Insects!

While the book is not very scientific and is more common sense, it is common sense.  

It and "Fat Sick and Nearly Dead" and "In Defense of Food" and years of my doctor ex-wife telling me: "I'm sorry, but a Junior Whopper with no fries really isn't eating healthy" finally sunk in.  I bought a Vita-Mix and a juicer and use both frequently and am MUCH the better for it.  

I believe it helps a lot with Hep C infection.  Just my opinion, but I have never in 20 years of having knowledge of my disease had my enzymes come back within normal limits except after I started focusing on a fruit and veggie diet with little or no cheese, factory or red meat, processed carbs, etc.  I now get regular tests and they have for the last year been only slightly elevated and have twice been WNL, including most recently.  It has been nothing short of stunning in my mind.

Once you feel your food utterly energize your bloodstream and / or induce goosebumps on your skin (yep, it happens), as opposed to weighing you down and making you sleepy, you've gotten on the right track and even if you don't stay on it all the time (as few of us can), you'll never forget how it's supposed to feel.  

I also confess to getting a sausage biscuit with gravy most Saturday mornings at my local farmers' market.  I mean, it's really really  good.  

2065676 tn?1331426040
I truly appreciate your nutritional sharing. Watched "Fat Sick and Nearly Dead" last week end and really enjoyed it. I absolutely get a boost from the juicing that I do and eat Paleo the best that i can on the triple meds. Any beef, chicken or bison that I consume is organic and truly range free. As in the movie, my food pyramid is largely fresh veggies and fruit. I agree that it is great to share this important subject especially while treating such a devastating disease as Hep C. In closing, I am only human and absolutely splurge now and then on something wonderfully bad for me......
1654058 tn?1407162666
I love your attitude 2mlbb. This does look like a great diet. I've always gone organic and leaned toward vegan. I truly believe that is how I got to ESLD without even knowing hep c was lurking. I ate to FEEL good. A diet low in processed foods and red meat is good for everyone, especially those with medical problems.
Alas - I love cheese and have got to have a steak occasionally, right?
Interesting about the turkeys. I try and buy free range chicken and bison when I can.
This new doc said that hep c/cirhossis patients need MORE protein to facilitate liver health. It's hard to eat that much yogurt and whey protein. He advocated meat proteins in moderation.
Thanks for the post. Our diet is so vital. Karen :)
163305 tn?1333672171
When I had ESLD I was told to eat lots of tofu and fish for protein.
Eggs and chicken are fine too. Just avoid the red meats.
Nuts are not easy to digest and neither is cheese.

Good luck.
Avatar universal
Nuts are  digestible if you soak them in water for 8-12 hours.
163305 tn?1333672171
I've heard that but never tried it. Does it change the taste ?
Have an Answer?
Top Hepatitis Answerers
317787 tn?1473362051
683231 tn?1467326617
Auburn, WA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Answer a few simple questions about your Hep C treatment journey.

Those who qualify may receive up to $100 for their time.
Explore More In Our Hep C Learning Center
image description
Learn about this treatable virus.
image description
Getting tested for this viral infection.
image description
3 key steps to getting on treatment.
image description
4 steps to getting on therapy.
image description
What you need to know about Hep C drugs.
image description
How the drugs might affect you.
image description
These tips may up your chances of a cure.
Popular Resources
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.
These common ADD/ADHD myths could already be hurting your child
This article will tell you more about strength training at home, giving you some options that require little to no equipment.
In You Can Prevent a Stroke, Dr. Joshua Yamamoto and Dr. Kristin Thomas help us understand what we can do to prevent a stroke.
Smoking substitute may not provide such a healthy swap, after all.