Managing Weight With Endometriosis
Last updated: April 2023
Can we talk about the weight fluctuations with endometriosis?
As women, there are deeply rooted messages about our appearance and our self-image that certainly don’t set the stage for a healthy mindset around weight. Add in the weight fluctuation due to hormonal shifts of endometriosis, and it can feel like a straight-up battle with the scale and our clothes.
Coping with hormonal shifts and emotional struggles
It can be incredibly frustrating to feel like your body is constantly changing – not because you’ve “fallen off the wagon” or “overindulged.” It’s because of hormonal shifts.
This struggle is emotional and can leave us feeling even more lonely living with endometriosis. What’s the best way to manage this?
I sure wish I had a magic formula that worked for every endo sister every time. The truth is, I don’t even have a magic formula that works for me every time.
That said, I do have some strategies that help me to navigate this with a little more compassion and grace because the reality is it can be a greater emotional struggle than a physical struggle.
Navigating weight fluctuations and self-worth
It's important to recognize that weight fluctuation due to hormonal shifts is a common symptom of endometriosis. It's not your fault, and you're not alone. Many women with endometriosis experience weight gain, bloating, and water retention due to hormonal fluctuations.
It's essential to be kind to yourself and to remember that your weight does not determine your worth. Now more than ever, it’s important to not judge or place blame on yourself based on what the scale says.
I tossed my scale. I didn’t want a fluctuating number to determine my mood and mindset for the day.
So, I don’t weigh myself at home anymore. I monitor my weight based on how I feel in my body, like my energy, elimination, and sleep, as well as how I feel in my clothes.
Yes, there are battles with clothes, too, because they can be tight on days that you’re more bloated, but I at least don’t feel like I’m chasing a number on a scale that’s forever a moving target.
So, what happens when the clothes get snug?
Focusing on good habits for controlling weight changes
My first response is to again, remind myself that this isn’t because of my doing. I have to constantly repeat this message until it sinks in.
But I’ll be honest, even if the weight fluctuation isn’t my fault, I still want to feel good in my clothes. So that’s when I’ll check in on my healthy habits.
Am I getting enough water in each day? This is always my first step because it’s simple, free, and I can do it almost immediately. I also like that I feel I benefit from it fastest.
Am I eating foods that support my health? Sometimes the answer is yes. Other times, this check-in helps me to realize that a little snack here, and there is starting to add up, so I could make some adjustments there. The goal of this step is to shift my focus from weight to health.
Am I moving my body to the best of my ability each day? Going for walks supports virtually every level of health for me: physical, mental, and emotional.
If I’m having a low-energy day, then my movement may be just five minutes of restorative yoga, but it’s the intention of self-care that’s important to me.
Prioritizing healthy habits
As with any step of living with a chronic illness, reaching out for support can be so healing. If you’re like me, it may feel uncomfortable and even a little hesitant at first, but when you can connect with women, just like you, who get it, it’s so helpful. They can offer support in a way that even your closest friends can’t because they don’t know the experience firsthand.
So, I’ll end by saying thank you for being my fellow endo sister and part of this community. It means so much to me to connect with and talk to you in the comments below.
Thank you for being here and being you!
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