Paleo / Leangains Body Recomposition and Psoriasis “Cure”

Steven Marjieh emails in his amazing story. It’s so comprehensive that I’m not going to bore you with my writing today. Just jump right in.

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First I would like to thank you on your blog. I do so enjoy it. I originally came across it through Martin from Leangains.

  • Yes I am paleo.
  • Yes I am an atheist.
  • Yes I am an anarchist
  • Yes I am lazy to start my own blog so I will use yours, if you do not mind.

I have read you for almost 2 years and truth be told… seldom do I find other people so likeminded. I enjoy your spicy flair.

My quest for health began 2.5 years ago. I started the gluten free thing and decided to really understand what being healthy was all about and discovered paleo.

I am long time psoriasis sufferer (20 years) which turned to a nasty case of psoriatic arthritis 7 years ago. I am one of those guys with the classic can-do attitude. I set my own dislocated elbow. Set my own broken hand. Crazy glue for stitches. All sorts of stupid. But as my arthritis began to progress I could no longer do the things I loved most. I am a swing dancer. I love throwing the ladies overhead and dance for hours. I could lift anything. I could hike for hours and never worried about hunger or food or getting tired. Ride my bike for days etc…

Then one night I had to piss at 3AM. This was not a special night in that I went to bed and woke up dozens of times from the pain coursing through my body from simply moving a leg. Rolling over. Anything that involved moving, hurt. Except for blinking and my left arm from my elbow down. So like any other time I had to arise from my bed I pushed my body with my left arm. I could not lift with my stomach. I had to hold on to my head with my right arm as my neck could not support the weight of my head and the electric shocks of it lifting.

I walked 10 feet from my bed only to collapse in to heap on the floor. I passed out. Never in my life has that happened. Ever. I have been hit, electrocuted, fallen from cliffs, fireworks accident and I ALWAYS walked away. Lesson learned. The pain was so excruciating I blanked out. I have the hole in the door from where my knee hit as proof. Did I mention I live alone? So there I was. On my back. Staring at the ceiling. Fortunately nothing was broken but my pride. Eventually I made it up to my feet and I got my roller chair and scooted around the house that way for a few days.

I wanted to get better and quick, so I started a new drug trial for my condition but I knew that there had to be a different/better way. The drugs helped immediately. The doctor minding the trial said she has never seen anyone take to the treatment so quickly. I healed in a month what normally takes 6 months she said. Well, unbeknownst to her, I had started the paleo route 2-3 weeks before I started the trial. After 2 months I told her and she was dumbfounded that my diet had such a profound effect. I got the obligatory “if it works for you” speech and grains are good and blah blah blah.

After a few months I stopped the drugs. The pain ebbs and flows but these days it mostly ebbs. I am getting better. I keep some of the drug handy in case I get in to something that causes me issues but I have only used it a couple times. I travel a lot for business, into Mexico very often, so eating clean can be a challenge. But I feel in another 6 months to a year I won’t have anything ever again, unless I act stupidly.

But when I do stay clean I can do wondrous things. My hands still have some pain so my grip stinks but I can pull 305lbs for high reps on my dead lifts. I need to buy more weights. I hike 10-20 miles/day on the weekends in a fasted state. I ride, dance, sprint and enjoy every moment pain free. My skin is all but perfectly clear. I was inspired by your soapless rant so no soap for almost 2 years now. I stopped antiperspirants and deodorants 10 years ago and used only “gentle” soaps, but no more of that, even. I always had an aversion to lotion but used it on my dry patches which covered 20% of my body, but that is all gone too. If I get a little dry now, it’s coconut oil.

I have a lot more to share but I will reserve that for when I am not so lazy and want to write my story.

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So how about a before & after? Both can be clicked for larger versions.

Steven 2008 copy
2008 Body
Steven 2012
2012 Body

Steve tells me that in the lower photo, you can see the last vestiges of his psoriasis on his left shin. Wow, that looks painful from here. Imagine if it was covering a large portion of your body.


Since Covid killed my Cabo San Lucas vacation-rental business in 2021, this is my day job. I can't do it without you. Memberships are $10 monthly, $20 quarterly, or $65 annually. Two premium coffees per month. Every membership helps finance this work I do, and if you like what I do, please chip in. No grandiose pitches.

6 Comments

  1. Alan on November 14, 2013 at 17:32

    Yeah, but it made all your hair fall out. B-)

    Well done and good job.

  2. Steven on November 14, 2013 at 17:47

    Thank you Richard.

    If I can offer any advise to anyone please let me know.

  3. Steven on November 14, 2013 at 17:49

    @Alan,

    HAHAHA!! Um thanks?

  4. PS on November 15, 2013 at 05:47

    Richard,
    Thanks so much for posting.
    Long time reader. Really enjoy the political/social angle and your constant experimentation. I’m digging the potato starch, seems to be helping… only 1/2 Tsp though, or… well, you know. Unique blog for sure.

    Steven,
    I’ve been self experimenting for about 12 years with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. I think my symptoms started about 20 years ago, just figured it was aches and pains from sports. Undiagnosed until I was about 24.

    Any nuggets of wisdom on specific triggers? From my experience, all the basic “primal” stuff works best, gluten, dairy avoidance, etc… But the real kicker seems to be sleep and lack of stress. Actually, it’s stunning how really living my life my way (Thank you Richard, Greg Swan) helps with my symptoms.

    I have occasionally taken humira over the past couple of years but don’t take it much. Trying to get away 100% from that shit.

    Congratulations on your results man!

  5. Steven on November 15, 2013 at 09:40

    PS,

    Rest and stress are huge for sure. I noticed coffee is a trigger as well. I can have it occasionally but to much and ouch! Also the quality of coffee is a big factor. Dave from bullet proof executive talks a lot about that and it is true. At least for me.

    I’m not VLC as I do the starch thing but I do carb cycle one day a week on my hardest work out day. I notice the glycogen rush causes some pain so I will reduce my intake a little and see what happens. Stay tuned.

  6. Asaf on March 10, 2017 at 14:54

    Hi Richard,

    Im not sure if you’ll read this message as this is an old blog. Anyway, I’ve been dealing with Psoriatic Arthritis for the past 8-9 years, trying to deal and treat it in almost every non-conventional way, from naturopathy, acupuncture to Ayurveda. Believing that there must be a natural way for the body to heal from this condition. I’ve always been a very healthy and active individual, doing lots of yoga, teaching pilates, surfing…and when I got this condition it stuffed me up completely. Now I’m trying the Bulletproof Diet (sort of Paelo) and I’m not sure how its going, its only been 2 weeks. I hope for the best. I still have pain that stop me from doing all the things I love and want to do. My Psoriasis is pretty much all under control, so its predominantly the Arthritis that bothering me. I really, really do not want to get on conventional medicine, but I’m now quite frustrated and not really sure what to do. Any suggestions???

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