Winning the Battle against Obesity as a Bipolar

  • 26 January 2016
  • Petra_1

A few days ago, I read a report listed on 'Nature' journal that discussed the effects that some antipsychotic drugs like Clozapine and Zyprexa had on mice. These drugs caused an overproduction of an enzyme in their brains which is responsible for increasing appetite. Just when you think you have almost won the battle against Bipolar Disorder, you realize that you have been fooling yourself all along and suffer a massive setback.

I know what medical non-compliance means. I had lived about three years without the prescribed drugs and medicines when I was in college. I remember how I had spiraled out of control and ran home to my parents seeking their help desperately. I remember what it was like when I did not take those medicines, and I am glad that I decided to get back on track.

A lot of bipolar patients talk about cutting medicines off their life completely. I have spoken to some of them who rely on herbal treatments and try to exercise and eat healthy to struggle with Bipolar Disorder. But this is not a simple problem. Bipolar Disorder messes with the neurotransmitters in the brain, and this causes the yo-yo situation that I so despise. And yet, I cannot change that about me. Science has not advanced so much so as to bring a solution for this right now. Maybe in another half century we can do that, but till then it is all about managing the symptoms of this illness.

I had heard that obesity hampers the cognitive functioning of the brain. You remember less, your attention span gets shorter. More so, you risk Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis and depression. Anyone who reads this blog knows I had always struggled with weight issues ever since I was a child. I had horrible days at school because of it. Even now, my body image suffers because I have such low confidence. But I did not give up.

Ever since my meltdown, I had promised myself that I would not let this problem get the better of me. Not only did I start taking my medicines daily without fail, but I saw different dieticians who could offer me different nutritional strategies. I finally found the a weight loss strategy that could work the best for me, and I have been following it every day ever since.

It is definitely an uphill battle for us and our loved ones. Some days when the depression hits, it is like I have no way out of this. But staying with family and friends helps a lot. When I find that I am getting too depressed, I usually go to my room and stay inside by myself. My family knows better than to disturb me during these hours. While it is hard to manage body weight, my persistent efforts have paid off. I maintain a journal where I record my body weight every week. I keep a close watch on what I eat, and what I do to maintain good health. This really helps me to stay rooted and I am in a much better place now than I was before.