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Demoralised, depressed and desperate (sorry it's a brain dump!)

(29 Posts)
WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 00:31:06

My weight is absolutely doing my head in. I've been battling with it for my entire adult life and just can't get a handle on it. Have managed to lose a stone or two on a few occasions then it's gone back on again, often with interest. At the moment I'd he happy to get down to my post baby weight - and my DD is nearly 11 blush.

I've tried Weight Watchers and ended up eating more by their points system than I did beforehand confused; Slimming World - more successful but too convoluted to fit in with the rest of my life these days; low GI - ok, but limiting; and various combinations that I've invented myself with varying degrees of success.

I have a very underactive thyroid which I'm on huge amounts of medication for, and in spite of the meds the only way I can lose weight is to live on veg, fruit, lean meat/fish and eggs - literally nothing at all in the way of carbs, fat or sugar. If I do that for a week say, I will lose a few pounds but just one day of normal eating (e.g. cereal and semi-skimmed for breakfast, sandwich, small bag of crisps and piece of fruit for lunch, and small roast dinner and small dessert for dinner) and the whole lot will go back on.

Part of the problem is monitoring my progress - because of the issue above I am terrified of weighing myself as my weight yo-yo's so much for so little reason and it's just too demoralising. I recently started dieting again and lost 4 inches over the course of a month, but have been manically busy and stressed and fallen off the wagon (again).

I always thought I scrubbed up ok for a fat bird but I have realised recently that I don't. I am sick to death of how I look, not being able to wear the clothes I'd like to, constantly worrying about how my weight will affect the things we do as a family (we're going on holiday in a couple of weeks - DD and DH will be spending hours bodyboarding - I will only be going in for 15 minutes at a time if the weather is really scorching as I can't get an affordable wetsuit that fits).

I'm also terrified for my health - when I'm on my feet for any length of time I can feel that my joints are suffering from the extra load, both my parents have heart problems and my mum had type 2 diabetes.

I'm 40 in a couple of months and there is so much I want to do with my life that my weight either is or could hold me back from doing - I don't want to carry on like this but I have no faith that anything else will work.

I'm 5'3 and weigh, I guess (haven't actually weighed since mid April) between 16.5 - 17st. The only things I haven't tried are hypnotherapy, fat binding tablets and bariatric surgery (which I'm starting to think might be my only hope tbh).

If anyone's been in a similar situation and can inspire me or recommend what worked for them I'd be hugely grateful. TIA.

LittleLionHeart Mon 20-Jul-15 00:43:06

When you were losing weight successfully before (by whichever methods)... What makes you stop?

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 08:14:55

Not seeing results is a big factor - although I lost four inches during June, they were mostly round my bust & waist and I really needed to get it off my hips to get in my target trousers for holiday in a couple of weeks - knowing I wasn't going to manage it after a month of fairly strict dieting was really demoralising.

It's coincided with a massively busy/stressful time at work - I am definitely an emotional eater which isn't too bad if I'm in the zone but if something happens when I'm already feeling a bit meh it's a disaster.

I lost 18lb last year, very gradually and got down 16st2lb. Then I had to have an emergency appendectomy last Sept, followed by an ovary removal op this May which has really thrown me back. Had horrific experience with anaesthesia in first op so spent months in between suffering with anxiety/ptsd, plus of course lack of exercise due to post op recovery x 2.

Also, because I'm so huge, I never reach the point where people start noticing I've lost anything - demoralising again sad.

I braved the scales this morning and am back up to 17st 3lb - going to make GP appt and see what they can suggest.

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 08:17:09

Also had my Mirena removed in May (was sterilised during op) so am having to cope with periods again for first time in 10 years - which explains the particularly down & grumpy head this weekend over it.

Dowser Mon 20-Jul-15 09:33:13

Interesting that you lose weight on a wheat free diet but put it on when you eat wheat.
I gave up wheat to reduce the swelling in my legs over 3 years ago and it has helped enormously. I can now wear lovely shoes that were just a dream a few years ago.

I found the book wheatbelly very good.
It explains how wheat has been altered and our digestion cannot cope with it. The wheat we eat now is not the same as the wheat of 30 years ago. We used to get one crop of four feet high wheat a year and now we get two half the size. As a child of the 50 s I never saw Many huge adults. My mum and dad were very slim as we're our friends and neighbours and bread was a big part of our diets but the changes in food coupled with the incidence of sugar in almost everything has led to an obesity crisis and it is a crisis.

I'm sure my daughter mentioned a correlation between wheat and thyroid malfunction.

I would suggest to you to go wheat and sugar free if you want dramatic results. Although I don't know how a damaged thyroid responds to dietary changes.

If you still struggle you may also be dairy intolerant but I would see how you go without wheat and sugar first. Have a look at the quit sugar thread and I wouldn't use honey or maple syrup either.
I gave up sugar three months ago for health reasons. After the first three days the sugar cravings stopped. I've had no chocolate, no gluten free cake or biscuit, no sweets. I was starting to suffer with bad ibs and stomach cramps but that has virtually gone now.

I know you are panicking about your holiday but if you start today with a protein breakfast. I have omelette with onion. A veggie and protein lunch. I have home made green soup with lentils and ham and a protein veg and small carb ( we have wholegrain rice or sweet potato) dinner you should see the scales move and on your hols stay away from the dessert counter. It's what my friend did. She had her drinks and only put on a pound.

I feel for you WB. I'm five feet 6 and the most I've weighed is 12 stone and i felt like an elephant then. Just don't panic. If you make the right dietary changes it will come off.

Dowser Mon 20-Jul-15 09:46:41

If you google gluten and the thyroid connection you will find lots of articles.
Here's one. Reading it has reminded me to order some more iodine which helps the thyroid.

over the years I've taken plenty of kelp, used lots of iodine etc. I went for blood tests recently and was really pleased when my doctor said I had extremely healthy blood. Thyroid fine and nothing needed tweaking.

Not bad for an old bird I thought, I wasn't even offered statins lol. There's still time for you to make the changes, lose the weight and regain your health.

Good luck.

Dowser Mon 20-Jul-15 10:09:43

I've just read this personal account from a 36 year old.

I too have dumped most of the chemical toiletries. I make my own face cream, I use magnesium oil as a deoderant.

I also take probiotics every day. I make my own kefir, sauerkraut and kombucha.

Just started making kombucha two weeks ago, I don't particularly like the taste so I just put a couple of spoonfuls in my drinking bottle. Some probiotics is better than none I figured.

I also have upped healthy fats and we cook in coconut oil.

To find out more about fermented foods read Donna Schwenk. I gave my doctor some of my kefir grains and she said it was very good, very strong.

DownWithThisTypeOfThing Mon 20-Jul-15 10:09:44

Ok, firstly your weight is not insurmountable (i thought you were going to say you were about 30 stone which I think needs some expert handling). If I was you, I'd make two realistic targets: 2 stone off by end of November then 2 stone off by the end of March. Then reassess. That's only half a stone a month and can be easily done with very small changes (speaking from experience here - see summer Sunday weigh in thread). For me, it's healthy snacks (preferably no snacks, but hey, come on!) and all but giving up alcohol.

In your post, you say very clearly the way if eating which helps you lose weight only way I can lose weight is to live on veg, fruit, lean meat/fish and eggs - literally nothing at all in the way of carbs, fat or sugar - that's actually a very good way of eating which thousands of people do as a normal way of life. I think you need to reframe your thinking and see it as a way of eating, not as a diet. You know from your thyroid issue & your parents health issues that certain bodies act certain ways and yours is telling you loud and clear what it wants/needs.

So yes, I think you have a mental block that needs shifting. I think you need to commit to that way of eating until you've lost the weight. And we're not talking a long time in the scheme of things - possibly 6-8 months out of your whole life. When you've lost the weight, then try different strategies to maintain.

So my main points are:
-set a goal but set smaller, realistic goals until you get there
- reframe your thinking - lean meat/fish & no carbs/sugar is a perfectly legitimate way of eating and can be very satisfying
- take control
-commit to six months of hard work

And I think the last point is so important - quite simply, you have to commit to doing it or else in six months time you'll still be fat (or fatter) and you could have changed things.

I'm aware some of this sounds very harsh - I've been where you are now and when I posted on day one saying "i'm bored, hungry and tired" some people have me some very useful points to think about and if they hadn't, I think I'd have thrown the towel in then berating my genetics rather than accepting yes it's hard work and sometimes miserable but it's in my control and I can either do it or not do it and only I could decide which was the better option.

Good luck.

DownWithThisTypeOfThing Mon 20-Jul-15 10:11:42

Oh and what I meant to say...get in reddit, tumbler etc and see people's weight loss transformations over a period of time - so inspirational. Sometimes you can't see much change in the earlier photos then boom, you can see someone's halved their weight.

twgal Mon 20-Jul-15 10:26:53

Hi WyrdByrd. I'm also on thyroid medication for my underactive thyroid - have been on it since I was 22, as they've removed half my thyroid gland back then. Eating less carbs helps me a lot, I'm not sure if it's necessarily the wheat, but definitely low carb diets work for me (I'm currently on Dukan, looking to lose about 18 lbs total, have already lost 6 lbs and I feel superenergetic, less tired, less depressed (yes I get the moods too).

I love bread and croissants and cheese and that's how I rapidly gained weight (comfort eating). Once I'm done with Dukan - which I don't follow exactly 100% but very very close - I intend to keep eating low carb, but take an approach that I think would work long term, as a lifestyle... essentially for the rest of my life (I'm turning 40 next month btw). It's called 'low fat high carb' LCHF.

Essentially that approach is eating less carbs (root vegs are still allowed) and very low sugar (no cake etc and cut even fruit intake), but natural fat is okay, including the one found in meat and dairy products. Wine, coffee, chocolate are allowed (of course, the ones low in sugar are preferred).

There is no calorie counting though.

So basically there are very few things that you need to avoid or eat very infrequently: bread, rice, pasta, potatoes, beans, and beer smile. Fruit is allowed but they say to treat is as a 'natural form of candy' and eat less of it. Berries are the best (lowest sugar content).

For me this works as I don't eat cake and sweets anyway, so it would only mean cutting significantly the starchy food (bread, potatoes, etc). I will keep eating rice and potatoes once in a while, but not more than one day per week. Well, that is my plan :-)

I wish you all the best in your weight loss journey. It can be done I think, but you need to change your lifestyle completely, and not just for the weight loss period.

Lifeisadancefloor Mon 20-Jul-15 10:58:34

OP I don't have any diet advice really, but I wanted to say that I started at a heavier weight than you - nearly 18st and lost loads and keep it off (nearly 6 stone). I diet differently depending on the weather - I am a fairweather dieter - but I have tried slimming world (didn't work for me but my parents shifted about 12 stone between them and have kept it off for the last 6 years), Weightwatchers (works but makes me neurotic about points), VLCD (best for me - I love the quick results) and Paul Mackenna (absolute miracle - makes you address your food issues and teaches you it eat like a thin person).

What I would say is don't give up - you can shift the weight but it does take time. My best advice is get on the scales everyday - because that makes you mindful of your weight and helps to readjust your eating on a daily basis- and keep a record of daily weight - you would be amazed at how much water weight it is possible to put on during ovulation and menstruation and don't let that deter you.

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 16:57:10

Thanks folks - this is really helpful.

Will come back and reply properly later as have just got in from work to yet another bundle of school related stress with DD!

Georgethesecond Mon 20-Jul-15 17:00:27

You've talked about your diet OP. What exercise do you do?

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 17:08:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MarchelineWhatNot Mon 20-Jul-15 17:08:46

...literally nothing at all in the way of carbs, fat or sugar. If I do that for a week say, I will lose a few pounds but just one day of normal eating... and the whole lot will go back on.

There's your answer, just stay away from the carbs, fat & sugar. Always. I am not a fan of 'Cheat Meals' or, worse, 'Cheat Days'. They can completely undo all your good work. They're just not worth it.

And I am a huge fan of no carbs as somebody I know lost a huge amount of weight, just giving up carbs and power walking for 30 mins a day. She went from a roly poly ball (not being mean, really she was like a ball), to a gorgeous, curvy size 14. All she did was give up carbs and the power walking. She made no other changes.

AreYouSupposedToBeInIowa Mon 20-Jul-15 17:14:53

I am the same height as you. I have gone from 79.6 to 72 kilos and I have cut all carbs (apart from Asda own make of Rice Krispies) from my diet. I am getting carbs from vegetables etc. When I say cut carbs I mean flour based stuff, sweets, cakes, biscuits etc. I eat meat, eggs, veggies, fruit, yoghourt and drink a drop of wine and it has come off slowly but I feel brilliant. I eat fat and olive oil. I also seem to get terrible indigestion and sleep badly if I have flour and sugar based stuff. I don't know if this helps?

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 17:39:48

Carbs are definitely a major factor for me.

Last year & recently when I've made some progress I've had all my carbs in the morning - a pack of Belvita breakfast biscuits & 200g fresh fruit - then salad with eg salmon, tuna, smoked mackerel, prawn/crabsticks, cold chicken, ham & egg etc & a yoghurt for lunch & dinner based on a low GI or Hairy Dieters recipe with plenty of veg & a little rice if it's something like chilli, for example. I've avoided bread most of the time & can take or leave pasta & potatoes. I only buy/make cakes & biscuits if we're having visitors or it's a special occasion & have dessert only on Sundays.

I don't have cheat days as such,but I spend every Sunday with my parents so have lunch & dinner there which is a bit beyond my control, although being quite elderly they only serve small portions anyway eg 2 small sausage rolls, a bag of crisps (often low fat type) & some salad for lunch; small chicken breast, three types of veg & 2-3 roasties for dinner (plus small portion of dessert).

As for exercise - I'm not great on that front I must admit, I find most types reall boring. I had a GP gym referral last year which I then took put a reduced membership off the back of for 6 months but the end of that coincided with my first lot of surgery & I didn't renew it, partly because I knew I'd probably be having more surgery & also for financial reasons.

I've tried C25K recently which was manageable but tedious & I'm too self conscious to run in public; we have a Wii fit but the challenge there is having the opportunity to use it when DH is crashed out in front of the telly after being on his feet all day at work. I also tried The 30 Day shred the other week - I managed 11 minutes confused blush!

I enjoy zumba & swimming but am a bit too big to manage the former at the moment (I was about 2st lighter when I used to do it) and the cost of just one session of each a week is almost as much as a gym membership.

I am thinking of asking the GP for another referral to the gym though. If I did that I get the joining fee waived and a £5 per month discount as I work for the local council - I might then ask if my parents & DH would get me a year's membership between them for my birthday.

Dowser Mon 20-Jul-15 18:15:40

Been weighed today. First time in 3 years and I'm pleased to say that I'm only four pounds heavier than when I finished slimming world at least 15 years ago.

It's a shame you and slimming world didn't get on OP I think it's a great plan and someone told me they have a gluten free diet.

Course I did this before going gluten free. It means I've still kept a stone and a half off over all these years as I've stuck to its basic principles.

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 18:33:10

I did quite like Slimming World, but I don't think it would fit in with my family/lifestyle these days. I'm a bit iffy about the group thing too, and really don't want to spend any more money than I have to shifting the weight.

I went for a few weeks years ago and lost a reasonable amount in the time, then the friend I was going with fell pregnant and stopped going and I jacked it in too as I didn't want to go on my own.

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 18:34:21

Reading back the post before last I also realise that one of my faltering points was getting bored senseless of salad!

Dowser Mon 20-Jul-15 19:15:13

I rarely and I mean rarely have salad. I don't like it very much and I don't think my spleen likes cold foods very much.

I have lots of home made soup at lunchtime and steamed veg or stir fry on an evening.

Georgethesecond Mon 20-Jul-15 19:22:25

I just had a fried sliced courgette with garlic salt (and a grilled chicken breast). It was yum and I am full.

WyrdByrd Mon 20-Jul-15 20:41:12

I love garlic salt on chips with mayo admittedly so will definitely give that a try.

If DH has steak & chips, I substitute roast peppers, onion, courgette, tomatoes & mushrooms for the chips & that's really nice.

Quite happy to have salmon with a nice heap of stir fried veg too.

I do like salad but it gets a bit much 28 days in a row. I used to take hummus & crudites to work for lunch but the side effects were somewhat unfortunate blush !

Georgethesecond Mon 20-Jul-15 22:24:28

I hate salad. I get on better with:
Salmon, egg mayo, rocket
Tinned tuna, tomatoes, cucumber
Chicken breast, artichoke hearts or roast cherry tomatoes
You need plenty of protein not to be hungry. Marks and Spencer's do nice packs of marinated roast chicken if you are out and about

Georgethesecond Mon 20-Jul-15 22:25:45

Also poached eggs and sliced ham is nice

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