food, personal, writing-life, wtf

That’s Not Part of My Lifeplan

I’ve lived with the metabolic damage caused by my thyroid disorder, for years.

I’m aware that the term metabolic damage has been coopted by the weight-lifting and exercise community to better define, starvation syndrome. As it relates to me, I’m in a constant state of metabolic resistance (that third stage experienced by weight loss chicks when their diet and exercise stop working). Typically, one deals with having a dormant to barely operable metabolism with a portioned diet (portions are not barring certain foods from your diet) and a daily yet light exercise plan.

I learned firsthand how damaging a weight-loss diet combined with extreme exercise could be after basic training in the military. I lost weight, but I was constantly run down and sick. My thyroid and metabolism barely survived those two years. My endocrinologist told me never to go full-scale diet and high work out. It fucks the metabolism up, big time (I’m paraphrasing, yo); my health is already hindered by fructose malabsorption.

I’m a writer and sedentary most of the day. My life is defined by poor eating habits. I eat green beans only if they’re from a can, and I dabble in corn and carrots. I can tolerate salad in the form of lettuce, dressing, and croutons; do not put a tomato or cucumber, or whatever shredded vegetables that taste like dried paper bits, near my lettuce. Fruit needs to have sugar on it or come in a can with syrup. I’m Polish, so potatoes are a way of life. I’m addicted to the occasional donut (okay, more than occasional), and my snacking involves salty things I will not put into bowls before retiring to my office. Nope, I’m a hand-in-box kind of lady, and those boxes die fast if they’re within grabbing distance.

At the doctors on Friday, I learned that my metabolism has officially reached the point of no return. I cannot persist in eating and living the way I do if I wish to attain some level of anatomical sustainability in my old age. What hurts is that even if I paid for a host of fat removal procedures, none of it would alter the condition of my metabolism; I’d still be sick, rundown, and unhealthy–but I’d look fabulous. What’s that worth? I’m 5’3″ and now clock back in at 214 pounds. I had gained almost 300 lbs, years ago when my thyroid shut down. I never got back to the weight I was after having the kiddos (155-65); the metabolic damage had reared its ugly head after many hypervigilant attempts at weight loss. Frustrated, I had abandoned all attempts to change and went back to a lifestyle that enabled my creative flow, and bolstered my emotional wellbeing.

Long story longer, I am not allowed to engage in that lifestyle anymore.

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