Day 34: Getting Tested

Something’s wrong. Well, there are multiple things wrong, but the biggest is that I haven’t just not lost weight over the past month – I’ve gained it. Today I weighed in at 164.6 lbs. Sure, I haven’t been restricting calories heavily, and there have been some foods eaten that I’d call “junk,” like pizza one night, and Chinese takeout another, but I’ve never gone over 1500 calories for a day (I’m supposed to be eating around 1300), and most days have some sort of exercise built in.

Of course I need to be doing better about eating fruits and veggies and eschewing dairy, soy, and processed foods. I definitely can’t argue with that. And I definitely need to do more heavy-duty exercising, though my back and hips have been really bugging me for the last few days, and I’ve been so stressed out that the thought of adding one more thing to the schedule just makes me want to take a long jump off of a short pier. But wait! Just when you think I’m plain crazy – there’s more!

Over the past few years, I’ve been suffering from symptoms that I’ve blamed on IBS, adrenal fatigue, birth control pills, and age. Then when I went off of birth control two and a half months ago, I started taking my basal body temperature (BBT) every morning, and quickly realized that something was off. Most days my temperature was at or below 96.4 degrees Fahrenheit. Often, it’s been as low as 95.2 degrees. At its highest, it goes up to about 97.3 degrees, but only in the last few days of my luteal phase, after which it quickly plummets again.

Since low basal body temperature is a warning sign of hypothyroidism, or under-active thyroid, I’ve been reading up on the condition to find out how serious it is. Along the way I’ve found out about a host of other symptoms that I’ve been exhibiting for the last few years. Here’s a list of symptoms that I checked off as a “yes” (this does not include “no” symptoms) on a thyroid quiz a few days ago:

  • Family history of thyroid disease.
  • Unexplained weight gain.
  • Unable to lose weight with diet/exercise.
  • Constipation.
  • Low body temperature & feeling cold when others are hot.
  • Constant fatigue.
  • Feeling run down, sluggish & lethargic.
  • Aches & pains in joints.
  • Depression.
  • Restlessness.
  • Mood swings.
  • Feelings of worthlessness.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Losing interest in normal daily activities.
  • Can’t remember things.
  • No sex drive.
  • Eyes are sensitive to light.
  • Light headed / dizzy often.
  • Recurrent sinus infections.
  • Heart palpitations.

So – yeah. To make a long story short, I’m going to get a Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) test tomorrow to see if I can start figuring this stuff out. Of course, I don’t have medical insurance or make enough money to even afford to see a doctor for tests, but luckily I ran across a great deal today on a site called MyMedLab. They’ve been running a promotion on a test that measures TSH levels, and it’s only going to cost $25 to get the test run, which is HUGE. Here’s a link to the deal – it’s kind of buried in their website. They’ve got testing sites all over the US, and as it happens, a few in the New Orleans area. Wish me luck!