I Look Good and I Do What I Want

a journey of loving my body and myself

intuitively working my way through the cereal aisle June 23, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Mae @ 1:20 pm

I am a breakfast person. I find it an extremely difficult meal to skip. I’m also very likely to eat the same thing for breakfast for months and months and months with no fatigue– although I never eat lunch or dinner that way. In any case, for years, my staple breakfast foods have been yogurt with fruit and granola, or oatmeal. I very rarely eat anything else, unless we go out to eat for breakfast– which happens extremely rarely as my husband, inexplicably, is not a breakfast fan.

 Growing up, I wasn’t allowed sugary breakfast cereals. My stepmom had a huge tupperware container, into which she would dump three or four boxes of generic, unsweetened plain cereals like Crunchy O’s and Puffed Rice to make a foul mixture that tasted like dust and death.  God, how I hated that cereal, and the skim milk I was supposed to eat it with. Yuck!

I did occasionally eat better cereals when I visited my grandparents, but my grandmother was a big fan of the Real Breakfast: pancakes, waffles, toast eggs, sausage, ham, things of that nature. I didn’t often choose to eat cereal (which was usually something like Raisin Bran) when faced with that kind of smorgasboard.

Lately, for whatever reason, I’ve been going through a Kid Cereals phase. I made Rice Krispy treats a few weeks ago, and have since been eating Rice Krispies, Honey Nut Cheerios, and Lucky Charms (I wish I were kidding) for the first time in my life (that I can remember). By the way? Marshmallows in cereal? GENIUS. Also, we don’t drink skim milk in my house, its always 1% or 2%, which to me is all the difference in the world.

I think I need to lay off the Rice Krispy treats, though, because I broke another stupid tooth last night chewing on one. It just about a month ago that I broke the corner off a molar on the bottom right side of my mouth, necessitating my first trip to the dentist (I hate the dentist) (excluding getting my wisdom teeth removed) since I was a teenager. Oy. I had to get a crown, which meant a lot of unfun shots in the gum and drilling, and better than a week of recovery pain. Yay, now I have that look forward to on the exact same tooth on the left side. Its kinda freaky that my teeth are all giving up the ghost at the same time. I’m starting to wonder if there is something else wrong. 

In other medical adventures, I did make it to the psychiatrist finally, last Friday. Ambien has been nothing short of a miracle for me. Just being able to get a reasonable night of sleep has made a difference for me. I’m also now taking Zoloft, but its only been a couple days since I started taking it and can’t say I feel any different except for a few minor adjustment side effects (of the gastronintestinal variety). I had done my research and was hoping for a prescription for Wellbutrin instead of or in addition to an SSRI, but its contraindicated for people with active eating disorder, and the psychiatrist (rather peremptorily, in my opinion) labeled my history of bingeing and purging EDNOS (Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified). Eh, whatever. I had hoped for the Wellbutrin because one of its well-known side effects is significant weight loss; 10 lbs on average in one study that I read. Of course, that’s not a really good reason to ask for or be prescribed a powerful psychoactive medication, so I tried to accept his refusal to offer it to me gracefully. He is, of course, looking out for my best interests, so that’s a good thing, really.

He did tell me that Zoloft is “weight neutral,” which means clinical trials have not found any significant weight loss or gain. In his experience, patients who lose their appetite and therefore lose some weight while depressed will tend to gain a few pounds with any antidepressant that is helping them get out of the depression; and also, the converse, since I tend to comfort eat and pack on a few pounds when depressed (not to mention my running and other workouts have fallen by the wayside lately), he would expect to see a decrease in my food intake and possible minimal weight loss.

Not that I am getting all excited envisioning the magical emergence of the Skinny Girl Trapped Inside Mae now that I am getting treated for my depression, but I would like to see my eating habits return to those that I am used to. Sunday was a tough day– the last day of my three-day weekend and the day I had to take my husband to the airport for a monthlong work trip– and I ate the following: a bowl of Lucky Charms, tortilla chips and guacamole, most of a bottle of peach/orange juice, and a couple Rice Krispy Treats. That is an extremely junk-filled, unusual day for me. I normally eat very nutritiously, lots of fruits and vegetables and lean protein. I was just too plowed under by everything yesterday to muster the energy to do anything but eat lazily and feel sorry for myself.

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15 Responses to “intuitively working my way through the cereal aisle”

  1. hope505 Says:

    http://www.medhelp.org/forums/mentalhealth/messages/32922.html

    ^^ Try googling “Wellbutrin and eating disorder”…or…somethin….

    Did you look at crazymeds.org?

    I’m a little mad at your doctor. *heh* Seriously, he could have given it to you!

    My physician prescribes for me, and man, I really got lucky because she’s great. When considering a medication to try for a first time antidepressant, I said, “Can I try Wellbutrin?” and she wrote me the prescription. When I didn’t like Wellbutrin ( I think I mentioned it already…I did lose weight, but had manic episodes) I asked her, “Okay, can I try prozac now?” And she wrote me a new prescription.

    She is just really good about honoring my self-knowledge, research, and intuition, and I feel so lucky to have her as a doctor.
    She also let me try MERIDIA when I was clinicaly obese…I really liked that drug. It is marketed for ‘weight-loss’ but is actually a mild antidepressant. After I lost a couple pounds and wasn’t “obese” anymore my insurance quit paying for it, so I had to go off of it.

    A lot of antidepressants are listed as “weight neutral” but in reality, are not. They get listed that way from clinical trials that frequently don’t last long enough for people to be able to report any significant weight gain or loss.

    Lastly:
    Cinnamon LIFE cereal is my rediscovered friend…I have a similar history with cereal as you do and wasn’t allowed to eat sugar cereal as a child. Now I have it when I want it, but try to wait til it’s on sale cause dayyumm! Why is cereal so flippin’ ex$pen$ive?? *haha!* Good luck with that zoloft…I’m interested to hear about how you do on it.

  2. criss Says:

    Rice krispie treats should not break teeth, unless you make them reaaalllly differently than most people do.

    Is it possible your teeth are breaking because you grind them in your sleep? Teeth-grinding (also called bruxism) can destroy your teeth in short order. If you think you might be doing this (especially if you experience jaw pain frequently, as if you’ve been chewing gum for too long at a time), please ask your dentist about a mouthguard. It’s like the ones kids wear for sports, but a different type of plastic. It feels odd at first, but then you don’t notice it.

  3. Next time you make Rice Krispie Treats you should try throwing in some white chocolate chips as the marshmallows are good and melted.

    You could also/or throw them in with the cereal..it is heaven, let me tell you and the best butter to use is “Blue Bonnet” or “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”.

  4. nuckingfutz Says:

    I had my teeth start falling apart while pregnant with my second child. Two more children (total 4) later, and my mouth is in a sorry state of affairs. But it only happened while I was pregnant – I’m assuming it was calcium deficiency, even though I THOUGHT I was getting enough (obviously not, though). So if there’s any way to get tested as to how much calcium you’re getting / how much you need, I would definitely give it a shot.

    I’m glad to hear your anti-D’s seem to be working for you so far, though. That can make all the difference in the world.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about your eating right now. Be aware of it, yes, but if you have a “bad eating day,” don’t stress over it. I’d be willing to bet, once you have your depression well and truly under control, that your eating will stabilize itself.

  5. Becky Says:

    I wasn’t allowed sugary cereals growing up either so when I first moved out on my own one of the first things I bought was Froot Loops. But I’m not really a cereal person so I’ve moved on to full-fat yoghurt with granola and fruit, yum.

    I’m glad to hear you’re doing well on your medications.

  6. hope505 Says:

    where do my comments go??

  7. hope505 Says:

    Clinical trials for antidepressants frequently do not last long enough for the researchers to determine if a drug is “weight neutral” or will make you gain or lose weight.

    If there is anything you don’t like about your doctor, including his refusal to prescribe Wellbutrin for you, I hope you won’t hesitate to find another doctor.

    The information I’ve found does not contraindicate Wellbutrin for eating disorders.

  8. Mae Says:

    Hey Hope. Well, WordPress is funky, plus I have comment moderation turned on, but it recognizes you since you have been posting before, maybe there is just a lag?

    He said Wellbutrin lowers the seizure threshold which can be a problem for people who are actively purging and who therefore have imbalances of (?? umm, I forget what he said– electrolytes?) which, the two acting together, can cause seizures. Even though I assued him I wasn’t actively bingeing/purging anymore, he kind of brushed it off like, “Well, for now, but you aren’t being treated for your eating disorder and who knows what might change in the future, I wouldn’t want to be responsible for adverse effects.”

    Criss, unfortunately I think you may be right, but I’m hoping that the teeth grinding at night will go away now that I am getting treatment for the depression.

    Umm, OMG Apples I am sooo trying that with the white chocolate next time.

  9. meowser Says:

    I gained hella weight on Zoloft. Hope505 is right, clinical trials are only 12 weeks and I was on the drug for 7 years and gained a net of 65 pounds. The first year I actually lost 10 pounds, then gained it back plus another 10 the second year, then another 20 the next year, etc.

    OTOH, I may be a somewhat unusual case in that I also had untreated PCOS during most of the time I took the drug (once I got on metformin and BCPs the weight gain stopped, but didn’t reverse itself). So I’m not convinced that my metabolic issues didn’t have something to do with it. But your doctor is mistaken if he thinks there is no weight gain associated with this drug. I’m not the only one who gained lots of weight on it long-term.

  10. Erin Says:

    Mae, I kinda agree with your doctor and only because you said that the Wellburtin will cause a 10 lbs loss, I don’t think you should take drugs for the side effects of it…

    I dunno, this is coming from a girl with an active E.D. who lied about it for many years and sought out meds that caused weight loss… I also intentionally left medical conditions untreated because when I’d get REALLY sick I didn’t feel like eating

    Just saying… go with what your doctor says and Zoloft rocks pretty well, very few side effects and none that seem to be too too major

  11. hope505 Says:

    …go with what your doctor says…

    baa-aa-aa.
    Doctors are intelligent, and if we’re lucky, well-trained and compassionate. They’re not god.
    I won’t go on about this since other peoples’ brain chemistry isn’t any of my business, really, and we are all so biochemically different one from another.
    Mae, if you’re happy with your physician and with the way he helps you with your medical concerns, that’s all groovy. I’m just saying that we as patients aren’t required to take whatever comes out of their mouths as gospel. And there’s never any harm in getting second opinions.
    * : )

  12. I lost significant weight on Zoloft, although I only stayed on it a month. No change with Wellbutrin.

    Oh, and since I think this is my first time commenting here–I love your blog. I wandered over here a few weeks ago from somewhere else in the Fatosphere.

  13. I remember being allowed certain sugar cereals sometimes, but not others. Apparently my mother drew the line (most of the time, anyway) at cereals containing marshmallows. 🙂 I will say that whether it was on purpose or not, cereal was one of those foods that was sort of value-neutral in our house (except for the marshmallow stuff), like “do you want Special K or Total or Apple Jacks?” and I don’t remember feeling like one was a “better” choice than the other.

    But I always did binge on cereal, because it was one of the few foods that was always available in our house, so I retain some of the same issues around it now. I have been known to buy Lucky Charms when my husband is out of town and eat large amounts of them for dinner the whole time he’s gone.

    I’m glad the Ambien is helping you and I hope the Zoloft will too. If you go the specified period and it’s not, I hope you will be able to get back in to your psychiatrist quickly to get something else. I hate to think of you continuing to suffer if you don’t need to. For me, Wellbutrin has (I think) had some minimal effect in curbing my urges to eat compulsively, and it’s the only antidepressant that has actually helped me feel more energetic and inclined to do things. But it also tends to shorten my already short temper, and I’ve been told it’s bad for OCD, so I don’t think it’s ideal. I’m scared of going off it though; it’s the only antidepressant that I’ve felt has actually helped me.

    I did a Prozac/Wellbutrin combination for a while; if you do need to change drugs, maybe you could convince your dr. to try a combination of things. Of course that may not be what you need, but it’s just a thought.

  14. Juliet Says:

    You should try Fruity Pebbles. OMG. I heart them.

    I am also a huge fan of breakfast foods. I love eating pancakes or cereal for dinner, too.

    Good luck with the Zoloft. I had a wonderfully brief fling with Ambien, but then stopped sleeping through it, which meant never getting 7 hours minimum sleep. So, alas, I had to stop taking it!

  15. Hi Mae–everything OK? I haven’t been ’round the fatosphere too much (at least not on posts that are at all recent… I’m way behind) but things were quiet here so I wanted to check how you’re doing. Take care.


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