PCOS, IR and Perimenopausal

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  • posted by sparkleoftheshire

    Anyone else out there doing BSD with PCOS, Inuslin Resistance and is Perimenopausal?
    I have massive weight gains…. 3 inches in a weekend, (so normal that isn’t it? well you and I know it’s not, but for some reason it doesn’t ring alarm bells with my doctor)
    I lost 2 stone last year when out of desparation of nothing working, my doctor put me on orlistat. I was killing myself at the gym 5 times a week, eating less than 15mg of fat per meal (no more than 5 g pf fat per 100g of food) utterly miserable, feeling awful all of the time, and eating with the fear of God, as anyone who has taken Orlistat does due to the hideous side effects.
    The weight has all come back on, and increased significantly.
    I guess by some peoples standards, as a size 16 (now verging on 18 for the first time in my life) hobbit, I’m not huge. But before my PCOS kicked in, I was a size 6 to 8. It took me 8 years of fighting to get diagnosed, and then everything made sense.
    I’m on Metformin, this used to keep my weight stable, but for the last 2 years, it really isn’t helping, and I do wonder whether I should ditch it.
    And now the cocktail is joined by the perimenopause which kicked in about a year ago.
    The combination of all makes me feel terrible about myself. Fat, bloated, sluggish. I sleep poorly. (I don’t drink alcohol much, maybe a glass of wine or two every few weeks) I don’t smoke. I have an active job. I go to the gym. The weight just keeps on coming. Nothing seems to work. I’ll just add in, my paternal grandfather was diabetic, my father a type 2 which changed in his later years to type 1 and resulted in him becoming a double amputee.
    So any of you in my situation, and how has it worked for you? Full on BSD? 5:2?
    Open to suggestions.
    Hubby will also be joinging me on this journey.

  • posted by caronl

    Hi sparkleoftheshire (love the name!) and welcome. You have come to the right place! There has been quite a bit of discussion on PCOS, which you can find by searching the term on this website. Two of our posters, Esnecca and Jennie10 (I think) had/have PCOS and have both had great success with BSD. There are more out there too.

    Many of us have come to this way of eating via regimes advocating low fat and lots of exercise, having found that they didn’t work in tackling weight and sugar issues. Have you read Michael Mosley’s BSD book? Gary Taubes book “Why we get fat..” is also an eye opener in showing that insulin is the key issue, and that low carbohydrate eating is the touchstone for getting back control.

    I have been on this site for 2yrs – 1 day, and in my healthy BMI range for 18 months. The way of eating was a life changer. In reply to your question, I started with 5:2 and a Mediterranean diet, but found that full on BSD worked far better for me. Maybe counter-intuitively, full BSD is easier to follow, because after about three days, you lose the cravings for carbs and snacks, and stop feeling hungry. It is miraculous.

    There is lots of good advice on this site – just search it. There are two particularly good threads for newcomers – “One week at a time….” and “Optimistic October”which are renewed each week/month. Both have newcomers and more experienced members, so just shout with any questions. I wish you lots of success. The silver lining of being in a really bad place is that the improvement will be startling. Do read this post below that Esnecca wrote in April – it is full of good tips, and a well of inspiration.

    ” Plumpgoose, so many of us have been there and know exactly what you’re talking about. My bloods were on the higher range of normal even when I weighed more than 320+ lbs at 5’2″. It was my insulin levels that were sky-high, and diabetes was only a matter of time, meanwhile the insulin itself made it impossible for me to lose weight because its job is to store fat. I never really dieted, just get putting on weight steadily for years as I followed the usual advice about low fat foods and whole grains. Like you, I could barely walk a block, my knees ached, I never got a decent’s night’s sleep, I was uncomfortable sitting, standing, walking, peeing, you name it.
    When I finally decided to stop living this way, the first thing I did was cut all carbs, whole grain or not. No bread, pasta, pizza, potatoes, sugar. I lost about 20 pounds that way (judging solely on fit of clothes; I hadn’t weighed myself in years) then stalled. In August of 2016, I bought the Blood Sugar Diet and decided to give it a try. I knew within days that this was the solution I’d been looking for. I got on the BSD bus and kept going until I reached my goal. I weighed myself for the first time the last week in August and I weighed 297 lbs. I reached my goal of 130 lb a year later. In November 2017 I reached the secret ultra dream goal of 120 lb, my high school weight. I did the 800 calorie ultra-low carb diet the entire time. No breaks.
    As far as exercise goes, I started with the easiest stuff I could find, a 10-minute chair aerobics routine for seniors with mobility issues. (I was 44 at the time, but so obese that I might as well have been 80 and in a wheelchair.) I added a very brief walk around the block. It took me 20 minutes because I had to stop twice along the route to catch my breath. As I felt better, the walks got longer and I developed an hour-long resistance band routine to strengthen my muscles without causing injuries.
    So yeah, girl, this is it. I was a barely functional wreck and now I’m fit as a cricket. Here’s how I armed myself. Get a kitchen scale. Put it on the counter. Keep it there. Weigh ingredients and calculate their calorie and carb content using an app like MyFitnessPal or Fat Secret. Decide what your maximum level of daily carb grams should be. Mine is 20 grams, which is very low, but it is the best way to ensure my insulin levels never spike and better safe than sorry. Other people aim for 50 grams or lower as this seems to be a common sweet spot to put you in fat-burning mode. Pick the number of meals you’ll eat a day. I skip breakfast because I’ve never cared to eat when I first wake up, and it’s a lot nicer to have 800 cals to play with divided over two than three. Establish an evening cutoff time, the earlier the better. No later than 8PM would be my advice.
    Are you a home cook or do you usually buy prepared food? What kinds of foods are currently in your routine? Do you have any food allergies? Use what you’re accustomed to as a jumping off point and just cut the carbs out them.
    Welcome to the journey of a lifetime, Plumpgoose. The trophy at the end of it is health and happiness that will obliterate all those years of pain and self-loathing. The terrible things you think about yourself are not true. Your body is stuck in an insulin overproduction cycle that nobody ever told you about, is all. You are going to extricate yourself from it and look in wonder at the person you always were but never knew.”

  • posted by caronl

    PS. I should add that the medical advice is not to do 800 calories for more than 12 weeks. But that is a bit further down the line!

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