There’s short straws. Then there’s short, fat straws.
The Alemtuzumab treatment I had for MS gave me odds of 1 in 3 that I would develop Grave’s Disease, a thyroid problem.
I was the 1.
At first, it was wonderful, as my loopy thyroid helped me shed pounds effortlessly. I was buoyed up with an incredible amount of energy (the Holy Grail for any MSer) and I sighed with sheer bliss as yet another pair of jeans were consigned to the growing Fat Pile, tucked away at the bottom of my wardrobe.
Enter the endocrinologist who took one look at my thyroid levels and immediately put a stop to my fun, effectively reversing then decelerating my over-active thyroid into a sluggish, bored, tired under-active thyroid.
I cried when I stepped on the scales. I snivelled when I rummaged around my Fat Pile. Every single day I gained a pound. I banished carbs and chocolate (gah) from my diet. I sipped green tea and swirled cinnamon sticks in my natural yoghurt.
I have a fairly physical job, so hoped against hope that this would offset the rapid weight gain. Nope. My Duracell-Bunny hyperactivity had morphed into slow-mo.
At my last meeting with the size-six endocrinologist, I’m not afraid to say I begged. I pleaded and put my case forward: the meds I was taking were of course sorting out the thyroid, but were ruining my life on two levels:
- Relentless weight gain. I am now a blob of my former self.
- Extreme lethargy and fatigue. Commonly known as, well, common MS symptoms, so I was having a double-whammy.
She had no mercy and told me I might be on them for a year. A year. At my current rate of weight-gain, I will be dressing in tents with holes cut in them for my head and arms.
It’s getting harder to keep going at work, as weight gain plus fatigue means it takes me hours to recover after just half a day in work. Never before has my nickname, ‘Half-Shift’ been more appropriate. My body and mind shut down at a certain point and I slump onto a pile of bricks, head in hands.
On the plus-side (lol), I am yet again radically over-hauling my diet in a desperate bit to put a stop to the pounds piling on even more than they already are. I have dusted off my kettle-bell. It’s still a door-stop, but I live in hope.
For now, I am experimenting with black clothes and dramatic scarves. Perhaps I should start wearing my heavy, black-rimmed reading glasses again, to draw attention away from my triple-choc muffin top.
And I will have insane pleasure in saying, ‘oh the fat? It’s my thyroid. Honest.’
pro-active, active, inactive, fine, ok with ms symptom (not sure-in fear), diagnosis confirmed: anxiety/depression change of food habits rebellion, more stress; weight gain: further stress you put on your body: thyroid issue-thyroid storm! Watch your diet, change food habits, meditate/deep relaxation, recovery or death! No exaggeration on my part, was there! Not many are successful in surviving this “thyroid storm” not saying that you’ll have it, just mind your food intake. Good luck to you!
Thank you! I am currently looking up super-healthy recipes.
It’s been a bit of a nightmare, but now that The Teenager is going to the gym regularly and choosing healthier food, I guess there’s never been a better time for both of us to get a bit healthier. So hopefully, when they finally stop the pesky meds, I will lose the weight effortlessly. I live in hope!
Oh man, I’m so sorry you’re going through this! I had a fairly unhealthy relationship with my body even before I first got sick, but the fact that over the past few months I’ve been gaining weight despite barely eating is driving me absolutely bonkers. (My doctors seem to neither know nor care what exactly is causing this; I don’t know if it would be better or worse for me if I could blame my thyroid!) Anyway, you’re not alone, and good luck with everything.
Thank you so much!
I really hope you get some answers soon. I think it’s always good to know what you’re up against?
I’m going to radically overhaul my diet. Could take a while!