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Help from fellow grokettes please!

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  • #31

    I really am amazed with all this help, thank you guys so much!

    @indiscreet- I don't think it's aspartame since I gave that up a year ago. I was diet soda queen back in highschool. When I got home from school I would hit the diet pepsi and "all natural" cheetos like nobodies business. I'm not sure what could be stressing me still but thanks for the input!

    @jen- Thanks for sharing! I will wait it out a bit and see if it will eventually come back. I'll try to stop limiting myself on food even now. I still try not to eat when I am hungry or eat until I'm full because I don't trust that my body needs so many calories. I used to eat about 1200 every day and I ran usually about an hour most days followed up by pilates/yoga/weights. I really don't know how I survived!


    • #32

      Do you feel good and strong and healthy besides this one issue? If so, it could simply be your body recovering/recouping and working on self-regulating from years of ED and birth control pills.

      If you go to an acupuncturist, they can force the issue and you WILL get your period back. I did that (mine stopped after a horrific accident--which the nurses told me was quite common), and in retrospect I highly regret it. I wish I would have let my body do her own thing.


      • #33

        I need to respectfully disagree with a previous post about PCOS symptoms. PCOS can be nearly asymptomatic. One doesn't need to have facial hair, acne, or other problems. When periods are irregular, PCOS is a possibility, even without other symptoms.

        My roommate in grad school (mid-20's) didn't figure out that she had it until her younger sister (a teenager) was diagnosed. Then she realized it was the obvious explanation for her irregular cycles.

        Another friend of mine didn't discover she had it until she tried to conceive. She didn't fit the PCOS profile in ANY way, other than her lack of ability to get pregnant. She even had regular periods. Apparently PCOS is often discovered on a fertility workup. The good news is that most women with PCOS are able to conceive with a little help.

        I completely agree that a slow physical recovery from an ED could be the answer. However, it would be a little surprising for you to still be amenorrheic after a couple years of at least 15% body fat.

        In your shoes I'd do some digging to find out what kind of hormone issues were treated with the Pill when you were younger, set up an appt with a gynecologist and/or endocrinologist, and get the ball rolling on figuring out what's going on.


        • #34

          One more thing about weight--I think it really depends on your frame. The best weight for YOU will be very individual. Also, I've read in groups of folks following more nutrient dense diets, that getting lots more mineral rich foods in can make your bones stronger--and bone weight can change--your bones can actually get heavier as they become more healthy. So that is a factor when looking at the scale as well. (Which I think you might want to try NOT doing for a bit to get the numbers out of focus for a bit!

          Anyway, sounds like you're getting lots of good input--just wanted to share that thought!


          • #35

            @ FairyRae- Our bones can actually get heavier?! I never thought of that.

            @ go ginger- I do feel so much stronger now. I could barely walk when I was at my lowest. No clue what bf % then but at 5'10", 115 lbs, 00 was probably damn low. I had just heard on other things (I forget where) that women should ideally be in the teens for body fat. I've only been this weight for 3.5/4 months so maybe my body is still recovering.

            Pikaia- I have no idea what pill I was on, but I'll find out. I do know it was the one where you only have 4 periods a year. That probably wasn't too healthy...

            I want you guys to know that the weight thing is secondary for me. I too want to focus on getting healthy. If I only wanted to be scrawny again I would go back to vegan. (Which by the way gave me such bad mood swings I was known in my dorm as that "crazy chick on the 4th floor." I feel really bad about that now...)

            Thanks everyone!

            p.s. I'd be really stoked if my bones were just getting denser. I am wearing the same size I wore when I was about 20 lbs less than I am now. I was a size 6 for a while when I was vegan and I am wearing em now too.


            • #36

              I have to chime in... at 5'10" a size 6 you're at a great size. One thing to consider is that you've really been working out, so you're going to weight more--muscle mass weighs more!

              And just to compare... Im only 5'6-1/2" and the smallest I've ever been when fit was a size 7--and around 135. I just don't go smaller than that-- but then I have a pretty wide rib cage, shoulders and hips, good thick bones and I build muscle easy-- so it's a good thing!

              I agree maybe you should try to avoid the scale for a while, and just continue to work on getting stronger and how you feel.

              As for the period thing... no harm in trying to do some hormonal testing to see what's going on. It may be you just need time for things to come back, or perhaps some endocrine issues from being underweight and/or being on the pill.

              sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid


              • #37

                Hey guys, sorry to bother again. I just had one more question.

                Do you guys think it's alright for me to IF even though I haven't been getting my period? Am I shooting myself in the foot and making my body take longer to repair itself?

                I just wasn't sure if I was inadvertantly signaling to my body that food is scarce so it shouldn't waste energy on a menstrual cycle or anything.

                Soooooo....yeah. Thanks!


                • #38

                  You might want to take into consideration the daily stresses that you have. Any kind of stress on the body, whether it be physical, mental, school stress, family stress or dietary changes can put a wrench in your normal hormonal balance. Also, you mentioned that you were on BC pills to regulate your periods but then stopped them (is that right?) - after taking synthetic hormones (as in BC pills)it can take months to "wake up" your ovaries and begin producing sufficient amounts of estrogen and progesterone to begin cycling again. I went through this for over 6 months after stopping BC pills and wound up going back on them due to a tank in estrogen levels, no periods and risk of osteopenia. If you get checked out by your primary MD or gyno, they might run bloodwork to check your thyroid hormones, but also estrogen / progesterone levels and FSH and LH (hormones produced in the pituitary in the brain that act on the ovaries). These could indicate possible endocrine issues and/or differentiate between a problem in the ovaries themselves or in the pituitary gland in the brain. That is to say, if they suspect your loss of periods is due to hormonal changes. Otherwise, your diet seems regulated and of sufficient calories for your height / weight so it seems unlikely to me that your amenorrhea is due to diet. As for IF, I think it might be an extra "stressor" on your body at this point, you might consider focusing on regular intervals of eating.


                  • #39

                    I think that you should eat when you're hungry and not eat when you're not hungry. If you don't feel like eating breakfast one morning, no sweat.

                    I agree with the people on waiting for your body to come back to homeostasis on it's own, especially since your period stopped about the time you stopped the pill. It's very likely that is the cause.

                    However, like someone else said, it doesn't hurt to get tested. Go for the more in-depth tests and unless they find something, don't let them prescribe you any meds because your body needs to heal itself.

                    It's great that you are concentrating on being healthy. Keep up the good work and good luck.


                    • #40


                      Have you ever seen those women that have a beard and are balding and carry their fat distributed like a man? That is PCOS.

                      I saw this and had to say something. Most women with PCOS do not have such extreme symptoms. I was diagnosed with PCOS 2 years ago and I had none of these symptoms. I did have adult acne, but to imply that all women with PCOS are man-like is ignorant.

                      missalex, it doesn&#39;t sound like to me that you have PCOS. It sounds like you are not eating enough for your height and activity level. Skipping meals and eating 1000 calories a day will not jump-start a missing period.


                      • #41

                        @pik my doc is thinking i have PCOS and all my hormone levels were fine, no US abnormalities and i have no symptoms...just irregular periods. i&#39;m 112-115lbs at 5&#39;4 so in a healthy weight range i just can&#39;t seem to get regular!

                        after 5mos i was put on provera for 10 days and was able to get my period in december. now she wants me to wait 3 months and see if i get it again. if my body works properly i should be getting it next week but i&#39;m not going to stress now that i know there isn&#39;t a bigger problem (since she ran a full hormonal work up and did an ultrasound on me)


                        • #42

                          i have not read through this entire thread, but I cant believe how much the first post sounds like me!!

                          I grew up a teen with bulimia and weight went up and down. I ended up at 190lbs at 5&#39;8. I did the south beach diet and kept it ultra low carb and fat and got down to 139lbs....that was no binging and purging and just eating healthy fish and veg and some dairy for over a year.

                          Then I became a vegan! big mistake!! i gained 30lbs eating too much fruit all day a small salad at night and a little tofu! thats it! maybe 1000cals a day.

                          Well now Im back to low carbing the primal way and my weight will not budge!!!Ive actually gained as well. ive been primal for about 7 months now and I cannot loose a pound.

                          Just a thought to the woman that started this post....We have both lowered and screwed up our metabolisms due to yo yo dieting and the EDs! I too missed my period for about 3 years until I got it back regularly only 5 months ago!

                          You have to give it time...heal your body with primal foods and dont under eat! Increase your calories so your body learns to trust you! and of course increasing them will make you gain weight if your only eating 1000cals a day! you are starving yourself and your body is holding on to everything you&#39;ve got.

                          Eat lots of veg, lean proteins and fats! Dont think about calories!! add EVOO to your salads to raise your caloric intake and exercise. If your a binger dont bring those food into your house...drink lots of water....i swear if you stop your bad ED habits your body will even out. You will loose weight but it might take a few years....

                          ALSO: take lots of a good quality fish oil! I found that when i added this into my daily diet my period came back!!I like nutra sea apple flavour!!


                          • #43

                            checking back in...i did get a period in december after being on provera but i haven&#39;t had one since i&#39;m 5&#39;4 114lbs so i&#39;m not underweight and i&#39;ve been primal since august. the doc is still thinking PCOS even though i&#39;m completely asymptomatic aside from the whole not getting a period thing. i even tried eating 4tbsp of nutbutter a day for the last few weeks,just something to maybe help my body think it was healthy enough or fat enough to have a period and no dice i called the doc yesterday to maybe put me back on birth control (i was off it since last april and just can&#39;t cycle on my own regularly)