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I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
#1
I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
I super duper love my C(A)-PAP.  I'll never give it up!  I love the lack of brain fog, and the feeling of alertness during the day, plus the regular sleep schedule/cycle.  

BUT I've noticed some side-effects that I'd really like to resolve.

I've gained 15-20 pounds in the year since starting CPAP.  I was already 50 pounds overweight due to some major meds I'd taken a few years prior... but was happy that I was at least holding steady at that weight, and not gaining. But now I'm steadily gaining (15-20 pounds so far), and I'm NOT appreciating it.

Also I notice that I pass a fair amount of gas throughout the day (never had this problem before CPAP), as well as have burping more than my usual amount pre-CPAP.

What can be done?  I'd really like for these side-effects to go away. Please help me.
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#2
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
As far as the weight, no secret there. You have to cut back on the calories. As far as passing gas that's a normal thing. I was just reading on the internet that the average person passes gas 14 times a day. That's without CPAP. It's just part of the process of digesting food.
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#3
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
Although most people assume that getting more rest will make it easier to lose weight, a recent study indicates that CPAP use may be associated with moderate weight gain, with the most compliant people gaining the most weight. It's just one study and more research is needed to confirm the results. However, I would call 15 to 20 pounds over the course of a year to be more than a moderate gain. I would suggest you see your doctor to rule out any other causes and consider other lifestyle changes you might be able to make to offset any CPAP related gains.

As for the flatulence...I don't think there's any solution for it. Yes, it sucks, but it is what it is.
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"If I quit now, I will soon be back to where I started. And when I started I was desperately wishing to be where I am now."
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#4
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
(02-23-2018, 12:48 PM)Hydrangea Wrote: I've gained 15-20 pounds in the year since starting CPAP.  I was already 50 pounds overweight due to some major meds I'd taken a few years prior... but was happy that I was at least holding steady at that weight, and not gaining. But now I'm steadily gaining (15-20 pounds so far), and I'm NOT appreciating it.

Also I notice that I pass a fair amount of gas throughout the day (never had this problem before CPAP), as well as have burping more than my usual amount pre-CPAP.

Weight loss is tough for some. I have a goal of not sitting on couch and watching TV, instead I lay, sit, stand on a yoga mat and do exercise. I use an 8lb medicine ball that I can use for hours of TV watching and not get tired.

Yep, gas is a problem, I use a FFM and though I'm trying to keep my mouth shut, however it's tough to remember when I'm asleep. Ha Ha, so I swallow air. Not going to wear a foam collar or tape my mouth but I have arranged my bed pillow so part of it is under my chin similar to a collar. I'm an all four sides sleeper so I'm also slowing training my sleeping brain to keep my chin up.
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#5
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
I gained weight pre CPAP days but have not lost much till I started exercising and watching what I eat. It is a very very slow reversal and I am far from my goal.

Sleep Apnea lowers our metabolic rate causing the weight to pile on, lacking in sleep makes us eat more and being exhausted makes us stationary. So it is no wonder the weight piles on. My weight gain was about 20 lbs as well. However being petite, I quickly surpassed well into the overweight BMI.

Others have testified to being able to lose some. I think it will be tough but it is worth a try.

Aerophagia was painful and embarrassing in the early days but for me, it seems to have settled down and there is less flatulence with my mouth being kept closed most of the nights with a neck collar and the tongue trick.

I hope you find a way forward, Hydrangea.
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#6
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
Aerophagia also occurs in people that breath through their nose. It is incredibly rare for me to mouth breath, but I am prone to aerophagia. It was much worse when I first started xPAP and it is also made worse with the Swift FX (coincidentally the mask that I started with).

So you could try different masks and see if that makes a difference for you, or might help to lessen it.

My initial sleep doctor recommended sleeping on my back, however my AHI quadrupled. But it is something you could try, and see if it works for you.

Using Gas-X (simethicone) before you go to bed, and as needed otherwise, can help.

As for weight gain:

I'd be willing to bet that something has changed in your behavior or eating habits, now that you are feeling better. Think carefully... what has changed?...

Are you out-and-about more, and thereby grabbing food at fast-food joints or restaurants?

Are you cooking more? Baking more?

How are your clothes fitting? Some weight gain can be due to an increase in muscle mass. Depending on how sedentary you were prior to xPAP, is it possible that a portion of the weight gain might be due to more muscle?
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#7
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
I too believe that weight gain is attributable to compliant CPAP users. Some time ago another member posted the following which is why losing weight is tougher:

"food looks better, smells better and tastes better"

Working out by itself won't do the trick. You will have to limit what you eat and avoid processed foods. There is no secret to losing weight. Its calories in versus calories out. Gaining a few extra pounds is a small price to pay for successfully treating OSA and avoiding the health issues that come with untreated OSA. Hang in there.
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#8
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
(02-23-2018, 01:14 PM)Walla Walla Wrote: As far as passing gas that's a normal thing. I was just reading on the internet that the average person passes gas 14 times a day. That's without CPAP. It's just part of the process of digesting food.
But this is beyond the normal. 


(02-23-2018, 01:53 PM)paulag1955 Wrote: Although most people assume that getting more rest will make it easier to lose weight, a recent study indicates that CPAP use may be associated with moderate weight gain, with the most compliant people gaining the most weight. It's just one study and more research is needed to confirm the results. However, I would call 15 to 20 pounds over the course of a year to be more than a moderate gain. I would suggest you see your doctor to rule out any other causes and consider other lifestyle changes you might be able to make to offset any CPAP related gains.
I googled (and searched here) before I posted this thread.  When I found (by googling) that there has been an association that others have noticed, it made me realize maybe it's an actual thing.  But you're right - I'd like to see more than just one study.  And yeah, 15-20 pounds in a year is way too much.  I am in touch with my doctor about it... but haven't made headway.

(02-24-2018, 09:53 AM)kiwii Wrote: My initial sleep doctor recommended sleeping on my back, however my AHI quadrupled. But it is something you could try, and see if it works for you.


As for weight gain:

I'd be willing to bet that something has changed in your behavior or eating habits, now that you are feeling better. Think carefully... what has changed?...

Are you out-and-about more, and thereby grabbing food at fast-food joints or restaurants?

Are you cooking more? Baking more?

How are your clothes fitting? Some weight gain can be due to an increase in muscle mass. Depending on how sedentary you were prior to xPAP, is it possible that a portion of the weight gain might be due to more muscle?
I try to always sleep on my back.  If I sleep on my side, I wake up with a sore neck and shoulders.  But I'll try sleeping on my side for a week or so, and see if that helps with the excessive flatulence and burping.

I am putting a lot of thought toward this, trying to be completely honest with myself.  And yes, I bet you are right.  I do feel so much better, and I'm far more productive... and I do go out-and-about much more, and grab food outside of the house far more frequently.  I will make more of an effort to eat at home as often as possible.

I keep flying through clothes - it's getting ridiculous.  There's definitely no muscle mass here.  Most of my weight gain is in my stomach (I look extremely pregnant).  Before I took the major meds a couple years ago, I was a size 6 or 8.  Meds bumped me up to a size 14.  I'm now a size 18 or 20, mostly due to the belly.
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#9
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
(02-24-2018, 02:20 PM)sonicboom Wrote: I too believe that weight gain is attributable to compliant CPAP users.  Some time ago another member posted the following which is why losing weight is tougher:

    "food looks better, smells better and tastes better"

Working out by itself won't do the trick.  You will have to limit what you eat and avoid processed foods.  There is no secret to losing weight.  Its calories in versus calories out.    Gaining a few extra pounds is a small price to pay for successfully treating OSA and avoiding the health issues that come with untreated OSA.  Hang in there.

I have 100% compliance. 

I'm going to be more conscious of eating at home, and getting more exercise.

I'm a very healthy eater.  And I gained weight (during the major meds weight gain period) despite walking 2 miles a day and eating extremely healthy.  So that is discouraging me now.  But I'll make a big effort, and hopefully I can break this.
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#10
RE: I Love CPAP, but... please help me with these side-effects
I too have read up about this and seen quite a few of the most recent studies indicating that paradoxically XPAP results in weight gain more often than not, the theory being that this is due to a decrease in  basal metabolic rate once we are fully treated. 

Women  tend to gain weight during perimenopause and menopause, just when many of us also develop OSA. So for us,  XPAP treatment coincides with natural weight gain. Sigh. Aren't we the lucky ones?

Not sure if this explains a  15 to 20 pound increase in weight but definitely consider that  your BMR is now lower and so food intake has to be less than before to prevent weight gain and to simply maintain current weight. 

I use the  LCHF approach, it  has helped me to eat much less than I used to and not feel deprived of food all day.
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