Sunday, 10 January 2016

Back on Track

Years ago, I was a weight-loss success.
It's a while since I've shared my struggle with my weight.

As many lupies know, losing weight while taking steroids is a major challenge, and the older I get the harder it seems to be.

I may have always had a bit of a weight issue, but many years ago, I got control of it.  In my early 20s I was a Weight Watchers success story.  I got to my goal weight and stayed there.  I gained during two pregnancies, and then got back to my goal weight in reasonable time. (Actually, in the first pregnancy, I was so sick that I lost an extra 5kg before I started gaining, so I was below my healthy weight for a while.)

Not only was I a success at my own weight loss, I was a Weight Watchers leader for a while, and helped other people reach their healthy weight goals as well.

Major life events have got me off track at times, but for at least a decade I was always able to bring my weight back under control with a bit of effort.

Fast forward to lupus and prednisone.

More recently, I've been up to twice my healthy weight.
 (I was attempting to make an L-sign for lupus awareness.)
Since starting on prednisone, my weight has been out of control.

I've tried again and again to get it under control, and again and again, it's got away from me.

At my worst I've been up to 115kg.  (My healthy weight is in the range of about 52-60kg).

My rheumatologist keeps telling me to lose weight - but with prednisone, it's hard.

Prednisone makes me hungry almost all the time, but apart from that, it just seems to make weight stay on and stay on, even when I do everything right.

It causes lovely things like the "buffalo hump"  that makes me look a bit like Quasimodo.  So the weight isn't just staying, it's staying in weird places.

So what's happened to make me determined to try again?

On Christmas Day I ate too much.  Not only that, but most of the food available where I celebrated Christmas was full of gluten, and I decided to just eat and deal with the consequences.

The consequences were that I was so sick that I couldn't face food.

Do you know what happens after a couple of days of eating hardly anything?  Well, for me, it means not really wanting to eat a lot.  It's the perfect time to start to get control of my eating,  to go back to the habits that got me to a healthy weight and helped me stay there for years.

So, when I was ready to start eating again, I installed the Calorie King app on my phone, I filled the fridge with fresh healthy non-processed and minimally-processed foods, and I began recording everything I eat.

I know how to do this.  I've done it before.  I just have to stick to it, and sweat out the times prednisone tells me to eat and eat and eat, and not get discouraged when prednisone and lupus make me retain so much fluid that it seems I'm packing on weight.

I'll keep you informed how I go.  If you're a long-term reader, you know I've tried this before.

What makes now different?  I turn 50 in May.  (Actually this blog turns 5 at the same time.  For those readers who've been with me from the beginning, can you actually believe it's been this long?  I'm having trouble getting my head around it.)

I'm getting older. I'm sick.  I don't need to be fat as well.  So prednisone or no prednisone, I'm determined to overcome this time.

And it would be good to force my rheumatologist to have to come up with a new lecture.  "I prefer my patients to have an hourglass figure," is starting to get old.


  1. The other day I was asked had I started my diet to that I answered mo not yet I gota get me head around it first. He said yeah you sure do. It's going to be awhile!! yet. Good onya for doing the hard yards!

  2. Paws and fingers crossed for you here : you can do it !

  3. Happy New Year to you . . . I can totally empathise with the frustration in your post here. I am also turning 50 this year - for me it's April that's the big month and I also find it incredibly difficult to lose weight. Each time I visit the rheumatologist I get weighed before I am ushered in to see her and it's always the same old. same old mantra . . . you need to lose some weight. I'm just on Plaquenil and not the prednisolone like you but I hurt too much to get much exercise done. I eat healthily and walk as much as I can but it really doesn't seem to make a lot of difference. I wish you all the very best with your efforts and look forward to seeing how you get on - hopefully we will both be looking gorgeous by the Spring! I am trying to cut back on sugar and carbs. I am finding the whole fifty business quite a hurdle I have to say . . .


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