Jump to content
  • Sign Up
Celiac.com Sponsor:


Celiac.com Sponsor:

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

MN Grannie

Changing Body Shape?

Recommended Posts

I have tried very hard not to gain weight since starting the gluten-free diet and actually have only gained about 5 pounds. However, my body shape has changed completely! I used to carry extra weight in my butt and thighs and now it has moved completely to my belly. I actually think I look about 5 months pregnant! What's up with this? Anyone else have this experience?

Jane in Osakis MN

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Grannie, I was diagnosed with Celiac in Nov 2006. Until my diagnosis, I was losing weight because my body couldn't absorb any nutrients. After I went gluten free, and my intestines healed a little bit, I began to gain weight again. The weight I gained went right to the waist and abdomen! Everywhere else stayed the same size! I don't eat a lot of grains because I haven't really had success in finding breads that I like the taste of. I rarely buy the gluten free cookies and crackers, and I only have pasta a couple of times a month. I have really cut back on the processed foods too. But after all this, I still am gaining weight! The bulk of my diet is fruit and vegetables with a little dairy. How can I still be gaining weight? The weight goes right to the middle of my stomach and abdomen. I look like I am pregnant! It is a mystery to me. I don't know what is causing the shift in the body shape. Why is the weight gained differently? If anyone else has any ideas please share.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Grannie, I was diagnosed with Celiac in Nov 2006. Until my diagnosis, I was losing weight because my body couldn't absorb any nutrients. After I went gluten free, and my intestines healed a little bit, I began to gain weight again. The weight I gained went right to the waist and abdomen! Everywhere else stayed the same size! I don't eat a lot of grains because I haven't really had success in finding breads that I like the taste of. I rarely buy the gluten free cookies and crackers, and I only have pasta a couple of times a month. I have really cut back on the processed foods too. But after all this, I still am gaining weight! The bulk of my diet is fruit and vegetables with a little dairy. How can I still be gaining weight? The weight goes right to the middle of my stomach and abdomen. I look like I am pregnant! It is a mystery to me. I don't know what is causing the shift in the body shape. Why is the weight gained differently? If anyone else has any ideas please share.

I have noticed the same thing, I am below the weight i used to weigh but my old pants still don't fit. To small around the stomach!! This is truly not fair. :blink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Doll

Assuming you are not *bloated*and that really IS fat:

Abdominal (belly) fat is related with insulin resistance. Which is BAD!!! Insulin resistance is linked to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, some types of cancers, etc. Insulin resistance, obesity, etc. is a growing problem worldwide, and although there may be other factors, it is closely tied with diet and/or lack of exercise.

While some possible reasons are hormone changes (i.e. menopause, hypothyroid, high adrenal levels) or insulin resistance due to previous starvation due to undiagnosed Celiac (ever notice how yo-yo dieters get fatter and fatter? That's one reason why!), it can also be the gluten-free diet itself.

Many people on the diet use the gluten-free replacement breads, cereals, baked goods, etc. These are LOADED with carbs, more so than gluten containing foods, and usually have little fibre. Fibre, found in whole grain breads, cereals, and oats, can prevent weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, and perhaps some types of cancer. Ever heard the term "Fibre is your friend"? ;)

All of the above=weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, the list goes on. I don't know if you use gluten-free products or not. Perhaps you don't. But if you do, you might want to stop. The gluten-free diet is NOT automatically a healthy one, unless you cut out processed foods altogether.

I personally use gluten-free products rarely. I eat mostly fish, beans, veggies, brown rice, nuts, and rarely, meat and fruit. I personally think that gluten-free replacement products (anything processed, really) are often not healthy. They're awesome for a treat, for sure though! I love gluten-free pizza, but I don't eat it everyday! The amount of carbs in that is INSANE. Get your fibre from brown rice and veggies, and stick to lean meats and fish. Make sure you are not drinking soft drinks (high fructose corn syrup) or eating junk food.

I would also ask your doctor to run a hormone panel, just to make sure everything checks out. However, this question seems to apear quite often, and I *personally* think it is linked with the gluten-free products that are marketed towards us. No one REALLY needs cookies, breads, pastas, flour, etc. Chocolate, well that's another story...hehe.... ;)

Hope you figure out why this is happening, and if you do need to change your diet, I am sending you support! :)

STARGAZER: I think you should also have your hormone levels checked. Do you feel like you have swelling or bloating? Do you have pain? Have you been tested for anything else? Like a C-diff infection? Or is it just plain old fat? There is also a good chance that you are severly insulin resistant due to the undiagnosed Celiac. In that case, make sure you are following a Type 2 diabetic diet, which it sounds like you are. You might also want to add Omega 3 supplements to your diet, and increase the amount of fish you eat. Look for wild salmon, it has less PCB's etc. Basically, you want to avoid all carb sources as much as possible. Salads, lean meat, fish, low startch veggies, gluten-free oats (if you feel safe eating them), and small amounts of brown rice are good. Make sure you get enough calories though overall. If you are still eating very few calories, that will all be stored as...you guessesd it! Fat!

Celiac...the gift that keeps on giving! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jane,

I'm 5' 5" and 115 lbs and I have fat now on my belly too. It's definitely fat as it feels squishy. I don't eat a lot of sweets since I am severely hypoglycemic. I thought it was menopause related ...

Doll,

What does severe insulin resistance due to undiagnosed celiac mean ? And why would this cause belly fat ? Thanks ...

Marcia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Assuming you are not *bloated*and that really IS fat:

Abdominal (belly) fat is related with insulin resistance. Which is BAD!!! Insulin resistance is linked to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, some types of cancers, etc. Insulin resistance, obesity, etc. is a growing problem worldwide, and although there may be other factors, it is closely tied with diet and/or lack of exercise.

While some possible reasons are hormone changes (i.e. menopause, hypothyroid, high adrenal levels) or insulin resistance due to previous starvation due to undiagnosed Celiac (ever notice how yo-yo dieters get fatter and fatter? That's one reason why!), it can also be the gluten-free diet itself.

Many people on the diet use the gluten-free replacement breads, cereals, baked goods, etc. These are LOADED with carbs, more so than gluten containing foods, and usually have little fibre. Fibre, found in whole grain breads, cereals, and oats, can prevent weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, and perhaps some types of cancer. Ever heard the term "Fibre is your friend"? ;)

All of the above=weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, the list goes on. I don't know if you use gluten-free products or not. Perhaps you don't. But if you do, you might want to stop. The gluten-free diet is NOT automatically a healthy one, unless you cut out processed foods altogether.

I personally use gluten-free products rarely. I eat mostly fish, beans, veggies, brown rice, nuts, and rarely, meat and fruit. I personally think that gluten-free replacement products (anything processed, really) are often not healthy. They're awesome for a treat, for sure though! I love gluten-free pizza, but I don't eat it everyday! The amount of carbs in that is INSANE. Get your fibre from brown rice and veggies, and stick to lean meats and fish. Make sure you are not drinking soft drinks (high fructose corn syrup) or eating junk food.

I would also ask your doctor to run a hormone panel, just to make sure everything checks out. However, this question seems to apear quite often, and I *personally* think it is linked with the gluten-free products that are marketed towards us. No one REALLY needs cookies, breads, pastas, flour, etc. Chocolate, well that's another story...hehe.... ;)

Hope you figure out why this is happening, and if you do need to change your diet, I am sending you support! :)

STARGAZER: I think you should also have your hormone levels checked. Do you feel like you have swelling or bloating? Do you have pain? Have you been tested for anything else? Like a C-diff infection? Or is it just plain old fat? There is also a good chance that you are severly insulin resistant due to the undiagnosed Celiac. In that case, make sure you are following a Type 2 diabetic diet, which it sounds like you are. You might also want to add Omega 3 supplements to your diet, and increase the amount of fish you eat. Look for wild salmon, it has less PCB's etc. Basically, you want to avoid all carb sources as much as possible. Salads, lean meat, fish, low startch veggies, gluten-free oats (if you feel safe eating them), and small amounts of brown rice are good. Make sure you get enough calories though overall. If you are still eating very few calories, that will all be stored as...you guessesd it! Fat!

Celiac...the gift that keeps on giving! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doll,

I call it my Celiac Belly! Diagnosed over a year ago, I've only gained 5 or so pounds but it's all in my belly! What a HUGE relief to hear of others with this problem. I don't eat very many processed foods, and I've heard that rices and potatos are "high glycemic" starches that cause belly fat - is this what you are saying too? Aside from eliminating rices and potatos completely, is there any other option? Ooh, and I've just eliminated soy milk from my diet, feeling MUCH better - is soy milk high in fat perhaps?

Sign me

Still Struggling After a Year

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OMG you all could be me!! After going gluten-free, I have put on 5 kilos and all in the tum. I bought one of those 'fat-suits' (as I call them) that suck it all in and push your boobs together because of the squishy-ness!! I've been gluten free for a while now and I find that I 'bloat' with dairy, with horrible cramps, and have headaches with rice... So i'm heading back 2 the hills and going all fruit and veg, which is extremely hard... But I am getting married in 10 months and HAVE 2 LOSE THE BELLY!

Any other suggestions? I know it takes months and lifestyle to change, but I'm willing...

I look extremely funny with scrawny arms and the beergut... :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This could be me. I feel so fat. First I lost 15 lbs. Then going gluten free gained them back, which was good. I am 5'9" and weigh 132. I have always had a larger lower half, but had a flat belly (even when I weighed 145 several years ago. Now I have a little fat pad, but this is not much. Most of it is bloat. I measured myself before and after breakfast (not a big meal). My waist change 3 inches!! I look 4-5 months pregnant. My stomach is hard to the touch not flabby. I did however put real weight on my lower back - the love handles. Never had this before. I am at a weight I always was comfortable at, but now feel horrible in my body. I am wondering if dairy is the culprite as well. I do notice bloat after everything , even a lot of water. Just above my waist my ribs stick out and all the bones in my back show. I am completely off balance!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My huband (celiac) is now 130 lbs. from a grand high of 180 (see photo at left) and he can no longer gain weight in arms and legs; it only deposits in waistline. He does not eat gluten-free junk food. We can't figure it out either as to why the waistline gets the extra pounds first. Maybe it's because he's over 55 years old? Does age make a difference? (due to other health issues he cannot work out or run - and he needs to conserve his calories to stay at 130 or higher. He is actually under 130 this week as he missed meals back in August and he hasn't been able to gain those 4-5 lbs. back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was diagnosed almost 2 years ago (confirmed by genetic test 2 weeks ago) but I only started gaining weight in June. Between June and October I gained almost 20 pounds. Nothing in my diet or excerise changed, but I swear my doctor could care less and assumes I'm just stuffing my face. This is definately not the case. I'm a vegetarian as well, which means that most fatty foods are totally cut out of my diet. I also work out 4 to 5 days a week. It's very frustrating. I also bloat severely after I eat or drink anything. My stomach bloats to the point where I can't even where any of my clothes. Has anyone else been having these problems? I just seems odd that it has started so long after I began the gluten-free diet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the same problems. I have had all the tests run for vitamins, hormones, etc. Weight is the only thing I cannot seem to get a grip on. There has got to be a reason for all of this. It would be great if an answer was found. Does anyone else have elevated cholesteral levels also. Mine were great until I went gluten-free. I follow the diet and know I am not getting "glutened" from other sources. I can't stand the way gluten free tastes (any of it) so I don't bake anymore. I don't eat breads, pizzas etc. Nothing out of a box. God made foods only (all natural) though I do have Cheetos every once and awhile :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get your thyroid checked. The TSh test is very inacurate and misses many people with hypothyroid. Make your you get a complete thyroid panel especially the thyroid peroxidase antibody test. This should be under 20. Mine was 799 even though my TSh was normal. Elivated levels show the autoimmune form of the disease known as Hashimotos Hypothyroidism. Weight gain is a very common symptom among many others. Elevated cholesterol is also common with hypothyroidism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have definitely changed shape after going gluten free. After I eat, I almost always have the distended belly, unless I eat like a bird. The worst of it is that my bust is down a whole cup size and my waist and hips are actually larger than they used to be by an inch or two! SO frustrating! I almost want to go back to eating gluten just to get my body back <_<, but I wouldn't ever do that since the consequences are way to serious.

After beginning the diet back in May, I gained about 10 lbs, then lost almost all of them by doing a low calorie diet (admittedly too low, 900-1100 calories a day while working out 6 times per week). Anyway, the only way I was able to get rid of my belly was by not eating enough food. As soon as I started eating again the distended belly came back. I thought this could have to do with the whole "starvation mode" thing so I started making sure I was at least getting about 1500 calories/day, working out 5-6 times/week and now I still have the belly and more fat on my hips so I don't know what to do. I want to be healthy, but I also want to be able to fit into my clothes comfortably again (and my bras!).

I believe I am eating healthy food, but I am open to any suggestions! (homemade buckwheat pancakes, yogurt, bananas, eggs and potatoes, tuna casserole w/broccoli or green beans, homemade bean and veggie soup with rice, unsweetened applesauce, raw carrots, cauliflower, celery, salad, homemade corn tortilla chips, popcorn, occasional gluten free pasta, homemade pizza/bread, wine occasionally in the evenings, coffee, tea and lots of water)

I had my thyroid checked and it was in the normal range. My lactose intolerance test came back negative. My antibody levels are still raised, but my doctor expected that would be the case after only 6 months of healing time (I also was tested only a few days after the absolute worst glutening of my life).

It would be so great if we could figure out what is causing this? For those of you who have been on the diet longer than a year or two, have you noticed that your body shape has gone back to normal? It sounds like even those of you who are on the all natural foods diet even have the same problem. I may try and cut back on dairy, but I don't think I really have that much on a daily basis anyway (yogurt and cottage cheese). I get so frustrated with my appearance sometimes. I started buying shirts that poof out at the stomach to hide my belly. Is there anyone out there that has a solution/ideas?

(sorry for the long post!)

Emily

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I'm going to an endocrine specialist today at 11am to see if they can figure something out about the weight gain. I've had my thyroid checked and it came back normal, but I'm going to have them do the full panel that was mentioned earlier. My body shape never changed until recently, even though I had been gluten free for 2 years. I don't know if going lactose free will help if you are not lactose intolerant... I tried it. Soy products have more calories and fat than skim milk. I just stopped drinking and eating soy based lactose free foods last week in an attempt to see if the weight will come off. Unfortunately I just stepped on the scale this morning and noticed I have gained another pound. Devastating. I'm trying a new diet of organic yogurt with banana, rice with vegetables and tofu (I'm a vegetarian as well... so there's even less to eat!), rice puffs with skim milk, salads, and I snack on hummus and low fat baked chips. My stomach also gets distended as well. Recently I was put on protonix for gastritis. It might help to get checked for that. I had it quite badly which caused my stomach to get so distended my skin went bright red from stretching. Taking the protonix along with tums every day has really helped, even though I still look a little off at the end of the day. I'll ask the doc today about the weight gain since thats the point of my appointment. I'll let you all know what I get out of him or her.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well I'm going to an endocrine specialist today at 11am to see if they can figure something out about the weight gain. I've had my thyroid checked and it came back normal, but I'm going to have them do the full panel that was mentioned earlier. My body shape never changed until recently, even though I had been gluten free for 2 years. I don't know if going lactose free will help if you are not lactose intolerant... I tried it. Soy products have more calories and fat than skim milk. I just stopped drinking and eating soy based lactose free foods last week in an attempt to see if the weight will come off. Unfortunately I just stepped on the scale this morning and noticed I have gained another pound. Devastating. I'm trying a new diet of organic yogurt with banana, rice with vegetables and tofu (I'm a vegetarian as well... so there's even less to eat!), rice puffs with skim milk, salads, and I snack on hummus and low fat baked chips. My stomach also gets distended as well. Recently I was put on protonix for gastritis. It might help to get checked for that. I had it quite badly which caused my stomach to get so distended my skin went bright red from stretching. Taking the protonix along with tums every day has really helped, even though I still look a little off at the end of the day. I'll ask the doc today about the weight gain since thats the point of my appointment. I'll let you all know what I get out of him or her.

Just keep an eye on your vitamin and mineral levels when taking Protonix. PPIs are notorious for causing iron, calcium and B vitamin deficiencies. Stomach acid is necessary for helping the body metabolize these nutritients and when you don't have enough stomach acid your body can't absorb them. Goodness knows, most of us have nutritional deficiencies already without adding to the problem.

As for "normal" thyroid results... Ugh! Most doctors have no idea what the proper tests to run for the thyroid are, let alone how to treat it without causing additional health problems. Can you tell this is one of my pet peeves? Definitely make sure your Endocrinologist runs the TPO and Tg antibodies, as well as FreeT3 and FreeT4 tests. Most won't. That's why many of us call them RearEndos. Also find out if they go by a combination of symptoms and testing, or by test results alone. If they treat you by what it says on a piece of paper, start looking for another dr.

Btw, did you know that reflux is one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism? HypoT causes the body to produce lower levels of stomach acid, thereby making the stomach have to work harder to get the same amount of work done. Although, I largely suspect there's probably still something in your diet that's causing the reflux, this is something to think about.

Good luck at the dr's appt! Got my fingers crossed. Hope you get a good one. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just keep an eye on your vitamin and mineral levels when taking Protonix. PPIs are notorious for causing iron, calcium and B vitamin deficiencies. Stomach acid is necessary for helping the body metabolize these nutritients and when you don't have enough stomach acid your body can't absorb them. Goodness knows, most of us have nutritional deficiencies already without adding to the problem.

As for "normal" thyroid results... Ugh! Most doctors have no idea what the proper tests to run for the thyroid are, let alone how to treat it without causing additional health problems. Can you tell this is one of my pet peeves? Definitely make sure your Endocrinologist runs the TPO and Tg antibodies, as well as FreeT3 and FreeT4 tests. Most won't. That's why many of us call them RearEndos. Also find out if they go by a combination of symptoms and testing, or by test results alone. If they treat you by what it says on a piece of paper, start looking for another dr.

Btw, did you know that reflux is one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism? HypoT causes the body to produce lower levels of stomach acid, thereby making the stomach have to work harder to get the same amount of work done. Although, I largely suspect there's probably still something in your diet that's causing the reflux, this is something to think about.

Good luck at the dr's appt! Got my fingers crossed. Hope you get a good one. :)

Good advice. It actually turns out that I produce too much stomach acid (or so I'm told but lord knows my gastro doc is terrible). Unfortunately there are not many gastro doctors in my area. Well the endocrine doc said she'd test for the thyroid problems, but then said she wouldn't put me on meds if I did have hypothryoidism because it could turn it hyper. Has anyone else had a doctor tell them that? They are running a million blood tests next month. Right now she's thinking polycystic ovary syndrome. Has anyone else been diagnosed with celiac and POS? So far this doctor seems ok, but my gastroenterologist is terrible and I'm not having much faith in the medical profession at the moment! Blah!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well the endocrine doc said she'd test for the thyroid problems, but then said she wouldn't put me on meds if I did have hypothryoidism because it could turn it hyper.

Say WHAT????? :blink: Run! Run away from this idiot NOW! What in the world does she think thyroid meds are for, if not to treat hypoT??? If you're hypoT, the only worries you'd have about going hyper is if you're overmedicated or if you go into a hyper swing of Hashi's (if you have it). Gah! That woman deserves a smack upside the head with a clue by four.

Right now she's thinking polycystic ovary syndrome. Has anyone else been diagnosed with celiac and POS?

I don't have an official dx of Celiac. My current label of choice is gluten-intolerant because I'm self dx'd. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. And I have PCOS.

So far this doctor seems ok, but my gastroenterologist is terrible and I'm not having much faith in the medical profession at the moment! Blah!

Understandable. Geeze! Where do these docs come from??? And, btw, you're not the only one to run into idiot docs. From the stories I've been reading, they seem to be the majority.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ugh! I just went jeans shopping today... when you see the weight you gain while standing on the scale it's not so bad. It's when you try to wiggle into jeans while saying "i refuse to go up another size" while standing in a dressing room that's really depressing. I think I'm going to fire my endocrine specialist by the end of the month if she doesn't get a move on with my weight problems. I don't understand why the doctors don't seem to take the weight gain seriously...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh my god what kind of quack is you doctor!!! You have to go on meds for life if you are hypo. You need a doc who will not just look at tests but also at how you feel. Please post your results so I can see them or pm me. A lot of docs are using outdated reference ranges as well. If you can't find a doc with brains you can use Dr. Lowe or Dr. Gina Honeyman (my doc) long distance. Go to the sight dr.lowe.com for eye opening info on thyroid. Make sure the no doctor puts you on synthoid. This drug is often not helpful. Armour is the best or possible Cytomel. Good luck and let me know. Please find a new doc!!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Emily,

I have a really bloated belly too! I havent been diagnosed yet, i get my results next week, im not convinced its celiac but ill have to wait and see! the worst thing is the bloating, i can cope with pain and toileting issues, but i look so bloated my doctor did a pregnancy test! ive always been around a US size 12 - 14 but ive always had an envyabley flat stomach for my size which i have been very proud of and now its gone, its the most depressing thing, my boyf is great about it but i know he is jut being nice!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...