Posted by: ani | 2009-07-14

mirena and weightloss

Dear Dietdoc

I used birth control pills for about 7 years, but it toyed around with my hormones a lot and the doctor suggested getting off it, gave me estrogen pills for 2 weeks and then I had a ' recovery'  time of 6 months. I managed to lose an extra 3kg, to 73kg without changing my diet. So after the 6 months they did some tests and said that maybe I should think about getting the Mirena inserted. I' m 24 had not had a baby yet, I read everything I could find about Mirena and decided in February this year to go ahead and get it. In April I found myself weighing 79kg. I worked damn hard to lose my weight last year, starting weight was 84kg and to see I was climbing the scale back to that number was terrifying! So I started to ' diet'  knowing that Mirena might have weight gain as a side effect, I also kept in mind that it can also be in my mind as well. It' s July now, and I' m stuck on 73kg for about 5 weeks. No matter what I do I can' t seem to lose it. I don' t know if it is a mental block, not being able to ever weighing less than 73kg, or if it has something to do with the Mirena? As this is the same weight I was when I put it in? My diet is nothing constricting, I don' t believe in hungering yourself out as your weight will come back again. Also I' m lactose intolerant and allergic to the high protein in eggs, both things I love to eat dearly! I eat either wholewheat bread with light margerine and bovril, with small glass of low fat milk, or a bowl of allbran and glas of low fat milk. At 10 I eat a small low fat yoghurt. Afternoon, usually 2 fruits, I' m a teacher and don' t always have time for more. At 4 when I' m home I' ll drink a cup a soup and a provita or two. For dinner it can be either fish, chicken or meat, never liked fat on meat with 2 cups of vegetables steamed or oven roasted, and a small portion of brown rice or small baked potato. I only drink one cup of coffee, that' s in the morning :-D to get me awake at school you see, and then 1.5l of water, or more if I get time to drink it. At home might drink one glass of Tab or Pepsi Max, although I know it' s not good for me! Wow, talked a lot. So I weigh 73kg, 1.78m tall, so BMI is 23, and would love to weigh 68kg, which is in the ' normal'  range for me. Please help me, and thank you so much for helping all the other people on here so dedicatedly!

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Our expert says:
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Dear Ani
Thank you for your kind words - they have cheered me up a lot at the end of a most exhausting day! Firstly congratulations for losing those 6 kg to get down to 73 kg! Now a BMI of 23 is very nicely within the normal range (18-25) and if you had an ideal BMI of 22, then you would need to weight 70 kg, not 68 kg. Don't stress too much that you have not yet reached 70 kg. This will come over time, esp if you start doing some regular exercise such as skipping which you can do at any time during your busy day as a teacher. Start off slowly doing about 10 min a day and as you get fitter, increase how long and fast you skip. Most female hormone therapies can either cause weightloss or weight gain depending on how the individual reacts - this is also true for Mirena. However if you use a low-fat diet and exercise, you should be able to counteract the effect of the hormones on your weight. Be patient with your body and don't stress because getting stressed, releases hormones like cortisol that can cause you to retain water and thus weigh more, even if you have not gained any fat!
Best regards

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