Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Ever since going vegan, I love going to the doctor. They marvel at my iron levels, glucose/insulin, and are delightfully flabbergasted with my cholesterol.

I've been waiting to see this doctor for 6 months who can tell me, despite my spotless diet and 3+ hour/day exercise regimen, why I cannot lose weight, especially my ever-growing tummy (which, despite common onlooker reactions, is baby-free).

The nurse asks what supplements I'm taking, and I tell her all about Vega (woohoo) and that I take a DHA capsule (algae- derived, of course!).

So the Dr. comes in and looks at my chart and was like: "You need to stop the DHA right away! It's a steroid and it's androgen like and it's making you put on weight."

Being a metabolic biochemistry major, I was very confused. "Uh, isn't it an essential fatty acid?"

"No no, it's a steroid."

I really wasn't sure on this one, so I drew a picture of the molecule on his chart (yes I'm a nerd) to clarify.

Doctor: "No, that's a fatty acid, DHA is a steroid."

Me: "You mean DHEA?"

Long pause.....

Doctor: "Oh, never mind. Keep taking it."

 

Besides that, which made me really laugh, he was SUPER helpful. We now know I have one of 2 things, one is really rare and curable, and the other is really common and sorta treatable. HOORAY losing this stupid tummy! (It will take 2+ months for a final diagnosis though).

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a funny story! Heheh

 

So of those 2 things.. Is hypothyroidism possibly one of them? Usually when I hear the "I can't lose weight no matter what I do!" story I automatically think thyroid problems.

I like to talk about illnesses heheh

Link to post
Share on other sites

Supposedly they've done studies to show that some people when they undergo stress gain it in their stomachs.

 

I suffer from chronic constipation and bloating, and know what it's like to go from flat stomach to passing for being 3-4 months pregnant in the span of an hour. At the risk of TMI, is your GI normal at least?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I suffer from chronic constipation and bloating, and know what it's like to go from flat stomach to passing for being 3-4 months pregnant in the span of an hour.

 

I'm curious - is this an actual condition? I often get very bloated and look pregnant, but I always just wrote it off as eating a lot of veggies/fruit/beans.

 

Even though I eat a very high fibre diet I'm still not what I would call "regular." I've never brought it up with my doctor though.

 

EDIT - sorry for the hijack

Link to post
Share on other sites
Nah they've checked my thyroid up and down. He's 99.9% sure it's adrenal or androgen related, but it'll take 2 months to know for sure. But yeah, that was the first thing they checked.

 

 

There is a fast and simple hormone test that you can do using saliva and there are labs you can use that do not require a doctor to order the test. Saliva is much more accurate than blood tests for hormone levels. I have used BioHealth Diagnostics in California to do saliva testing of my adrenal gland function. They also can do estrogen, testerone, DHEA and cortisol levels.

 

My body temperature runs about a degree below normal but I too have normal thyroid function but weak adrenals.

 

Hope you can get some answers and get your body back on track.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I suffer from chronic constipation and bloating, and know what it's like to go from flat stomach to passing for being 3-4 months pregnant in the span of an hour.

 

I'm curious - is this an actual condition? I often get very bloated and look pregnant, but I always just wrote it off as eating a lot of veggies/fruit/beans.

 

Even though I eat a very high fibre diet I'm still not what I would call "regular." I've never brought it up with my doctor though.

 

Bloating is usually a sign that you are deficient in digestive enzymes (and possibly hydrochloric acid of you bloat immediately after eating). Healthy vegetable fiber should decrease bloating by decreasing transit time in the gut so things don't sit and ferment.

 

Large amounts of cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli if eaten raw could be an issue but lightly steaming them should solve that.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I suffer from chronic constipation and bloating, and know what it's like to go from flat stomach to passing for being 3-4 months pregnant in the span of an hour.

 

I'm curious - is this an actual condition? I often get very bloated and look pregnant, but I always just wrote it off as eating a lot of veggies/fruit/beans.

 

Even though I eat a very high fibre diet I'm still not what I would call "regular." I've never brought it up with my doctor though.

 

EDIT - sorry for the hijack

 

It's an actual condition that could mean many things. I am MUCH better than I used to be owing to the fact that I ditched the animal proteins, which brought my digestive system to a grinding, screeching halt--especially meat and dairy.

 

I know of people who discovered they had a food intolerance that a lot of tests were able to uncover. One was able to eliminate her issues by eliminating gluten. Do you feel worse/better after eating certain foods? Pay attention and keep a diary.

 

I've had my prob ever since a bout with a major illness and rather strong antibiotics took the "juice" out of my system over a decade ago, and it steadily got worse ever since.

 

Things I have tried which helped in order from most to least impact:

 

1 - Take Betaine HCL with meals. It could be a low acid problem and this helps. I gradually upped the dosage to three pills with a meal and I now take them when I eat large meals.

 

2 - Small meals mostly of the veggie protein and vegetable variety.

 

3 - Digestive enzymes. Worth a shot.

 

4 - Probiotics

 

These days I've been adding Triphala as a supplement and it helps a LOT. It has taken my body a while to adjust to the Vega I've been having for breakfast and it's still not fully there yet. There are still times when I have to reach for that combo stool softener/laxative, but it's down to "that time of the month" when I do.

 

Which is another question...have you noticed that your monthly cycles impact this at all?

 

If you choose to go to a doctor, be warned...do NOT let them write you off and hand you a disease of elimination. Ask them flat out to run the barium test, blood tests...mine treated me as a statistic ("did you have something traumatic happen to you in your childhood", etc), was condescending ("oh, you're taking herbs instead of OTC meds? such a *holistic* girl!"), ran ONE test on me and since he couldn't find anything declared it IBS and gave me a medication which was taken off the market a year later (and thankfully was no longer taking by then cause it didn't help). The most amount of help I've received on this matter was by going to a naturopath who asked me a million questions before having me try various supplements to see what ones worked and in what combination.

 

Good luck, and hope this helps!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Bloating is usually a sign that you are deficient in digestive enzymes (and possibly hydrochloric acid of you bloat immediately after eating). Healthy vegetable fiber should decrease bloating by decreasing transit time in the gut so things don't sit and ferment.

 

Large amounts of cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli if eaten raw could be an issue but lightly steaming them should solve that.

 

Yup, taking Betaine HCL has helped me immensely. Digestive enzymes added a kick, but the low acid appeared to be at least most of the cause.

 

The thing is this: if you are also bloating elsewhere - ie, rings get too tight - then it could be some sort of food intolerance.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info.

 

I do keep a food journal. And it's not related to gluten, soy, or monthly cycles. I've tried probiotics and didn't notice a difference. And my meals are mostly vegetables already. I know it sounds like I'm shooting down your advice, but I'm not. I try to follow and Eat to Live like diet (only I eat more than 3 times a day) and that's very veggie/fruit-heavy. I don't get pain from it, I just look like I'm pregnant. The bloating is only in my tummy.

 

I feel like the only time I'm "regular" is when I eat junk food...processed food and refined flour/sugar. Which is odd...because there's less fibre. I just really don't get that.

 

Are digestive enzymes different than probiotics? I have no idea. I'd be willing to give those a shot.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the info.

 

I do keep a food journal. And it's not related to gluten, soy, or monthly cycles. I've tried probiotics and didn't notice a difference. And my meals are mostly vegetables already. I know it sounds like I'm shooting down your advice, but I'm not. I try to follow and Eat to Live like diet (only I eat more than 3 times a day) and that's very veggie/fruit-heavy. I don't get pain from it, I just look like I'm pregnant. The bloating is only in my tummy.

 

Nope, I know you're not. The problem is that this can have multiple roots/sources and without knowing the details, I can't give you the best advice. I know that I've struggling with this for years and it just got worse, not better. My diet is also mostly veggies and I still have problems. There have been days when I was forced to go on a liquid diet until my body calmed down.

 

I feel like the only time I'm "regular" is when I eat junk food...processed food and refined flour/sugar. Which is odd...because there's less fibre. I just really don't get that.

 

I'm guessing stomach acid may be the culprit. Look for Betaine HCL in the supplements aisle; I've found it at my local Whole Foods. It has made a HUGE difference for me. It's worth a try.

 

Are digestive enzymes different than probiotics? I have no idea. I'd be willing to give those a shot.

 

They are VERY different. Enzymes help food to digest. Probiotics are bacteria cultures. Betaine HCL is also another animal entirely (if you'll forgive the expression), which assists with the hydrocloric acid in your stomach.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Besides that, which made me really laugh, he was SUPER helpful. We now know I have one of 2 things, one is really rare and curable, and the other is really common and sorta treatable. HOORAY losing this stupid tummy! (It will take 2+ months for a final diagnosis though).

 

This is what worked for me when a healthy vegan diet and exercise alone, did not

http://beforewisdom.com/blog/?p=255

Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the info.

 

I do keep a food journal. And it's not related to gluten, soy, or monthly cycles. I've tried probiotics and didn't notice a difference. And my meals are mostly vegetables already. I know it sounds like I'm shooting down your advice, but I'm not. I try to follow and Eat to Live like diet (only I eat more than 3 times a day) and that's very veggie/fruit-heavy. I don't get pain from it, I just look like I'm pregnant. The bloating is only in my tummy.

 

I feel like the only time I'm "regular" is when I eat junk food...processed food and refined flour/sugar. Which is odd...because there's less fibre. I just really don't get that.

 

I would highly suggest trying the digestive enzymes, some of them have hydrochloric acid in them as well. The ones I have do. Or you could get it separately and see if the plain digestive enzymes alone do the trick or if you need the added HCl.

 

I agree that it is best to see a holistic-minded doctor whether MD or ND. Naturopaths can do blood tests and such also. Different ones have different approaches and different specialties. Asking around or calling and asking questions helps to find the right one for you.

 

 

Probioitics are meant to help re-balance gut flora.

 

Another issue that can cause severe bloating is candidiasis. Though if you are eating a lot of greens and not much fruit or fat, then it is less likely to be an issue.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It may be helpful for you to do mono-meals and see if there are any particular foods that cause a problem. Otherwise it is pretty easy to just get some high quality digestive enzymes at a health food store and see if they help. Unfortunately the brand I use is sold through health care professionals only.

 

Here are some links to good quality vegetarian products at great prices:

 

http://www.vitacost.com/productResults.aspx?within=withinResults&ss=1&qs=Ns%3dP_SoldQuantity%257c1%26N%3d32%2b2007967&Ntk=products&x=0&y=0&Ntt=digest%20activ

 

http://www.amazon.com/Source-Naturals-Essential-Capsules-capsules/dp/B000GFSVPU

 

http://www.amazon.com/nZymax-Digestive-Spectrum-Vegetarian-Supplement/dp/B001G6XEN2/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1269710356&sr=1-3-fkmr0

 

If you try enzymes please post your results. Good luck!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah my issue is body mass/fat, my belly is always pretty big. I'm gaining definition and losing inches in my arms/legs on a SUPER strict diet (I count every calorie and gram of everything) and going to the gym 3 hours/day, 6 days/week. Despite this, I'm not losing weight or body fat %, since it all redistributes to my abdomen/face. Ugh, I know.

I count my blessings in that I'm really healthy, I just have some issue that they haven't been able to find yet that causes this.

I'm also "normal" looking, you would just think I eat some junk and am not as fit as I am. (Women's size 10 for what it counts.)

I really just want to eat normal food sometimes. This calorie restriction thing (1000-1800 depending on workout) gets old. Not that I don't love vega and greens, but 2-3 meals a day are green smoothies or powder-based. I'd kill to eat a cookie sometimes. 2 months and we'll know and I can start treatment to get healthy!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Nah they've checked my thyroid up and down. He's 99.9% sure it's adrenal or androgen related, but it'll take 2 months to know for sure. But yeah, that was the first thing they checked.

 

 

There is a fast and simple hormone test that you can do using saliva and there are labs you can use that do not require a doctor to order the test. Saliva is much more accurate than blood tests for hormone levels. I have used BioHealth Diagnostics in California to do saliva testing of my adrenal gland function. They also can do estrogen, testerone, DHEA and cortisol levels.

 

My body temperature runs about a degree below normal but I too have normal thyroid function but weak adrenals.

 

Hope you can get some answers and get your body back on track.

 

Yeah the actual tests don't take much time at all. The problem is that other doctors just tried to gloss over the problem which they never thought was related (acne and irregular cycle) by putting me on hormonal contraceptives. This new doctor thinks those were symptoms of the same problem. Until I can get them totally out of my system (about 2 months) they can't get an accurate measure on my androgens.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had acne and screwy periods for years. Being put on birth control pills just "masked" the problem, but when I came off them last year, my problems just escalated. I haven't had a normal period on my own. I recently just got my acne under control with the help of topical medications and antibiotics.. I was at the point where I didn't care what it took to get rid of my acne because my face was just a mess. I still have PIH (post inflammatory hyperpigmentation) from all the acne I had.

I've tried talking to my doctor so many times about my weird cycle but all he does it try to tell me I need birth control pills, or the shot, or some other hormonal thing that won't fix the problem.. *sigh*

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 6 years later...

DO NOT USE LASER for lyperpigmentation!! Its too strong and will make it worse!! These treatments are very expensive.

 

Since we have sensitive skin anyway, what works is using products with glycolic acid as that is gentler and will take away the hyperpigmentation over time without BURNING it off (which wil leave scars). I use two creams for my hyperpigmentation and I have seen results in one month of daily use. (1) the Made from Earth Pure Aloe Vera - I use this on my body, and (2) the Lady Soma Renewal Serum - I use this on my face.

 

Aloe is a safe, gentle and effective method of treating hyperpigmentation, while the Lady Soma Renewal Serum has gentle gycolic and hyaluronic acid that takes the pigment away without the laser burning.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...