British Liver Trust
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Does anyone know how to keep control of weight whilst taking steroids due to AIH, also Coeliac diagnose as well??

after having been diagnosed with AIH back in Feb this year I have started to take steroids since March. It's not really long but I am putting lots & lots of weight on and despite the fact that I took up some classes and Gym at least three times a week, this doesn't seem to help because I feel so hungry most of the time. I also feel a bit down and I think this contribute to my hunger as well. Any additional suggestions? I am starting to be seriously worried about my weight, never had to deal with this problem until last year. Thank you!

4 Replies

Hi mrossi. Steroids seem to do a mixture of fat redistribution (hence the classic 'moon face' and fat deposits round tummy) and give you an appetite. With the coeliac, do you have to avoid all grains? If so, presume that means yummy things like cake and biscuits and in fact any foods with gluten are banned.

What are the foods you are allowed to eat, and which ones do you think you eat an excess of?


weight is hard to keep of when on steriods of aih, it is a hard fight beleive you me i have been on steriods for many years now and struggle to maintain a stable weight


Hi Bolly, being Coeliac means that I have to be completely gluten free, However this doesn't mean that I can't eat any cake or biscuits, etc. as long as they are gluten free (free from range) there is no problem. What I have found is that I am hungrier than I've ever been before and even if I go to the Gym this weight doesn't come off. Having AIH means also that I might be on steroids for quite sometime, depending on how my body responds to the treatment, therefore I really need to find a way to tackle the weight before it gets really depressing! I have done a bit of reading in the meantime and it sounds like exercise and a good diet should help but in reality, like Meinbank said, it's not that easy. That is why I was wondering if there was any other advise that anyone could pass on. It looks like I have a very big battle to fight ahead! thanks for your responses, I appreciated them.


Hi Mrossi.

See if you can avoid the gluten free aisle in the supermarket and cut out cakes, biscuits, bread, cereals etc. That in turn will reduce your sugar consumption and your calories. Also try and decrease portion size. Apparently meat serving should be no bigger than a fist and at least half the plate should be veg. Not piled high either, lol! I found on steroids the problem was snacking or grazing between meals, so be firm and don't do that, or if you MUST snack keep it to fruit, or home made smoothies, or raw veg sticks, or veg smoothies.

If you are being treated correctly for AIH you will be weaned off the steroids, or at worst left on a low maintenance dose of, say 5mg. 5mg daily wont affect your appetite. Are you being put on an immunosuppressant like Azathioprine while being weaned off the steroids?


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