What's Working (Or Not Working) For You?

2

Replies

  • Alliwan
    Alliwan Posts: 1,262 Member
    mhulgan wrote: »
    Thanks :blush: I guess I'm around a lot of people who think "natural remedies" are the way to go, so I felt a little guilty when taking the medication made such a drastic improvement. Crazy, I know!

    You can always try Inositol if you want more 'natural'. I use both but some on here ditched the met and use only Inositol as it works much the same way. Can get it off amazon for about $15 for a 2 month supply or more depending on how much you take a day.
  • Dragonwolf
    Dragonwolf Posts: 5,614 Member
    mhulgan wrote: »
    Thanks :blush: I guess I'm around a lot of people who think "natural remedies" are the way to go, so I felt a little guilty when taking the medication made such a drastic improvement. Crazy, I know!

    I'm a fan of natural remedies, myself, but I still don't think Met is "cheating." Most medications are derived (or were originally derived) from natural ones. Aspirin, for example, comes from a natural compound found (salicylic acid) in many plants, including willow bark, meadowsweet, and a number of fruits and vegetables. Likewise, "natural" doesn't always equate to "safe" (or even "safer" than its refined counterpart).

    The active compound in Metformin can also be naturally derived from French Lilac (aka goat's rue), where it was originally derived (and the plant itself has been used since at least the Middle Ages).

    That said, there are other options available for PCOS remedies. Inositol is a common one, which works similar to Metformin (though uses different pathways). Vitex is also a common one for more general hormone regulation (though it does have more side effects and risks than Inositol, so be sure to research it, especially if you're looking to get pregnant).
  • Alliwan
    Alliwan Posts: 1,262 Member
    Dragonwolf wrote: »
    mhulgan wrote: »
    Thanks :blush: I guess I'm around a lot of people who think "natural remedies" are the way to go, so I felt a little guilty when taking the medication made such a drastic improvement. Crazy, I know!

    Vitex is also a common one for more general hormone regulation (though it does have more side effects and risks than Inositol, so be sure to research it, especially if you're looking to get pregnant).

    I keep seeing ppl say that on here but the research ive found says Vitex is safe to take during TTC and pregnancy, that it can be unsafe to STOP taking it before 12-16 weeks of pregnancy. It actually helps ppl get and keep the pregnancy if they are progesterone deficient. If there is other research id love to read it. I think my pregnancy and miscarriage in September was a fluke, as we were told we'd never be able to have kids naturally so I am not overly worried about getting pregnant again but trying to be safe just in case we are one of those rare ppl who are struck by lightening twice in one lifetime.
  • Dragonwolf
    Dragonwolf Posts: 5,614 Member
    Alliwan wrote: »
    Dragonwolf wrote: »
    mhulgan wrote: »
    Thanks :blush: I guess I'm around a lot of people who think "natural remedies" are the way to go, so I felt a little guilty when taking the medication made such a drastic improvement. Crazy, I know!

    Vitex is also a common one for more general hormone regulation (though it does have more side effects and risks than Inositol, so be sure to research it, especially if you're looking to get pregnant).

    I keep seeing ppl say that on here but the research ive found says Vitex is safe to take during TTC and pregnancy, that it can be unsafe to STOP taking it before 12-16 weeks of pregnancy. It actually helps ppl get and keep the pregnancy if they are progesterone deficient. If there is other research id love to read it. I think my pregnancy and miscarriage in September was a fluke, as we were told we'd never be able to have kids naturally so I am not overly worried about getting pregnant again but trying to be safe just in case we are one of those rare ppl who are struck by lightening twice in one lifetime.

    It's listed as "generally unsafe" or otherwise not verified as safe for pregnancy. Like I said, though, it has more side effects and interactions, so research it.

    http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-968-vitex agnus-castus.aspx?activeingredientid=968&activeingredientname=vitex agnus-castus
    http://www.drugs.com/cdi/vitex-extract.html
    http://altmedicine.about.com/od/herbsupplementguide/a/Vitex.htm

    There's also some anecdotes out there that it can basically have the opposite effect on some women - https://unicornandi.wordpress.com/2010/05/04/vitrex-beware/
  • mark_grace
    mark_grace Posts: 7 Member
    Soil have PCOS, am on metformin (not exactly sure why when my blood sugar is 71). However, the dr said I'm insulin resistant. I'm about 205. I can't seem to lose weight in my stomach! Very much an apple shape and I've been going low carb and low calorie, I've lost about 7-8 lbs in two months...SUPER SLOW! But my stomach is not budging and never does on past weight loss attempts. Any thoughts?
  • KnitOrMiss
    KnitOrMiss Posts: 10,104 Member
    Insulin resistance is completely different than low blood sugar, though the two can coexist. There are many good writings and posts on insulin resistance here recently. When you go low carb, you do not need to also do low calorie. Make sure you are getting plenty of healthy fats or your body will have no fuel on which to run. Proteins are not fats. There are some good low carb groups linked in other posts as well, here. With low carb (not low cal), high fats, and moderate protein (to sustain my lean muscle mass and such), I've lost a ton of inches, as well as some pounds, and I feel light years healthier! Make sure you're doing low carb the right way...because doing it improperly will damage your body.
  • Dragonwolf
    Dragonwolf Posts: 5,614 Member
    In addition to what Knit said, try cutting out grains and dairy for a while (ideally, 4-6 weeks). It's possible the belly isn't just fat, but bloat, too. There's some evidence that PCOS has some low-level autoimmune component and/or some relation to autoimmune issues, which are often triggered by grains and/or dairy.

    Also, 8 pounds in two months is not slow at all. That's about a pound a week, which is exactly where you should be. If your calorie intake says you should be losing more, then you've still got something working against your body. Take a look at what you're eating and work to find what that is. Once you get the right foods for your body, things will start falling into place without you needing to starve yourself, but it can take time and effort to do so.
  • mark_grace
    mark_grace Posts: 7 Member
    Thank you guys! I actually am dairy and grain free (trying to combine low cal, LCHF, and Paleo all together)! Eating healthy fats - olive oil, avocados. I actually have never liked dairy so that's the easiest part. I get that the weight doesn't seem horrible that I'm losing (even tho it will stop at 190, does EVERY time I diet sadly despite all efforts). My question is where is the weight coming off at? I have thin legs, I'm 5'8", and literally all my weight is in my belly - sucks!! I measured my stomach and it has not changed one single bit! I'm down about 10 lbs now (weighed this am). So 10 lbs came from somewhere. My question is how to target belly loss, I keep hearing how it's hormones and my dr said my testosterone is VERY high (hence PCOS)... Just not sure how to get that in check and start reducing my gut!

    Thanks again everyone :):):)
  • KnitOrMiss
    KnitOrMiss Posts: 10,104 Member
    Aside from reducing carbs to non-existent and stopping the dairy and grain (for irritation/bloat factors), you can't target the belly fat. Your body will naturally hold on to belly fat until the very end - It is a biological imperative. Your body is genetically hard wired to hold belly fat so that women can continue the species, even in times of famine... You will lose fat as your body determines, so reducing body fat in general will help reduce belly fat... And the LCHF with Paleo variation will help this process, but going low carb WITH low fat does not help the process. You need the fats to train your body to burn fat, too. All your fuel comes from fats or carbs - and since you're cutting carbs you need fats to run your body!!
  • umrebelbelle
    umrebelbelle Posts: 19 Member
    I went for my annual physical at the GP Wednesday morning. I was shocked and happy to see I was down 14 pounds since January. Now I wish I could remember what I had done other than workout and add more fruits.
  • mark_grace
    mark_grace Posts: 7 Member
    Knit,

    Impressed. You know all the answers, have good advice and you write extremely well! ;)

    I appreciate all the tips. Sadly I'm not too much of a chicken eater (although I do eat it). I do get fat from olive oil, avocados and sadly... A lot of steak. That may not help.

    I've been told belly fat is hormones, but I'm built just like my mom and aunt, aside from being 5 inches taller. Just irritating that all of the weight is in the gut! Well, I have until March (in a wedding) to somehow figure out to lose 40 lbs!

    I'll keep tabs on this group, it's very informative. I'll just keep doing my thing until I hit a plateau and then sadly I better put my Fitbit to use that I just bought! ;)
  • briannadunn
    briannadunn Posts: 844 Member
    I am taking berberine and I love that stuff. My blood sugars aren't all over the place and I broke my platue. I am glad I am not the only one not losing weight easily. I think walking 30 min a day and doing other forms of exercise has always been helpful for me and doable.
  • VeganKay92
    VeganKay92 Posts: 15 Member
    Going vegan and taking metformin.
  • KnitOrMiss
    KnitOrMiss Posts: 10,104 Member
    mark_grace wrote: »
    Knit,

    Impressed. You know all the answers, have good advice and you write extremely well! ;)

    I appreciate all the tips. Sadly I'm not too much of a chicken eater (although I do eat it). I do get fat from olive oil, avocados and sadly... A lot of steak. That may not help.

    I've been told belly fat is hormones, but I'm built just like my mom and aunt, aside from being 5 inches taller. Just irritating that all of the weight is in the gut! Well, I have until March (in a wedding) to somehow figure out to lose 40 lbs!

    I'll keep tabs on this group, it's very informative. I'll just keep doing my thing until I hit a plateau and then sadly I better put my Fitbit to use that I just bought! ;)

    I definitely do not know all the answers, but I've done a lot of researched and learned a lot from others here, as well. Thank you for the compliment on my writing.

    It doesn't really matter what meats you're eating, as far as I've been able to tell. All the rules you've heard about what foods are bad for you in the last 20+ years are backwards. Those things are only that bad for you if you're eating a high carb diet... If you've cut the carbs, which are the problem and complicate everything else, steak, red meat, and all that aren't bad for you. It helps if you can get the grassfed, non-antibiotic type meats, but it isn't the end of the universe if you can't. The hormonally "grown" stuff can affect us PCOSers more than normal folks, but that is the way of it.

    Cheese has more of a hormonal impact as far as my own personal experiences. If you think about it, milk - whether human breastmilk or cow's milk, etc.., includes the components to help babies of the related species to triple or more their birth weights, and as quickly as possible for species survival and all. Why would we want to put that type of metabolism amplifying hormone stuff in our bodies? Now don't get me wrong, I'm still a cheese junkie, but I'm becoming far more aware of how those things affect us in general, and me specifically. But just KNOWING makes a whole shift in perspective for me.

    I would think that a certain amount of belly fat is the genetic/species component, but a certain portion of it could also be hormones, and those of us here know - if there is something that can be screwed up with your hormones, we're likely to have it!

    Good luck on your goal, and just remember that losing inches is more important for how your clothes fit than the random number on the scale!
  • NicoleB0830
    NicoleB0830 Posts: 60 Member
    I see a lot on here about low carb diets , as an alternative I would like to suggest "The PCOS Diet" book ... It talks about spreading carbs out throughout the date to help balance your blood sugar and metabolism. Carbs come from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.

    I am personally doing ( or trying anyways) to do 45% carbs and balancing my C, P, F throughout the day ... PM me if you ( any of you) are interested in hearing more!
  • Dragonwolf
    Dragonwolf Posts: 5,614 Member
    edited August 2015
    mark_grace wrote: »
    Thank you guys! I actually am dairy and grain free (trying to combine low cal, LCHF, and Paleo all together)! Eating healthy fats - olive oil, avocados. I actually have never liked dairy so that's the easiest part. I get that the weight doesn't seem horrible that I'm losing (even tho it will stop at 190, does EVERY time I diet sadly despite all efforts). My question is where is the weight coming off at? I have thin legs, I'm 5'8", and literally all my weight is in my belly - sucks!! I measured my stomach and it has not changed one single bit! I'm down about 10 lbs now (weighed this am). So 10 lbs came from somewhere. My question is how to target belly loss, I keep hearing how it's hormones and my dr said my testosterone is VERY high (hence PCOS)... Just not sure how to get that in check and start reducing my gut!

    Thanks again everyone :):):)

    It's coming off somewhere, just not in the places you're measuring. I know I've found that I've lost inches (or fractions of an inch, as the case may be) in places like my wrists (as if they weren't boney enough already), ribcage area, and thighs (in areas/ways that I don't measure). It will come, and it will help if you can get the testosterone down. Check out the earlier posts for things that can help.

    Unfortunately, you can't spot-reduce any area. Where the fat loss comes from depends entirely on genetics and hormones. Just keep working on losing weight and balancing your hormones and it will come eventually.
    mark_grace wrote: »
    Knit,

    Impressed. You know all the answers, have good advice and you write extremely well! ;)

    I appreciate all the tips. Sadly I'm not too much of a chicken eater (although I do eat it). I do get fat from olive oil, avocados and sadly... A lot of steak. That may not help.

    I've been told belly fat is hormones, but I'm built just like my mom and aunt, aside from being 5 inches taller. Just irritating that all of the weight is in the gut! Well, I have until March (in a wedding) to somehow figure out to lose 40 lbs!

    I'll keep tabs on this group, it's very informative. I'll just keep doing my thing until I hit a plateau and then sadly I better put my Fitbit to use that I just bought! ;)

    Try not to stress yourself out about the deadline. Doing so rarely helps get you there and the cortisol from stressing can actually hinder things. Work on improving your health and the rest will follow suit. Confidence will make you look good at the wedding, regardless of the number on the scale.

    Also, there's absolutely nothing wrong with steak, especially when you're eating fewer carbs. It's full of great vitamins and minerals that are crucial to health. The idea that it's somehow "bad" comes from horribly flawed studies that lump a good steak in with heavily processed "meat products."

    To compare, I eat red meat almost exclusively (most commonly in the form of bison), and my bloodwork is pristine and I'm losing weight at the nice rate of about a pound a week.
    I see a lot on here about low carb diets , as an alternative I would like to suggest "The PCOS Diet" book ... It talks about spreading carbs out throughout the date to help balance your blood sugar and metabolism. Carbs come from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.

    I am personally doing ( or trying anyways) to do 45% carbs and balancing my C, P, F throughout the day ... PM me if you ( any of you) are interested in hearing more!

    Low carb is the most popular/visible around here, because most of the more active/vocal members also have insulin resistance, for which low carb is hands down the best route to address. Unfortunately, for those with insulin resistance at least, sugar is sugar is sugar, regardless of where it comes from (yes, even whole grains or fruit), and causes glucose dysfunction.

    However, not everyone is like that, and such a diet, or something similar, may be successful at least for those without insulin resistance. I'd love to see your progress as you follow that way of eating, and once you've got a few months of success under your belt, I encourage you to share your story in the "Success Stories" thread. :)
  • alfiedn
    alfiedn Posts: 425 Member
    I see a lot on here about low carb diets , as an alternative I would like to suggest "The PCOS Diet" book ... It talks about spreading carbs out throughout the date to help balance your blood sugar and metabolism. Carbs come from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.

    I am personally doing ( or trying anyways) to do 45% carbs and balancing my C, P, F throughout the day ... PM me if you ( any of you) are interested in hearing more!

    When I read that book, I gained something a little different. Yes, she did say I could have more carb-y foods than my doctor. No, she didn't take into account that I eat vegetarian and so most of my protein sources have more carbs than most people have.

    I did find value in the idea of spreading carbs evenly throughout the day. However, it seemed like she recommended you be careful of the carbs you choose and the amount of them that you eat. If you recall, she recommended a plate that was 50% veggies, 25% proteins, 25% starch (maybe). That is still more light on carbs than many people eat at a meal, so it is actually supposed to restrict your carbohydrate intake somewhat.

    Despite the fact that many here do a much lower carbohydrate diet than me, the idea of restricting carbs for someone with PCOS or with an insulin problem is a pretty solid one and is one that is presented in this book (unless I missed something when I read it).
  • Dragonwolf
    Dragonwolf Posts: 5,614 Member
    alfiedn wrote: »
    I see a lot on here about low carb diets , as an alternative I would like to suggest "The PCOS Diet" book ... It talks about spreading carbs out throughout the date to help balance your blood sugar and metabolism. Carbs come from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.

    I am personally doing ( or trying anyways) to do 45% carbs and balancing my C, P, F throughout the day ... PM me if you ( any of you) are interested in hearing more!

    When I read that book, I gained something a little different. Yes, she did say I could have more carb-y foods than my doctor. No, she didn't take into account that I eat vegetarian and so most of my protein sources have more carbs than most people have.

    I did find value in the idea of spreading carbs evenly throughout the day. However, it seemed like she recommended you be careful of the carbs you choose and the amount of them that you eat. If you recall, she recommended a plate that was 50% veggies, 25% proteins, 25% starch (maybe). That is still more light on carbs than many people eat at a meal, so it is actually supposed to restrict your carbohydrate intake somewhat.

    Despite the fact that many here do a much lower carbohydrate diet than me, the idea of restricting carbs for someone with PCOS or with an insulin problem is a pretty solid one and is one that is presented in this book (unless I missed something when I read it).

    This sounds along the lines of the "slow carb" type eating frameworks, where the carb amount is higher than low carb plans, but the focus is still on the non-starchy and high-fiber carbohydrate sources. That kind of framework works well for a lot of people, too.
  • alfiedn
    alfiedn Posts: 425 Member
    Dragonwolf wrote: »
    alfiedn wrote: »
    I see a lot on here about low carb diets , as an alternative I would like to suggest "The PCOS Diet" book ... It talks about spreading carbs out throughout the date to help balance your blood sugar and metabolism. Carbs come from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.

    I am personally doing ( or trying anyways) to do 45% carbs and balancing my C, P, F throughout the day ... PM me if you ( any of you) are interested in hearing more!

    When I read that book, I gained something a little different. Yes, she did say I could have more carb-y foods than my doctor. No, she didn't take into account that I eat vegetarian and so most of my protein sources have more carbs than most people have.

    I did find value in the idea of spreading carbs evenly throughout the day. However, it seemed like she recommended you be careful of the carbs you choose and the amount of them that you eat. If you recall, she recommended a plate that was 50% veggies, 25% proteins, 25% starch (maybe). That is still more light on carbs than many people eat at a meal, so it is actually supposed to restrict your carbohydrate intake somewhat.

    Despite the fact that many here do a much lower carbohydrate diet than me, the idea of restricting carbs for someone with PCOS or with an insulin problem is a pretty solid one and is one that is presented in this book (unless I missed something when I read it).

    This sounds along the lines of the "slow carb" type eating frameworks, where the carb amount is higher than low carb plans, but the focus is still on the non-starchy and high-fiber carbohydrate sources. That kind of framework works well for a lot of people, too.

    That is how it seemed to me when I read it. I actually would really recommend reading it to most PCOS people as well. May also work well for some diabetics? Interesting read for sure.
  • ravenstar25
    ravenstar25 Posts: 126 Member
    I went to the doctor, got the proper medication (metformin) and now just eat standard low calorie without counting carbs. I am losing steadily, although I am now supplementing with inositol and dci to see if that speeds things a little.