1 year post-diagnosis: PCOS update

1 year post-diagnosis: PCOS update ~ Our Cozy Den

Today marks a special anniversary for me. It is 1 year ago to the day that I was diagnosed with PCOS. That day was one of the hardest of my life. I remember bawling my eyes out on my husband’s lap at what a huge change it was going to be in my life. I felt completely overwhelmed and hopeless. A lot has changed (and some hasn’t!), so I wanted to check in and let you know how things are going!

Timeline of the Year:

December: Diagnosed ~ My doctor put me on a sugar free diet: no sugars, dairy, fruits, grains of any sort. It was pretty much vegetables and protein.

January ~ My doctor found pre-cancerous cells in my uterus, and I had to go on hormone medication to expel the lining. I had a terrible period that lasted 3 long months.

February ~ I was miserable, dietarily speaking. I was hungry all the time, cranky, hating everything I was able to eat and crying a lot over the things I couldn’t have.

April ~ I got a clean bill of health with the pre-cancerous cells, and my doctor took me off the hormones! She was also impressed that I had already lost over 30 pounds in only 4 months, so she adjusted my diet to add in a few items with sugars in it: potatoes and corn.

Summer ~ With the new diet changes, my happiness level went up 100x. However, weight loss completely stalled. I lost a whopping 1 pound in 4 months.

September ~ My weight started to creep up again, so I asked my doctor if I could try Metformin, a common drug used to help people regulate insulin (tons of people with PCOS and/or diabetes take it). She agreed.

October ~ I was excited at first that the Metformin took off another 5 pounds or so. But that only lasted a few weeks, and I plateaued again.

December ~ Here I am at the 1 year point, 38 pounds lighter, and much happier.

 

How I’m Doing Overall

1. Symptoms

My symptoms a year ago were numerous. Here is how each one is going:

-Uncontrollable weight gain — stopped for the most part. I lost 38 pounds this year. (If you look at my birthday post, you’ll see that I said I lost 42 pounds. I took ONE DAY off of my diet on my birthday, and I gained 4 pounds back. That is why I can’t deviate!)

-Acne, hirsutism (unwanted facial hair), fatigue, mood swings, & hot flashes — all mostly gone, or at the very least minimally present.

-Menstrual cycle — regulated!

2. How I feel

Better is all I can say. I wish I felt confident, but I’m not there yet. I still feel horribly self-conscious in public. I still have another 40-50 pounds to lose. I still feel like I look fat in photos and I worry what people are thinking of me.

3. Diet

After my doctor added in corn and potatoes, I felt like I could live like this. Before I cut it out, I was in a living hell every day. But now, things are okay. I try to only eat potatoes when we are out and about (it’s hard to find things to eat at restaurants). I eat corn only in the form of tortillas and tortilla chips. A lot of my dinners at home are made with spaghetti squash, zucchini, or cauliflower being substituted for carbs in my favorite recipes. {Go to this page to see some that I have posted!}

 

FAQs

Some friends have asked me some questions, so I thought this would be a good time & place to answer them!

Q: Do you eat different meals than your family?
A: Yes and no. Sometimes I make them regular lasagna and I’ll make myself a pan of zucchini lasagna. Sometimes I make something like white chili or chicken azteca that we all can eat. Other times they eat something like meatloaf that I can’t have at all, and I’ll just have a protein shake or pull something from the freezer. (When I make a full pan of something like zucchini lasagna, I freeze the extra servings for future meals.)

Q: What is a typical day, eating-wise? 
A: I typically have eggs for breakfast every day. For lunch I will snack on nuts, cheese, cold meat, and a protein ball for dessert. For dinner, I eat like I said in the previous question.

Q: How do you go out to eat? 
A: I do my best to check a restaurant’s menu before I go. What I’m looking for is 0-3g of sugar in a meal, and under 20g of carbs. If I don’t have the chance to look at the menu, I will usually order a cheeseburger with no bun, because it is the safest choice. Many times, steaks and chicken are marinated in sugary sauces, and even most salads include sugary dressings or sugar-marinated meats, or toppings like carrots/apples/berries that I can’t have.

Q: How often do you work out?
A: Not as often as I should. My doctor told me to try to get in 30 minutes of activity every day. EVERY day, like 7 days a week. I manage 1-2 days a week.

Q: Doesn’t it kill you to watch everybody eating sweets, especially during the holidays? 
A: Yes, a little bit. But I don’t hate them for doing it in front of me. {Really, I don’t! Enjoy that cookie!} Yes, I wish I could have one. Yes, I cried a little on Thanksgiving. But I’ll get through it the same way I have gotten through the last 365 days: one day at a time.

 

Going Forward

I wish I could figure out a way to continue losing weight without cutting corn/potatoes again. I *think* I’m going to try cutting just one (probably potatoes, because I heart Mexican food!). And I know I need to exercise more, but I’m just not sure how to find the time in our busy schedules! Blogging usually takes 3-4 hours a day, homeschooling another 5 hours, add in housework, cooking, kids’ numerous activities, church events, and more — I just don’t know how or when to fit it in. I’m still taking Metformin twice a day, though I’m not sure it’s helping any, so I may ask to go off of it for a while.

 

I know this post was long, but thanks for reading, and a SUPER HUGE thank you to my husband Byron, and my friends Krista and Martie, who have been my biggest supporters through this! I owe you more than you know! You got me through the hard days, and celebrated with me the triumphs. Thank you for being there for me, and I love you all! 😘

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *