June 22, 2011

Unexpected Benefits

I've lost 8 pounds since February. Now, you might think that's no big deal, but let me elaborate. About 15 years ago, some weird things started happening to my body, including the gaining of a significant amount of weight. Just recently, I discovered that I have a hormone syndrome that not only caused the weight gain to start with, but it makes the extra weight more difficult to lose. In an even more cruel twist of fate, the extra weight makes the symptoms from the syndrome that caused it worse. I've tried to lose weight in various ways over the years, with little luck. So imagine my surprise when I started losing weight now.

A few interesting points to consider:
  • I have stopped buying lowfat/no-fat ingredients. Since starting this quest in February I have used only real butter, real sour cream, real yogurt and full fat cheese. I also stopped buying skim milk and started using 2%.  Cream and buttermilk are now kept in my refrigerator as every day ingredients.
  • I have not started any formal exercise routine. Any "new" exercise is in the form of walking more and working by hand more.
  • We eat out just about the same amount as we did before.
  • I have baked and eaten more bread, cookies and other baked goods since I started, but they have been almost exclusively homemade (by myself or someone else).
  • My consumption of packaged convenience food has dropped dramatically.
  • Since I'm buying locally raised fruits and veggies in season, they taste better and, therefore, I eat more of them.
Now, please remember that while I am a scientist, this is nowhere near a scientific study. It's purely anecdotal. I am not a doctor or nutritionist and am not in the business of advising anyone on how they should be eating.

Why, then, do I think I've lost weight when everyone is probably thinking I should have gained weight? Well, the extra exercise is certainly part of it. I also have been drinking a lot more water. The biggest thing, though, is that the homemade food is so much yummier that eating is a more complete experience. It's not something I do mindlessly to get to the next activity. The real ingredients are also more satisfying, so I don't feel like I need a second helping to reach satiation.

I don't have a current picture, but if the weight loss continues, as I expect it will as I keep adding even more physical activity and summer fruits and veggies become available, I'll add some progress pictures.


Celtic Cat said...

Wow, somethings for all of us to think about when we go to the grocery store.

Unknown said...

I had a similar experience five years ago. I gained around thirty pounds after being at the same weight for years. The doctors I've seen have not had any luck helping me loose the weight either. They just told me that it would have to be the old fashioned way but that doesn't seem to be working. I know my hormones are all out of wack but I didn't know that there might be a diagnosis available. I'm wondering If you'd share what you were diagnosed with?

Ann @ Living From Scratch said...

Hi! My diagnosis at this point is PCOS (polycysytic ovarian syndrome). It can both cause and be worsened by extra weight gain. I also seem to have hyperparathyroidism, but that diagnosis is still in progress...

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