Weight gain after stroke

Hi Everyone

Just wondered if anyone else has had a problem with weight gain, I have put on 3 stone in 18 months since my stroke.  Mainly because I am unable to be as active as I was pre stroke and even if I was to eat like a mouse I probably wouldnt burn enough calories to cover that intake.  I am unable to go out walking on my own and suffer from stroke fatigue.

I have now resorted to purchasing a treadmill to try to aid some sort of loss and so stop me getting breathless everytime I do something.

I know you can get food suppressant pills on line but dont know if they are any good.

I used to do well over 10000 steps a day but now average around 3000.

Any one else got a problem?

Exactly as you have outlined, when I was exercising just a little then the waist line started to expand. Also, my appetite is much better than pre stroke, I used to be faddy and now I am not. 

I have also been advised to have a better diet. This should reduce the chances of another stroke. So I have decided to reduce my weight by better eating. As I no longer rush around I have all the time in the world to consider and plan my "diet". Really all I do is have less red meat/processed meat and less snacks.

By losing just one pound every few weeks, I have reached a very satisfactory 155lbs. My trousers fit much better. This diet has been well over a year and I dont deny myself everything, just a bit of cake or a larger supper. I record it along with my BP and my pulse (I have a problem with heartbeat but thats not necessarily an isue for many of us) and I am not severe with this monitoring. Just watch my trends.

The last thing I will do is to take any form of medication for weight loss. We have enough wretched tablets to confuse us, so why make life more difficult.

If you really are 3 stones over the top then chip away at it slowly. Once the first few pounds have slipped away then you will be so pleased with yourself that ou will carry on, very steady. 

The treadmill is a good idea. Any exercise is good. The only exception is that too much exercise may harm you. Take it easy Wendy. You can do it


After my stroke I actually lost a stone in weight. This is mostly because the hospital food wasn’t appetising. Three years on and I have no excess weight. I did change my diet significantly. It is now one day fish, one day meat, one day vegetarian, with the odd vegan day thrown into the mix. I also make all our bread and low sugar marmalade (I am diabetic). We eat very little red meat and I drink less alcohol. I go to three exercise classes a week. Like Colin, I would advise against taking tablets.

Hi Wendy

i had a stroke last June and put on 6kg in 6 months from a mix of being told to eat more in hospital (they thought not having a pud meant I wasn’t eating enough!) carrying on with snacking while housebound and walking less than 5 mins (probably < 1000 steps) when I used to walk 90 mins a day and work full time.

i definitely agree appetite suppressants are a bad idea.

Natural sources of fibre can filling and help with appetite:

Fibre from veggies, pulses and whole grains can be mixed into meal. 

Having enough liquids: Glass of water, or a hot Tea or soup at meal times works for me

Distractions , activities: reading, internet stuff (even work - for me!) helped me cut down on my (new habit) snacking

my weight is still fluctuating due to pain, over doing it with exercise vs work and eating too much on holiday but hoping to get that initial kilo off again...

Best of luck!

amanda x


just wondering if you’ve been put on anti depressants. This can cause weight gain. 

As someone said in another thread, drs are to eager to diagnose these, sometimes not looking at other consequences. They are possibly needed but it’s a fine line in my view. 

Good luck 

I have just re read the postings in this thread and it is jolly good suggestions throughout. One thing omitted (by me as well as the rest of us) is that water is important. Especially if you are in the two years post stroke period. Our brains can not tell you they are thirsty, they will just nick the water from other parts of our bodies. Our brains are busy trying to rewire and make sense of the new person they are trying to cope with. My consuktant suggested that the brain was bubbling with the heat and water was essentail. An extra litre at least is required. I hate drinking the extra water, but I hate having brain damage a lot more. So whilst we edge our weight to abetter level, keep drinking the water.

Diet is important but I am useless at this subject so take note of others.

Good luck fellow passengers on the train of recovery


Hi, I too have put on the pounds,er stone!  But now,with the better weather and feeling better, I go out and walk.I use a retractable stick to walk with because it gives me more confidence...then I can fold it away if I go to the shops. My problem is sweet stuff....I enjoyed the meals in hospital,but cooking for myself ,not much fun. Better weather has encouraged me to have varied salads,and I am enjoying them .Biscuits and cake are not on my shopping list any more. I think the shock of the stroke does things with our life in general ,including foods we eat ...then ,after time we settle down.

Very good point Colin, I do drink a fair bit of water daily but have noticed that my muscles are turning into flab and I guess that's due to my body/brain using the water from there. I also show discoloration in my pee (sorry for being blunt), not sure if that's the medication or not enough water? I'm getting my car adapted on Monday, looking forward to getting back on the road again, its been 7 months. Look out Norfolk.

Ladies please dont read......

The medication does allsorts to the pee. I grow asparagus and am used to the effect ! Whatever, we must keep our water intake high. I understand that the brain does indeed take water from our bodies.

I was driving quite soon and it gave me so much independence. I still cant drive far, but to be able to nip to the shops and the next village, well its a huge benefit. 

Norfolk will have to accept you as you are.


My husband has put a lot of weight on since his stroke and because he isn't very active any more is really struggling to lose it

Yes my hubby is exactly the same used to walk for miles before his stroke and he has gained about 3 stone.

Norfolk sends you a warm welcome - if you don't count the easterly breezes of course ?

Our access roads are gradually improving too, win-win ?

I have had the total opposite. I have lost 2 stone. I find I am not eating the same as before ?

I have read with interest all the comments on weight, I am the opposite to many having lost a lot of weight due to my stroke I cannot now put it on again I have no real appetite or desire to eat or cook I seem to have lost all that since the stroke I liked the comment about drinking plenty of water for the brain 

good luck all


I didn’t really bother too much about the weight gain. The breathlessness was a big problem for me so I tried to eat a measured healthy diet and do as much steps as I could. Seven years later, the breathlessness is much better to my great relief and my weight is almost back to normal. 

Stroke is likely to damage our tasting. The brain is just not picking up the right messages from our taste buds. Do be reassured that its "only" the messaging service, the buds are unharmed. It would be good if you detemined your optimum weight then ever so gradually worked towrds that. Guinness is great for putting on the pounds.

Whatever, do please drink lots of water. Brain needs it whilst it is working its wonders to repair you. Barin doesnt feel pain, so it wont tell you its thirsty.

Best wishes to you Glen



If you can work out your optimum weight, then very gradually work towards that. I gained weight so have now spent many months edging it down to what is reasonable weight for me. Nice that my trousers fit me again.

Guinness is good for adding back weight.

Could you perhaps try preparing these meals that are "healthy", eg dont have meat etc.

Maybe you need cheering up generally. Lots of smiles and lots of positivity.

Dont give up Alan. You were chosen to survive a stroke. You must therefor be a wanted person. Do try and look for whatever the plan is for you. Do try looking at what you can do. And not what you cant do.

For me, its making tea and coffee for village hall and village church gatherings. And waiting on tables. It helps dexterity. It helps my brain (couldnt remember three orders to start with, now I do ten). It helps give some meaning to my existence. It gets me out the house. It makes me mix with people, and I am even popular for doing the task that enables others to enjoy their gathering.

Yes of course I have wanted to give up on everything. It is such a cruel affliction. Losing the "old Colin" is something only you guys understand. But I might as well establish "new Colin" if only to see whats in store ! I really dont miss doing other peoples taxes, investments and so on. And I dont miss the stress one tiny bit.

Best wishes to you all


Thank you for your wise words. You give hope.


thank you. Will try drinking more water. My sight seems to be getting worse though maybe that will help in the healing process . Thanks again Colin 

Lets hope so. Opticians would check your eyes (no  I dont mean the obvious) and they could tell you whats going on.