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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I have been a vegan for almost a month now! Yay! All in all, it's going really well. I'm eating a more balanced diet now than I ever have before, I'm taking a vegan multivitamin, and I love it all.

Some of you may have read earlier posts of mine in which I explain how, when I tried to go vegan several years back, I ended up having a lot of health problems stemming from IBS -- I was trying too hard to be healthy and ate a LOT more insoluble fiber than someone with IBS should. Felt sick all the time, noticed blood in stool, lost a lot of weight. It was bad.

Well, when the docs were running all the standard GI tests, they eliminated all of the more serious diseases -- Crohn's, ulcerative colitis, etc., but they did find hemorrhoids, which they concluded to be the source of the bleeding. The gastroenterologist said that a healthy amount of dietary fiber would really help with this.

For the most part, I haven't had any real problems with the hemorrhoids, but in the last few weeks, I've had noticeable bleeding. It makes sense that too little fiber in the diet can aggravate hemorrhoids because there could potentially be lacerations with elimination, but it also seems that too much fiber in the diet could also be a problem because of more frequent bathroom visits.

I am definitely consuming more fiber than I was when I was merely vegetarian. However, I eat plenty of soluble fiber, and while I wish I could reap the health benefits of eating lots of whole grains, the only whole grains I eat on a regular basis are oats because they are gentle on my GI tract. I also cook many of the especially fibrous vegetables I eat to soften the fiber and therefore improve the overall digestion process. All of this has DEFINITELY helped to prevent IBS symptoms, but my hemorrhoids are acting up on me. They hardly hurt at all, but the intermittent bleeding is concerning.

At this point, I don't think I need to seek medical attention because I know what's causing the bleeding, and it isn't interfering with my life in any way. So I thought I'd ask you guys. Did anyone with similar GI issues experience this when you were transitioning to a higher-fiber, vegan diet? Will it likely stop once my system is more accustomed to the change in eating habits?

Because this has been an issue specifically associated with my transition to veganism, I thought I should probably post in Vegan Discussion. But mods, if you think it should be moved, that's fine with me.
 

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its great that you are happy with eating a vegan diet


when it comes to your digestion have you noticed that you are straining in the last few weeks?
sometimes they can act up bc of constipation and straining during elimination.
how much water do you drink each day?
hydration is key to optimal digestion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You know... you might be on to something with the water. I don't drink enough water.
 

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Sitting all day can be a big issue; unfortunately too many jobs and tasks pretty much require it.

Spending too long "trying" can also contribute...

What kinds of exercise habits do you have?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieP View Post

You know... you might be on to something with the water. I don't drink enough water.
Water is essential for preventing constipation, and constipation is the leading cause of hemorrhoids.

Those cute aluminum water bottles are super handy, try to keep one near you everywhere you go.
Drink a lot of water in the morning bc sleeping can dehydrate us.
herbal tea is a good way to hydrate
add lemon or ginger or mint leaves or cucumber slices to water to make it more appealing
 

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I don't think hemorrhoids are associated with a vegan diet. If anything, they would be related to not eating enough fiber, but chances are some people are just more prone to getting them than others.

If you are having significant bleeding, that is concerning. How long ago did you have those GI tests? If it was years ago and you haven't seen a doctor since, I don't think it's safe to assume that the bleeding you are having now is coming from hemorrhoids.
 

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Most people think hemorrhoids are directly linked to constipation but it is not the only thing that can cause it. A family member recently had severe issues with hemorrhoids in combination with going to the bathroom very often. Went to the doctors who said it was IBS at first, seeked a second opinion as it was ongoing and painful, and the bleeding was getting to a scary point (we are talking months). Finally had a colonoscopy at hospital, it was found he has polyps. Waiting for surgery atm to have them removed. We believe a change in diet to have triggered the stress on the GI track but, ultimately the symptoms match the symptoms that polyps can cause.
Not trying to scare you. I see your issue seems to be directly related to IBS, but I would suggest you see a doctor if you haven't for a long time.
 
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