Wednesday, March 9, 2016

My test results are in ...

I got a call yesterday from my doctor's office saying the test results were in. My thyroid and insulin was perfectly fine, but my iron was low, and the doctor wanted to see me to discuss. I saw her this morning and first she said it was all good news. My thyroid, insulin, liver, even cholesterol were perfect, in fact everything was way better than before I started this weight loss journey.

So I said what about my iron levels? I have hemochromatosis, which is an iron overload disease. The treatment is phlebotomy. They drew blood weekly at first until my iron levels got where they should be, then I was just told to become a regular three-monthly blood donor to keep it in check. So I was quite surprised to find my iron was now low. Since they told me that yesterday I'd Googled all the hemochromatosis sites and finding possibilities like liver cancer, internal bleeding or infection.

She asked a few questions to find out whether I was losing blood somewhere and then suggested a stool test to check for bleeding there. I then asked if I should adjust the frequency of my blood donations. "Oh, you're a donor," she said, "that's where you're losing blood!" To be fair, she's not the specialist that prescribed the donation schedule, but I'm sure it's there in my records and it's the standard treatment for hemochromatosis, so I was surprised it hadn't occurred to her. So she said to cancel my next donation appointment and not have any more at this time. In about six months we'll test my iron levels again and see if that made the difference. It might mean I have to go less frequently from here on.

So this is all wonderful news, I'm healthy - all the test results were great. So she said "I know you were looking for an answer, a reason why you're not losing weight." Yep. Well basically she said having ruled out everything else she was confident it's the same problem most women my age have where they have trouble losing weight or even gain weight in their fifties due to pending menopause. Yippie. Not what I wanted to hear. I reminded her she'd said if that was the case there were things we could do ... what did she suggest? Well, she said she had been thinking Metformin might help, but since my insulin was perfectly fine, she didn't think it would do anything.

Obviously I was glad to be healthy, but disappointed not to have an answer to get the weight moving again. She said that she knew I wanted to weigh less, but the important thing to remember is these test results indicated I was the picture of perfect health compared to where I was in August 2013. I was pre-diabetic then. That's no longer an issue. My goal was never to get skinny, I wanted to get healthy - and I'd done that. She recommended I keep doing what I'm doing and be happy where I am. Great. Same thing my hubby says.

But I still feel I'm struggling not just to lose weight these days but to stop gaining any more back. I'm not sure what to try next. I said I knew some women my age have to drop their carbs extremely low to get the weight moving again but she said she didn't want me to do that. She thinks I should have the occasional healthy carbs like sweet potatoes and swedes (rutabagas) and not worry too much about it at this stage.  I don't know. I hate the idea of constantly feeling like I'm on a diet, and having to switch things up all the time trying to find the one thing that will work. It's probably wreaking havoc on my metabolism. But I also don't like the thought of staying where I am, or heaven forbid, regaining. I guess I'll have to put some thought into the game plan moving forward.

Anyway, that's it, I just wanted to check in. I'm healthy as a horse apparently.


  1. Glad all tests (save the iron) are great. Try and just sit back, breathe deeply, and relish that fact. Maybe put the scale away for a full month, eat what you know you should eat, exercise as normal, and take the focus off the number. Stress alone can make our bodies retain weight.

    Good luck!

  2. Good news about the normal labs. I feel your frustration. I use additional parameters, pain free joint days, migraine free years, binge free months/years.

    Here's to the next phase, I'm right there with you. :) Karen P

  3. Great news about the test results ... and as you say iron levels will be checked out again in a few months time.

    I can still feel your frustration coming through ... perhaps just relax a little and concentrate on the fact of the great results. August 2013 you were pre-diabetic and now it's March 2016, you have come such a long way and have done so well.

    When I say relax a little I don't mean bring on the rice, pasta, potatoes but just enjoy the LCHF meals. I've never had a problem with the huge variety of real fresh foods that are available when living this lifestyle.

    Looking forward to reading your next post.

    All the best Jan

  4. Well that's all good news. I am not a fan of going very low carb and believe that some good carbs do us no harm. It's the sugary, wheaty carbs I avoid. I even think a few healthy carbs (sweet potato etc) help us. Life shouldn't be so hard or miserable to cut all carbs (in my opinion). Maybe concentrate on maintaining for awhile - it sure beats the alternative of gaining! Good luck.

  5. Hi Anna
    This may be of interest to you? It's written by Franziska Spritzler but is on Authority Nutrition site - here is the link

    Have a great weekend

    All the best Jan

  6. That is such good news! I know it is frustrating, but remember that you have met your main goal. Many people try and try and never get there. Take some time to appreciate what you have accomplished!

  7. Thanks everyone. Appreciate the support.


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