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Thread: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

  1. #1
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    Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    (tw eating disorders) I've lost about 25 lbs this year while dealing with digestive problems. Now down to 85 lbs, so clinically underweight and my doctor is getting concerned. She wants me to see a dietitian to be treated for an eating disorder. But I eat 3 meals a day and small snacks. I just can't eat large meals because of my gut health problems. Either I'm bloated, crampy, and miserable or it runs right through me. The nutritionist thinks eating more will actually help the symptoms, and told me to eat past the discomfort but obviously that's very difficult. I can't afford to see the nutritionist that much because it's $200 a session and not covered by insurance. I'm scared I have cancer or something else causing malnutrition. I've had blood tests and a CT scan that looked normal. But are there any other tests I should do. My mother had cancer and losing weight was one of her symptoms, so I'm getting worried. Everyone else GAINS weight so easily so what's wrong with me. If you always feel sick how did you manage to maintain your weight?

  2. #2
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Quote Originally Posted by Librella View Post
    (tw eating disorders) I've lost about 25 lbs this year while dealing with digestive problems. Now down to 85 lbs, so clinically underweight and my doctor is getting concerned. She wants me to see a dietitian to be treated for an eating disorder. But I eat 3 meals a day and small snacks. I just can't eat large meals because of my gut health problems. Either I'm bloated, crampy, and miserable or it runs right through me. The nutritionist thinks eating more will actually help the symptoms, and told me to eat past the discomfort but obviously that's very difficult. I can't afford to see the nutritionist that much because it's $200 a session and not covered by insurance. I'm scared I have cancer or something else causing malnutrition. I've had blood tests and a CT scan that looked normal. But are there any other tests I should do. My mother had cancer and losing weight was one of her symptoms, so I'm getting worried. Everyone else GAINS weight so easily so what's wrong with me. If you always feel sick how did you manage to maintain your weight?
    Hi Librella, clear blood tests and scans are a good sign!

    When you are eating those small meals, you need to be taking in enough calories. It's not so much about the size of your meal, as the calories and nutrients - and some fat content.

    A few things....

    Not everybody gains weight easily.

    When I had my breakdown, I couldn't eat because I felt sick all the time (massive IBS flare) my digestion system was malfunctioning all over the place. I drank ginger tea for the nausea and ate little but often, and tried to consume as many calories as I could.

    If you had cancer, and it was causing malnutrition, I don't imagine you'd have normal blood tests.

    Losing weight is a symptom of cancer, but it has many other less sinister causes - anxiety being one them - and anxiety plays absolute havoc with the digestive system!
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  3. #3
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Hi, yes a clear scan and blood tests are reassuring. Have you had a gastroscopy/endoscopy, which could shed more light on your digestive issues, have you had a test for coeliac? This can cause diarrhea and weight loss.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    What EXACTLY are you eating? Three meals plus snacks provides no information, you may class a slice of toast as a meal.

    Do you track your calories (not the only metric for weight loss or gain, but a good overall indicator)?

  5. #5
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Nora, thanks for your comment, it’s very reassuring. I’m sure anxiety does play a role since I’ve been on edge for months between my health problems and COVID isolation.

    I have not had an endoscopy. I think they included celiac in the blood tests.

    I have oatmeal for breakfast, usually with peanut butter and honey mixed in. Sandwich for lunch. Dinner usually something like rice with chicken and steamed vegetables. Snacks are usually pretzels, crackers, etc. and sometimes a protein shake. I log my meals but don’t count calories.

  6. #6
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Then you need to count calories.

    A spoon of oatmeal, a bucket of oatmeal?

    You need data, something to work from.

  7. #7
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Quote Originally Posted by Librella View Post

    I have oatmeal for breakfast, usually with peanut butter and honey mixed in. Sandwich for lunch. Dinner usually something like rice with chicken and steamed vegetables. Snacks are usually pretzels, crackers, etc. and sometimes a protein shake. I log my meals but don’t count calories.
    How old are you Librella?

    Also, how active are you?

    It's possible you're not eating enough calories. You really do need to work out how many you're eating and if it's the amount you should be eating for your age etc.
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  8. #8
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Quote Originally Posted by NoraB View Post
    How old are you Librella?

    Also, how active are you?

    It's possible you're not eating enough calories. You really do need to work out how many you're eating and if it's the amount you should be eating for your age etc.
    I’m 30 so I don’t think it should be this easy to lose weight. I never struggled with it before this giant ibs flare. I’m not super active, staying home a lot these days but I do yoga and go for walks. I guess I’ll start with a calorie tracking app.

  9. #9
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    Re: Weight loss with digestive symptoms

    Quote Originally Posted by Librella View Post
    I’m 30 so I don’t think it should be this easy to lose weight. I never struggled with it before this giant ibs flare. I’m not super active, staying home a lot these days but I do yoga and go for walks. I guess I’ll start with a calorie tracking app.
    30? Easy peasy lemon squeezy! (ish)

    Once you hit the meno - then it gets harder.

    However, I had a breakdown at 46 (4 years post meno) and I lost 2 stone in weight, and I'm 50, and I've lost a stone since March but I have been exercising as well as the IBS flare FROM HELL!

    At 30, you're still in the age bracket for 2,000 - 2,400 calories per day, (depending on how active you are) and from 31 that goes down to between 1,800 and 2,200.
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