Weight Loss Will Not Cure ME/CFS or Fibromyalgia

I have been successfully losing weight since I started on the Medifast program almost 2 months ago – I started June 20th.  I have lost a total of 23.5 pounds as of today and I am super excited and have felt better than what I have felt in a very long time.  But I am still sick with ME/CFS & Fibromyalgia and I can’t forget that.  I believe that the combination of the weight loss and the new Synthroid medication has given me more energy but I always know that the CFS & Fibromyalgia are there – lurking, waiting to come out and grab me. 

I am happy I have been feeling a lot better but there is always this sense of doom lurking in the back of my mind – no matter how positive I try to be (and for the most part I believe I am pretty positive about the whole thing), I can’t help but keep wondering how long is it going to last?  I started noticing last week, especially when it was so hot, that I was feeling more run down again and I’m not feeling as rested as I was when I get up in the morning.  To me that is always a warning sign that I need to be careful and slow down.  One of my defininte ME/CFS flare warning signals is when I have been sleeping well and I still wake up and feel like I need more sleep I know I need to take it easy.  We have been having such an awesome summer here and I hate to have to stop now…I keep praying that this doesn’t end.  I want to keep feeling better and better. 

A misconception that a lot of people have and even medical professionals have is that overweight or obese CFS and/or Fibromyalgia patients wouldn’t be sick if we were at a healthy weight.  I was told this at a weight loss clinic one time and I have heard it from doctors also.  I had to inform all of them that I was at a very healthy weight when I first became sick and I was sick for almost 10 years before I started having weight issues so that is nothing but a load of crap.  I do know that carrying the extra weight doesn’t make us feel any better and yes, it definitely made me feel worse, but being thin is not the cure.

This is also my own personal experience, but I notice that my knees are not hurting as bad as they were.  The 23.5 pounds off have done a world of good for the arthritis in my knees.  I still have a lot of leg pain (thanks, Fibro!).  I am hoping that more weight loss, massage and walking will help with that.  I am also more flexible.  I was cleaning out my mini-van the other day and I was able to climb in and out a lot easier.  I was wore out, but it was easier climbing around!  There have been a lot of positives to losing weight but it irritates the crap out of me when people assume that losing weight is going to cure these illnesses.  I wish it were that simple.

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  1. I’ve been using medifast too but have been doing the 4-2-2 plan which seems to work better with my diabetes. The pounds are coming off more slowly – I guess about 15 in three months. Not as fast as I’d like but at least it’s still going.

    It’s a great program and makes meal preps really fast! LOL

    My knees and feet and ankles still hurt but I feel like the progression of pain and degeneration will be slower over the next few years than if I’d not lost the weight.

    • What items do you like the best? I really enjoy the bars and the brownies. I eat a lot of those! 🙂 I too am hoping that the pain and everything else will get better. Weight loss will not cure us, but it definitely can make improvements!

  2. Sandy – It’s good to hear of your continued success with the weight loss and an enjoyable summer. People and Doctors alike are ignorant when it comes to weight gain versus the illnesses. Fortunately, not one of my Doctors has had the nerve to tell me that if I lost weight I’d be cured. Certainly, more comfortable, but not cured.

    Since the lack of activity and medications have turned me in to someone I no longer recognize, I took the plunge and have started this week with a meal delivery plan that is healthy and requires no effort or thought on my part.

    It is not excactly something I can afford financially these days, and I will find it necessary to take money that is saved for this endeavor, but as one of my Doctors pointed out, I would not think twice about doing so if this was for my husband or children.

    I need the help. I was always very proactive and could take the initiative and willpower to keep my weight in check. I’m just looking for some relief in feeling and looking so fat and perhaps some of the pressure removed from the joints and muscles. In no way, I am delusional that this will cure the me/cfs/fm. It will be good for my heart, BP, Cholesterol and maybe not cringe in disgust when I must look in a mirror.

    Wishing you continued success, Nancy

    • Hi Nancy – It’s great to hear from you! Your doctor is right. We wouldn’t think twice it it were for our husband or children. We need to think of ourselves just like we do them. We are just as important. They need us as much as we need them. You will have to let me know what plan you decided to go with and keep me updated with your results. I’ll send you a message on Facebook too to find out more!

  3. I like the choc crunch bars, shakes (banana is my favorite but I make eggnog shakes with the vanilla and Torano’s syrup and all kinds of flavors with the choc shakes). I love the oatmeal make into pancakes. I take a packet of oatmeal, add a 1/2 tsp of baking powder, 1T of egg beaters, and then add water to the right consistency. Sometimes I add Torano’s brown sugar and cinn flavor to the maple oatmeal or blueberry syrup to the blueberry flavor, etc.). Then I use a small fry pan and in about 1 minute I have a nice thick pancake. All the syrups are SF. I also have a sandwich maker with a flat plate and waffle plates. Making the oatmeal batter into waffles is a nice treat too.

  4. Hello,

    I am fascinated.. what on earth is Medifast?
    I am 56 and have recently been diagnosed with CFs/ME.

    Between winter 2008 and today I have gone from 9 stone (12s lb) to 13 1/2 stone (189 lb).

    What is remarkable is that I
    do not eat junk food
    am vegetarian
    eat only organic food
    a 2 week food diary shows my average daily calorific intake to be around 1000-1500 cals.

    Of course, I no longer can cycle, walk less than I did and sometimes even climbing the one flight of stairs of our little home is a major challenge.

    Any thoughts?

    Happy 20111 to you all!


    Gea Vox

  5. One of my doctors has repeatedly told me that my weight gain was not my first health priority. This was frustrating because I had been very active and had gained the weight steadily despite monitoring my food intake very carefully.

    I told another doctor about my frustration regarding the weight gain, and she told me about Medifast. I’ve lost about 30 pounds, but it hasn’t been steady. Apparently testosterone can get converted to estradoil, and when the latter is high, it stops weight loss. So, the doc has given me anastrazole to help block the conversion.

    Everyone always feels better at their desired weight, but people don’t understand the nature of this fatigue. I think “fatigue” is a poor choice, and I prefer to use “fragile stamina” because it better reflects the unpredictable nature and onset of exhaustion episodes.

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