Gaining Weight and Scared

by Laura C
(Wilmington, DE, USA)

After a year of being on the Natural Diet Solution for PCOS and Infertility, I went through a period of about a year of maintaining my weight (after my gallbladder had to be removed) and now I'm gaining - and don't know why.

Being on the diet gave me great control of my weight. I lost between 60 and 70 lbs in one year!

Then maintained for a year, as I said, and now I'm gaining in the last six months - maybe 10-20 lbs have come back on, which depresses me.

I've not changed my diet, and I won't; my lifestyle eating plan has changed for life with this diet!

I will never again go back to eating the way I did before, but I need some help now.

I've started walking and riding a bike and can only hope it helps.

Being on the diet has also helped my once intense sinus issues (removing dairy and I also started seeing a chiropractor), and I no longer get even one sinus infection a year (used to get several).

BUT, I'm afraid now, because I'm gaining and I NEVER want to go back to being obese like I was.

I have more confidence now, I'm HEALTHIER, I'm menstruating on my own!!, etc.

I'm wondering if my thyroid is off, as mentioned in the recent newsletter. I've had it checked several times before and the TSH came back "normal" every time. But my mother and maternal grandmother BOTH have thyroid disease - so ... what test can I ask my doctor to do to ENSURE the proper testing is being done?

I am exhausted constantly (and it's not from sinus issues anymore). I don't have a husband or kids, so it's just me and my job ... and I have PLENTY of time to sleep, but I feel like I'm never getting enough, could always use more, and it's hard to stay motivated to exercise when all I want to do when I get home is go to bed.

So, why am I constantly exhausted?

What thyroid test do I need to have done to determine if this could be the key to getting my energy and my weight loss back on track?

Not to mention, my hair has thinned out ... it used to be so much thicker and more sturdy.

All these things were mentioned in your article about thyroid. I would be so grateful for any suggestions.

This website and this diet have changed my life and I'm ecstatic! I just want to get back on track now ... and don't know how I got off?!?

Thank you!!

~~~~~~~~~~~

Editor's comments: Hi Laura,

Life does offer its challenges! In a situation like this, you need to be a "detective" and try to track down every clue to see if it leads to a solution.

You may need the assistance of more than one health professional.

Exhaustion and lack of energy has many causes. These are systemic, non-specific symptoms that can be caused by any number of things.

Thyroid function is a good place to start. As we've said in the newsletters, a "normal" TSH does not necessarily indicate that your thyroid function is optimal.

A more thorough thyroid evaluation would include these blood tests: TSH, FT3, FT4, rT3, TPOAb, TgAb. Your doctor may say that you don't need to do these tests. But how does he or she know that?

In general, the more data you have, the more intelligent and targeted is the treatment plan. I always prefer hard data to guesswork.

Regarding rT3 (reverse T3), a high rT3 might lead to diminished energy because it is thought to cause enzyme dysfunction. Enzymes are required for energy production.

In addition to blood tests, I would suggest you check your body temperature with an axillary temperature test. A low resting body temperature suggests hypothyroid function or tissue resistance to thyroid hormones, regardless of what your blood test says.

I would also suggest you get a complete multi-channel blood chemistry, a complete blood count with differential, and a urinalysis. These basic but underutilized tests can reveal hidden problems. For example, it might show that you could have an iron deficiency, which can lead to both exhaustion and hair issues.

Since you don't have a gallbladder anymore, you may be having more trouble absorbing essential fats and fat-soluble vitamins. Consult with a health professional about this. Possibly, it may be a good idea to take digestive enzymes with your meals. You might also wish to take concentrated essential fatty acids, such as EPA/DHA capsules. You can also get "micellized" fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin E. A micellized vitamin is a liquid where the fat-soluble vitamin is enrobed in water. Thus, your intestines think it is water, not fat, and so it is more easily absorbed.

It's easy to become stressed out over your recent health problems, to say nothing of the issues of daily living. But always keep in mind that stress is your enemy. Stress is thought to increase rT3 -- not a good thing. It also increases your stress hormone production, which induces abdominal fat buildup. So do everything you can to reduce and manage your stress level.

These are just a few thoughts off the top of my head. You definitely need to consult with an experienced, knowledgeable health professional(s). Find one who is willing to do an in-depth diagnostic workup and who will take the time for a thorough case history.

There is a reason you are gaining weight, don't have enough energy, and have thinning hair. In fact, there is probably more than one reason. You may find it necessary to assemble a team of health professionals to advise and help you.

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