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Sleep Apnea

niklong
niklong Posts: 48 Member
I have felt like a walking zombie for the past month or so. I've had my thyroid rechecked and it's good with the dose of meds I'm on. My dr wants me to do a sleep study/ test for sleep apnea and she said it can affect your ability to lose weight....which is a catch 22 since losing weight can help your sleep apnea :/ . Just checking to see others' experience with this and if getting treated for sleep apnea did help your weight loss efforts. I know for sure it's affecting my ability to exercise (if that is what it is). I'm just exhausted all the time.

Replies

  • middlehaitch
    middlehaitch Posts: 8,375 Member
    edited May 24
    My SO has borderline sleep apnea. Meaning he didn’t need a cpap machine, but was advised to lose weight.

    The weight loss worked for him, he is tested annually, until his COVID weight gain.

    He has started losing again and has bought a couple of T-shirts with pockets in the centre back to place a ball, this keeps him off his back preventing the snoring and possible apnea until he gets his weight back down.

    He didn’t have noticeable energy changes, but like I said he was borderline, and was quite successful at losing weigh and exercising.

    Do get the sleep study it can really help define what is happening and how you can be helped.

    Cheers, h.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 22,371 Member
    edited May 24
    Get the sleep study. Sleep apnea can also seriously increase chances of heart disease and other major health problems.

    I've had sleep apnea (diagnosed and treated) for nearly 20 years. If it affects weight loss, I believe it would not be via some obscure mechanism, but through one or both of two routes that each involve fatigue. Fatigue:

    1. Leads to people resting more, doing less, because they have less energy. They burn fewer calories in routine daily life (even by subtle things like less fidgeting!), and are more likely to struggle with exercise, or with the vigor of the exercise that they manage to do. Lower daily calorie expenditure makes it harder to lose weight.

    2. Tired people tend to have lower will power. That conspires with the body's desire, when fatigued, to see energy by eating (especially quick energy foods, for many, like sweets; or calorie dense foods). Strong food cravings plus lowered willpower makes it harder to lose weight.

    Sleep apnea is dangerous. A sleep study is vaguely annoying (I've done multiples), but not truly awful or anything. If you're in the US, and have reasonable health insurance, it should cover much of the cost. It's worth it.

    Getting my sleep apnea treated improved my life, for sure. I felt much better, more rested, energetic. (I had some other sleep issues not helped by apnea treatment, so things weren't perfect, but there was *definite* improvement.)

    I know people for whom weight loss cured their sleep apnea, or greatly improved it. Sadly, in my case, it seems to have something to do with the structure of my airway in some genetic respect, because mine is about the same now (at BMI 21, for me 5'5", 125 pounds) as it was when I was class 1 obese (183 pounds). Even if apnea treatment isn't magical for your weight loss, I think you can anticipate improvement in energy level and general sense of well-being.

    Some people find a CPAP annoying. I don't, personally, at all. Other than that I have to live without it if I do rustic camping, I don't see a downside.
  • tinalongworth
    tinalongworth Posts: 16 Member
    niklong wrote: »
    I have felt like a walking zombie for the past month or so. I've had my thyroid rechecked and it's good with the dose of meds I'm on. My dr wants me to do a sleep study/ test for sleep apnea and she said it can affect your ability to lose weight....which is a catch 22 since losing weight can help your sleep apnea :/ . Just checking to see others' experience with this and if getting treated for sleep apnea did help your weight loss efforts. I know for sure it's affecting my ability to exercise (if that is what it is). I'm just exhausted all the time.

    I hear you. I have sleep apnea too. I look at it like this - losing weight gets me closer to getting away from my CPAP. In 2016 I lost nearly 100 pounds and was able to stop using the CPAP. As a matter of fact, that was my weight loss goal - to lose enough weight to be able to sleep without it and I did! Unfortunately, I gained 50 pounds when menopause hit me in 2019 and I had to start using it again. Menopause is notorious for making you gain abdominal fat, but it didn't help that I have lost my Mom too. The point is this - don't let your sleep apnea hold you back. I sleep better and I sleep hard because I exercise and I get great scores and the MyAir app on the nights I exercise. You can do this. I believe in you.
  • Jthanmyfitnesspal
    Jthanmyfitnesspal Posts: 3,034 Member
    I can say that my wife was on the borderline, too. She has lost a lot of weight, and it did go away. I could tell because she snored loudly at times and had generally a difficult time breathing. Now she doesn't!

    This was not her main motivation for losing weight, she had much worse health issues as well. So this was simply a nice side-benefit.
  • girlwithcurls2
    girlwithcurls2 Posts: 2,182 Member
    I have it and am within 10 pounds of an ideal weight. Weight loss does not change mine. I avoided admitting it for decades. By the time I did the sleep study, I realized I had been dealing with it since my 20s. I had no idea how taxing it is on your heart, among other things.

    The CPAP changed my life. And I Just got an upgrade, and my new machine is even better than the one I got 6 years ago. Definitely do it. The sleep study doesn't need to be a full night's sleep either. They just need to get enough time to get some data. Schedule it. Even if you depend on a CPAP for the rest of your life, what's the alternative? I figure that mine is extending my life at this point.
  • EdwinHoover
    EdwinHoover Posts: 1 Member
    My experience is that better sleep by wearing CPAP gave me energy and lowered carb cravings. I lost weight and no longer need the CPAP.