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red meat intollerance - is it real?

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Old 11-09-2005, 02:29 PM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Elaren HB User
Question red meat intollerance - is it real?

Before March I was a happy omnivore. Suddenly I started feeling very unwell after meals: bloating, severe dull stomach pains that lasted for hours, most often with vomiting and diarrhea. The ultrasound of my upper abdomen showed nothing unusual with any organs. Doctor diagnosed me with ulcer or gastris and I've been given 3 courses of different proton pump inhibitors, along with a typical diet free of hot ans spicy (my favourite!) foods, acids, alcohol, caffeine. None of these helped. Antacids also don't. I had a test for Helicobacer which came out negative.

I started dietary elimination and finally found out that any form of red meat triggers my episodes (birds and fish are fine, so is dairy). I gave up red meat for 6 months and had no trouble. But I have heavy periods which leave me iron defficient, and not being able to consume the best source of this element is a shame. I told the doctor about my finding, but she didn't take me seriously and I was given more PPI medication and was told to take it for months at least. I searched internet as well as medical literature (medline) for some information, but couldn't find anything useful. I know it's not a food allergy because I have no skin reaction and the severity of symptoms is proportional to the dose of red meat: after a thin slice of beef I have pain for only 3 hours, while when I ate a whole steak I spend the entire night on a loo with severe diarrhea and vomiting, burping out gas and unable to even assume other than upright position. It must be indigestion at the stomach level.

Considering sudden onset of my symptoms and no other accompanying health problems, I wonder if there are any other possible chronic infections that can cause inability to digest specifically red meat. What are the biochemical characteristics of mammalian flesh that differ it from other animal products?
Or is it possible that some new preservative is being added to all beef, pork, lamb, venison and kangaroo meats?

Yesterday I tried a slice of salami (oh, I miss it!) and got the pain again, so it's not gone after months of abstinence

Please help anyone who encountered similar problems or has heard of possible causes or cures (other than avoidance) for red meat intollerance. Thanks!

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Old 11-09-2005, 03:08 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2005
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WannaBeFreeToRoam HB UserWannaBeFreeToRoam HB UserWannaBeFreeToRoam HB User
Re: red meat intollerance - is it real?

Hi Elarin,

Have you gone to a gastroenterologist? They are the pros at digestive problems. If you have not had them yet, you need an upper endoscopy and a lower one too. This will tell you if it is anything really bad. I have gastritis, and other stomach problems, and take Nexium in the am, 1 hr., before eating or drinking. Then, if I need anything further, later in the day, I can take up to 4 Pepcid Completes and then if something else is needed, I can take a Zantac in the evening. Most of the time some or all of these work.

Try to limit, alcohol, caffeine, acidic foods, certain kinds of spice, and not too much fat. Like I cannot eat sausage or hot dogs (like your salami - is a sausage). I do not eat meat at night, only in the am and lunch. No, oranges, limes, lemons, tomatoes. When I do have meat, I only eat about 3 oz. Then, most of the time, I take a Prevacid as a preventative. You can get lots of iron, from whole grains (bread with at leave 3 mg fiber) and veges like spinach and such. You can also get iron fortified milk, bread and other foods. I cannot eat pork very much at all.

Just try sticking mainly to chicken and fish and shrimp and very little bits of beef, mixed with other things. Some people can eat nuts and seeds too. I can, but you may be different.

Hope you feel better soon. Anxiety will affect your digestion too.


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