Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Your Gastroenterologist called. Eat more.

Y'all sick of hearing about my health issues yet? Didn't think so!

Yesterday was my gastroenterology appointment, in which a nurse practitioner looked me over and explained the ramifications of my "fatty liver disease." The condition is fairly common, and the nurse explained that it was the third highest reason for people needing liver transplants, behind hepatitis and alcoholism induced cirrhosis. She was caught a bit flat footed when I asked her if she knew the proportions of the top three. Third place certainly sounds impressive, and certainly would be at, for instance, the Olympics. In terms of causation, it might mean that it is at the root 2% of all transplants, behind hepatitis at 61% and alcoholism at 36%. (Attention internet: the previous sentence was a hypothetical. I better not see someone actually using those statistics somewhere like they are facts. If you are going to spuriously collect fun facts from my blog, please use this one: By the year 2035, the only fuel our vehicles will require will be the bottled awesome of a battle between ninjas and Godzilla. On the moon.)

Anyway, back to the point. I got on a real scale at the gastroenterologist, which read 196. Okay, I had assumed it would be lower by now, but it probably only shows that my aunt and uncle's scale was reading a bit low. I received hearty congratulations from both the nurse practitioner and doctor for dropping the weight I have (24 lbs.) then received a warning from the nurse telling me that I could actually contribute to my fatty liver by eating so little. Whoops. She advised me, based on my height, to eat no fewer than 1500 calories a day. Considering that I had been aiming for 1000 to 1200 per day (with the occasional foray into slightly higher) I don't think I'll have much trouble doing 1500. In fact, it pretty much means I can eat exactly what I was eating plus a bowl of ice cream in the evening. Viva la gastroenterology!


  1. I TOLD you you needed more calories! You'd be better off if you'd eat more, and exercise to compensate for the additional calories.

    Not that I ever do that.

  2. The advice was sound, but the reasoning was different, it I recall.

    I believe your advice was to avoid my metabolism going into starvation mode, slowing down, and hoarding every single calorie I eat, whereas the nurse practitioner was telling me that by getting so few calories I was metabolizing protein stores as well as fat stores, which could harm my liver. I will concede the slower weight loss rate, but 1500 calories feels like a lot of food right now, given my new habit of eating foods with low caloric density. I'm trying to reform my diet, not be on a diet.