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Weight Loss
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I'm 9 months gluten-free and I feel like I'm on the mend.

 

When I compare how I feel now to even 3 months ago, I feel like I've come a long way forwards in my recovery.

 

The one thing that worries me still is my weight. I lost a stone and a half at some stage which I know can be a common symptom. I didn't weigh much to begin with anyway and the loss of weight makes me underweight. It's also made me incredibly paranoid as it's something people seem to comment on most.

 

But anyway, when I saw other people with celiac have suffered the same thing I wasn't worried about it. My issue is that despite feeling a lot better, I haven't regained any weight. I weigh the same as I did 9 months ago. And it's made me doubt the progress of my recovery.

 

I always thought with healing my weight would come on bit by bit until it returned to normal and would be the most likely indication of how my body was healing. It went up some at some stage before going back down but I think that was more down to me trying to eat more food to compensate for the lost weight, which I've now stopped.

 

So yeah, my question is this really. For anybody who suffered weight loss in recovery, how did it come back. Is it something that will more likely come back all at once or should I have put some weight on by now if I'm feeling a lot better in myself?

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I know these are obvious questions, but are you eating more than you did when you were sick?  Are you eating dairy, and if yes, are you making full fat choices?  Can you indulge in icecream now and again?  I am no expert, fairly new to this, and as to doubting your recovery because you have not gained weight, I would say look to what other positive results you are getting.  Other symptoms must have abated.  If the inability to gain weight is the final hurdle, I would think you should choose the full fat dairy options, perhaps more oils on salads, or more nuts and fruits, and have some gluten free treats of your choice, of course that you can tolerate, and see if that adds any pounds.  

 

I hope someone else more knowledgeable than I will chime in with good advice.

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What is your BMI?

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I know these are obvious questions, but are you eating more than you did when you were sick?  Are you eating dairy, and if yes, are you making full fat choices?  Can you indulge in icecream now and again?  I am no expert, fairly new to this, and as to doubting your recovery because you have not gained weight, I would say look to what other positive results you are getting.  Other symptoms must have abated.  If the inability to gain weight is the final hurdle, I would think you should choose the full fat dairy options, perhaps more oils on salads, or more nuts and fruits, and have some gluten free treats of your choice, of course that you can tolerate, and see if that adds any pounds.  

 

I hope someone else more knowledgeable than I will chime in with good advice.

 

I probably used to eat more before i got sick. I'm dairy intolerant so I've had to cut that. Also, I have to watch that I don't eat too much sugar as I suffer from bloating and gas if I do. But I don't think the differences in what I eat now and then are too great and will not account alone for the sort of weight loss I have experienced, though it may account for a few of the pounds. 

 

I tried eating more earlier in my recovery to the point that I'd try and stuff myself beyond full with every meal. This helped a little and pushed me up a few pounds but I was still aways from my normal weight and in the end I decided to abandon the strategy and eat normal amounts and just wait for the weight to come back naturally as my gut heals.

 

And to clarify, I do feel I've come a long way forwards in the 9 months since I've gone gluten-free but I've still some way to go. As I mentioned before, I suffer from bloating and gas after most meals, my BM's are still not normal and I still have days where mentally I don't feel right. There's been improvement in pretty much all of these areas though, it's just the weight than continues to stay the same.

 

My BMI is 19.6. So it's within the healthy range. Before I got Celiac Disease it was 22.5. It bothers me as I said because it's the thing people notice most. I'm continuously told by people I look like I need to gain weight.

 

Maybe I'm just worrying about it more than I should. I have to be recovering as many symptoms have abated or are improving. And I guess the weight will just come back on with time.

 

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I am glad you are recovering.  Too bad you have dairy issues because that is where one can easily up the calories without upping the volume.  There are definitely food choices you can make that are high calorie, low volume, that won't overstuff you.  Bacon for instance is pretty much a frivolous empty calorie food, but people do add some bacon to a salad for the added caloric content.  Nuts are high calorie - add a few nuts?  Not knowing your dietary restrictions/issues, its hard for me to suggest appropriate high calorie/low volume foods, but I think since you're getting other good results, its a good suggestion.  Its difficult, for instance, to eat 2 servings of something - when you are full, you are full, but if you can find some high calorie/low volume foods to add during the day to each meal, it might help in the gaining weight arena.  Also, many of the gluten free recipe "treats" are empty calories, and it seems you may need extra calories.  Lastly, perhaps next time you visit the doctor you could suggest thyroid testing for hyper thyroid conditions, and also diabetes type 1 which tends to keep people thin. Though I hope it would not be either of those.  

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Okay, that is good news about your BMI. I can totally relate to comments about being thin! When I had issues with my gallbladder (non-functioning) people made comments like, "Do you have cancer? Are you anorexic?" Gee, I could not eat without pain. Luckily, I stayed within the BMI ranges but it was still noticeable.

I think you need to give it more time. Try to ignore the comments. Let's face it. There are more heavier people around than thin. People are just getting used to a heavier look even though it is not good.

I think the weight will come back as your ability to digest food improves. Remember, it can take a couple of years to completely heal. For the lucky ones only a few months. Just make sure that gluten is not sneaking into your diet! You might have more than a dairy intolerance too. Try keeping a food journal.

My food tip? A tsp. or more of refined coconut oil in your morning coffee! I am on a low carb, high fat diet to combat diabetes.

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