I understand exactly what your mean about always being petite and having a well muscled body. Your body does not appear to be utilizing the caloric intake at this time.
I also understand not wanting to take medications as I struggle with that one but right now I take a lot of meds and I am just 67. I have been on Inderal for years for BP and I do not notice any side effects but I do not have a leaky valve.
I want you to be healthy and feel well as you should, your only 76 which is not considered old these days.
I am going to share with you my issue; it is hard for me to write this without crying but I have not had a good cry yet today.
December 26, 2011, I lost my energy and was bogged down by fatigue. This was very depressing as I like to be active. I saw my PCP who ran a B12 lab test which was borderline low so we add some B12 to my medication list. I still had severe fatigue and no energy which caused me to feel so very guilty for not being able to just do my housework.
My next visit was to my Psychiatrist who changed my antidepressant and for 4 months my antidepressant was titrated up until I finally said no more as I felt worse on that particular med.
In July of 2012 our family went up north to the cabin and all I could do was lay on the couch, no appetite and I was losing weight.
On August 10th after my annual physical with my PCP I was sent to the hospital for a ultrasound of the pelvis - all was normal. Just to be on the safe side, my Dr. order a CT of my abdomen as I had some tenderness near my waist but nothing I could not live with. I was sent straight from the CT Scan to see my PCP as she had the results of the CT Scan which I expected to be normal like everything else.
My Dr. walked in the exam room and said, " I have very bad news for you, you have a extremely large tumor in your colon, it is cancer and you are nearly completely obstructed" The rest is history.
My reason for sharing my story is to encourage you to be your own best advocate............look for another reason for your low weight and failure to thrive. It may be something simple or it may me something serious.
I am a nurse and I ignored the warning sign of fatigue, I except that it was probably my depression................
I sense that you are a very kind and caring person and I hope you find the answer to your problems.