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Are you a member of the polar bear club?



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Hello All,

Reading this forum for a few months has taught me that everyone is a little different. But today, I am looking for some 'misery loves company' friends. If you are able, riddle me this.

Why are there times you get so cold? I do not understand.

As for context, I am a few weeks post surgery. Things are going well...just wondering who gave me a membership into this Polar Bear Club. I wasn't looking to join a club where members are forced to freeze nearly to death.

Through my years, I have always been a warm person...temperature wise that is. To say it another way, I have always been a "scrub a little too hard and I can sweat in the shower" kind of person. But, as Bob Dylan once said, "The times, they are a changin." Let me explain.

There are times when I am on the couch. I am dressed in warm clothes and thick, comfy socks. I am under at least two or three hefty blankets. There is a fire in the fireplace. A large labrador retriever that goes by the name of Bella is curled up beside me sharing her warmth. Yet, I still shiver to my bones. What the hell is going on here?

As odd as this may sound, I have actually worn a winter hat inside of my own house because I cannot get warm. But a few hours will pass and, suddenly, I feel like I am back to normal.

During these 'winter wonderlands,' my beautiful wife is wearing shorts, no socks and a flimsy t-shirt. As she lifts her hair in an attempt to cool herself, she proclaims the problem is with me. So I have a few questions for you. Perhaps you can help me.

1) Have you experienced this same issue?

2) Does it go away? If so, when?

3) Does anyone really know what causes it?

4) Why am I not cold all the time?

Thanks for all of your sharing. Hopefully your wisdom will provide me with some new knowledge.

I wish each of you the most wonderful, healthy and fulfilling days ahead.

Best,

AnotherGuy

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I can only answer the first one: yes, I am experiencing the same thing. I am constantly cold, even when bundled up and everyone else around me is fine or even warm. I do have times I feel normal, but I then I will get super cold again. I read somewhere it has something to do with the hypothalamus not compensating for the reduced weight, but honestly I'm not sure if that is true or hogwash. I'd love to better understand what is happening.

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Yes, it happens. There are at least a couple of reasons:

1. Lack of padding. As we lose weight, there's simply less of us to cushion us from the cold. Think about why bears eat so much before hibernating—they get fat both to insulate themselves and to nourish themselvesˀ.

2. Temperature regulation. This is related to #1. Our bodies are used to having the thermostat 'set' a certain way. Now that thermostat isn't keeping us as warm anymore and it takes time to catch up.

3. Iron deficiency. This is a big one, especially if it's your hands and feet that are especially cold. Right after surgery we struggle to get enough iron. And even if you supplement with iron, your body may not use it as efficiently as you need. And one of the signs of anaemia is... feeling cold a lot.

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2 minutes ago, vikingbeast said:

Yes, it happens. There are at least a couple of reasons:

Thank you for the information. Much appreciated.

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Living in south Florida this is not a terribly bad thing. I used to sweat a lot. To the point that I sought out meds for excessive sweating. I would sweat Standing still in the shade. 65 pounds less insulation and I don’t get cold but I don’t sweat anymore either unless I am in the direct south Florida sun or doing some physical activity. My husband freezes though (he is just naturally slim and fit) so I get what you mean. He will be wearing a light jacket in the middle of summer outside and everyone around is comfortable or even hot. It’s weird.

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Posted (edited)

Hey there, AnotherGuy, from another Ohioan! I am 18 mos. post-op, BMI about 25.1 now. Several months ago I started sleeping under a down comforter (that was in the summer!). The down comforter isn’t doing the trick any more, so I sleep under an electric blanket at the highest setting of 10 with a dachshund plastered next to me. My hands feel like blocks of ice, and I sleep with socks on every night. But I’ll take it, happy to be at this point. Interesting about the Iron (mine checks out ok).

Edited by Elidh
Clarification

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Simple reason is you’re losing your fat insulation & your body is not running as hot because you have less body to move about. The more you lose the worse it will get. Wait till you go grocery shopping in the middle of summer & you need an arctic parka in the cold aisles. Bbrrrr!! 🥶.

It does improve a little - or maybe we get more used to it. I keep a jacket in my car year round.

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12 hours ago, Elidh said:

Hey there, AnotherGuy, from another Ohioan!

Hey Elidh…always nice to meet another Ohioan. Congratulations on your weight loss.

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8 hours ago, Arabesque said:

Simple reason is you’re losing your fat insulation & your body is not running as hot because you have less body to move about.

Hello Arabesque…maybe you are correct. I am not looking forward to my own personal winters in the summer. Ugh! Have a great day.

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I've read on these forums over the years that a lot of people get super cold after WLS. I am not one of them. I still stay hot most of the time or at least regular.

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really common. For some it eventually goes away, for others, it's permanent. Has to do with less padding plus temperature regulation, I think. I had that the first year or two post-surgery, but I don't any more.

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I was a member of the polar bear club even when I was at a BMI of 43! I’ve lost 78 lbs since surgery in august and have transcended into arctic hell 😭

It got so bad at one point that I was sleeping with five blankets, but I finally invested in a mattress warmer that I just keep on all night long, so now I only need two.

I really hope this passes! 🥶

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1 hour ago, Summermoose said:

I was a member of the polar bear club even when I was at a BMI of 43! I’ve lost 78 lbs since surgery in august and have transcended into arctic hell 😭

Holy cow! @Summermoose That is a little bit scary. I hope your artic hell ends soon. Hopefully thin feels better than artic hell. 😁

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I have never been cold until I started the Pre op diet, I am frozen now and wear gloves in the house at times. The only time I warm up is when I am cooking or cleaning. I am looking forward to summer when I can at last sit in the sun and warm up instead of hiding, sweating indoors. I look forward to hearing from our more senior members on this matter.

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On 1/4/2022 at 1:37 PM, AnotherGuy said:

Hello All,

Reading this forum for a few months has taught me that everyone is a little different. But today, I am looking for some 'misery loves company' friends. If you are able, riddle me this.

Why are there times you get so cold? I do not understand.

As for context, I am a few weeks post surgery. Things are going well...just wondering who gave me a membership into this Polar Bear Club. I wasn't looking to join a club where members are forced to freeze nearly to death.

Through my years, I have always been a warm person...temperature wise that is. To say it another way, I have always been a "scrub a little too hard and I can sweat in the shower" kind of person. But, as Bob Dylan once said, "The times, they are a changin." Let me explain.

There are times when I am on the couch. I am dressed in warm clothes and thick, comfy socks. I am under at least two or three hefty blankets. There is a fire in the fireplace. A large labrador retriever that goes by the name of Bella is curled up beside me sharing her warmth. Yet, I still shiver to my bones. What the hell is going on here?

As odd as this may sound, I have actually worn a winter hat inside of my own house because I cannot get warm. But a few hours will pass and, suddenly, I feel like I am back to normal.

During these 'winter wonderlands,' my beautiful wife is wearing shorts, no socks and a flimsy t-shirt. As she lifts her hair in an attempt to cool herself, she proclaims the problem is with me. So I have a few questions for you. Perhaps you can help me.

1) Have you experienced this same issue?

2) Does it go away? If so, when?

3) Does anyone really know what causes it?

4) Why am I not cold all the time?

Thanks for all of your sharing. Hopefully your wisdom will provide me with some new knowledge.

I wish each of you the most wonderful, healthy and fulfilling days ahead.

Best,

AnotherGuy

YES! This is my experience too. I've always been the one who was hot all the time, sweat frequently and all over, never ever cold. In fact I've always loved cold weather. Post surgery though, I've noticed that my sensitivity is definitely higher. My hands and feet have been cold frequently and I swear to you the other night I was shaking so hard my cat walked over to me with this concerned look on her face like I was seizing- the worst I have ever shivered in my life. Hoping that it will just be a temporary thing for a year or two but man....strange times.

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