You’re religious about the gym. You only rarely deviate from your usual salads and smoothies. So why TF is the scale creeping up??
Sudden weight gain with no discernible cause is basically the worst—but it may be a sign something is askew in your body. Think: out of whack hormones or other sneaky health conditions that are causing your metabolism to misfire.
What to do? Before visiting the doc, you keep a log of everything you eat as well as your exercise habits (including outside-the-gym activity) for at least a few days if not a week or two, says Melina Jampolis, M.D., an internist and physician nutrition specialist based in Los Angeles.
“Lots of people have ‘calorie amnesia’—they’re eating more calories than they tally up in their head, or it’s not that they’re exercising any less during the week but maybe they’re sitting more,” Jampolis says.
Once you’ve determined that’s not the case, your doc can get to the bottom of whether any of these lingering health issues might be messing with your waistline.
If you’re also exhausted…it could be hypothyroidism
When a young woman walks into a doc’s office with unexplained weight gain, the thyroid is the first place most physicians will investigate, says Jampolis. And for good reason: a whopping one in eight women will develop a thyroid disorder in her life, according to the American Thyroid Association.
That butterfly-shaped gland in the neck is responsible for secreting a hormone that regulates the metabolism, and if you’ve got an under-active thyroid (called hypothyroidism) the metabolism may slow down, triggering weight gain.
Women with hypothyroidism may also suffer from low energy levels or fatigue, dry skin, hair loss, hoarseness, or constipation, says Jampolis. Notice any of them and you should book a chat with your doc who can check on your thyroid with a simple blood test if necessary.
If your periods are also abnormal…it could be PCOS.
Research shows that as many as one in five women have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)—an endocrine disorder that throws off the balance of reproductive hormones estrogen and testosterone, and can trigger a number of unpleasant symptoms like wacky periods, facial hair growth, and migraines.
PCOS can also muck up the way your body uses insulin (the hormone that helps turn sugars and starches into energy), which means (womp, womp) unexplained weight gain around the mid-section is common, says Jampolis.
If your menstrual cycles are off, a gyno will likely take a peek at your hormones to diagnose this one.click next or open button to continue reading.