Observing Myself Get Fucktarded: Eating Crappy For a Month

I didn’t set out to do an experiment and in fact, it’s not even as poorly controlled as are most of my haphazard hacks. So, rather than call it a “self experiment,” I think I’m going with: “observing myself get fucktarded.” Deal?

I just fell into it. Around the last week or two of July, in the midst of moving to where I’d be living in three places at various times, I migrated into two things of import:

  1. Stopped cooking (many reasons, including selling my gas range). So, mostly restaurant, take-out, some fast food—but I tried to keep it real. So, for example, in Fat Head style: burger and drink, hold the fries usually.
  2. Was taking zero supplements, including PS (or any other RS or fermentable fiber supplementally), and zero probiotics from either my recommended stash or dairy-based.
  3. Neither sought ought gluten grain products, nor avoided them when they were around.

But, I was also pretty physically active, and it ended up that I was feeling great, and so at a point, I thought: why not continue this season of debauchery and see where it takes me?


  1. I had diminished appetite almost all the time. It was actually weirdly uncharacteristic. Whereas, I could always finish a burger, fries and drink meal, I was leaving a few bites and sometimes even more of just the burger.
  2. I lost weight—about 8 pounds in 3-4 weeks. I’m not really ready yet to go into what I think I know in terms of long-term weight loss using RS (see my post here, see Grace’s recent post here), but since this began about 18 months ago, I’ve knocked off about 15 pounds or so in total, with 8 of them in the last month on no supplemental RS.
  3. Kinda roller coaster in terms of going from fucking awesome sleep to crap no sleep; and as well, going from a euphoric state of well being to having a deep understanding of Robin Williams’ plight (a little hyperbole for the masses, there).

But here’s the real kicker and it just began a couple of days ago, and has intensified: I’m back to having mildly chronic nasal congestion, itching, sneezing, runny nose and drip.

SO, I’m headed back to the regular routine, starting today. Just can’t tolerate the nose crap. But the appetite and weight loss are mystifying to me and I tried not even one little bit. If anything, I tried to not try.

‘Splain it to me.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. eddie on August 21, 2014 at 09:15

    Your yeast has come back..and having fun
    Hows your toe nails…….

    • Richard Nikoley on August 21, 2014 at 11:22

      Toe and fingernails always great. I have blogged about this.

      Once I began supplementing K2 MK-4, they became thick tools.

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 11:55

      NO NEED 🙂 buddy

      your—- foie gras turns out to be the richest known source of K2.

  2. Gina on August 21, 2014 at 10:08

    Seth Roberts would probably say that eating foods that you were unaccustomed to resulted in diminished appetite and concomitant weight loss – the “crazy spicing” version of his Shangri-la Diet. Since junk food has a strong calorie-flavor association, this theory would predict that the diminished appetite wouldn’t continue much longer.

    Man, I miss that guy.

    • Regina on August 21, 2014 at 10:21

      On the interview you did yesterday (I believe), you said you suspected the bad oils were the numero uno culprits. I agree with you. And Paul Jaminet calls them liquid poisons.
      I feel awful after take-out food anymore. I taste the nasty oil immediately.
      Try to stay the course; even when life gets chaotic as in moving.

  3. Ray on August 21, 2014 at 10:53

    Richard- its funny I get in fights with my girlfriend because I just hate eating out. I can cook better than most places IMO and I can control what goes in. Also, You mentioned your nasal issues…I use Nasonex everyday and it has solved every sinus issue Ive had for the past year in case you wanted to try that route. Good luck

    • Amy L.H. on August 21, 2014 at 11:04

      Ray, +1 on Nasonex.

      I am hesitant to use lots of medication but I have chronic sinus infections, like 8-10 a year, and they were really affecting my quality of life. I’ve gone to see numerous specialists and was referred for allergy testing. The allergist is the one who gave me the Nasonex, and for the first time in a long time I feel free. No congestion, no drip, no sore throat or cough. My allergies bother me less and less each day. It’s a scrip I’ll gladly keep filling.

    • Richard Nikoley on August 21, 2014 at 11:26

      Is Nasonex just another brand name for what was Beconaise, then Flonaise?

      Used those everyday for more than a decade. As I understand, nasal steroid with no side effects.

      Paleo got me off of them, and I’d just use OTC Afrin now & then.

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 12:02

      Give the seagate olive leaf spray or nutribiotic nasal sprays …..a try,, ( look them up)

      the afrin is good to shrink membranes if you have a bloody nose( instantly will stop one) not good to use alot..

      the steroids are reducing the inflammation– try the above to remove the cause.. they work

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 12:11

      I always to to—-the 90’s

      Beware: Sinusitis is Often Misdiagnosed

      The problem with sinus issues is that that they’re very easily misdiagnosed. Sinus problems and post-nasal drip can actually be a tip-off that you’re being affected by mold or fungi.

      In fact, research done by the Mayo Clinic in the 1990s that strongly suggests NEARLY ALL chronic sinusitis is caused by fungi, but blamed on bacteria—then mistreated using antibiotics. The findings were published in 1999 in two peer-reviewed journals, Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and Mayo Clinic Proceedings.iii Yet, most physicians are still unaware of this study, or at least of its significance. A 1999 Mayo Clinic press releaseiv stated:

      “Mayo Clinic researchers say they have found the cause of most chronic sinus infections—an immune system response to fungus.

      The Mayo Clinic study suggests that 96 percent of the people who suffer from chronic sinusitis are “fungal sensitized,” meaning they have immune responses triggered by inhaled fungal organisms! This explains why antibiotics are so ineffective for chronic sinusitis as they target bacteria, NOT fungi. Antibiotics and steroids can actually worsen fungal-related infections by destroying your body’s natural biological terrain, creating an internal incubation ground for further fungal growth.

      The bottom line is, if you have chronic sinusitis, you MUST approach it from the perspective of a fungal infection FIRST, not a bacterial infection, even if it means having to educate your healthcare provider. A good place to start is by sharing the Mayo Clinic study referenced above. The book, Mold: The War Withinv is also a useful resource.

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 12:19

      steriod inhalers feed fungus—and lower inflammation at the same time—-a back and forth cycle

    • Amy L.H. on August 21, 2014 at 12:21

      eddie, my allergy skin test showed me very allergic to pretty much every tree and grass out there, and to molds/fungi. Luckily my house is pretty dry and we don’t have an obscene mold issue, but Lord! mold is everywhere and we are always inhaling it, aren’t we?

      I’ll check out the study when I have some time to read it later, and the book – thanks for them.

      Meantime, I’ll stick to my Nasonex. And my neti pot, which also helps especially when I’m having a bad episode. Been high and dry here lately, but rain is coming and that’s usually when I get bad (hmmm…rain, moisture, mold’s preferred environment…connection?)

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 15:55

      if you find it to stop working in 6 months to a year…. its still just a steroid (mometasone furoate monohydrate)

      If it works , it works different strokes for folks– 8 years has got to suck for nasal drip.. GOOD something is working right now for you

      If it stops — look up the two above( seagate and the other (steriods feed FUNGUS)

    • eddie on August 21, 2014 at 16:00

      you ll find no ENT, GI or regular doc would even look at fungus /yeast or yet talk about it…..

      Its never a problem in there eyes always 100 percent bacteria

    • james london on August 22, 2014 at 03:07

      Eddie I’m in the process of weaning myself off a steroid inhaler (was on for mild asthma that I believe was due to mercury) because I think it was responsible for more of my symptoms than anything else (especially mental ones – google “JD Moyer asthma” he found this too; but also endless post-nasal drip) and certainly more than it cured.

      But I’m curious about Seagate olive leaf spray which I remember you mentioned before, because it’s described as “homeopathic” – I can’t really tell from their website what it means in this case – does it contain non-existent quantities of things or is it something else in this case? I think homeopathy is nonsense but would consider a product that has active ingredients in meaningful quantities.

    • JCB on August 22, 2014 at 03:12

      Wasn’t this study discredited because there wasn’t a control condition looking at the rate of fungi in non-sinusitis controls?

      I remember looking at this a while back (I also have chronic sinusitis).

    • Douglas on August 22, 2014 at 04:30

      I am a big proponent of using a neti pot for daily nasal passages hygiene. Mix a tsp of sea salt in a liter of distilled or filtered water(ideally) and dump some in your neti then irrigate. Works by gravity and will keep your breathing apparatus in top shape!

    • eddie on August 22, 2014 at 05:00

      Google the ingredient s

    • james london on August 22, 2014 at 05:34

      I found the ingredients before but not the quantities, but looking some more I found this:

      Active Ingredients Baptisia tinctoria 4X

      Inactive Ingredients: USP purified water, xylitol powder, sodium chloride, olive leaf extract (olea europea) 4X, grapefruit seed extract, sodium hydroxide (for pH balance)

      4X means the homeopathy shaking/diluting thing – diluting to 1:10,000.

      I’m not disputing that this product works for you Eddie but won’t be trying anything homeopathic myself.

    • Ray on August 22, 2014 at 09:41

      I dont think Flonaise is the same thing. Yea my allergist said Nasonex is a spray with no side effects because the cells cant uptake it something. But I will say I suffer from dizziness due to allergies and the spray helps to ALMOST eliminate it. Hooray drugs!

    • Ellen Ussery on August 23, 2014 at 06:31


      Homeopathy sounds very woo, I agree.

      I have tried various homeopathic products with mixed results. A few have worked incredibly well (arnica pellets after injury and surgery worked so well I alway carry some with me). Others seemed to have no effect.

      BUT, and here is my point, if you have a serious problem and have tried doctor approved products with serious well known side effects, what kind of mental gymnastics are keeping you from trying something with 0 side effects?

  4. Amy L.H. on August 21, 2014 at 11:08

    Richard, is it possible that you’re experiencing reduced stress/cortisol and feel truly free so your body is settling itself in?

    Despite lowering my carbs (not in VLC territory but definitely lower than SAD) and cleaning up the diet, I find it hard to lose any weight at all. Thyroid’s fine, no other apparent endo issues, just can’t lose any weight, but I am one giant stress monster most of the time (my own doing). I find when I’m more relaxed, I lose wt with ease.

    Maybe it’s time for a vacation. Havent’ had one since Kiddo #1 was born almost six years ago. Hell, haven’t had a dinner out alone with Himself in almost six years, either. I’m doing something wrong, I think…

  5. Bruce on August 21, 2014 at 11:40

    I’ll be one to second that PS *within a day* greatly improves my often stuffy nose, especially while sleeping, but also feels a lot cleaner and clearer during the day. My ENT could not believe how swollen I was in the sinuses to the point where she did some procedure (along with fixing deviated septum) where a needle is stuck up there with electric current to reduce the swelling. And here, a few cents worth of PS fixed it (along with reasonably clean eating.)

  6. sassy on August 21, 2014 at 11:47

    I can’t imagine eating that stuff and losing weight. Of course, if I eat a burger, I want 3 more. Or 1 piece of pizza and I eat the whole pizza. I love the bad stuff and it’s like crack cocaine to me.

    I wish I could control it like you, but I’m a hog!

    I heard you coughing (I assume it was you) during that podcast from your previous post. I assume part of the nasal problem. I think the bad food may be affecting you more then you think.

    Could the ‘feeling good’ just be more from your recent moves, stress reduction, more so than the food?

    Shit, who knows??!!

    • Richard Nikoley on August 21, 2014 at 19:03

      “I wish I could control it like you, but I’m a hog!”

      That’s the rub. At least for this brief period I was not having to exercise control.

  7. Wilbur on August 21, 2014 at 18:40

    I think about this stuff a lot. In my understanding, there are lots of variables at play, and weight is just one number that reflects a whole lot of stuff going on in the body. A long term number, perhaps, determined by months or even years, rather than weeks.

    I cannot give you specific references because I do not record them, but my reading of the science is that the effects of fermentable carb supplementation (not necessarily RS) on body weight can last up to six weeks after cessation. Perhaps it’s a body recomposition thing, with muscle converting to fat. There’s also the fecal matter weight issue, significant enough that mice had to be weighed without their guts to get an accurate representation of their body mass (the guts of the fiber fed mice weighed significantly more). There are signaling issues in which the bugs induce the host to eat more of what the bugs like – perhaps you were in a transition in which you didn’t have enough bugs to tell you to eat bad stuff but were losing bugs telling you to eat good stuff, for an overall net decrease in appetite.

    I myself have been rock solid in my consistency of 100+ grams of inulin, FOS, GOS, pectin, psyllium, arabinogalactan, and other stuff I can’t remember. For almost 6 months, I have weighed 162 +/- a couple of pounds. No trend. This is down from over 200 less than a year ago. Sometimes I walk several miles per day for weeks, sometimes I don’t for weeks. I weightlifted for awhile until I injured myself. Now I am doing calisthenics and gymnastics type stuff. I eat trash for a while, then get back to the good stuff. Mostly good stuff though.

    All in all, I notice that I am getting leaner. Others have noticed. Objective measures, such as numbers of chins, styles and numbers of push-ups and squats (getting close to a pistol squat!) support this. I am getting decent abs. My pant size has gone down. But my weight is unchanged, or if anything is maybe down a pound or two. I can’t informally see any appetite change.

    I guess I’m trying to say that, based on my experience, I am not surprised to hear you’ve lost a few pounds and your appetite is less. If I quit everything, I’d guess the same for the short term. But long term I’d expect different.

    • cobalt on August 21, 2014 at 23:54

      Wilbur, could you remind me again what GOS is again? Your approach of eating lots of different starches and fibers has inspired me.

      Richard re the sinuses, that is really interesting that it came back so quickly. You only stopped for a month and I believe you’ve been taking RS for a while now.
      Seems like the core bacteria haven’t colonized… or something ??

    • Wilbur on August 22, 2014 at 05:28

      GOS = galactooligosaccharide

      I love the names of the fibers. GOS isn’t cheap, and I am still experimenting to figure out if it adds anything. The jury is still deliberating.

      I also eat lots of different plants, in which I include beans and stuff. Raw plants whenever possible. Lots of fruit, especially berries and grapes.

      Every day I think that this is the way my body should be. It’s fantastic.

    • cobalt on August 22, 2014 at 16:46

      Ah that’s right. Bimuno?
      Can’t get it so easily here, and there doesn’t seem to be much else.
      That’s ok. Still working through a bunch of other ones. Just got some acacia, so will see how the gut bugs like that!
      Thanks Wilbur!

  8. Dr. Curmugeon Gee on August 21, 2014 at 22:38

    can the sinus problem be from gluten?
    can you irrigate w/ saline?

    not sure about the weight loss; probably due to stress reduction + outdoors more often?


  9. colin nelson henley on August 21, 2014 at 23:00

    unless this is speculative you might want to change August to July

  10. George Kerkhoven on August 22, 2014 at 04:07

    Richard, I really don’t want to offend you, because I have too much respect for your honest out-of-the-box-thinking, but I still want you give you the suggestion that you may suffer from orthorexia nervosa; and before you call me names, please read extensively on her website:
    starting maybe with this article:

    • Marc on August 22, 2014 at 21:42


      Thats the funniest fucking thing Ive read in the comments in a long time!!


    • DH on August 25, 2014 at 14:22

      Well, some FTA commenters may suffer from orthorexia, especially those who castigate Richard whenever he deviates from their particular orthodoxy. But if you read the list of specific symptoms, you’ll see that Richard is anti-orthorexic.

    • George Kerkhoven on August 26, 2014 at 01:45

      castigate? NOT.
      I thought I was polite enough in my comment and at the same time I realize that it is always difficult to differ in such a forum like this. And so maybe it was foolish to suggest this on a website like this. But at least you seem to have read the suggested website about orthorexia, for others here it was a sort religious sin to suggest this. I never ever would tell that Richard has orthorexia, because he can only decide that for him self. But its is very VERY hard to become aware it by your self if you have it; that’s why feedback can be very helpful and then you decide for your self. If I tell you that you still have some shaving cream on your face just before an important meeting with customers, you can still decide to let it on your face, but before that feedback you couldn’t decide about that.
      I respect Richard, just BECAUSE he deviates from orthodoxy: from Paleo, from low carb etc.

  11. Saraswati on August 22, 2014 at 04:37
  12. Mary Morrgwyn on August 22, 2014 at 20:14

    Thanks for the insight once again Rich. That would explain my lifetime mood swings. And sleep disruption.

  13. Michael44 on August 22, 2014 at 21:57


    Is there a medical term for when you try to pull your hand away from a hot stove top?

    Or maybe there is a term for trying to keep your head above water when you are in danger of drowning?

    Well, I have one, and it’s called the “survival reflex”.

    It is perfectly natural to try and avoid being slow-poisoned by the food we eat!

    Perfectly natural.

  14. Michael44 on August 22, 2014 at 22:01


    I definitely agree with you. That comment is too funny.

    Another medical term for you George –


  15. Dr. Curmugeon Gee on August 23, 2014 at 10:39


    XD, how can Richard suffer ED given that he does not even avoid gluten?

    (i do, as much as i can,
    cause it made me sick)

  16. Natasha v. Potato on August 26, 2014 at 16:24

    Hi! Well, it took 6 months but I can now eat potatoes and PS. Woo hoo!! Also, it took 6 months, but I can now eat rice and wheat without tripping into a food binge. 🙂 Guess what? It took time to wreck things and it takes time to fix it up again. My microbiota is a “fixer upper”. 🙂

    I am eating normal amounts of food and normal food. Mostly cooked at home, but I also do eat out. I used to have be strictly low carb because if I ate carbs I got so hungry! Even with a full stomach and a feeling of full, I would be so hungry that I had to eat more. Also, carbs would trigger binging (not often but on occasion) where I would never feel full. Not feeling full and the compulsion to binge, were two different symptoms and the only way to control it was not to eat any carbs. Which, I now know, starves both good and bad gut bugs.

    Over the past few years, I had steadily gained 20 pounds. Weighing 192-195 was very disappointing, when I had been so successful at keep the weight off. I have been fighting this with low carb and low carb high fat, but no improvement. Now that I am on RS and RS foods, my weight has jumped up to 198-200. While I was initially upset at the weight gain, I am seeing general health improvement.

    I continue to experiment with adding in different RS, pre-biotics and pro-biotics. Strangely, Prescript Assist gives me anxiety – nothing wrong with Prescript Assist….I just have to keep working on myself.

    I think that in time the weight will normalize, without extreme dieting. I have done so many extremes and been successful in the past…that I have likely severely reduced my microbiota diversity. My health completely collapsed at 17 after an IV antibiotic. Being bottle fed (soy!), I likely didn’t have the microbiotoa diversity then either.

    I still think Dr. Bernstein is a brilliant engineer/medical researcher, but the body is so much more complicated that simple carbohydrate restriction.

    I must say, I can’t have Amazing Grass yet. I tried!! I am extremely allergic to grass, worse symptoms this year. A sprinkled Amazing Grass on my Kefir and it caused severe swelling of my sinuses. Just as painful as the cracked tooth I had last winter.

    So, I am hoping to get over the grass allergy. 🙂 I have lots to experiment with and lots still to do.

    Love the blog! Can’t wait for the book. 🙂

  17. Michael44 on August 26, 2014 at 23:07

    Hi George.

    You may indeed have Richard’s best interests in mind, but your statement did come across as a little patronising.

    Stick around and read up on his blog (huge..huge back catalogue of posts and comments to look at)

    Hopefully you’ll arrive at another point of view soon enough.

    All the best.

    • George Kerkhoven on August 27, 2014 at 06:01

      Pretty patronizing towards Richard, don’t you think? He is very well able to make his own decisions; he doesn’t need your protection.

      It reminded me of a shift in thinking of Lierre Keith as she was still a vegan, she read repeatedly on forums comments that people had turned their dogs into vegans and that other people applauded that. That opened her eyes. It’s the same with many followers of diets; they become obsessed and they get slim and they are applauded, but they don’t know themselves that they got stuck in another neurosis, called orthorexia. Of course I have nothing against healthy food and healthy living, but nobody knows what that is. Really nobody. Wild guesses is all we’ve got. And if we have a glimpse, like people living in the blue zones, we still are not really sure; all they could find in common is something with family, social bonds, being appreciated…nothing with food, except for the fact that it is was/is natural, non-processed; but there are probably many factors we don’t know yet…all I know is that diets (also Paleo) in it self are wrong, ineffective, because they are the same as holding your breath; yes, you can do that and it has effect, but only for a while. You can’t control something what is an vegetative, unconscious process, like breathing. It’s almost a miracle that people still believe that weight has anything to do with food-control….but there are enough websites written about this phenomenon, like, but it’s very hard to make that shift….

      I follow Richard’s blog from the very beginning…

      I want to close this with some words of Friedrich Nietzsche: “Sometimes people don’t want to hear the truth, because they don’t want their illusions destroyed”

  18. Michael44 on August 27, 2014 at 21:09


    Richard may or may not agree with me. I don’t know.

    I standby what I have said to you.

  19. mal on August 28, 2014 at 22:12

    I was forced to change my diet and amend the supplements I was taking for a few weeks when I went out to state to visit my dad who had surgery.

    I noticed that once I started back taking vit k, my gums seemed irritated. When I took vit D alone while on the trip, they would bleed. Now I’m at a stand-still and not taking either. {I normally would take fish oil, vit k and recently started vit D shortly before leaving on the trip}

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