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How can a morbidly obese person keep positive thoughts?

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Hi, I'm morbidly obese and in the third week of a health imposed change in eating and fitness habits.  After three months of seeing Drs after a flu sort of illness and multiple blood tests they decided all that was wrong with me, apart from being very anemic and having very low transferrin and Vit D, was that I was so far overweight. My blood pressure was 200/140 and sugars were high (though they said not diabetic yet).  At first they wanted me to have stomach surgery but i couldnt stand that so they said i have to stick to less than 800 calories a day. I cant. Ive tried and i cant.  I feel terrible, depressed.. more than depressed i feel evil. When i go to the store i feel like everything i pick off the shelf is a poison. Ive started to be scared and there are some times when i cant think of a single "safe" thing to eat and as soon as i do eat something i become sure it was the wrong thing. Also artificial sweeteners seem to make my liver swell up and be tender. Is this a normal sort of thing to go through in the first weeks of cutting back? I know my body has alot of adjusting to do so can you please share how to deal with these feelings.

11 Replies (last) are mobile, yet your doctors want you on less than 800 calories a day?

I'd get a second opinion.

Yes I am mobile and have started walking 20 mins morning and night (i cant manage 30 at once yet). All my blood tests were good, my chol was so low they joked about putting me on a high cholestrol diet and sodium was good so im not having too much salt (I dont add salt to anything so would only be whats in foods) Thyroid is fine so i can blame that. Ive always been massive. Im very short, only 4ft 11 or 150 cms so maybe thats why the calorie allowance is so low? I didnt ask, i was trying to get out of the Drs before bursting into tears. Last thing i need is to be labeled a nutter.

You're going to go through withdrawal symptoms and its not going to be fun.  I've been there.  Find another medical person to talk to for another opinion- 1200 calories is the minimum you need to keep such organs as your heart running.  You can do it!  Listen to your body.  You know it better than any so called professional- you are the true pro when it comes to you.  And above all, bring home fruits and vegies and less and less sweets and less and less processed psuedo food- you go to Wal-Mart and you'll know exactly what I mean.  40 minutes a day of exercise when you are heavy is a lot.  Can you get to a pool and exercise that way?  That can be a fun way to sneak in some exercise and yet enjoy yourself.  Sit down and ask yourself what's fun?  You find swinging on a swing in the park exciting, find a way to go do that.   You can do it.  For sure, be patient and loving to you.  Its going to be a slow hard battle but its a battle you can win when you set your mind to it.   Maybe find a support group near you?  Don't worry- there will always be somebody bigger than you.  Best of luck!

I'm not going to give you any dieting advice, although I still think that 800 calories a day is a little ridiculous, especially to start. Did these doctors speak with you about what kinds of foods you should eat and what to avoid? That's nearly as important as your calories when you're trying to lose weight and maintain or begin a healthy lifestyle.

I still say go for that second opinion--ask to speak to a dietary expert. I'm a little wary of anyone who tells a person to consume less than 1,200 calories a day.

He said the shake and choc bar supplement things, one three times a day and lots of water . Problem is, Id spent months getting off "fast food" and chocolate chips etc and that seems like going backwards.  I guess it isnt my place to say but it felt insulting, as if oh shes so fat she must only eat chocolate and milkshakes anyway. Instead of that I am trying to keep everything low GI and low fat with no fruit and no bread/pasta/rice and little dairy. I cook casseroles, stirfries, spag bol etc for the family and have about half a cup of whatever over salad veg instead of pasta or rice. I do mix barley into most meals as spouse has a cholestrol issue and that helps so maybe i should take that out of my food. Nothing else was said except i need to do 1-2 hrs walking a day. and come back in a month. Its already 3 weeks and im scared I wont have lost enough weight. I couldnt stand to have the surgery, i was stuck in a house with someone who had a bad experience with that and had huge health issues for 2 yrs after. but I have to go back to the Dr as i will need script for blood pressure meds then and dont want to risk going without them as BP was so high recently (200/140) so will have to put up with it if Dr goes off at me. :(

Yeah, also be skeptical of anything that asks you to omit certain food and nutrient groups (like fruit or carbs or fat) for the sole purpose of weight loss.

I just feel it was very irresponsible of your doctor to put you on such restrictions without giving you more information. :/

The walking will most definitely help with your blood pressure, though. It did wonders for my mom, even though she didn't lose a ton of weight. You'll be amazed at how much better you'll feel by just getting active. :)

Original Post by kotov_syndrome:

I just feel it was very irresponsible of your doctor to put you on such restrictions without giving you more information. :/

I agree, and I also agree that getting a second opinion could be a good idea.  Keep in mind that whether or not you get the surgery is up to you - your doctor cannot force you t do it.  I am no expert and have absolutely no backing for this, but I think it is almost always healthier to lose weight the slow, calorie counting way.  It really is effective and is much more natural.  As for exercise do what you can for now and work your way up - it's not good to push yourself too much.  Slow and steady!

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I think that you should definitely see another doctor.  800 calories is too low for anyone, and the fact that the doctor recommended diet shakes and bars instead of real food is a red flag.

I'm not a medical professional, but I think that most people would agree that 800 calories of diet shakes and bars is not a smart weight-loss diet.


Hi, why don't you hire a professional dietician as they can probably give you fantastic advice? The rest of us all guess but they actually know. My father was quite a famous doctor in his field but when he prescribed drugs that were remotely sophisticated, he always consulted his pharmacist as it was the pharmacist's business to understand the drugs whereas his was to heal people. Most likely the doctor isn't a dietician and he hasn't taken a multitude of courses to give you the proper advice.

I would need the Dr to refer to a dietician here and it is fairly expensive. Must be very strict requirments to qualify for referral because when my hubby was diagnosed with diabetes and sugars over 22 (400's) he didnt get referral. We have just got advice from online and third hand from people who could afford pay to go without referral.

I think everyone has convinced me this 800 cal thing is unwise. Maybe it is what is making me feel evil and scared of food. Kind of feels like going crazy so hopefully  1200 will not have that effect on me.

We have a couple of members that I can think of off the top of my head who have manage to lose quite a bit of weight and get into a much healthier set up.  mollymouserduke3522.  There's many more, but off the top of my head, these two come to mind.  There have also been a few who have done the lapband or similar surgeries but most consider that to be an absolute last resort.

VLCD (Very Low Calorie Diets) are often recommended by doctors when they feel that the health risks of your weight outweigh the health risks of rapid weight loss.  Not all doctors are equal and many don't have much training in nutrition from what I hear, so whenever what they tell you simply does not work for you I recommend getting a second opinion or asking for a modification of their plan.

The typical idea here is to maintain a 500-1000 calorie deficit per day while still getting the minimum recommended calories 1200F/1500M+300teen +%exercise.  So you use the tools to find an estimate of what you burn, then subtract 500-1000 calories from that but make sure to have the minimum recommendation to end up with a rate of loss around 1-2 lb per week.  About 1% of your overall body weight per week is the general aim.  The thing to do is see how this works for you.  1200 may be too low for you given that your weight is higher.  Run your numbers through the tools and see what you get and then consider whether or not you can feel full on that many calories of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats.  

Once you have your calories around the right target, then it's time to look at food composition.  Unless there's a food allergy or a medical reason (gallbladder, heart, etc.) to have a restricted diet most people do try to keep whole grains and healthy fats in their diets.  It may mean that you limit your servings to 1/4 cup of brown rice rather than 1 cup of minute rice, but that's a lot different from completely cutting out grains.  Most people cut out butter, oils, and full fat dairy as generally for the same volume you have fewer calories.  Also switching to whole grains is useful, making your own food so that you know what is going into it and getting at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

11 Replies