It's possible to slow the rate of body mass loss while on pred with exercise and extra calorie intake. Maybe possible to add a little muscle strength with weight training. But I would not expect to regain a lot of weight while on pred unless all flare symptoms are gone. As when we're flaring we have very fast mouth-to-anus transit times, so that normally ~24-hour period of transit becomes 4-hours or less, giving our digestive acids and enzymes less and less time to extract nutrients from our foods. We can eat like a horse and yet still loose weight while flaring.
It's going to take a lot of time, patience, and persistence to regain lost weight while still actively flaring. When I was only mildly flaring, I upped the carbs and dairy intake (if you do not have dairy and/or gluten intolerances) and went to my local gym for 45 minutes each day for some light weights and cardio training. Lots of breads and pastas, lots of whole milk an yogurt. I'd have a big homemade protein shake after my workout: added whole milk, whole yogurt, peanut butter and a banana in my blender. At first, I was only able to regain 1/2 a pound every two weeks despite eating like I was training for a triathlon. As I continued healing, it started picking up. Over 6-months, I was able to regain 12-pounds that I had lost over the course of my flare (I had lost 17 pounds but it helped).
Thanks for this! Maybe I can describe my situation in a little more detail, so you can help me consider it better.
All my life I've been one of those people who can eat like a horse but not gain any weight. I started weight lifting originally to support healthy adult body mass. When I don't workout, I lose weight. My body tends toward excess catabolysis.
When I take pred, this process is accelerated, and I suffer from extreme cachexia and muscle wasting... some of the worst doctors have seen. I am 6'4" and when I take 40mg + have a flare with rapid-transit of food, my body weight usually drops to 125-130lbs. It's scary. I then lack all capacity to really exercise, as I can barely walk. My leg muscles waste and become like pencils. Some of this is definitely due to the flare, but a bigger part of it is due to the pred.
Once the deadly inflammation has passed and I'm down to just every day inflammation, I start tapering pred. Once the pred taper gets to 15-20mg, my weight increases rapidly. For instance, in the past 3 weeks I have gained 15lbs and I'm not really exercising.
My main concerns are these:
- #1 concern is that because I'm on a pred taper, I am reliant on pred to provide the adrenal strength necessary to even do a workout -- my body could suffer a severe crash at the next taper, even if I skip the gym for a week. Could it make sense to wait until I'm off pred completely to start back at the gym? It would suck if I started working out, tapered again, and then all hell broke loose because my muscles are all damaged from working out + my bowels are trying to heal but can't + I don't have the adrenal strength to support all this.
- weight lifting damages muscle tissue so it can rebuild stronger, but that would sacrifice resources that could heal the bowel
- I don't want to exacerbate my flare so that it escalates again
- and yet, I need to do weight bearing exercise to try and rescue my bones
I might be overthinking this, and I just need to try some weights. Thanks for being patient with my thought process.
Post Edited (MarkWithIBD) : 12/2/2019 10:52:55 AM (GMT-7)