Happy Wednesday, friends! If you didn’t see on Instagram – these past few days I’ve been feeling quite under the weather so I took a brief hiatus with Monday’s post, but I’m back today with a quick update on my chronic illness, Hashimoto’s.
First of all, I’ve finally made it through the medically-induced flare that I was going through pretty much all summer. My levels are normal and I feel “okay” – which is much better than feeling as bad as I was. I pretty quickly dropped about 7-10 lbs of inflammation as soon as my medicine was regulated. I still have about 20 lbs to go (or, until I feel better in my own skin) of inflammation and fat, but I’m glad that the extreme inflammation is gone. On someone that’s 5’1″, 10 lbs of bloat is VERY noticeable to both myself and my clothing.
With that, I’m still not feeling great and my doctor isn’t being very helpful (more on that in Update 2 below) so Ben and I have taken a lot of things into our own hands like watching documentaries and reaching out to holistic practitioners. Here are a few of the updates…
Update 1: Working with a Hashimoto’s lifestyle coach/practitioner & a nutritionist
I hired Nicola Carpenter as my lifestyle coach / practitioner specifically for Hashimoto’s. She has it and has made strides with her health, so I know her supplemental knowledge and lifestyle ideas will help me immensely. I also had a session with a nutritionist who healed her Hashimoto’s with food, so I’ll be seeing her maybe once a month as well. All of these practitioners are online, which is helpful! I meet with Nicola once per week via video chat (my next chat is on Friday) and she helps/supports me through the lifestyle changes I should make that greatly affect my chronic illness. More about that below.
Update 2: Looking for new doctors
I’m not currently looking with the holidays and such, but unfortunately I just don’t think my current doctor is helping in the way I’d like. I loved her in the beginning, but she’s currently stuck on one idea (that SIBO – small intestinal bacterial overgrowth – causes all of my symptoms) and even though I haven’t done well on what she’s prescribed, she keeps trying to prescribe me more. While I know my gut is a big issue, I do not believe that SIBO is the issue. I believe I have leaky gut that CAUSES SIBO, so until I get some of these other issues figured out, nothing we do with SIBO is going to work. Because of that, I’m looking to get another doctor or possibly see someone else at her practice.
Another thing I want to make changes with is my hormonal health. I’ve done a lot of research lately and feel that my Mirena IUD is causing (or all birth control, really) a LOT of issues for me. I even had a breast cancer scare and have a lump being watched as of late. So many scary things that can be caused by these medications that my previous doctors have prescribed to treat symptoms I’m having. So I’d like a practitioner that may also have experience with hormones.
Update 3: Food changes
The current food changes I’ve made are being VERY strict about gluten (AKA at restaurants, considering it an allergy and sticking up for myself) and I’ve now cut out all dairy and soy. I didn’t eat much dairy or soy, but the past week I’ve cut it out completely. I’ve also bought a supplement called Allergenza that I can take when I go out to eat in case of accidental exposure to gluten or dairy. While I don’t want to change my diet, I need to start taking these issues seriously. Gluten and dairy trick my body into thinking their thyroid proteins, which causes my antibodies to go into overdrive and attack my thyroid (or something like that – not a doctor.) So while it may not be celiac or a disease, it is very serious and I need to treat it as such. We’ve also been buying almost entirely organic and making a lot more of our own food.
Update 4: Lifestyle changes
While being cognizant of stress has always been a priority of mine, the last few months have been nuts so I’m trying to get back into that. The meditation and journalling I do every day helps, but I’m incorporating things like mindfulness throughout my day, working home a bit more often (when my employer allows) and saying “no” to events that don’t make me feel well.
We’ve also cut out quite a few things at our house and replaced them with non-toxic things. Here’s a few updates:
- We purchased a Berkey Filter since Chicago’s water is crap. HUGE change for us!
- Got rid of all my Bath and Body works candles :'( and replaced with essential oils
- Replaced all skin care and shampoo/conditioner/lotion with Beautycounter
- Replaced our dish soap, hand soap, cleaning supplies and laundry detergent with non-toxic or lower toxin kinds
- Purchase organic meats and organic fruits/vegetables when needed
I think that’s it for now! We’re making small, gradual changes that we know will continue to enhance our lives. Here’s to taking back my health!