what is wrong with my metabolism - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 06-27-2011, 06:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have gained 18 pounds in the last year.  I eat really well (no refined anything, lots of fruit and veg, good fats...) and exercise 3-4 times per week, plus run around after two small kids constantly.   I have always done these things to some extent but have really worked at it even more as the scale rises, but no matter what I do, the scale at best won't budge and at worst goes up a pound a week.  I swear something is up with my metabolism because I feel kind of full in the morning where I used to be hungry and my weight doesn't go down a few pounds in the morning like it used to.  This is so frustrating.  

 

My youngest daughter weaned 6 months ago at 2.5.  I had noticed the weight gain the previous 6 months but attributed it to nursing.  And, I really worked at trying to get a handle on my weight the last six months but no matter what I try, nothing works.  

 

I have had a complete blood work up by a naturopath and everything looked good but based on my symptoms he put me on adrenal and thyroid support, but after three months that hasn't done a thing either.  I did 4-6 weeks grain free, low carbs, no change.  What else could it be?  What else can I try?  Help!

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#2 of 21 Old 06-27-2011, 07:12 AM
 
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hug2.gif I went through the same thing. For me it was, honestly, portion size. I didn't realise I was eating too much. I kept thinking that I had to eat more, because I was too worried of not having enough energy for my kids. I was already eating a very healthy diet--no sugars, low glycemic, low carb, no processed foods, and couldn't lose weight. I also went to a natoropath who sent me for blood tests for hormonal imbalances. (But since I really disliked that naturopath, I never went for the blood tests.)

 

Then I read something, and it clicked--I was eating way too much. Right now I eat probably half of what I used to. I feel great, and I have great energy, and the weight just melted off.

 

Not saying that this is what you are doing, but I thought I'd share. I honestly never thought I was eatings so much--I thought I needed all that food.


My kids are 8, 5 and 2!
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#3 of 21 Old 06-27-2011, 07:18 AM
 
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Ditto for the eating too much. I am attempting a high fat, low-carb diet with intermittent fasting, so basically, I eat two meals a day, but that are filling enough to last me through the day. My cheat day will be Sunday, and I lost 2.8 lbs this first week doing it. This is with a basically defunct thyroid (I'm on Synthroid 100 mcg), so it's very hard for me to lose weight, too. Maybe you could add IF to the mix?


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#4 of 21 Old 06-27-2011, 07:26 PM
 
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I just read a book called "The Fat Resistance Diet" by Leo Galland. IDK if it's any different than any other fad diet, but a friend of mine who has chronic allergies/asthma said her nutritionist put her on a similar diet (she wasn't familiar with the author or the book itself) and definitely knew the concept he writes about in his book. (Big picture: The issue is leptin resistance that causes all kinds of cellular inflammation (which causes things like allergies, asthma, celiac, etc.) and difficulty losing weight.)

 

I haven't started it yet, as I just finished reading it today, but I figure it's worth a try. It's not a high-anything or low-anything diet, but the first two weeks all grains and most dairy are restricted. I glanced at the meal plans and the only thing that really struck me was that there seems to be a lot of caffeine in the form of green tea, but he states you can use decaf (which I will).

 

Everything else seems pretty normal, although I wonder about portion size and how successful you can be if you eat more than the portions stated. (It's not clear how important calorie restriction is, although I suspect if you're doing to lose weight v. for healing other health issues, you probably want to stick to the portions allotted.

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#5 of 21 Old 06-28-2011, 10:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone.  I do need to consider portion control.  I don't eat more than I used to, and I've always had this attitude where I could / should eat until I am full as long as it is healthy food, but perhaps I just consume too many calories for this point in my life!  I will definitely look into the Fat Resistance Diet, because I feel like there is some underlying situation that is going on, and maybe this could offer some insight.   I will also explore intermittent fasting.  That sounds interesting for reducing calories.  I really appreciate the feedback!  Anyone else btdt?

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#6 of 21 Old 06-28-2011, 05:08 PM
 
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I am in a similar situation. My youngest of 4 just weaned at 2.5 yrs old, and my metabolism has really changed since I had her. I used to be able to eat pretty much whatever I wanted and my weight would stay steady. Since having her, I've been fighting to lose the last 10 pounds, and if I eat too many carbs, my weight can climb a pound each day. I gained 13 pounds in 3 weeks over Christmas! Everyone said that couldn't be real weight, etc, etc, but I'm still stuck with it. The only thing that seems to keep my weight in check is eating really low carb.. and portion control, sadly. I have always been the type to eat a lot without a problem, but apparently that ship has sailed....

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#7 of 21 Old 06-29-2011, 05:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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That sums it up for me too, bigknitwit.  I can maintain my weight by eating low carb and exercising a ton, but I can not lose a pound and need to lose around 20.  If I splurge on the weekend and have a piece of toast or something (never sugary things and never excessive), I gain a pound or two.  I really feel like there is something off and I can figure it out, it'll all go back to normal.  I am looking into that leptin resistance...

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#8 of 21 Old 06-29-2011, 10:41 AM
 
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If I eat say, cereal for breakfast, some kind of wrap-like sandwhich for lunch, and some kind of starch with dinner, I'll put on a pound the next day, and it sticks. It's absolutely maddening. 10 days ago I relaxed and ate some of the popcorn at my boys birthday party, and 1/3 of a cupcake. I put on 1.5 pounds. Worse still, it brought back carb cravings and suddenly I was eating way more fruit than normal, and more cheat bites here and there. Now 10 days later I'm 3 pounds up, and finally now getting serious about dropping out all the carbs again - not that they were excessive. I wish I could find the way to make it all go back to normal too...

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#9 of 21 Old 06-30-2011, 03:56 AM
 
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What does your workout routine look like?


Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds   10yo dd  8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds  
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#10 of 21 Old 06-30-2011, 04:07 AM
 
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Not being hungry in the morning can be a thyroid symptom. You said that your had had labs done. It might still be a good idea to look at the results yourself, also. Unfortunately, you can have a thyroid problem even if your labs look good (google reverse T3, for example), so I would suggest looking at the list of symptoms and trying to figure out whether you have other possible symptoms.


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#11 of 21 Old 06-30-2011, 10:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phathui5 View Post

What does your workout routine look like?



 

yeahthat.gif

 

As someone who has struggled with my weight for years (and gained and lost more than I care to admit), I have found that weight/strength training is absolutely essential to my routine...AND I have to do cardio.  I can't do one or the other and lose weight.  I also can't diet and not work out or vice versa and still lose weight.  It has to be a combination of all three. 

 

I gain very, very quickly.  So far, the best diet for me is low carb (but not no carb, I do eat "healthy carbs" like brown rice, whole wheat pasta, and fruit), and I have to really amp up the protein.  I eat a LOT of eggs and I notice a huge difference when I do. 

 

I also recently cut out caffeine and, believe it or not, that really helped me. 

 

I will say that losing weight has gotten harder and harder for me. I used to be able to just really work at it for a few weeks and I could lost 8-10 pounds, now I am lucky for 1 pound a week. 

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#12 of 21 Old 06-30-2011, 02:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My workout routine is 30 DS 3-4 times / week, yoga 1-2 times / week.  I go through periods where I run for 30 minutes 3 x / week but that doesn't make a difference either.  I am reasonably active during the day too.  I started a bunch of supplements per the naturopaths rec.  They include some sort of thyroid support, adrenal support, iodine, multi, vit d.  I've taken them for almost two months and I notice no change at all.   Ugh.  Is it going to be like this forever?  I so hope to find something that clicks for me.  

 

And, carbs definitely make me gain weight too, but when I cut them out entirely I don't really lose weight.  Ugh!

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#13 of 21 Old 07-02-2011, 04:27 PM
 
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I was doing P90X (a daily workout routine of about an hour - cardio and weights alternating), and still gaining while eating carbs...

 

Prior to this new, unwanted metabolism, two major events happened in my dietary life: In the fall, a got (oral) herpes, and it was the most sick I've ever been. The sores were all over my mouth and I couldn't eat without extreme pain for 10 days. I would force down a yogurt cup, which was agonizing, and drink ice water. I dropped 13 pounds in that time period. It so happened that it was the last pouns of my pregnancy weight. Then, very shortly afterwards, I had to start an extreme elimination diet for my DD who seemed to be reacting to everything she and I ate. I went down to 4, and then 6 foods and was stuck there for about 2 months. During that time, 2 of the foods were rice and pears, and I ate a TON of them without gaining weight, along with turkey, asparagus, and eventually butter. Around December, DD's LDA immunotherapy shot started to work, and she was suddenly able to tolerate more and more foods. And so I ate, and ate. It was Christmas so there was chocolate to eat, and desserts, etc. Not crazy - much like I used to eat around Christmas. I was horrified by the weight gain and couldn't believe it. I gained 13 pounds in 3 weeks before I finally fully believed it wasn't going to stop. I would take clothes out of the dryer and fold them, and they would no longer fit - the weight went on so fast... Now I can stay pretty steady 10 pounds above as long as I eat low carb.  I can't seem to drop much lower though... I don't know what happened that suddenly changed my metabolism, but I know it has something to do with those 2 events.

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#14 of 21 Old 07-03-2011, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Me too!  I had a similar series of events, in a different order.  My youngest had severe reflux so I went on various elimination diets for months around two and a half years ago.  I lost all my pre pregnancy weight quickly but wasn't down too low and then she stabilized around a year. I just couldn't eat wheat or dairy, which wasn't too extreme. Then around a year and a half ago I had a bizarre intestinal illness where I had diarrhea every morning for six months.  It was miserable and I went to many doctors and naturopaths and no one could figure out what it was but eventually I went on mega doses of probiotics and eventually it stopped.  During that time my weight was way down.  I was at least 5-10 pounds under a healthy weight for me and I was trying all sorts of food eliminations then too as I thought for awhile I as reacting to food.  Since that problem stopped, around a year ago, I have steadily added weight on and can not get back down to normal.  I, too, think those two things messed up my metabolism and I really feel like there MUST be something I can do to get back on track.  But, I have tried everything I can think of, to no avail!  Very interesting that you had such a similar lead up. 

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#15 of 21 Old 07-03-2011, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, I have felt like sometimes more extreme exercise programs make me gain weight even more.  It's like my metabolism did not like the near starvation mode it was in a couple times over the past years and so shuts down when I start working out too much.  

 

Does anyone know what controls your metabolism?  Is it the thyroid, pituitary gland, or what?  Are there things that can be done to heal the source of the metabolism?

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#16 of 21 Old 07-03-2011, 12:14 PM
 
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IDK the answer to that question exactly, but I think it is the thyroid, at least in part.

 

The Fat Resistance Diet is *supposed* to "heal" your metabolism and get it working again, under the premise of detoxifying your fat cells and then eating the right foods (or rather, avoiding the wrong ones) so that the body can restore its metabolism to its proper functioning. I haven't started it yet. My friend is on something similar for her extreme asthma, and she hasn't lost much weight yet, but that's not her primary goal and her whole system is COMPLETELY messed up (she was on tons of steroids over the years which led to significant weight gain/roller coaster weight). I will be trying the diet soon to see if that will help me, but I have no illusions that it's a magic bullet. If it works, great. If not, at least I'll have more healthy eating habits!

 

It's funny that you mentioned chronic diarrhea in the mornings that came and went with no apparent reason or cause... I had the very same thing! No idea what happened, what I did differently, what was causing it. I didn't bother going to the doctor b/c I figured it was my awful diet, which hadn't really changed too terribly much except that I go on cycles where I eat really well (lots of veggies and lots of fiber) and then not so well.

 

I don't know... I just know I need to eat more heathfully anyway, and hope it will help!

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#17 of 21 Old 07-03-2011, 03:07 PM
 
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I honestly don't think it's thyroid related. I am on full thyroid hormone supplementation (175 mcg plus armour), and have been for many years. Of course I had my labs drawn right away with the run away weight gain, but couldnt' find anything wrong with them. I also had a more alternative-type doctor look over the numbers, and they look good. I generally feel good too - not like when my thyroid levels are low (which I've experienced many times). I wonder if it has to do with some kind of severe nutrient deficiency that occurred as a result of the illnesses and elimination diet...

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#18 of 21 Old 07-04-2011, 04:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't really think mine is a thyroid problem either because I don't have any other symptoms and my comprehensive blood tests were perfectly normal.  And I'm taking thyroid supplements that haven't changed anything.  It could be a nutritional deficiency, but I have been taking high quality supplements from the naturopath (multivitamin and mineral, iodine, cod liver oil, vitamin d, probiotics...) for months now and nothing has budged.  Perhaps there is something else though...

 

I was reading up on healing the metabolism yesterday and there are lots of stories of people who recovered from anorexia and then experienced the same problem.  One person described it as a pendulum that will eventually settle back in the middle.  She said, the body is just trying to store fat in case of perceived starvation again, but she suggested that phase should pass and things will normalize eventually.  That made me feel really optimistic. I have been fearing this is the beginning of metabolism problems and it's going to get worse and worse, but that pendulum idea made a lot of sense to me.  Obviously total elimination diets mess with things quite a bit!  Most people seemed to think that in order to recover it is better to not cut calories too low or your body may react by slowing down the metabolism even more.

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#19 of 21 Old 07-04-2011, 04:22 PM
 
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I like the pendulum explanation too. Maybe we both just lost weight way too quickly, and then throw elimination diets in there as well and here we are in fat storage mode. Thing is I don't feel like I have a slower metabolism. I actually feel really good eating low carb and having stable blood sugar levels. My sweets cravings are reduced, I'm stronger, and my joints don't hurt in the mornings. That was a good idea to look into recovering anorexic people's experiences. I have searched online high and low trying to figure out what's going on with me and found nothing. I think this may be the key to solving this problem, moreso than chasing various deficiencies. Now I have to go read more about recovering from anorexia!

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#20 of 21 Old 07-04-2011, 04:27 PM
 
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That does sound like a much more logical explanation than thyroid issues, especially if you're on supplementation or your levels have tested as normal (as mine have, even though I do have "other symptoms," according to one doctor).

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#21 of 21 Old 07-14-2011, 05:17 PM
 
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I did the same thing.  As dd2 slowed down her nursing, I gained a bit.  Then when she weaned entirely, I gained a BUNCH.  I have found that it helps to just eat a very small amount at each meal.  The amount I ate when nursing is so much more than I need now.  I think I underestimated the amount of calories that went to breastmilk. 

 

I am not making a ton of progress, but I feel better when I cut portions and don't eat junk food (duh).  I am also walking a couple days a week, doing some yoga, and have started lifting heavy weights again.

 

 

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