How Do You Like Them Apples?

It happened again! Glamour magazine just called me an apple! As opposed to pear-shaped. Disclaimer: Don’t bother reading this blog if you don’t regularly get labeled some kind of fruit!

I don’t mean to compare apples to bananas but you know who you are. Always too full to eat dessert, even when it’s Molten Lava Cake? You buy bags of fun-sized Snickers in Sept, which stay intact and accounted for when actual Trick-or-Treaters knock? Upon ordering, you request waiters to wrap up half your lunch in doggy bags (and you really do have a canine at home that devours it). And you shun the ‘five seconds’ rule, throwing away the yummiest of dropped morsels even on newly waxed floors!

“Oh, I really couldn’t eat a thing,” my friend Tiffany laments when she’s upset. So how come when I get angry (after being told how to dress as an Apple, for example!) – – I eat everything in sight?? Including biting poor Tiffany’s head off?? And if I hear another busy person remark, “I just realized I forgot to eat all day long.” I’m gonna reply, “Gosh, I can relate. Last night, without a moment to spare — I became aware that my heart hadn’t remembered to beat all evening long.” Seriously? These harried individuals need to write “consume something” on their daily planners?!

Why is it that when my co-workers come down with a nasty bug, their taste buds are thrown “off” and suddenly they have no appetite? Within 48 hrs, these sick office-mates demonstrate how their jeans fall down. (They’re each receiving a belt for Christmas) Yet when I get the exact same flu, cardboard toast and plain white rice never tasted so divine! And everyone else’s prescription seems to list possible side effects like weight loss, yet I get that one persistent sinus infection requiring a steroid that makes me bloated.

Finally, how come no matter which thyroid condition (hypo or hyper) I’m diagnosed with, I never get the one with weight loss as a symptom? Listen, I know my rights! And one of these (I think it’s Hyper!) causes a sped-up metabolism!

If you can relate, are 35-55, and feel like your recent weight gain has upset your entire apple cart, the culprit may be close to home. In fact, it may be your own body — in particular your thyroid. I joked about it above, but it’s really no laughing matter. Recent studies suggest that millions suffer from undiagnosed thyroid problems. Women are particularly likely to develop thyroid issues and experience weight gain, especially in the abdomen (hello Granny Smith!) because the thyroid is linked to other systems that impact weight – – namely proper functioning of the sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone and testosterone) and the adrenal glands.

It is imperative to go to an experienced, healthy aging doctor who understands how to properly test. A whole thyroid panel (not simply TSH) must be run. If not, a patient can be deemed to have normal levels and left unfairly struggling (as a Fuji or a Gala!) with fatigue, dry hair/skin, foggy thinking, increased cholesterol, puffiness around eyes/face, memory loss, and even yikes, heart disease! But once you find someone competent that you can trust, they will be the Apple of Your Eye!

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