Friday, February 25, 2011

Look Ma, No Bruises? Paleo Strikes Again

My karate partners reported something shocking. Both women were cautioned by their doctors about domestic violence, given helpline phone numbers, and information about the women's shelter. Why? Because their arms are covered with "defensive wounds", aka bruises from our karate class. Their doctors thought their husbands had been whuppin on them. If that wasn't so sadly all-too-common, it would be funny.

So now the big question is this: why, when my partners and I have been hitting each other, our forearms colliding a few hundred times per class, are my arms not covered by bruises? Why, when I leave class with them red and blotchy and starting to purple do they look like this just a few hours later?

The answer came when I was browsing though a Paleo eating forum (there's a forum for everything, isn't there) and someone posed the question: "Does anyone else notice that they don't bruise easily any more?"

Yeah, as a matter of fact, I noticed that. My arms and legs used to be covered with bruises all the time. And now they're not.
One person had this to say in response:
Another aspect of the paleo eating lifestyle is that the blood vessels, veins, capillaries slowly become more pliable and elastic. Thus when the body is abused, the veins and capillaries have some give and do not break as easily to leak blood under the skin.

Also the vascular system is not as rigid due to some microscopic removal of plaque that had been layed down before elimination of non paleo foods such as wheat and sugar. Also the vascular system has opened up a tiny, tiny bit thus allowing more blood to flow with less effort by the heart muscle.

The resulting increased flow of blood, the pliability and less rigid vascular system due to changing to a paleo eating lifestyle are aspects of why people are able to correct their high blood pressure with diet alone.
Now that may be speculation, but it sounds plausible to me. For sure, my body feels completely different. It heals faster, I don't have the stiffness of beginning arthritis in my fingers that I've had for the last couple of years. My muscles are barely sore after tough workouts, and now my bruises barely appear and then they're gone. All evidence that the paleo diet is effecting change on a deep and cellular level in my body.


JenniferLeah said...

very interesting. I have not been eating paleo long enough (~month)to notice this but I tend to bruise very easily. I will see if this changes :D

Liz in Seattle said...

I'm back on low carb/paleo too. I'll have to check that out. For me in TKD, it's shin bruises, although I've started using shin pads. I've definitely noticed reduced inflammation, psoriasis, and GI trouble. I shouldn't call this the paleo way of eating...should call it the Duh diet :-)