MidwestBeast in: The Case of the Mysterious Weight Gain!

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    Just had a brain MRI this evening; specifically a dynamic MRI that looked at the pituitary (what that means is that I was hooked up to an IV, too, and there was a 4 second window to get an image, for part of it, after the contrast injection).

    Anyway, I stuck around after to speak with the radiologist and there were no tumors or anything out of the ordinary. In the big picture, that's great news. In regards to this, it leaves me back at the drawing board.
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    Good to hear it came up clean!
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    Quote Originally Posted by MidwestBeast View Post
    Just had a brain MRI this evening; specifically a dynamic MRI that looked at the pituitary (what that means is that I was hooked up to an IV, too, and there was a 4 second window to get an image, for part of it, after the contrast injection).

    Anyway, I stuck around after to speak with the radiologist and there were no tumors or anything out of the ordinary. In the big picture, that's great news. In regards to this, it leaves me back at the drawing board.
    Well at least you know you dont have a tumor.
    Always a plus. Man though it is odd that you are having such mean problems. Maybe you are just going through early andropause?
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    I still say map the genome....
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    Quote Originally Posted by LiveToLift View Post
    Good to hear it came up clean!
    Thanks, man.

    Quote Originally Posted by mattrag View Post
    Well at least you know you dont have a tumor.
    Always a plus. Man though it is odd that you are having such mean problems. Maybe you are just going through early andropause?
    Oddly enough, I was praying for a tumor the whole time I was having the MRI done. How messed up is that? When I say tumor, I'm referring to a small tumor on the pituitary; not a golf-ball sized one smack-dab in the middle of my brain. I know you don't really "hope" for a tumor, but it would have been an answer to all of this; it just leaves me wondering, again. And I've never studied andropause to really know what it is.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDarkHalf View Post
    I still say map the genome....
    You're probably already on vacation, but I repped/pm'ed you to ask if you had any info on this. I'm meeting with a new doc (guy who lifts at my gym) next week. I'm trying to rule more stuff out/find the answer lol.
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    Andro pause is just low the slowing down of our HTPA. Like menapause (sp) for women.

    Just basically TRT therapy to get you bumped back up. Or maybe some DHEA/Preg?
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattrag View Post
    Andro pause is just low the slowing down of our HTPA. Like menapause (sp) for women.

    Just basically TRT therapy to get you bumped back up. Or maybe some DHEA/Preg?
    I'm pretty sure it's something different than that. Back in January (first blood labs), my test/estrogen were in good order (test wasn't AS high as I'd like, but still well within normal range) and my libido still feels like I'm a teenager most of the time. Between that and my use of exogenous thyroid hormone, that shouldn't be an issue.

    My top thoughts (as far of a stretch as they may be) at the moment are:

    - heavy metals and/or xeno-estrogens working at a cellular level (I drink tons of water, so it could be from tap water/pipes and/or all the canned tuna/chicken I've eaten over the years, plastic I always used to drink out of until a month or so ago, etc.).

    - some type of food allergy/reaction (though this is a stretch for me, because I don't see that keeping me from losing weight; plus, it would be odd that it kicked in just a year and a half ago)

    - something still just hindering the conversion of thyroid hormone (I don't know what it would be though, based on everything I've had tested)

    - something happening at a cellular level (maybe related to other aspects already mentioned) that is triggering fat cells to grow or be targeted (I know how crazy that sounds, but I'm running out of ideas lol)

    - I've always had issues with stomach cramps in my lower abdomen; perhaps something happening where waste isn't properly being removed from my body, spilling over (I'm aware of how ridiculous that one sounds, but when I was in high school I went over a full week, while on vacation, without having a bowel movement -- purposely holding it because of a hatred/fear of public toilets, and also for more than a weekend while gone, too. Both times, I ate a lot and when I did have the first bowel movement afterward, it wasn't anything more than normal; doesn't make sense, although I've never heard of that being an issue or problem)
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    I have similar problem I believe I have some sleep issue I wake up at mornings sore.... Also I hate this part if I eat enough for muscle I get fat if i drop my cals first thing happened I loss muscle loll FML I will try sprinting soon but I have for a long time believe thyroid and sleep very issues I also abused stims a lot too
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jasen View Post
    I have similar problem I believe I have some sleep issue I wake up at mornings sore.... Also I hate this part if I eat enough for muscle I get fat if i drop my cals first thing happened I loss muscle loll FML I will try sprinting soon but I have for a long time believe thyroid and sleep very issues I also abused stims a lot too
    seems as though this is a very common problem. I too have this problem. I used stims for around 8 years to lose weight lol.
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    I should have meetings with 2 different doctors, this week. One is a doctor who lifts at my gym and the other is an endocrinologist at a top university. I'm also looking at stuff to do with MC4R gene mutations (look it up; interesting stuff).

    The bottom line is that crushing rT3 and bringing my TSH down to near hyperthyroid numbers did nothing to benefit me, so there is something hindering that from being effective even though the numbers have changed. On top of that, something is creating high prolactin (though apparently it's not a prolactinoma on the pituitary, as the MRI effectively ruled that out) and arguably high cortisol (24 hour came back through the roof, but AM and PM serum draws did not; still have never had 4x saliva done).
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    Wow. That's some crazy stuff.
    Gene mutation hmm. I'll look it up. But for now it's sleep time.
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    3 more pages of labs loaded into Post #2 on page 1 (metabolic panel and metals from 11-02 and prolactin, HGH and ferritin from 11-14).
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    Hey midwest,

    Im in the thread i have a lot to catch up on
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssbackwards View Post
    Hey midwest,

    Im in the thread i have a lot to catch up on
    Thanks for taking a look, man. I appreciate it.

    I e-mailed you, as well.
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    Keep us updated this is interesting
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    Quote Originally Posted by MidwestBeast View Post
    Thanks for taking a look, man. I appreciate it.

    I e-mailed you, as well.
    hey man, i emailed you back.

    i addressed some things i thought were very important..

    you can post them up in here if youd like. my gut is saying leptin resistance which can cause ADRENALINE resistance. Leptin tells the body to secrete catecholamines. When you have a resistance to that your levels of leptin remail elevated in the body which in turn stimulate tissues like the kidney (which has no shut off as you can say) which can increase blood pressure ect. Also the elevated adrenaline will then cause a resistance due to overstimulation. This can effect the adrenals. especially morning levels because the natural diurnal rhythm of leptin is to raise at night. hence the high cortisol level from over stimulation and stres.

    One thing i forgot to mention is melatonin which can increase leptin levels when insulin is present but decrease them when they arent.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssbackwards View Post
    hey man, i emailed you back.

    i addressed some things i thought were very important..

    you can post them up in here if youd like. my gut is saying leptin resistance which can cause ADRENALINE resistance. Leptin tells the body to secrete catecholamines. When you have a resistance to that your levels of leptin remail elevated in the body which in turn stimulate tissues like the kidney (which has no shut off as you can say) which can increase blood pressure ect. Also the elevated adrenaline will then cause a resistance due to overstimulation. This can effect the adrenals. especially morning levels because the natural diurnal rhythm of leptin is to raise at night. hence the high cortisol level from over stimulation and stres.

    One thing i forgot to mention is melatonin which can increase leptin levels when insulin is present but decrease them when they arent.
    VERY interesting. Should he be taking melatonin on an empty stomach prior to bed then?

    Also, what are some signs of this cascade occurring?
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    I'm waiting to hear back from the doc that lifts at my gym. He was out of town last week and we were supposed to finally catch up and get some of his thoughts, this week. I e-mailed him, yesterday, to follow up, but haven't heard back.

    I have an appointment on Friday with a new endocrinologist at a top university, since my doctor had suggested I seek a second opinion if the pituitary issue didn't turn anything up (which the MRI didn't).

    The more I think about it, the more I'm curious about heavy metal poisoning. Look at this scenario:

    MWB has hypothyroidism, but does not have it diagnosed (he just assumes he isn't working out hard enough or eating well enough -- read: uninformed). Despite this, he still loses weight, but it is really, really difficult. This makes sense, as hypothyroidism would lead to a slower metabolism, but not an all out halting of it (i.e. eating less and working out even more will still yield results).

    MWB is arguably in the best shape he has ever been in. On Thanksgiving day, 2009, he moves to Kentucky, from Illinois. He spends 2 weeks in KY before getting to go home for 2 weeks off (perk of working at a university). In this month, his weight fluctuates up a bit, but not horribly (considering how bad it is, currently). From January 2010 until May 2010, he makes progress (all the way back down to 208). At that point, after one month of spotless eating (legitimately zero cheats), he has a cheat meal that balloons his weight up. From this point on, he cannot lose more than a few pounds at a time, likely water weight.
    Is it possible, in 4-5 months time (really from January - May), heavy metal poisoning could occur from the high water intake (~2 gallons/day) in the new environment? Think about it, even though it was hard, I could always lose weight. After only being here a few months, I could no longer lose weight; not even with extreme cardio and dieting.

    Having hypothyroidism for years would make sense. It would seem like whenever I ate something bad or had a cheat meal, my weight would jump ridiculously high (i.e. metabolism not spiking to take care of it and keeping things fresh like it should). I often would see the effects days after the cheat meal, too. But then something else finally snapped. So, hypothyroidism for years, and finally something else in conjunction with that.

    Possibly heavy metal poisoning, maybe just adrenals deciding to junk out from the years of stimulant abuse (running over a gram of caffeine a day on occasion).
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    Took me a while to type that out; I'll address the replies in a sec (gotta do a few things at work, first).
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    Thanks, ssbackwards. Again, I really appreciate your time glancing over things for me. I wanted to share his responses to my list of possible causes in case anyone else is going through something similar and reading this thread (his responses are in bold, following each possible cause):

    Possible Explanations:
    - Heavy Metal Poisoning
    I drink 1-2 gallons of tap water, daily (on average) and sometimes more. I’ve
    also eaten a lot of canned tuna over the years, as well as other canned foods.


    A nice chelator like vitamin C, along with EDTA, and a colonic would work nicely for this. Dsade had a colon purge protocol using ephedrine and psyllium. Seems to do the trick to clear you out, however i never used it. You can do what i mentioned after a 24-36 hour fast. That shouldnt be too detrimental to your condition what so ever. at this point some damage is done and this is a natural way to remove the toxins


    - Hashimoto’s or Thyroid Antibodies Issues
    I still haven’t had my thyroid antibodies tested (requested in the past, but
    never had them checked).


    For hasimotos / or just the thyroid anti bodies. this one is a little more difficult. certain foods contain goitrogens which are natural anti thyroid substances. Things like broccoli (and the broccoli family) and most legumes (including peanuts) contain them. To which they effect normal people without the specific antibodies is not detrimental. however if the antibodies are present, may be an issue. Cooking usually resolves this, but more then likely not all the way. Nitrates also effect your thyroid as well. one thins over looked is IODINE, this can INCREASE TSH (hypo), and its in a lot of product, in some salts. Its all over.


    - Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia (1 or 2)
    Prolactin is high. Dynamic MRI showed no prolactinomas, but something is
    causing the high prolactin. Gene mutation (MEN or RET) could explain this.


    This can be due to problems with the below with the CART system, which interacts with POMC (and sub units MC3/4) They work together and activated by leptin/agouti/npy, to reduce cravings, or not. A good dopamine agonist can work here, something like L-Dopa. Problem is it seems to lose effectiveness much in the way a b2 agonist would. There was a way to reduce that from happening however i cant remember off hand what that was.


    - MC4R Gene Mutation
    Worth looking at this, alpha-MSH, and POMC. ACTH and AM and PM serum
    cortisol draws came back normal, but this could be tied to adrenal
    insufficiencies, along with other things.


    This gene mutation is more then likely not the cause. This is pretty rare from what ive seen. This would i believe inherintly keep leptin low and other things like agouti/npy/GIP high. This can cause even higher leptin levels (circlating not reaching the ARC nucleus in the hypothalmus to shut of hunger) along with lowered thyroid hormones from agouti and npy elevation in the PVN and DVN (both in hypothalmus)

    With the adrenal deficencies that can be a problem, seems as they were normal though. Cortisol is directly related to stress. stress comes in many factors. Inflammation by nature is stressful. That causes the cortisol release. Thing with that is related to below. High insulin/leptin, increases TNFA and IL-6, which are inflammatory.


    - Insulin and/or Leptin Resistence Issues
    My father was diagnosed with diabetes (type 1.5) in 1998. For a long time, I
    virtually stopped consuming carbohydrates. I also nearly starved myself for
    years without knowing it (before I understood nutrition).


    This is the likely culprit of this whole matter. It happens to a lot of people and dont know it, hence high rT3, low calories and weight gain. it relates to agouti. ill provide a supplement list in the reply


    - Hyperparathyroidism
    Never had PTH tested and thyroid gland is enlarged on left (no tumors found
    in ultrasound).


    This is interesting, but not so much as it takes calcium from the bones, which can effect agouti levels!!!! im not sure of the enlargement issue as im not a medical doctor, so i cant comment. Sorry about that one.
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    I was unaware that people would use colonic hydrotherapy for heavy metal toxicity?

    I have used Metagenics Metalloclear following a heavy metal test I had done but admittedly I didn't get retested. I noticed significantly increased body odour while using it which was allegedly a sign of detoxification through sweat.

    My personal view, for what it is worth on bowel habits is that it is important to rectify the habit before having hydrotherapy. It clears you out better than anything else I have used (obviously) but if you are someone who doesn't use public toilets the problem will likely resume soon afterwards.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdcc View Post
    I was unaware that people would use colonic hydrotherapy for heavy metal toxicity?

    I have used Metagenics Metalloclear following a heavy metal test I had done but admittedly I didn't get retested. I noticed significantly increased body odour while using it which was allegedly a sign of detoxification through sweat.

    My personal view, for what it is worth on bowel habits is that it is important to rectify the habit before having hydrotherapy. It clears you out better than anything else I have used (obviously) but if you are someone who doesn't use public toilets the problem will likely resume soon afterwards.
    Haha, I'm over that little phobia. That was something I dealt with when I was younger into my early teen years. I can't say I love public restrooms, but they don't bother me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattrag View Post
    VERY interesting. Should he be taking melatonin on an empty stomach prior to bed then?

    Also, what are some signs of this cascade occurring?
    prior to bed on empty stomach to reduce the over elevation of leptin levels. this way your AM level of cortisol is not skyrocketed as it was in your test. take it with ALA as well to blunt leptin release from adipose tissue.
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    So leptin, admittedly, isn't something I'm overly comfortable saying I know well. However, I've researched it a bit and looked over it a bit more in depth, tonight. From what I read/understand, it's linked to satiety, correct? I monitor daily calorie and macronutrient intake. Honestly, I'm usually not hungry more often than I am. I'm certainly not experiencing a feeling of not being full that causes over-eating (other than random times like Thanksgiving when I knowingly eat more than I should lol).

    Does it have some other function that I'm overlooking that would still put it as an issue if I have leptin resistence (or the mutation that is its absence)?
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    Quote Originally Posted by MidwestBeast View Post
    So leptin, admittedly, isn't something I'm overly comfortable saying I know well. However, I've researched it a bit and looked over it a bit more in depth, tonight. From what I read/understand, it's linked to satiety, correct? I monitor daily calorie and macronutrient intake. Honestly, I'm usually not hungry more often than I am. I'm certainly not experiencing a feeling of not being full that causes over-eating (other than random times like Thanksgiving when I knowingly eat more than I should lol).

    Does it have some other function that I'm overlooking that would still put it as an issue if I have leptin resistence (or the mutation that is its absence)?
    its a major endocrin hormone involved in satiety, thyroid, adrenals, sex hormones.

    its also hand in hand with insulin resistance, inflamation, obesity,

    leptin resistance isnt always cut and dry.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssbackwards View Post
    its a major endocrin hormone involved in satiety, thyroid, adrenals, sex hormones.

    its also hand in hand with insulin resistance, inflamation, obesity,

    leptin resistance isnt always cut and dry.
    Gotcha. Yeah, I'd seen through research everything it's linked to; just didn't see how it could be the cause of all this if the main issue was satiety, since I don't over-eat.

    I'm interested to see what the new endo has to say on all of this; pick his brain a little.

    I want to get a more clear answer from someone else on my 24-hour cortisol being as high as it was. My doctor dismisses it because of the volume of urine, saying that since there was so much, that's the reason it's high and since my 8 AM serum draw was fine, it's nothing to worry about. However, it's also my understanding that if you're screwed up, your body doesn't follow normal timelines as far as when hormones peak.

    My prolactin draw was actually in the afternoon, when it came back high. What I'd read suggests it's highest in the AM and following physical activity (though, again, in a non-normal individual, time of day doesn't seem to play as much of a role).

    Dynamic brain MRI rules out prolactinomas on the pituitary. My thoughts are that there is a tumor or are tumors elsewhere (e.g. adrenals, thyroid, etc.) that are causing the high prolactin. I've also never had TRH tested, but because of the high prolactin, that seems worthwhile to at least check. Looking into GnRH is also something I'm thinking may be necessary due to the high prolactin levels.

    As far as actual evidence, I have high prolactin. I had a high TSH. I need to figure out whether I'm arguing that I have (had) high cortisol.

    Those are undeniable.
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    ASI tests are really cheap, worst comes to the worst do it again and buy one yourself.

    The flaw with ASI tests are that in theory, simply doing the test is putting you out of daily routine and could alter the results, especially if you have to take them at inconvenient times or on a day which is not a normal day for you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdcc View Post
    ASI tests are really cheap, worst comes to the worst do it again and buy one yourself.

    The flaw with ASI tests are that in theory, simply doing the test is putting you out of daily routine and could alter the results, especially if you have to take them at inconvenient times or on a day which is not a normal day for you.
    http://www.optimalhealthnetwork.com/...ting-s/582.htm

    I didn't know what ASI stood for, so I had to google it. I still haven't done the saliva test, which the doctor at my gym highly suggested and said it's better than 24-hour urine (which my current GP has said is the gold standard over saliva...gotta love disagreements between doctors). That being said, I'm very curious about insulin issues, anyway, because I never "felt" the effects of taking in a lot of carbs at once and my dad is diabetic.

    The tests they list here are interesting. I hadn't thought about progesterone, at all.
    Psalm 34:10 - "The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing."
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    Had an appointment, this afternoon, with an endo at a top university. He teaches, works for the medical center and has been published a decent amount, too (not that this really means anything, but it's usually a good sign).

    It was the worst doctor's appointment I have ever had in my life.

    I won't get into all of it, but basically he fixated on my high iron levels from one blood test a month ago (not concerned at all with the two ferritin tests I'd had done). Beyond that, he said that I probably should have never been placed on exogenous thyroid medication because that's clearly not the issue, here. He went on to tell me that since my mom is overweight and that my dad is diabetic (maybe 10 lbs overweight, but he is a skinny dude) that this was my genetic destiny. He said I'd never have an athletic type body.

    When I pointed to the fact that I had that body for the last several years (I provided him with a photo progression of me from 2000-current), he said that I'm getting older--yes, that was his reasoning. I said he couldn't expect me to believe that gaining 70 pounds in a year is normal or a part of aging, especially when I've eaten 500 calories/day while working out for 10 days straight and managed to gain weight.

    He then went on to try to explain nutrition to me...His first step was bringing up how there are 4,000 calories in a pound, to which I stared at him for a moment and said, "you mean 3,500?" and he smiled and said it was the same thing...Yeah, 500 calories doesn't matter (you'll see why this is irritating in a moment). He'd asked if I track calories and I told him I do; avg. 2,000 cals on off days and 2,600 cals on lifting days. He said if I reduced calories by 200 a day that I'd lose 1 pound in 20 days--he guaranteed me this lol. I explained that I've been calorie restricted and it's made no difference (he kept stopping me and explaining how I was wrong and hadn't been doing that long enough, wasn't patient enough, etc.).

    Then he decided to tell me that a body is like a bank account and you have to take out more than you put in. I wanted to pound my head against the wall (well, more like his). I, again, explained that I'm well aware of calorie expenditure, maintenance and intake. I told him he surely couldn't be suggesting that it's healthy to put yourself at an overall negative caloric deficit on a regular basis (e.g. maintenance = 2,000 calories, so you eat 1,500 calories and work out to burn off 1,800 calories which would result in -300 on the entire day).

    It was awful. The only thing he wanted to do was check my iron levels again, to which I declined. He also said I should go back to a low dose of levothyroxine if anything.

    Needless to say it was a complete waste of my time.

    I'm waiting to hear back from the doctor at my gym; he's covering for his boss this week, so he said he is a bit backed up, but he does have some notes for me. Beyond that, I'm going to get back into my GP and see if I can get him to sign off on some more tests (thyroid antibodies to rule out hashimoto's, insulin to check for insulin resistance, and a few other things). I'd rather chip away at one thing at a time than listen to some idiot like the guy, today.
    Psalm 34:10 - "The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing."
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    http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org...46/4/717.short

    http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org...3/5/1253.short

    http://ajpendo.physiology.org/content/283/1/E187.full

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science...31938406002447

    now im looking into another satiety hormone like GLP1 and PYY, im not sure there can be a resistance to this, however it can be high post prandually which can cause that satiety. need to research it more in regards to leptin resistance. However im really thinking your leptin issues are the main cause for throwing off other hormones in your body and the way the normal signaling works.

    I cant find a good study, but its something to look into.
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