Hello! My name is starchild, and Iím a woman in my mid-twenties. I am currently suffering from a flare-up , so Iím stuck in bed for a while until I can walk again. Thank goodness I found this forum. Your stories are so inspirational, and it is comforting to read the supportive messages from people who can relate to my health experiences.

I was diagnosed with SLE and a few accompanying conditions in late 2003 after a year of bouncing from doctor to doctor. Lupus is attacking my joints, skin, lungs, and overall energy level. Iím taking Plaquenil, prednisone, Flexeril, Celebrex, and a couple more prescriptions. The worst medication side effect for me is weight gain from taking the steroid (which is exacerbated by my inability to exercise regularly due to shortness of breath, fatigue, inflammation, and pain).

Please let me know what types of weight loss techniques have worked for other lupus patients. I am not overweight, but I certainly weigh more than I did before the illness and medications. Iíve asked my doctor to reduce the steroid dosage, but he said that my health necessitates a higher amount right now and that my weight is not cause for concern. I canít help but think that my knees would feel some relief if I could shed some pounds, though. I eat balanced meals (with lots of fish and very little red meat), and I do low-impact activities like walking, stretching, yoga, and meditation whenever I can; however, I cannot manage to lose weight. Iíve considered taking herbal supplements, but I donít know much about them and their interactions with lupus. Any suggestions are most appreciated.

Thanks, and best wishes to you!