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The Skinny On Protein Supplements Please!
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I'm still waiting for the results of my mom's celiac tests, should have them in a couple of days. Regardless, we are going to try getting her on a diet and exercise program to improve her health.

She is very deficient in Vitamin D, also has very low serum protein. She has anemia, though she is not iron deficient. She is 83 years old and on top of the deficiencies, has some kind of dementia-like symptoms that came on just in the last three years, along with all her other symptoms.

We are hoping to give her one last chance at staying in her home, and are moving 600 miles to stay in the house with her while overseeing a strict gluten-free diet with carefully selected nutritional supplements.

My question is, if she is suffering from malabsorption due to celiac damage, will protein supplements do her any good?

What kind of protein would be best? I've been seeing discussion regarding "denatured vs. non-denatured" and that kind of thing, and I just don't know what to do!

Please, can one of you fitness buffs help me out? I know that "fitness" is a weird place to put this, but don't know where else to post.

Thanks so much!

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I can't help with the type of supplement, but thought I'd add..many Celiacs are told to eat some protein with every meal. Taking a digestive enzyme with whatever you decide to use should help break down and make the protein more easily absorbed?

B1 vitamins, E, and fish oil are helpful for dementia type symptoms.

Good luck to you and your Mom!

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I can't help with the type of supplement, but thought I'd add..many Celiacs are told to eat some protein with every meal. Taking a digestive enzyme with whatever you decide to use should help break down and make the protein more easily absorbed?

B1 vitamins, E, and fish oil are helpful for dementia type symptoms.

Good luck to you and your Mom!

Thanks for your suggestions, Bubba's Mom!

We'll make sure to throw some digestive enzymes into the mix. Do you use them? If you do, which kind?

We will definitely be supplementing the B vitamins, especially B12; Vit. D, CoQ10, cold-water fish oil. Also going to put her on a good quality probiotic. We might, if she will tolerate it, even go as strict as a GAPS/SCD diet.

We're sure praying it helps her. The doctors sure haven't. We've been going around and around for more than two years now.

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I don't think highly processed protein powders are the right answer, even in the elderly. I'd be more inclined to give her high-quality eggs at breakfast, both for the protein and the lovely lipids in egg yolks that feed your brain, and some chicken, turkey, or fish at lunch and dinner. If you're following GAPS, the meat will be slow-cooked which makes it tender and digestible.

I really like a little betaine HCl with some pepsin for a high-protein meal. It makes me feel less "heavy". I found some low-dose capsules at my health food store that only have 225 mg of betaine HCl. The normal 500 or 600 mg gives me heartburn.

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Thanks for your suggestions, Bubba's Mom!

We'll make sure to throw some digestive enzymes into the mix. Do you use them? If you do, which kind?

We will definitely be supplementing the B vitamins, especially B12; Vit. D, CoQ10, cold-water fish oil. Also going to put her on a good quality probiotic. We might, if she will tolerate it, even go as strict as a GAPS/SCD diet.

We're sure praying it helps her. The doctors sure haven't. We've been going around and around for more than two years now.

I have 2 different Digestive Enzymes and use them according to what I'm eating.

The Source Naturals brand is an all vegetarian/fruit broad spectrum capsule that's a bit milder than the other one I have. I can take 1 or 2 capsules as needed.

The other is Meijer brand Super Enzymes. It has 330mg of Betaine hydrochloride along with several fruit enzymes and ox bile extract, pancreatin USP 4x, amalase, protease, and lipase.

I only use the stronger one when I'm eating a very high protein/hard to digest meal. For instance last night I had grilled pork, baked beans, and broccoli, and needed the stronger one.

If your Mom will go along with the gaps or scd diet it seems like a good way to go?

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I don't think highly processed protein powders are the right answer, even in the elderly...I really like a little betaine HCl with some pepsin for a high-protein meal...

Thanks for the suggestion. I definitely will be looking into this now, after reading my mom's labs. She has some strange things going on; the immune deficiency issues can cause intestinal damage that looks just like celiac damage, meaning it's highly likely her intestines are trashed and she needs all the help she can get if she is going to start absorbing nutrients efficiently again.

I have 2 different Digestive Enzymes and use them according to what I'm eating.

The Source Naturals brand ...The other is Meijer brand Super Enzymes... It has 330mg of Betaine hydrochloride along with several fruit enzymes and ox bile extract, pancreatin USP 4x, amalase, protease, and lipase.

If your Mom will go along with the gaps or scd diet it seems like a good way to go?

I may push mom towards GAPS/SCD in a short time. With her mental state, it's going to be a challenge to keep her gluten free at first. I think we'll ease her onto the other diet after a week or so. We also have a lot of hard work to do in training her caregivers, so that when we are no longer in the home with her, she can maintain eating patterns that are healthy for her.

Thanks again, both of you, for your input. You've been very helpful.

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