Perimenopausal and Weight Gain/Loss

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Replies

  • NaomiJFoster
    NaomiJFoster Posts: 1,451 Member
    I'm feeling very sad for those of you who didn't start this path until in your 50s. I started at around 38, as did my mom and my grandmother. It's absolutely killing me now at age 45. I feel like I'm way to old to deal with my body acting this way. But now I'm glad that I'm this 'young' for it!

    My sister did it the easy way. She had very bad ovarian cysts. They removed one ovary surgically. She begged them to take both but they wouldn't do it because the other one was healthy. Well, two years later, it also had complex cysts on it. She didn't really want another surgery. So they gave her injections to put her into instant menopause. She had monthly injections for 6 months, experienced all the classic symptoms during those 6 months, and then it was over. Done. The end. Bravo!
  • jzammetti
    jzammetti Posts: 1,962 Member
    NJL13500, I really hope that it is something simple for you. 43 is young for perimenopause, but everyone is different. Good luck!

    I'm 42 and also in perimenopause. I started my period pretty late (15) and it is typical to start menopause early in that case.

    I haven't really noticed an affect on my weight - but that may be because I started this weight loss journey about the same time I started seeing the symptoms of perimenopause so I have no baseline to compare to...

    OP - I would suggest you drink lots of water every day - the warmer the weather, the more you should drink. Staying appropriately hydrated will help the weight fluctuations caused by water retention. Also, stay active - that helps the symptoms according to my mom, an RN.
  • It's such a relief to find this thread. I'm 50 and had a partial hysterectomy (the type where they leave the ovaries behind) when I was 38. Having no periods means no clues about when the menopause will happen. Reading the symptoms some of you have mentioned - the erratic memory is a particular problem for me - and having noticed some strong mood swings, makes me wonder if my ovaries are finally getting out of the egg production business. It could also explain why my weight loss has been on a plateau for the last year despite eating to target. Increasing or varying exercise is not an option as I have a lifetime medical ban on abs exercises, lifting and running, but at least what I have learned from this thread has provided me with a possible explanation for what may be happening ... and knowledge, as they say, is power. Thanks to the OP for raising the question, and to all who have contributed.
  • NaomiJFoster
    NaomiJFoster Posts: 1,451 Member
    NJL13500, I really hope that it is something simple for you. 43 is young for perimenopause, but everyone is different. Good luck!

    43 is actually pretty normal. The majority of women begin perimenopause anywhere between 45 and 55, but the 'normal' range goes from 35-65.

    And why doesn't anyone teach us about all of this? We are prepped and prepped and have every tiny detail explained to us about starting our first periods. But the only info we get about ending them, are the jokes on sit coms. Most of us end up floundering through the experience for a few years before finally figuring out what is going on. My own mom had barely even heard of it when she started at age 38, and only knew that it was something that happens to women in their 60s (even though we later found out that her mother was also in her late 30s when she started. She finally went to the doctor thinking she had cancer or something. Why aren't we taught about this part of our lives?
  • Galbania
    Galbania Posts: 1
    I had the same problems as all of you but fortunately am over it now, and I,m only 47. I had about three horrible years before though. I don't have hot flushes anymore and feel more like my normal self again, but can't loose weight- but then I am lazy and eat far too much. I know that but I have a lot of stress with my large family and job. I think I have to de-stress a lot to loose weight. One herb that seems to replace estrogen I found is called fenugreek and you can buy it really cheap in large bags in indian grocery stores. It also regulates blood sugar. But don't take more than half a teaspoon a day, otherwise you get more problems than before. You can soak it overnight as it is quite hard and put in your muesli. It tastes pleasant, like maple syrup. Artificial maple syrup is actually made from it. Here's the link:
    http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-fenugreek.html
    One other thing I found that helped is to mentally concentrate on your periods stopping. I know it sounds weird, but for me this worked extremely well.
  • Cobwellac
    Cobwellac Posts: 75 Member
    NJL13500, I really hope that it is something simple for you. 43 is young for perimenopause, but everyone is different. Good luck!

    43 is actually pretty normal. The majority of women begin perimenopause anywhere between 45 and 55, but the 'normal' range goes from 35-65.

    And why doesn't anyone teach us about all of this? We are prepped and prepped and have every tiny detail explained to us about starting our first periods. But the only info we get about ending them, are the jokes on sit coms. Most of us end up floundering through the experience for a few years before finally figuring out what is going on. My own mom had barely even heard of it when she started at age 38, and only knew that it was something that happens to women in their 60s (even though we later found out that her mother was also in her late 30s when she started. She finally went to the doctor thinking she had cancer or something. Why aren't we taught about this part of our lives?

    You are right on with this. A lot of women have no idea that perimenopause can actually start in a woman's mid to late 30's, and that full menopause is normal anytime after 40.
  • evileen99
    evileen99 Posts: 1,564 Member
    I'm post menopausal, and what you are experiencing is the tanking of your metabolism. It royally sucks. I have to work out harder and eat less than I did just 5 years ago to just maintain.

    I highly recommend getting a BodyMedia Fit to help you see what your calorie burn is so you can adjust your eating accordingly.
  • ClareWantsProgress
    ClareWantsProgress Posts: 173 Member
    *waves hello* Newbie here and just figured out how to search. I entered perimenopause at 39 and at 45 am dealing with the whole gamut of issues. Ob/gyn put me on Yaz to try to regulate my out-of-control periods, and when at age 44 I started getting menstrual migraines like clockwork during the "dummy pill" days, I am now taking it continually.

    This does not thrill me, but I cannot function when I'm blacking out and vomiting, so what do you do? I have to work and cannot stay home in bed one week each month.

    I just had my thyroid checked, and it is normal, so I'm hoping the Eat More To Weigh Less approach will work for me since I have gained 25 pounds since beginning this lovely change of life and would love to fit back into my clothes again.
  • ClareWantsProgress
    ClareWantsProgress Posts: 173 Member
    I am 47 and have been going through menopause for well over a year. I started having symptoms after I had my tubal ligation when my son was born in 2007. I struggle with the flashes, mood swings etc. and it is almost impossible for me to lose. Recently I upped my calories hoping that was the issue. After reading that lifting weights burns more fat than cardio I am leaning towards doing more lifting. I also have this issue with the scale. I tried weighing every day to teach myself just how much my weight fluctuates so I don't stress out so much. I used to enter any time I showed a change in weight but then learned that if I entered a gain I got very discouraged so now I only enter the losses. I wish there was a magical solution. Trial and error seems to be my norm.

    Just to clarify, your tubal did not cause your issues - it was just that you started perimenopause. (I had a tubal at 27 and had no symptoms whatsoever until age 39 when I started perimenopause.) I don't want women to avoid getting a tubal thinking it will cause menopause - it doesn't affect your ovaries or hormone levels in any way. Best decision I ever made!! :)
  • ClareWantsProgress
    ClareWantsProgress Posts: 173 Member
    Hi, I am in the same boat. I am 48 and had my first hot flash at age 43. I was sitting at a local craft show and after getting home, thought I had gotten a sunburn, turns out it was my first hot flash. I get them facially. They feel just like a sunburn.

    I don't get night sweats, but I do get hot at night. It's hard because my son Charlie has autism and can't stand to hear night breathing and snoring, so I have to keep the door shut to the bedroom and my husband is a furnace at night. So I don't sleep well.

    I am STILL getting zits, which bugs me. I had my last period in the middle of May and started having period symptoms in mid-June, but it hasn't kicked over so far. I have had fluid retention and cramps, so I take a midol and that helps. I eat watermelon sometimes, too. It's a natural diuretic.

    I was on hormone therapy for it back when I was 44, but I won't take it anymore. It made me sort of insane.
    :noway: :noway: :bigsmile::noway: :noway: Not good.

    I don't know when I am going to go into full menopause. My mom had a hysterectomy, so I have no idea when she would have hit it and my sisters have each already gone through the gate. One is 52 and the other is 56. It's a waiting game, I guess. I'd just like to know when I could take the period gear out of my purse.

    I feel for you. I can't take HRT because my mom had breast cancer and I had tumors removed myself (pre-cancerous). My ob/gyn has me on continual Yaz to deal with my crazy periods and the migraines I started getting. I've gained 25 pounds in the last 5 years and cannot get it to budge, even though I was not overweight before and have always exercised regularly. I am trying the TDEE - 20% approach and hope to start seeing some results since nothing I was doing was working. :(
  • DonnaLeeCattes
    DonnaLeeCattes Posts: 492 Member
    I'm 45 and when I was 26 I had a hysterectomy which forced me into menopause early.
    I have struggled with weight every since then. I still get real bloated and feel like crap. But I have found if I workout first thing in the morning it helps me or at least makes me feel better about myself :)
  • lisaanne1369
    lisaanne1369 Posts: 377 Member
    I am 44 and in my 3rd year of it and there is nothing "pre" about it. I have all my girly parts and havent had a period sense Feb 2013 and before that Oct 2012. I have rounds of hot flashes and night sweats and when I think I had enough and want hormones ,they go away for 4-6 months.

    I been on MFP for a year and took up running in November of 2012. I have lost 18-20 pounds and eat what ever I want, just in moderation. I feel this is a life time deal and slow and steady wins the race. I know every day isn't a winner and to just roll with the punches.
  • bcattoes
    bcattoes Posts: 17,303 Member
    Yeah, during perimenopause it seems like I have PMS more often even though I have periods less often. The usual PMS meds work as much as they ever did, but I find that intense exercise helps me the most. Things like HIIT, or cardio calisthenics routines. It is seriously hard to talk myself into doing them when I'm bloated and cranky, but it always helps.
  • StefPayne
    StefPayne Posts: 126 Member
    I am right here with at 44 years old. I lost 33 pounds and maintained the loss for 6 months and now I have put 5 pounds back on and can not get it off for the life off me. My weight just jumped up, my period that had always been regular became un-regular and I started having night sweats all at the same time. I am working out twice as much as I was, counting calories and getting my water in and the scales will drop, but just not back down to my lowest weight. It is very frustrating and this started in April for me so I am anxious to see some other posts. Thanks for starting this post and good look to you!
  • dym123
    dym123 Posts: 1,679 Member
    Not sure if I'm happy or severly depressed to find this thread. I'm 46, started having perimenopausal symptoms last year, then they stopped and now they've started back with a vengence. After consistently losing over the last 18 months, I've gained 3lbs, which sucks because I was 3lbs away from finally losing 100lbs and after reading the other responses, 3lbs is just the beginning. I know my diet (avoid most processed foods) and workouts (lots of heavy lifting) are good and I drink tons of water (mainly because its summer in the Midwest). Maybe I'll pick up some Estroven on my next trip to Costco and hope for the best. I hate being this close and then having to deal with this.
  • ClareWantsProgress
    ClareWantsProgress Posts: 173 Member
    Maybe I'll pick up some Estroven on my next trip to Costco and hope for the best. I hate being this close and then having to deal with this.

    The over-the counter Estroven products have helped me a LOT with the night sweats and hot flashes. I no longer wake up 4-5 times a night soaking wet (that was just so lovely, ick). While the pills don't completely take away the symptoms, they have greatly lessened their severity. My doc gave me the o.k. to use them, too. Being able to sleep better helped a lot with my general mood and functioning.
  • FattieBabs
    FattieBabs Posts: 542 Member
    Great thread and everyone keeping it real! Thanks to the OP. I have found that interval training and weight training is really helping. My weight is on a plateau but I am losing inches and have dropped from a size 20-22 to an 18. . A lot of people have made some very positive comments too. I still scuba dive and sail, I am 53, and the energy levels I get some the regular exercise really does help.

    My mother was a manic depressive and she was worse during the peri menopause which kicked it all off. I am therefore super cautious of mood swings and hormonal imbalances and am monitoring carefully. Joining mfp is one of the most positive things I have ever done because it really makes me think. Thanks to all the brave posters on here and for encouraging each other. My funniest experience of a hot flush was playing a big violin solo during a show and my fellow female players fanning me whilst I was playing to cool me down. Sweet! Good luck ladies!
  • GiGiBeans
    GiGiBeans Posts: 1,062 Member
    My symptoms started 2 years ago - constant hunger, weight gain, memory lapses, bloating, extreme mood swings, night sweats, horrible itching. I thought I was going insane. My gyn prescribed exercise and diet. The only diet that worked for me is low carb unfortunately being that I love bread and pasta. A few weeks ago I started overindulging in carbs and exercising less, partly due to vacation, and my symptoms started coming back. Lowered carbs and started probiotics, feeling good again.
  • judiag1
    judiag1 Posts: 3
    This was me too - and I tried everything - but finally - something I have recently started doing is working! NO FLOUR NO SUGAR diet! Google and you'll be amazed. Have been on it for 6 days now - have lost 1.3kgs and feel great. I'm staying with this one! FINALLY something that suits my body!
  • liln5k
    liln5k Posts: 6
    I am 42 and peri-menopausal. I don't have hot flashes or anything like that BUT I do have the irregular cycles, mood swings, anxiety, heart palpitations, etc... My husband and I started the virgin diet (lifestyle change) in late oct early nov of last year. I weighed 215 lbs. As of my Friday weigh in, I am now 128 lbs... I walk on the treadmill at work 5 days a week for 40 mins (5 min warm up; 30 min walk at 3.5 mph; 5 min cool down) I do upper body weight machines mon and wed and then legs on tues and thurs. I do standing ab's all 5 days. My husband has lost 95 lbs with the new lifestyle changes and he doesn't work out like I do... for us It comes down to clean eating... we eat meat, fruits, veges, good carbs and healthy fats (oliveoyl, etc) (lentils, sweet potatoes and brown rice)... we eat as organic as possible... We don't eat processed foods, dairy, eggs, peanuts, corn, soy, sugar or artificial sweetners... I average between 1200 and 1300 calories and it is a lot of food to eat!!! we are never hungry!!! if interested you should visit jjvirgin.com or visit her page on facebook... it really does work!!! :smile: