Help with Weight Loss Tips?

I am a 35 year female diagnosed with PCOS at the age of 17. I didn't get my period till after my first child was born.

Never had fertility problems (I am a mother of five, had two children after having a sterilization).

I do suffer from severe hirsutism (face and body), multiple cysts, irregular menses, underactive thyroid and thus obesity.

The medication I take: androcur, metformin and eltroxin.

I exercise daily for about an hour. This includes resistance exercises and jogging. But I can't seem to lose weight.

My diet plan has been given by a dietician and I follow it very strictly. My current weight is 117 kg and has been for the past 15 years.

I have no idea as what else to do.

And neither does my doctor although he suggests that my weight problem may be caused by a lack of sleep; I am not a very good sleeper, getting only 4 hours a night.

Tranquilizers and sleeping medication has no effect. Any advice?


Editor's comments: Here are several thoughts to consider:

1) Get your vitamin D level checked with a blood test. Many women with PCOS are too low in vitamin D. Vitamin D helps to reduce insulin resistance. The less your insulin resistance, the easier it is to lose weight.

2) Are you eating any foods with added fructose sweeteners? Too much fructose increases fat production, especially by the liver.

3) Up to 50% of women with polycystic ovary syndrome have fatty liver degeneration, also called non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). A diseased liver makes it more difficult to manage your weight. Get a blood test to assess your liver function. Also, high doses of Androcur can be toxic to the liver. If you have NAFLD and taking Androcur, I wonder if Androcur might be creating one problem as it solves another.

4) How do you know your thyroid medication is correct? If it is not correct, weight loss is really difficult. Do a Google search for "axillary temperature test" and test your resting body temperature. You can do this at home. If your temperature is below normal, you may need to adjust your thyroid hormone therapy or do a more in-depth assessment of your thyroid function.

5) Sleep apnea and disturbed sleep is surprisingly common in PCOS. Poor sleep patterns may cause an increase in cortisol, which is a stress hormone that increases belly fat. Tranquilizers are a bad idea. Lunesta is a sleep medication that you may find effective. Also consider melatonin, which not only helps to restore your daily metabolic rhythm, but it also is a powerful antioxidant and thus is quite beneficial.

6) If taking metformin for a long time, be careful. It will induce a vitamin B12 deficiency. In one study of PCOS women, NAC was found to be as effective as metformin. So maybe you could add some NAC to your routine. NAC has no side effects that I know of.

7) Don't focus solely on weight. Also focus on your waist circumference. Is your waist shrinking or expanding? That is more important than your total weight. Why? First, abdominal fat is dangerous fat. Second, muscle is much heavier than fat. Therefore, you may be gaining muscle weight while losing fat weight, which is a very, very good thing.

8) I don't know what your dietician told you, but you will need to change the TYPE of carbohydrates you consume. Notice I did not say "low carb". I said the type of carbs. This diet ebook explains all this in great detail.

9) Short bursts of high-intensity exercise are thought to be effective in up-regulating your metabolism. I don't have space here to explain this. While resistance exercise and jogging is highly recommended, it may not be optimal for weight loss.

Hope this helps!

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