So I said what about my iron levels? I have hemochromatosis, which is an iron overload disease. The treatment is phlebotomy. They drew blood weekly at first until my iron levels got where they should be, then I was just told to become a regular three-monthly blood donor to keep it in check. So I was quite surprised to find my iron was now low. Since they told me that yesterday I'd Googled all the hemochromatosis sites and finding possibilities like liver cancer, internal bleeding or infection.
She asked a few questions to find out whether I was losing blood somewhere and then suggested a stool test to check for bleeding there. I then asked if I should adjust the frequency of my blood donations. "Oh, you're a donor," she said, "that's where you're losing blood!" To be fair, she's not the specialist that prescribed the donation schedule, but I'm sure it's there in my records and it's the standard treatment for hemochromatosis, so I was surprised it hadn't occurred to her. So she said to cancel my next donation appointment and not have any more at this time. In about six months we'll test my iron levels again and see if that made the difference. It might mean I have to go less frequently from here on.
So this is all wonderful news, I'm healthy - all the test results were great. So she said "I know you were looking for an answer, a reason why you're not losing weight." Yep. Well basically she said having ruled out everything else she was confident it's the same problem most women my age have where they have trouble losing weight or even gain weight in their fifties due to pending menopause. Yippie. Not what I wanted to hear. I reminded her she'd said if that was the case there were things we could do ... what did she suggest? Well, she said she had been thinking Metformin might help, but since my insulin was perfectly fine, she didn't think it would do anything.
Obviously I was glad to be healthy, but disappointed not to have an answer to get the weight moving again. She said that she knew I wanted to weigh less, but the important thing to remember is these test results indicated I was the picture of perfect health compared to where I was in August 2013. I was pre-diabetic then. That's no longer an issue. My goal was never to get skinny, I wanted to get healthy - and I'd done that. She recommended I keep doing what I'm doing and be happy where I am. Great. Same thing my hubby says.
But I still feel I'm struggling not just to lose weight these days but to stop gaining any more back. I'm not sure what to try next. I said I knew some women my age have to drop their carbs extremely low to get the weight moving again but she said she didn't want me to do that. She thinks I should have the occasional healthy carbs like sweet potatoes and swedes (rutabagas) and not worry too much about it at this stage. I don't know. I hate the idea of constantly feeling like I'm on a diet, and having to switch things up all the time trying to find the one thing that will work. It's probably wreaking havoc on my metabolism. But I also don't like the thought of staying where I am, or heaven forbid, regaining. I guess I'll have to put some thought into the game plan moving forward.
Anyway, that's it, I just wanted to check in. I'm healthy as a horse apparently.