Jenny's Journal (Hormones, Lipedema, Anxiety, Weight)
I started PB about 9 months ago.
I have been trying to loose weight since I am 13 years old. I was never hugely overweight, but have always been a bit chubby. For me the biggest problem was and is, that I accumulate all the fat in my legs and upper arms, to that point, that I could never really wear boots or tight jeans. They would never fit properly. Jeans would usually not fit at my lower legs, but also be way to wide around the waist.
My first diet book I read at my grannys house, who had been very skinny in her youth, but overweight most of her later life, just like my mother. I was 13 years old and didn't want to look like my granny or mother, when I was older. The next 15 years I was starving myself on different diets, but would still have late nights at the weekends with my friends and have tons of alcohol and cigarettes. I managed through all those years to stay around 140 lbs. Most of the times I ate vegetables, carbs, and almost no fat or protein. My standard meal would be a big plate of pasta with tomato sauce after school around 14h, which would send me into a sleepcoma till 18h. Then I would stay up late into the night.
Around 2 years ago the true horror began. I swapped the pill from a very high dosed one to one of those micropills, developing severe headaches every month, got short of breath, as well as huge amounts of water collections in my whole body, that would hurt. My gynecologist gave me another hormone for the headaches..
One day to another though, after beeing out of breath after going up the stairs, I stopped the pill in the middle of the cycle, because I was afraid, that If I take one more of those things, I'd drop dead. Also I changed my gynecologist. In the first place I had started to take the pill due to akne and painfull periods, and It had always helped for a little while, but the symptoms came back. Anyway, in the following months I gained around 15lbs.
To loose those pounds again I tried everything, including a low carb diet/food combining (split the food in carbs/protein&fat, and have them never together in one meal). It helped a little, but not really. In the end I tried one of those soy/yoghurt based protein shakes and fasted for a long period of time, having nothing but the shake, and some fishoil capsules. I lost a couple of kilograms, which of course came back, as soon as I tried to eat something.
At that point my metabolism was completely messed up. Everything I tried to eat then, would cause problems.
A couple of months later I went to the doctor, because my legs started to hurt so badly, after my long night shifts. It seemed as if I developed blue stains quicker than anybody I knew, without actually banging my legs against something. The just came. I mean, I always developed blue stains quickly, but now they seemed to get really bad. Also I wondered, why I could't loose wight, even though I starved most of the time. After a quick two-minute glance of a dermatologist, I got diagnosed with Lipedema, which is basicly a very severe form of cellulite + water retention in your adipose tissue. After some research in the Internet, looking at all the pictures of people with Lipedema, I got very very afraid.
For weeks I looked for a cure and found out: There is no cure.
The only thing I could do against the pain, would be compression tights, forever and at any time, as well as MLD-therapy a couple of times every week.
My life felt, as if is was over. All I wanted was, to feel good in my body and happy with myself.
After some more research in the internet, I found a doctor who prescribed a 4-phase diet based on only cooked grains, for people with Lipedema. Later cooked veg would be added, but no fat, and no animal protein, except a little fish. The theory was, that you would need your gut to get used to food again, in a very slow process. Also you were not allowed to do too much sport, only walking and swimming. Furthermore the doctor believes, that if you eat animal protein, in people with Lipedema, it the protein somehow passes into your skin, binds water there, and doesn't get out so easily anymore.
That diet seemed to work in his patients, so I tried It myself at home without any help of a doctor. I started with phase one: Only cooked grains in water. The diet would have probably worked, if I would have done all the other (very cost intensive) therapies, that go with it, like MLD, jogging in a very cold room and different kind of massages. For me though, nothing really happened, except that I had a nervous breakdown, followed by panik attacks. So I started to see a therapist. Unfortunately I also had a lot of private stress at the same time.
To summarize my situation: I was a depressed, afraid, chubby, moody 28 year old woman with several medical issues, who spent most of her days of every week, in medical institutions, to treat all those symptoms, having nothing to eat but grains cooked in water.
It went on like that for a couple of months, until January 2012.
At the beginning of this year I found this website by chance. A friend of mine posted I video of a woman, that had managed to 'cure' her MS(Terry Wahls). On her website I found the link to MDA. I read everything in a couple of weeks and informed myself more about nutrition. It all kind of made so much sense, so I started to eat according to the PB in Feb/March, and what can I say:
After 9 months I
- have no headaches anymore
- have less periodical pain
- have beautifull skin
- the pain in my legs stopped
- don't develop blue stains anymore
- realized how my digestion system SHOULD work, and that constant diarrhea/constipation/bowel noise isn't normal
- am not so moody anymore
- don't loose my hair anymore
- am full of energy
- I sleep at night
- I don't get sick really
- find that my body looks better, even though I didn't loose any weight
- don't sweat throughout the day + my sweat doesn't smell that bad
- have no candida infections
- am not so cold anymore all the time
.. the list could probably go on...
I am so grateful, that I found this website, and that Mark and his team are providing us with so much information. For me it means, that I am allowed to eat. It feels as if, for the first time in my life, I am can eat food, that tastes good and is good for me. I don't have to feel guilty about eating anymore. I actually love food!
However, I haven't lost any weight. And I still have some problems with water retention in my legs/arms/breasts, even though it is not as bad as it used to be, and it doesn't hurt anymore. The reason probably is, that I haven't included all the other lifestyle changes in my life. I walk more than I used to and I spend more time outdoors, but not nearly as much as it is suggested here. Also I haven't started any weight training. And after reading a journal of another woman (ruby) here, that motivated me, I am going to give my weight loss a try.
1. Walk around 35 miles/50km a week
2. 2 Workouts a week (1x Yoga, 1x Primal Fitness)
3. Meditate Daily
4. Lower my carb intake
5. No dairy products, no coffee (it seems to affect the water retention)
6. Green Smothie every day
7. Take Fishoil supplements
Start weight: 72,5 kg/158 lbs
- loose 15kg/33lbs
- normalize my hormones (periodical pain + libido too low)
- get rid of the water retention in my legs
I hope to be able to have some more good news in a couple of weeks.