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HomeAnswersEndocrinologyweight lossWhy am I unable to lose weight despite eating less?

I am unable to lose weight although I eat less and be active. Why?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Answered by

Dr. Shaikh Sadaf

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At June 23, 2018
Reviewed AtJanuary 17, 2024

Patient's Query

Hello doctor,

I am a 41 year old female. I am having pretty bad acne, slight periods (almost like spotting), unable to lose weight. I gained 10 lbs extra in the past year. Although I am eating 1000 to 1200 calories a day and I am active, I am not losing. I did some blood and saliva tests and here are the results.

Results of the saliva test done on day 19 of the cycle:

  1. Estradiol 1.9 1.3-3.3 pg/mL premenopausal (luteal).
  2. Progesterone 131 75-270 pg/mL premenopausal (luteal).
  3. Ratio: Pg/E2 69 L. Optimal: 100-500 when E2 1.3-3.3 pg/mL.
  4. Testosterone 34 16-55 pg/mL (age dependent).
  5. DHEAS 5.5 2-23 ng/mL (age dependent).
  6. Cortisol 3.5 L 3.7-9.5 ng/mL (morning).

Results of the blood test done on day 8 of the cycle:

  1. Estrogen, total, serum 359.2 pg/mL.
  2. DHEA, LC/MS/MS 198 102-1185 ng/dL.
  3. Testosterone, total, SLI.
  4. LC/MS/MS 29 2-45 ng/dL.
  5. Progesterone.
Answered by Dr. Shaikh Sadaf


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I just read your query and saw each one of your attached reports (attachment removed to protect patient identity). You have more or less normal test results. A slightly low cortisol is acceptable. You certainly have low vitamin D levels and you must take vitamin D supplements 5000 IU daily. Have a 30-minute sun exposure over your hands and feet as well for the same.

You are in a healthy BMI (body mass index) range and that is why your body is settled at a particular weight which it finds suitable for you. Besides, doing the same exercises every day will cause the muscles to develop a memory. So, they adapt themselves making it further difficult to lose weight. Try to use different ways of exercising to break the plateau which you have reached in terms of weight. Try alternate high and low-intensity workouts.

Regarding your scanty menses, have a pelvic ultrasound done.

Hope you find my advice of some benefit. Good luck.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Shaikh Sadaf
Dr. Shaikh Sadaf


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