Eat Healthy for Under
Eating Less Than I Need and Still Gaining!
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I am a 35-year-old woman just diagnosed with hypothyroidism. I have kept meticulous food diaries and seen nutritionists. Even though I take medication for attention deficit disorder that leaves me with a small appetite, until being put on thyroid replacement, I was gaining weight consistently. I walk four and a half miles a day and eat between 1,000 and 1,400 calories a day. Can you shed any light on this?
— Lori, South Carolina
Your thyroid gland is responsible for regulating your metabolic rate. To maintain a healthy metabolism and be able to burn as much food and store as little fat as possible, you need to have a good amount of muscle mass and a healthy thyroid. If you develop hypothyroidism that goes untreated for a period of time, you can indeed gain a lot of weight. After your thyroid is regulated with medications, you will start to lose that weight, slowly but surely.
The only way to increase your muscle mass is by resistance exercise training (weight lifting). It sounds as if you are finding it difficult to lose weight even after starting thyroid hormone replacement and dieting and walking. I would supplement this regimen with weight lifting (with a personal trainer, if possible) once or twice a week. With the added muscle mass, your metabolism should increase.
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