Dr. Abby Gets Personal
As a passionate observer of weight fluctuation, I became fascinated by my parents' recent journey.
Mom was skinny for most of her life. I remember Dad making malted milkshakes to fatten her up, when I was young. (None for me, though!) As she hit her 70s, she spread into a size 16, but retained her bean pole legs. She never really dieted, but went through brief periods of "watching her weight."
Her weight gain seemed normal to me as she aged, and I was happy that it would protect her bones. This was gratifying, since the most exercise she ever does is pushing a fork or remote control.
Early in her 70s, she became ill, and lost about 20 pounds.
She was finally diagnosed with "C. diff." After a few months it was under control, and she regained all 20 pounds.
Dad always looked normal to me, though he developed some weight around the belly, as he aged. He often did "calisthenics" at home, and before my time, was a very fit soldier. His love for tennis kept him in good shape, and still helps manage diabetes, at 83.
Last year, Mom underwent surgery for colon cancer, which resulted in a shortened colon. There were some complications and scary moments, but in the end, she was cancer free, and able to live her life.
She lost 30 pounds over 6 months during the ordeal, yet gained every single one back in the next 3 months.
Dad was loyal ... Continue