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KONRAD695 SparkPoints: (140,803)
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Posts: 723
10/8/12 3:52 P

I see you're a science person, so lets put that to work. Scientific theory results= wild weight.
Now you form hypothesis for what is causing it.

You may have picked up some bug or other while traveling, so safety says see a doc. I would think this would either cause gain or loss, not both. Second idea is also internal, natural body rhythms. You need to adjust from travel, a new diet, exercise program, time zones, and etc

External issues. How are you stress levels and sleep cycles? Is the scale Broke? Is is a balance type that may have something under it, uneven floor, is it getting moved?

Next calories. Are you tracking your food and fluids. This can be your biggest variable. Try drinking only water. Track every piece of food. You may even be reacting to something you eat. Make up some large batches of food almost everyone can eat. This is your control group. Freeze some and rotate them through your diet. Use these to make up 75% of diet then you can try out other foods. Track everything and see if their is any impact. Reacting to a food type, and this could really mess things up.

I can make my weight go up and down 2-3 pounds in a day. When doing an elimination diet for gluten intolerance, I found I have some dairy issues. If I eat a salad with feta cheese and greek dressing, I'm fine. Same salad with fresh Mozz and buttermilk ranch, then mild bloating/weight gain. It just slows things down. I was 30 pounds heavier and still going to the bathroom so it was hard to narrow down until I got rid of my other variables. Maybe some of these ideas can help you. Hope everything evens out soon for you.

LITTLE1DER Posts: 934
10/8/12 10:35 A

If it's been a month, I would contact the travel clinic that you got vaccinated at and tell them what's going on.

STRONG_SARAH Posts: 1,203
10/6/12 2:04 A

Were you on malaria medicine? I spent a year in S.Africa and had some problems with the malaria medicine even after I stopped it. Also, keep in mind your diet has changed drastically. I would recommend eating plainly for a while. Organic white rice, for example. Boring, unprocessed foods might be what your stomach needs to calm down, because it sounds like bloating to me.
I am not a doctor however, and I agree that you should be tested for parasites too.
Good luck.

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (253,924)
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Posts: 27,154
10/5/12 6:49 P

Don't use the scales for a while, and consider possible causes other than just 'weight'!

It appears to have started since you came back from Africa. I would imagine there would have been quite a change in diet on return. This often impacts on bowel movements - i.e. constipation/diarrhoea or even the frequency, going from normally daily, to once every 2-3 days. Constipation doesn't necessarily mean you can't pass anything, but you MAY have found that the amount is 'not much', and perhaps a quite a bit firmer? This could mean that you have a lot of waste still in your body and believe me, that could account for a fair bit of that weight you mention. Your change in diet from Africa to home could account for this on a temporary basis, too. Fluid retention can also account for a lot of it. Fluid retention doesn't just mean that you don't pass urine - you can still pass it normally but have a lot in your tissues causing a visibly bloated face, abdomen, fingers, ankles, or feet. I had this quite considerably when I was heavier, but it was only when I was nearing my goal that it improved enough that I could halve my diuretic. Summer was always worse than the cooler weather. You don't mention where in Africa you were - if it was in the southern parts, then you were in winter/spring - the cooler time.

Other than that, speak with your Dr because as has been mentioned, you may have picked something up which can cause this, and if you haven't, it could be that there is something medical going on, but remember that a lot of people have these big fluctuations on a daily basis - and I was one of those gaining quite a bit of weight as the day wore on.


AWESOMEANI SparkPoints: (7,351)
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Posts: 245
10/5/12 3:58 P

I totally know how you are feeling. I had the same problem for what seemed like an eternity. No matter how good I would be I would be up 7 pounds one week, down 5 the next, I was bouncing the same 10 pounds and it was so FRUSTRATING!!!! Yeah, my scale almost bit the dust a few times.

So here's what I did. First, I took a breath and reminded myself that as long as I kept working at my goals, tweaking where I needed to and, at keeping motivated my body would catch up to the new normal and I will see the changes, slowly but surely. It just might take a while. For me it took months. The fact that you were traveling, and to far away places I assume, is very relevant. I know when I travel even one state over it messes up my my system for a few weeks with swelling and such.

Ok, so the next thing I did was to stop weighing myself. Just for a while, until I could relax about it and the number was less important. I put myself on a once a month schedule and relied more on my alternate methods of tracking progress (like the jeans test.) Just this one action (or inaction actually) made a huge difference in my mindset and mood. It was easier to focus on what was important when I wasn't trying to analyze the most recent number the scale produced.

Prim8PhD, this will pass :) Hang in there, your body will settle, and stress will just put a monkey wrench into things. Try to find your calm about it. :) After all, what is more important, a healthy body or a light body? Your good behaviors are totally making your body healthy even if the scale is being wonky. You will be fine.

Having said all that, a trip to the doctor might be in order, just to check things out. Never hurts to be cautious. And you never know, maybe the visit will produce a tidbit that you may find very useful in helping your body stabilize.

Hang in there, you are on the right track.


SIMPLELIFE2 Posts: 707
10/5/12 2:45 P

I agree about going to the doctor. With your recent trip to Africa, you could have come up against some diseases or pests that are not commonly seen here. Make sure you find someone with some knowledge in this area. Fluctuations within about 5 pounds are quite common, but fluctuations of 10 pounds within a week seem a bit troublesome.

That said, it sounds like you obsessing a bit over weight and measurements. "inches coming and going on the daily" Frankly, I see no need for measuring daily. Even weekly is a bit much. You see firsthand the level of frustration and anxiety it produces. This is not a sprint but a marathon. How long have you carried extra weight? It is reasonable that it will take just as long to shed.

You really don't provide much detail about your diet and exercise routine, so it's hard to provide any recommendations. If you are new to a healthy diet and exercise, it sometimes takes awhile for the body to catch on. After getting checked out by a doctor, just make sure you are eating enough calories, getting the appropriate nutrients, adding movement daily and exercising consistently, and sleeping sufficiently and stay away from the scale or tape measure for awhile. Trust the process. It will happen.

Edited by: SIMPLELIFE2 at: 10/5/2012 (18:33)
ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (200,100)
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Posts: 27,326
10/5/12 1:00 P


a person's weight does fluctuate from day to day because of a variation in water weight. Not to be nosy, but is TOM nearing ? During a woman's menstrual cycle, her weight can vary quite a bit because of water retention. I can vary as much as 5-7 pounds. However, a 10 pound variation is unusual for a woman at reasonably healthy weight for their height.

Are you eating normally ? If you've been eating normally (no binging or anything of that kind), but your weight is still going up and down like a roller coaster, you might want to talk to your doctor. Are you on birth control ? I know that when a woman changes or goes on BC, that can effect their weight in the form of water retention. Have you had a change in any medication ?

If not, you might want to give your doctor a call, just to be safe.

PRIM8PHD SparkPoints: (13,467)
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Posts: 82
10/5/12 11:17 A

Ever since I got back from a long research trip to Africa almost a month ago, my weight has been wildly fluctuating (to the tune of 10 lbs. in a single week's beginning to end) but not actually ever going down. It's driving me crazy to the point that I swear I'm going to throw my scale at the nearest exposed brick wall. There's just absolutely no consistency and I can't tell if any of my efforts are making the slightest difference.

I've tried dealing in measurements, but those are just as variable, with inches coming and going on the daily. Normally, I'd say, whatever, give it time, but it's been a MONTH and I seriously can't figure out what on earth is going on with my body. I have this overwhelming fear that I'm doing something wrong, and it's holding onto every single calorie I take in. Why on earth is my body freaking out like this? Why is there no consistency despite all my good behavior? What do I need to do to move in one direction?

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