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  1. #911
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    Great story, Lady Grok!

    From the comments, you really struck a nerve with a lot of the women here. I think sometimes they feel like they're not much of a big deal unless they have washboard abs and lost 300 pounds or can deadlift triple our body weight. For most of us, it's more like big changes in our daily lives - things we just got used to over the years and forgot how much they dragged us down.

    Thanks for sharing your story!
    My sorely neglected blog - http://ThatWriterBroad.com

  2. #912
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Grok View Post
    You're very welcome! I am so overwhelmed by all the wonderful people who posted comments about it- I honestly thought I would get a lot of body-snarking. And it is shocking (and kind of disheartening)to hear how many people (specifically, women) have a similar story to tell. I still have a long way to go, but dammit, I worked hard to get here. And while I would like to be lighter, I have to concede that for me, being healthy is more important than what basically amounts to (in my case) vanity. That doesn't mean I will stop trying to find the magic formula though- as long as it's Primal.
    I keep reading the comments. A LOT of us have had the same stuff happen. I was totally struck by the whole brain fog thing. I went through this phase in my 20s where I couldn't stay awake. I would sometimes be late for work an hour because I'd be taking a nap. I went to work at 2pm. On my days off, I would sleep on and off during the day. But even if I didn't actually sleep I never felt entirely awake. I went through it again in my 30s. It was such an awful period of time that at one point I went to an eating disorder psychologist and told her how afraid I was of having that happen to me again.

    It's like there's this whole secret world of suffering out there that the entire medical profession has absolutely no awareness of.

    Anyway, I also wanted to tell you that in the last picture you show, I do not see an overweight person at all. You're very beautiful and look vivacious and active. You have a classic beauty, too, like a movie star from the 50s.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    Starting squat: 45lbs. Current squat: 170 x 3. Current Deadlift: 220 x 3

  3. #913
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    LadyGrok, I just read your story on the main page. You did a great job of telling it and your results are very inspiring. Best to you and your husband.

    I've just read about 10 pages of this thread and have to figure out how to subscribe to it. I've been mostly lurking for weeks, posting my own journal and reading others. But much of the information, while interesting, is not immediately applicable. This thread seems like a good fit for me.

    This might be TL/DR, but here's my back-story: I am 54, recovering from severe adrenal exhaustion, which I've recently realized has been a lifelong situation. Each time it recurs, it's worse and I recover less energy and function. Presumably I've also damaged my gut/immune system over the years with the wrong foods. Or maybe that came first in childhood or even in utero?

    I was a very skinny kid with a terrific sweet tooth, suddenly became a D-cup, short-waisted, wide-hipped teenager in the 70's when the ideal was a long, slim body a la Farrah Fawcett. I looked in the mirror and saw FAAAAAAAAAT at 5'4" and 115 lbs. I knew other teens that just didn't eat but couldn't starve myself, if I didn't eat I got bad headaches and tremendous fatigue. Or actually worse than normal headaches and fatigue. So I alternated between cutting calories and binging on sugar.

    Probably the thing that helped my health the most during teens was riding a bike everywhere, sometimes for hours a day. But I've never been crazy about exercise and I've always lacked stamina. Definitely not the sporty type. Had my first adrenal exhaustion crisis at 17 (fainting, tachycardia), doctors had no idea what was wrong after lots of tests.

    Years went by, my weight went up and down. Got married. Gained 25 lbs during a period of intense personal stress. Was a vegetarian for about 4 years during which time I lost weight but became anemic. Husband had an affair and marriage ended messily. Gained weight back and was generally miserable. Another period of intense work-related stress. Another round of tests for various complaints. Had high insulin levels but adrenal function was never tested. Quit painful job and started walking every day. Lost 20 lbs and felt pretty good. Got a job I loved, met a great guy, fell in love, got married. After the happiest year of my life, the bottom fell out of my health. Constantly sick, bronchitis, UTIs, strep throat, unremitting fatigue, multiple courses of antibiotics. Was eventually diagnosed with CFS. Went on various supplements and gradually improved my health to about 80% over a period of 5 years. (My guess now is that this was related to adrenal issues as the symptoms are so similar.)

    So what do I do? Quit the job I love and move with my husband 400 miles from home to pursue a venture which did NOT turn out well. Tremendous personal and financial stress. Insane boss. Went through menopause. Lost 60 lbs in four months by eating 1/4 my normal food intake and exercising very heavily. (Somehow this made me "feel better" in a crazy way.)

    Husband that I adore is diagnosed with advanced cancer and the world turns upside down. We get him through 5 months of chemo, he doesn't die in 3 months as expected, I live on peanut butter sandwiches and tea and regain 25 lbs, we manage to just barely stay afloat financially, and move across the country to be near my sister, who is my rock and my angel. A magical year ensues, he is doing pretty well, I get a decent job, we find a crummy little house, then a better one, then a better job for me... until he stops responding to chemo. After three months of 24/7 caregiving while also working, he dies peacefully at home.

    I grieve and sleep and eat whatever the hell I want to.

    Six months later I feel like I'm ready to get back to real life. So I tackle a huge charitable project in addition to working full-time and in 6 months burn up whatever reserves my adrenals had. BP spikes into stroke range, arrhythmia, angina, insomnia. This scares me. I am lucky enough to find a naturopathic MD who diagnoses depressed cortisol and immune function due to long-term adrenal exhaustion. He recommends a paleo-type diet along with supplements and hormones, which leads me here.

    I've lost 9 lbs in a month with almost no exercise. BP is largely normal. No chest pain, palpitations, or arrhythmia. Sleep is improved but not fully better. Still very fatigued but slowly improving. I'll have labs done in another month so I can compare pre- and post-PB cholesterol (VAP test), insulin, cortisol, etc. I don't find this way of life difficult to follow at all other than going to bed early.

    I hope this wasn't too long for an introductory post. I hope to gain from your knowledge and experience and if I can contribute to anyone else's well-being, I would be happy to.
    My Primal Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57034.html

    "...since our orthodox theories have not saved us we may have to readjust them to bring them into harmony with Nature's laws. Nature must be obeyed, not orthodoxy." Weston A. Price

  4. #914
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Grok View Post
    Hey all,

    I know a lot of you have been complaining about the success stories that have been posted. In a crazy moment, I decided to write something down and sent it in, with some pictures. Mark just emailed that he is going to be posting it tomorrow. I am feeling a little sick- because it's not a typical "Success" story by any stretch, but maybe that's why he chose it. I am worried about the potential reaction to it, because- well, I put it all out there. But I feel like it could potentially help other people, as we aren't all 25 year old guys with computer jobs and 30 lbs to lose that crept on a couple of years ago. So: to quote good old Bartyles and James, "Thank you for your support!" And I hope you enjoy reading it.
    I was very pleased to see that testimony, myself. Thanks for putting yourself out there!

    Oh Wrenwood, you have had such a rough ride! {{hugs}} I'm glad that the last month at least has been a positive. I see that you've had a similar experience to me, with the chest pains and such disappearing almost immediately on a primal diet. I'm still feeling my way on what is the optimal mix of eating and possibly supplements to deal with my own CFS. I'm actually doing better, but the schedule has been pretty crazy lately, so the increased well-being has been almost balanced out by the increased demands. At least I'm dealing with them without collapsing... Although "increased demands" in my case is pretty mild compared to most people's lives. I'm still nowhere near to being able to consider looking for a job.
    5'2", 55 years, Primal since April. Pre-Primal weight loss, from 216.6 to 157.8
    Primal low: 140.2 (Dec. 3) Goal weight: 135?
    Main Primal goal: beating back my CFS enough to function more normally and start writing again

    More and more, our life has been governed by specialists, who know too little of what lies outside their province to be able to know enough about what takes place within it.
    - Lewis Mumford

  5. #915
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    have been lurking on this thread for a while myself.

    loved ladygrok's story and for once it doesn't measure success with a six-pack!

    wren, am glad you are on the upswing. amazing what we can catch just going through life, eh?

    this is me:

    until my early 40s, i never had a weight issue. on-off anorexia, disordered eating through childhood and until my 30s though. was always active, no car, walked everywhere. i am small, only 5'2", and most of my life looked like a popsicle stick with giant bewbies.

    about age 42 or 43, my weight started creeping up. it got bad, so for months i tried all the conventional tactics, including fasting. i was convinced that healthy grains were ... healthy. i cut fat, cut cals, exercised like a maniac. ate lentils and more lentils and fruit. not much happened. i cried often. my b/f just insisted i wasn't doing enough. that i needed to exercise more. what 90 minutes on the treadmill wasn't enough?

    i discovered low-carb and a light bulb went off. the pounds didn't fly off, but the weight did go and i was the smallest i had been in a long time. i was at about 150-152 and a size 6. i felt great. whole foods, healthy fats. terrific.

    the elimination of grains also "cured" a lifelong battle with bronchial issues. i'd always had terrible colds, coughs that would go on for months. coughing so hard i spit up blood and broke blood vessels in my eyes and face. gagging and coughing up mucous most mornings. nice, huh? my normal. lol. in almost 3 years, i have not had so much as a sniffle. my b/f gets a cold or stuff goes around at work and i do not catch it. that is awesome. my skin, hair and nails are all so much better. i sleep better.

    last year, my period started going kaplooey. some days so bad i was afraid to leave the house. grapefruit-sized clots sploshing on the floor. i became badly anemic. back and forth with a few doctors and had a mirena iud put in. friends have it and love it. at 47, i am peri-menopasual so was hoping i could just ride everything out for the 5-year lifespan of the device.

    the first couple months were ok and the heavy bleeding/cramping, thankfully, went away. however, my body shape and composition began to change at about the 4-month mark. these last 2 months, i do not even recognize myself. somebody posted a pic of me on facebook and i am a fat lady. none of my summer clothes from last year fit. i weighed 169 pounds this morning. my entire midsection is bloated and fat. my muscle tone has disappeared.

    i am binge-eating at night and find it almost impossible to stop eating junk food at work. my house pantry is clean, but i am still over-eating.

    a few weeks ago, i started fasting and did some serious calorie restriction. in 2 weeks i had dropped 7 or so pounds. this week, which is the one where i should be having my period, i am way back up in my weight, even though i am having no other menstrual symptoms. and, my b/f is on me again because i look terrible. he has no idea how very much worse i feel. while he is willing to concede that "some" of my issues may be hormone-related, he just thinks more exercise will cure everything.

    my libido, which was previously ravenous, has disappeared. i feel "dead" inside. except for when i feel depressed.

    my annual gyno exam is on monday and will make him remove the iud.

    after that i am unsure what to do. i am terrified of having an ablation -- it seems so invasive and scorched earth, but clearly treating myself with progesterone is not working.

    i feel so helpless at the hands of my hormones and just do NOT know what to do. my doctor and gyno both suck, my long-term doctor retired awhile back. though still fairly young, she had been hmo'd to death. so i no longer feel like i have a health-care advocate. i feel lost.
    As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

    Ernest Hemingway

  6. #916
    Lady Grok's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noodletoy View Post
    have been lurking on this thread for a while myself.

    loved ladygrok's story and for once it doesn't measure success with a six-pack!

    (snip)

    a few weeks ago, i started fasting and did some serious calorie restriction. in 2 weeks i had dropped 7 or so pounds. this week, which is the one where i should be having my period, i am way back up in my weight, even though i am having no other menstrual symptoms. and, my b/f is on me again because i look terrible. he has no idea how very much worse i feel. while he is willing to concede that "some" of my issues may be hormone-related, he just thinks more exercise will cure everything.

    my annual gyno exam is on monday and will make him remove the iud.

    i feel so helpless at the hands of my hormones and just do NOT know what to do. my doctor and gyno both suck, my long-term doctor retired awhile back. though still fairly young, she had been hmo'd to death. so i no longer feel like i have a health-care advocate. i feel lost.
    Welcome- and thanks for your kind comments about my story!

    It sounds like you recently changed your diet pretty dramatically. When I first started PB-ing, and again at the beginning of this year, when I cut carbs drastically- My cycles got weird. Super weird. Specifically, what was typically a textbook 28 day tour stretched out to 50, 55 days. Eventually, it self-regulated back to "normal." Your body may be trying to process everything and catch up, but you are right to be concerned, as there are a lot of variables at work here.

    Please don't beat yourself up about your weight- my guess is that the gyno visit may clear some things up- either figuring out if there is a problem, or putting your mind at ease that there isn't. It sounds like your hormonal levels are going haywire. The IUD removal sounds like a good idea to me, too. Hang in there! I know, that helpless feeling is the worst.

    In the meantime, you need to find a new doctor. Have you gone to an endocrinologist, or considered a naturopath? (I know, granola crunchy, but can't help it- I'm from California!) There is a list of Paleo/Primal-friendly practitioners around here somewhere. Please let us know how your appointment goes!
    With Mark's help, I've conquered depression, acne, rosacea, scale obsession, migraines, and lethargy. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

    http://www.theladygrok.blogspot.com/

    My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread8215.html

  7. #917
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    thank you.

    i had been eating very clean low-carb for a bit over a year before things went off the rails. definitely age-related hormonal issues, rather than caused by my eating.

    have considered a naturopath, but don't know anybody who sees one. just picking one at random is like throwing darts blind-folded. lol.
    As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

    Ernest Hemingway

  8. #918
    Lady Grok's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbhikes View Post
    I keep reading the comments. A LOT of us have had the same stuff happen.(snip)

    It's like there's this whole secret world of suffering out there that the entire medical profession has absolutely no awareness of.
    Honestly, that was the most shocking thing for me, too. The comments. I couldn't believe how many women (and a few guys too!) freaked out and said, "Hey, this is me!" If that many women have been struggling with this for decades, and women (for the most part) have been following the advice of their doctors, then it's just been- well, like a conspiracy of willful ignorance on the part of the medical profession. We've meekly done what we were told, and have become fatter and sicker, and then been blamed for failure.

    Obviously doctors must have multiple patients with similar issues, and never connected the dots. I think part of it is because inability to lose weight is seen or portrayed as gluttony or moral weakness. So it doesn't get openly talked about- partially because let's face it, at least in my case, I felt/feel ashamed of my inability to control my body, and partially because people who have low self-esteem/depression are a lot less likely to stand up for themselves and say, "HEY! Your crappy advice and refusal to believe me are interfering with my quality of life!" Also, being a lady makes you much more unlikely to want to rock the boat. And- weight is so stigmatized and personal, and you blame yourself.

    And honestly- I just thought that all my "before" problems were normal, and I got dealt a crappy hand, health-wise. I was completely gob-smacked when I cut out grains and learned that wasn't the case.

    Thank you for your compliments! LOL- on the 1950's thing- As a teen, I used to look at cheesecake pics of the starlets, and was convinced I had been born in the wrong era. I actually got a hilarious flashback of my family's trip to Hawaii when I was 12. Japanese tourists kept pulling me aside to take pictures with me, and my family was a little freaked out and a LOT confused. We finally understood when one family managed to explain that they thought I looked like Brooke Shields! I don't see the resemblance myself, (I wish!)except for the coloring, but hey.
    With Mark's help, I've conquered depression, acne, rosacea, scale obsession, migraines, and lethargy. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

    http://www.theladygrok.blogspot.com/

    My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread8215.html

  9. #919
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    Quote Originally Posted by noodletoy View Post
    thank you.

    i had been eating very clean low-carb for a bit over a year before things went off the rails. definitely age-related hormonal issues, rather than caused by my eating.

    have considered a naturopath, but don't know anybody who sees one. just picking one at random is like throwing darts blind-folded. lol.
    Gotcha. I do see one- he is at least supportive and listens to me, which is (sadly) a novel and rewarding experience. I actually found mine on yelp.com- which is great for finding "regular" doctors too, by the way.

    Here's the link to Paleo Physicians Network- http://paleophysiciansnetwork.com/

    I clicked around a bit. It looks like there are lots of docs in your area, but a LOT of them are chiropractors. There was one option I clicked on that looked good. I mean, her name is Dr. Ronda Rockett, which sounds like a bada$$ Crossfitting lady superhero who fights crime and wears a jet pack. I don't advocate choosing a doc based on name alone (this is where crosschecking on Yelp comes in handy), but come on, being able to say that you are "going to see Dr. Rockett" just opens up a world of comedic potential! There are a few naturopaths in there too. Good luck!
    Last edited by Lady Grok; 06-16-2012 at 11:46 AM. Reason: to add link!
    With Mark's help, I've conquered depression, acne, rosacea, scale obsession, migraines, and lethargy. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

    http://www.theladygrok.blogspot.com/

    My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread8215.html

  10. #920
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    Quote Originally Posted by noodletoy View Post

    last year, my period started going kaplooey. some days so bad i was afraid to leave the house. grapefruit-sized clots sploshing on the floor. i became badly anemic. back and forth with a few doctors and had a mirena iud put in. friends have it and love it. at 47, i am peri-menopasual so was hoping i could just ride everything out for the 5-year lifespan of the device.

    the first couple months were ok and the heavy bleeding/cramping, thankfully, went away. however, my body shape and composition began to change at about the 4-month mark. these last 2 months, i do not even recognize myself. somebody posted a pic of me on facebook and i am a fat lady. none of my summer clothes from last year fit. i weighed 169 pounds this morning. my entire midsection is bloated and fat. my muscle tone has disappeared.
    Have you been checked for fibroids? These symptoms are pretty common in women with utirine fibroids.
    I was diagnosed with a very large one about 4 months ago so have been doing a lot of research on them, some drs estimate as mush as 50% or higher of women get them but often they remain small, however if they get bigger or badly situated they can seriously screw with your cycle, cause bleeding & cramps etc etc.
    If your going to the Gyno soon you might want to ask about getting checked. (they did a ultrasound to check me) adding an iud might effect it although ive no exsperience with that.
    Every time I hear the dirty word 'exercise', I wash my mouth out with chocolate.

    http://primaldog.blogspot.co.uk/

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