My remarkable weight loss after hysterectomy with intermittent fasting

Have your attempts at weight loss after hysterectomy been unsuccessful so far? Want to know what remarkable strategy worked for me?

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After struggling for eight years with weight gain after my hysterectomy and trying different diets and exercise programs, the result was always the same. I never managed to keep the weight off.

You may want to learn how I lost 38 pounds in three months. I have been able to maintain my target weight ever since.

But first, let me explain why the other diets didn’t work. And how a few lifestyle and dietary changes gave me new insights into how our body works. These are the three key factors for successful weight loss after hysterectomy.

  1. Intermittent fasting helps your body to burn fat and not sugar.
  2. Eating a low-carb diet provides your body with less glucose and more fat
  3. Exercise helps to use up the body’s glucose so it starts burning fat quicker

Interested? Let me explain …..

Intermittent fasting for weight loss after hysterectomy

When I first read about intermittent fasting, I immediately rejected it. Fasting means no food, which means terrible hunger….. or not?

I became intrigued after watching some videos of Dr. Berg on intermittent fasting. All of it made a lot of sense. It explained clearly why losing weight was so difficult after a hysterectomy and what I was doing wrong.

When you eat carbohydrates, the pancreas releases insulin to regulate your blood sugar levels.

When insulin is present in the blood, you cannot lose weight. So, if you eat 5 to 6 meals daily, your body continuously makes insulin. Your body’s first choice for energy will always be sugar. It will not use the fat stored in your body as an energy source unless it’s run out of sugar.

So if you want to burn fat, you must increase the time between your meals. When you don’t eat (fast), insulin will drop, and your body will produce the human growth hormone (HGH), the hormone for fat loss. At this point, it will start using your fat reserves. The longer you stretch this period of not eating, the more fat you burn.

intermittent fasting

This is the idea behind intermittent fasting. It’s not a diet but changing the eating pattern and not eating.

During the day, when you eat, your body is in the fed state and burns glucose to use as energy. It also stores the glucose it doesn’t need in your fat cells.

In the fasting stage, your body uses fat from your body as its energy source. What you need to do is to give your body the time to go from the fed to the fasting stage.

Delaying the time your body is in the fasted state is a way of exercise in which you train your body to burn its own fat instead of continually using glucose. This will take time, like with any exercise, as you cannot expect to run a marathon from one day to the next.

This is how I recommend you start with intermittent fasting.

First, you stop eating snacks between your meals and just eat three meals a day. The next step is to narrow your eating window or the fed stage.

Most people prefer to do this by skipping breakfast and taking advantage of the time they sleep during the night. If you sleep eight hours and add another 4 hours of not eating, you are already 12 hours in the fasting stage. You also benefit from the fact that most of the fat-burning hormone HGH is released at night.

It takes at least 12 hours after you had your last meal before your body enters the fasted state. So you will need to lengthen the time to start burning fat.

Many people prefer the 16 – 8 scheme, where they fast for 16 hours and have their meals in the remaining 8. You can do that in the preferred time frame that suits your lifestyle. If you normally have your last meal at six in the evening, stick to it and add 16 hours. This way you can have your first meal at 10 in the morning.

How to start intermittent fasting

I’m never hungry in the mornings and prefer the last meal later in the evening. This means I have my first meal around two o’clock midday.

You may even see that you lose weight by eating the same amount of calories as before but by changing your eating window to eight hours or less.

Benefits of intermittent fasting other than weight loss

Intermittent fasting will not only help with weight loss after hysterectomy, but it has many other health benefits. Because of its increasing popularity, more and more research is being done, and new benefits are being identified. Here are a few of the benefits:

  1. Reduces insulin resistance and lowers your chance of type 2 diabetes
  2. Keeps the heart healthy by lowering blood pressure, bad cholesterol, and triglycerides
  3. Triggers autophagy ( the body detoxifies and repairs itself)
  4. Improves brain health and may delay the onset of Alzheimer’s
  5. Promotes longevity
  6. It helps fight inflammation and protects against common diseases

Eliminate your worst enemy: Sugar

The first thing you need to understand if you are serious about weight loss after hysterectomy is that most of us women consume much more sugar daily than we need. For your body to have normal blood sugar levels, you need no more than 1 to two teaspoons of sugar a day.

The fact that the average person consumes 30 to 31 teaspoons daily may cause the body cells to stop responding to the hormone insulin correctly. This means you have what they name insulin resistance.

With sugar, I do not just mean chocolates, candy, cakes, and so on, but also bread, pasta, rice, and all the carbohydrates that our body converts to sugar.

Sugar is highly addictive, and many feel they cannot live without it. But the more sugar you eat, the more your body craves it. You have to break this cycle if you want to lose weight. You can start by substituting sugar for sweeteners.

A few good examples of sugar alternatives you can try are:

  • Stevia
  • Coconut sugar
  • Raw honey
  • Maple syrup
  • Monk fruit extract

This way, you will satisfy your need for sweet-tasting food but will not spike the insulin levels in your blood. It also will gradually restore your natural sensitivity to sugar and is a way to get yourself out of the sugar trap.

One more good reason for cutting out the sugar is that eating too much sugar over the years can cause damage to your nerves, inflammation, obesity, Alzheimer’s, and cancer.

What should you eat to lose weight after hysterectomy?

 Limit your carbohydrate intake.

As I said, we must also consider all the carbohydrates we eat. Consuming too many refined carbohydrates is one of the main reasons for obesity in women.

Yes, our body needs carbohydrates to work properly. But it doesn’t need unhealthy carbs in the form of processed and refined sugars. These will only spike your blood sugar levels and offer nothing else than empty calories.

Fill your diet with healthy vegetable carbohydrates or complex carbs. Complex carbs contain vitamins, minerals, and fiber, which you can find in whole grains, legumes, nuts, fruits, and vegetables. Because they are high in fiber, it takes the body longer to digest them, and they will make you feel full for much longer.

A low-carb diet (fatter)

So what about fat? We were all brought up with the belief that fat is bad for our health. And because of this, the low-fat diet products industry flourished for many years. Low-fat products are often loaded with sugar and full of calories.

You have to overcome the fear of fat. More recent studies show that low-carbohydrate diets give better results than low-fat diets.

Eating more fat and fewer carbohydrates stabilizes your blood sugar levels. Fat does not raise your insulin levels but makes you feel less hungry and longer satisfied after a meal.

healthy fats for weight loss after hysterectomy

Avoid bad fat

That doesn’t mean you should eat many unhealthy fatty foods like potato chips, fried foods, or ready-made baked goods.

Most of these foods contain partially hydrogenated vegetable oil or trans-fatty acids and have a bad health effect.

Raising the bad cholesterol and lowering the good cholesterol raises your risk of heart disease.

Most trans fats are bad for you except the type we know as vaccenic acid, which is naturally present in full-fat dairy and grass-fed organic animal products.

Eat more healthy fat

Confused about which fats you can eat and how much?

You may include the following type of fat in your diet. Your daily calorie intake should be 50 to 85 % of these fats.

  1. Full-fat dairy products – butter, whole milk, full-fat cheese, cream
  2. Nuts – macadamia, almonds, pecans, walnuts, pine nuts
  3. Avocado
  4. Coconut oil, olive oil, fish oil, nut oils
  5. Seeds – Chia, poppy, flax seeds

Many people who are on a low-carb or Keto diet do also include saturated fats, like bacon, beef, pork, lard, and tallow.

Despite the bad things about eating saturated fats commonly believed, a recent study shows that consuming dietary saturated fat is not associated with an increased risk of heart disease.

Eat protein in moderation

When on a low-carb diet, it’s easy to overeat on protein. High-protein diets are popular, but too much protein over time may cause liver and kidney problems.

How much protein you should eat depends on several factors. For example, younger people need more than older people, and athletes need more than less active people.

The average you need is about 40 to 70 grams of protein daily. Here, you can see roughly how much protein is in each food. Prefer to get your protein from good quality grass-fed animal products and organic plant foods.

How to exercise when intermittent fasting

When combined with intermittent fasting, Exercise can accelerate your weight loss after a hysterectomy.

Start exercising together with intermittent fasting only when you feel ready for it. Initially, you may be a bit light-headed when you exercise while fasting because your blood sugars are low. In this case, it is better to stop and do your exercises between your meals or even after your last meal.

Once your body has adjusted to burning fat instead of carbohydrates, you get optimal results when exercising during fasting. If you get hungry after your workout, do it just before you can have your first meal of the day.

Here are some of the benefits of exercise for weight loss after a hysterectomy.

It will:

  • Reduce your blood glucose.
  • Reduce your insulin levels.
  • Boost insulin sensitivity.
  • Boost cellular fat oxidation (fat burning).
  • Raise your glucagon (the opposite effect of insulin).
  • Raise human growth hormone.

Weight loss after hysterectomy will not happen with exercise alone. Focus on changing the program of when and what you eat, and you will see some surprising results.

Whether you are struggling with weight loss after hysterectomy or desperately trying to get past a certain weight loss plateau, intermittent fasting is worth trying.

Intermittent Fasting is not for pregnant women, breastfeeding moms and kids. They rely on a consistent supply of nutrients for proper development. But also if you are a diabetic you should consult your doctor first.


With intermittent fasting, I managed to lose the weight I had gained after the hysterectomy. After three months, I was at my target weight. Ever since I have fasted every day for 12 to 16 hours. This is easy as my body has got used to it, and I never feel hungry anymore. I believe this also helps immensely not to put the weight back on. During the feasting hours, I now eat three meals instead of two.

What if you could start looking the way you did before the hysterectomy surgery?

What if you could experience that incredible feeling of seeing the numbers on the scale go down week by week?

Imagine how great it feels when people compliment you and ask how you managed to do it.

That is exactly what happened when I started with a low-carb diet and intermittent fasting. And I sincerely believe that you can do it too. Like to try it but don’t know where to start?

Initially, I needed a little jump-start, so I purchased a personalized Keto diet plan. I used a custom meal plan for the first few weeks, matching my food preferences. I got an eight-week meal plan for Keto-friendly foods that I liked. With this, I knew exactly what to eat and was sure that I got the right nutrients.

What do you think? Ready to get serious about weight loss after hysterectomy? I love to hear (in the comments below) if you have tried intermittent fasting or Keto. Or maybe you are tempted to give it a go.

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  1. I’ve been struggling with weight gain due to hysterectomy 8 months ago. I’ve gained about 15 lbs and the swings are crazy. It’s definitely caused me some depression. I feel like no one is hearing my concerns. I did go to an endocrinologist (waiting for results) for bloodwork so I could see exactly what was going on rather than guessing as I was not having issues with weight gain. I was highly active, ate well, etc. I’m considering the IF but my concern is I usually work out intensely in the morning and I don’t think I could do it on an empty stomach. What would you suggest? I also workout in the evening so I’m not sure I would have a 16 IF span. Maybe I would start with 12 hrs?

    1. Intermittent fasting doesn’t mean you have to skip breakfast. You can start eating at 9.00 am and have your last meal at 5 or 6 in the afternoon. I suggest you start with 12 hrs and slowly increase the time you fast. You have to find out what works best for you. You just have to forget what worked for you before the surgery regarding diet and the way you workout. It will not give the same results anymore. You will benefit more from strength training (to prevent osteoporosis), HIIT training, and yoga, and meditation. What also helps to combine a low carb with the IF and stop snacking.

  2. Great read. I have been doing Keto and nithing has changed. I will try IF along with low carb and will add in fruit. I miss fruit. Thank you for the article and encouragement.

    1. Hi Janet, be careful about the fruits you add to your diet. Some fruits are high in carbs and not very Keto friendly. For example, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries are lowest in carbs and can be eaten in small amounts. Bananas and grapes are the highest in carbs and probably not your best choice. Instead, you can eat plenty of low carb vegetables like spinach, lettuce, cucumber, cauliflower etc..which are filling and nutritious.

  3. This article ROCKS!
    I have just had a Partial Hysterectomy to remove a massive pedunculated fibroid, uterus and tubes and am “27 reversed” but still ’28 and Holding’…ha-ha!

    I know that when fibroids are the issue, fat & weight loss are really hard to accomplish. I did 2 years of strict dietary protocols starting with IT Keto > Fibroid diet > Carnivore Zero carbs (my fav) and lost Zero pounds!

    I eat Kosher, organic, zero sugars of any kind – no “cheat days” EVER, as I am not a ” food craver”.
    Now that I am in the healing process on Day 5 after surgery, I am starting the Intermittant Fasting (IT) today. The staples come out tomorrow, so it will be a week or so before I can start exercising other than walking.

    This website is THE most sane one I have found that doesn’t have the usual load of BS on it…so KUDOS all around!

  4. Hello. On my 4th day post operation, will be trying this after 2 weeks I get my stitches taken out. Thank you so much for this post. Very helpful and down to the point. I hope to have the same great results you did! I am 47 años also have Hashimoto syndrome.
    A great big hug from Guayaquil in Ecuador, South America. ❤

  5. I am 3 weeks post operation, had my uterus and both ovaries removed. I would like to start intermittent fasting. Is it okey or should I wait?

    1. I believe you should wait at least until you are 3 months post-op. Your body is healing now and needs all the nutrients it can get for its recovery. Until then you can avoid weight gain by avoiding eating too much pasta, bread and other foods rich in carbs. Eat plenty of veggies, fruit, fish and nuts in moderation. Wish you a good recovery.

  6. Thank you so much for posting! I had a partial in October 2016. I have gained 10 -15 pounds since. Full disclosure, I was not active and ate like crap. 3 weeks ago, I started working out with a trainer.1 hr a day, 3 days a week. I’ve been eating a lot better but I’ve only lost ONE pound. I was starting to get very frustrated which is how I found your post. I’ve started doing 12 hr IF and will see if that helps me get the scale to move.

    It is very discouraging to eat right and work out and still not lose.

    Thank you!

  7. What about vitamins. How do you take those with IF? Currently I take a probiotic first thing in the morning before breakfast, but with IF I may not eat the first meal until noon. Should I take the probiotic before the first meal or is it ok to take it first thing in the morning still?

    1. Hi Alaina, I take mine first thing in the morning with a glass of water. Have no problems with that. If it upsets your stomach then take it just before your first meal of the day.

  8. Today I was at my wits end with my weight gain since my Partial Hysterectomy in December 2017. I am reduced to wearing 1 jean as all the others cannot get pass my hips. I have flown past a size 8 dress to a comfortable 12 and went from 150 to 165 in the last 4 months. I am so afraid of what a 5th month will do to me. I started Intermittent Fasting in March this year and with a few “fall of the wagon” days, its now two months with 2 lbs gone. Its sad and depressing, but I figure IF has helped put the breaks on the weight gain. Its been 3 weeks now I have started walking 3 miles once a week to 4 miles 3 times a week – still only 2lbs down. This week I have started a 7 day fruit cleanse along with my 16:8 IF – hoping I can Jump-Start my metabolism. Reading your post lessened my depression a bit, as I will try the low Carb with IF after this cleanse. I usually eat three meals with IF, but I will also work on 2 for the month of May and see if that helps. Thank you for your “light at the end of the tunnel” post. I really needed it today of all days!

  9. Hi, thank you for this. I have been doing lchf for 3 years now and lost 38lb. Love my size 10. Have found that lately have been slipping and put in about 5lb, my lovely size 10’s are getting just a little snug. Due to have hysterectomy in 29 days time, any suggestions on how to best prepare myself. Many thanks x

  10. Before I had my hysterectomy I had easily lost 30kgs by LCHF and IF. But since my hysterectomy in March 2017 I have chased the same 2-3kgs up and down the scale all year, regardless of how carefully I monitor my diet and fasting times. I’ve tried 3 day egg fasts and I’ll lose those 3kgs, but I won’t lose more than that – my ‘set point’ just won’t budge. At the moment I am shaking up my IF regimen by adding in some 23 hour fasts on 3 alternate days per week. This seems to have lowered my set point by 2kgs, but it is sitting firmly at 115kgs – so I still have a long way to go – for my height and bone structure my ideal weight would be 70-73kgs. (If I had continued losing weight in the same way as I did pre-hysterectomy, I know I would easily be 15kgs lighter than I am now. My diet this last year has been a lot stricter, but the weight loss has been negligible.) Do you have any advice?

    1. Hi Wendy,
      My guess is that the problem lies in a hormonal imbalance due to your surgery. Weight loss plateaus can be caused by many other things like not getting enough sleep, lack of vitamins and minerals or even the way you exercise. Egg fasts are not a healthy approach and will make you ill when you this too often. Also if you starve yourself your body will go into its defense mode and prevent further weight loss. Do you eat enough vegetables? For IF to work you need to eat at least 9 cups of vegetables a day. Watch this helpful video with reasons why people plateau with weight loss.

  11. Hi, thanks for posting this! I had hysterectomy 2 yrs ago and have put on 30lbs. I can’t believe how hard it is to shift the weight! I just tried a month (JAN) of very “Clean eating” 3 meals a day. I counted calories everyday, consuming about 1200 a day. Cutting out high carbs like bread and potatoes. no alcohol, and absolutely nothing. Its very frustrating, but I will try this method with more vigorous workouts. Id really like to get back to where I was before! I am 42 yrs old and 170lbs and 5’9″ Id just like to have a waist again! I’ll update on my progress!

  12. This makes for very interesting reading. I have gained 1 stone since my full hysterectomy 14 weeks ago basically because I comfort ate. I could not afford to put on 1lb let alone 14lb. For the past 3 weeks I have completely altered my diet and I’m exercising and I’ve not lost 1lb, or look any different. Having read this article I will start this today. I will track my progress. Do you eat “normally” at the weekends?

    1. Hi Angela, I suggest you start slowly by delaying the time you don’t eat. I drink lots of tea and if I get terribly hungry I eat a few (a fist full) of almonds or walnuts. This will not raise your blood sugar or trigger a release of insulin. Build up slowly as I suggest on this page and the feeling of hunger will disappear after a while. This is why I continue also during the weekends. My body has completely accustomed to this way of eating and I like to keep it that way.

  13. I am very interested and will try. I am 39 years old. I was considered “over weight” for my size..4’11” 153.3lbs. before my partial hysterectomy x2 weeks ago. Yesterday …I weighed 143.3lbs at my two wks post surgical follow-up. I had difficult losing weight before the hysterectomy which I was trying (fluctuating up and down 5-6lbs) , but I definitely don’t want to gain more wt. I feared this so I Will definitely give this a try and keep you posted on my success. I had already tried the eating smaller portions prior to surgery, but was eating more frequently=fluctuating. Now I’m about to see about doing the opposite.

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