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Unexplainble weight gain and still no period


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I have now been maintaining a BMI 22.5 for a month, and I am eating 2000-2200 cal a day with light exercise (40 min light dancing x5, 30 min walking x5, 60 min horseback riding x1 per week). I wasn't even underweight before, in fact I've been in the healthy range for three years (more info in my profile). Why am I not getting my period? I feel like I am the only one not having period at this weight... I would like to lose healthily to a BMI of 20-21, but I know that it is probably a bad idea as I still don't have my period. 

Other thing is that I just gained 2 lbs this week and I'm freaking out. I had been maintaining 135.5-136.5 for four weeks, and now I am suddenly 138 lbs! I've been eating less this week if anything, averaging around 2050 cal. How is this possible? Could it be just water weight? I think I gained that already in the beginning of the week. On Tuesday I ate less than normally (1850 cal) as I was performing with my choir and didn't have much time to eat. It was really hot day, and probably 90 degrees inside the school, and I was sweating all the time. Next evening when I weighed myself I weighed much more than I usually do in the evenings (I try to weigh myself only once a week but couldn't resist the urge). Is my body retaining water because it's been so hot and I'm dehydrated? Or am I just making excuses? I thought I was finally maintaining and my metabolism had recovered, but 2 lbs a week just freaks me out!

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Forgive me...I'm a guy.

From what I know from Health class maybe the weight gain is from your body preparing for a possible pregnancy, as in, all that extra tissue is being made. Which leads me to believe that your period will come back this month.

Again, I'm a guy. Could a girl please confirm this or prove me wrong?

Yes, Senor Awesome, you're right. :P I know that for me, pre-anorexia, I knew when my period was coming because I was constantly bloated and retained water. So your period might be coming!

First of all, I highly recommend that you don't try to lose weight any time soon. A BMI of 22.5 is healthy. If your body's set point was a lower BMI, it would have stopped gaining at that BMI. Trying to lose weight might trigger your eating disorder again and mess up your metabolism. There's a less likely chance you'll relapse at 22.5, plus, you need the wiggle room.

Also, please be careful about eating! It sounds like you're starting to cut back a little. I'd bump back up to the amount you were eating before. Seeing that you want to lose weight and starting to cut the calories again is sending warning bells through my head. Not that I'm in any position to accuse you of relapsing... Just be careful. (:


I'm in the same boat as you. The first time I ever had my period pre-anorexia, I was classified as underweight. When my metabolism caught up to me and I began emotional eating, I gained up to a normal/high weight. When my anorexia hit and I began to drop the weight, my periods became pretty light. They probably would have completely gone away if I wasn't using birth control to regulate them. Anyway, I'm off the pill, weight restored, and my period hasn't come back yet, which I thought was odd due to the fact that I was underweight when I first ever got my period in the first place!

Lots of post-anorexics that I know still only get very light periods, even though most of them have been weight-restored and recovered for years.

I hear that the best way to get your period back is to eat lots of healthy fats, like nuts and peanut butter. Good luck!

I'm going through the very same thing right now. I lost 30ish lbs, had fine regular periods like clockwork before I lost weight. Now, at a BMI of 21.7, I still don't have them back. I do get a light one that only lasts like a day or two about once every 4-5 months or so. But the last time that I had an actual period was January of 2011.

I did go to a doctor, had a lot of blood tests done, even an ultrasound. They said that I was completely fine and healthy. My doctor just told me to wait and that it'll probably return on its own - my body may still be in "shock" from the fat loss (even though I hit my UGW April 2011, almost a year ago!). Idk. If I don't get it back within the next few months I may go to another doctor.

OH..by the way..it's funny we're like exactly the same weight. As for your unexplained weight gain, I too had the same thing happen to me. I hit my UGW of 135, even went down to 132 ... but for some unexplained reason I flew back up to 138 (I have no idea why, or how) and ever since I've been stalled there. That was about July of 2011, and have been there ever since. I'm not looking to lose weight anymore, dont get me wrong..I just thought it was strange too that I had an unexplaiend weight gain. But it very well could be that we both went too low and our bodies made us regain some.

Heh. I feel smart now. Score one for the guys!

Thanks for all of you! I really hope it would be my period coming. I've been having discharge for over a month and cramps from time to time, but nothing has happened. My period started already at the age of 10, so I had them for three years, and they were always regular and heavy. I stopped getting my period very early in my ED, at a BMI 21, eating probably at least 1500 cal at that time (I didn't count then). They seem to be very sensitive to any kind of deficits... It's been now four years without them and I'd be surprised if that hasn't affected my bone density.

lonely_cupcake: I know I'm at a healthy BMI, but I just feel so big. I weigh more than ever before, and it feels so hard not to be "the skinny one" anymore. And I admit I've started to cut back a bit, mostly because of the weight gain. I'm okay with maintaining this weight at least for a while is that is what my body wants, but I really wouldn't want to gain any more. :/ I promised myself that I won't let my average intake drop below 2000 cal, and when I get my period back I will try to start eating intuitively and little by little begin to exercise more. If my weight then over time drops naturally I'm glad, if it doesn't then I just have to cope with it. And I made another promise - I will never, ever let my weight drop below BMI 20. I'm so done with this ED. -,-

"I did go to a doctor, had a lot of blood tests done, even an ultrasound. They said that I was completely fine and healthy. My doctor just told me to wait and that it'll probably return on its own - my body may still be in "shock" from the fat loss (even though I hit my UGW April 2011, almost a year ago!). Idk. If I don't get it back within the next few months I may go to another doctor."

That is what all the doctors have said to me too. Several blood tests, ultrasounds, everything... "They will come back, you just have to be patient", said one of them three years ago. Well, I've been waiting for a while. And the funny thing is that none of them suggested me to gain weight, even when my BMI was below 19.

Original Post by cendree:

That is what all the doctors have said to me too. Several blood tests, ultrasounds, everything... "They will come back, you just have to be patient", said one of them three years ago. Well, I've been waiting for a while. And the funny thing is that none of them suggested me to gain weight, even when my BMI was below 19.


Wow..that's crazy. So how much have you gained back? None of the doctors that I went to told me to gain weight but one of them did say when she charted my BMI that "if another doctor didn't know of my condition they'd think I was anorexic" because my weight just plummeted due to the weight loss. Ugh. I don't know.

Well, I was bmi 16.9 at my lowest, then 18.5 for a year or so, and after that I gained slowly and maintained bmi 19-19.5 for two and a half years. This January I started real recovery and I've been now at bmi 22.5 for five weeks.

That's good that you've been recovering at a good steady pace! I'm currently about 21.7 right now. I don't remember when I lost it -- maybe 143ish? I'm afraid that if I don't get it back soon I might be looking at having to gain some weight back.

Another 0.5 lbs gain this week, eating an average of 2100 cal a day. No sign of period. I used to get cramps when I was eating 3000 a day, but now it's been a while without anything, except for discharge. I just can't understand why I maintained for four weeks, and now I'm gaining again? I know many people that eat well above 2000 cal with light activity and maintain low BMIs, and I don't know what is wrong with me. If this was water retention, I should have dropped it already, right? I feel like I might have some water retention, as my socks leave marks that stay for at least an hour after I take them off. But how can I really know what is water and what is fat? And how can I get rid of the water retention?

This is so discouraging. The urge to restrict is bigger than ever, and I feel just lost. :/

I don't have any advice on your period other than to keep eating healthy fats and to hold out a little longer!

On the weight gain... Have you ever read Hedgren's blog? If not, I advise you read this post (ignore the first part and skip down to the phases of recovery): http://www.gwynetholwyn.com/blog/2011/9/13/ph ases-of-recovery-from-restricted-eating.html

I may be wrong, but it sounds to me as if you've entered phase II of recovery.

First of all, you are likely undereating. This will prevent you from getting your period. What was your BMI pre-restriction? A BMI of 22.5 might be low for your body.

I would definitely eat more. Up to 2500.

I am actually BMI 23 now. :/ Pre-restriction it was 22 and I was eating loads of junk food and everything, I was only 13 though, but already gone through puberty and at the same height that I am now. I have heard of many people who kept on gaining and gaining after anorexia, are now overweight and maintaining on 1000 cal with exercise. I'm so afraid that will be me!

I don't think I am undereating, at least not by much, because most calculators (even those made for teens) say that I need around 2100-2200 cal. I guess I just have to be patient and hope that some of the weight will come off later like in Minnesota starvation study. Now I am trying to start intuitive eating, but count the calories at first at the end of the day to make sure I get at least 2000.    

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