People may look at me and see someone who looks healthy and fit. So what would I know about feeling awful and living miserably? How can I possibly relate? How does this little bit know even a little bit about anything?!?
I’d like to share my story and what lead me from being incredibly unhealthy: inflamed, shackled to food, crashing after lunch every day, joint pain, barely able to leave my bed some days, to where I am now. And by the way, my health is still a work in progress…but I’ve made a LOT of progress!
From the time I had reached my teens, I dealt with severe hypoglycemia. It wasn’t diagnosed until my late 20’s, but looking back I see just how long it plagued me. My way of eating was typical: toast, cereal, oatmeal, fruit, those amazing donut cakes my mom would buy me at the gas station, etc.
And I ate. All. The. Time. I was never full and if I went more that 2 hours without eating, I was shaking, sweaty, had blurry vision, achy joints, and would come close to passing out. Food was, literally, my life. But I was eating low fat, so I was on the right track, right?
Fast forward to my late 20’s when I was finally diagnosed with hypoglycemia. The “cure” they gave me was to eat several small meals throughout the day, to cut sugar, and to consume lots of whole grains. However, this kept me chained to food. It remained the thing I thought about most and what I had to schedule around every trip I made out of the house.
I continued to feel fatigue, dealt with abdominal inflammation, irritable bowel, had debilitating stomach pains that would land me in the ER over and over, only to be sent home with shrugged shoulders. It was no way to live. I entered the health and wellness field in my early 20’s, earning my Master’s in Exercise Science and throwing myself into research and soaking up all the professors said.
The food guide pyramid was still being pushed and so I passed this “awesome knowledge” onto all my clients. But I didn’t FEEL like the picture of health.
I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease (an autoimmune of the thyroid) about 14 years ago. I dove in. Deep. Through my research on how food affects, not only autoimmune disorders but how you feel from brain fog to gut issues, I came to the conclusion that I simply needed to start by changing course in how I ate.
My husband dealt with severe migraines for decades, so a friend suggested we go gluten free…perfect timing with my new-found desire to get my health under control! Within a few days he felt like a new man. Then I started noticing that my stomach ailments were gone, my joints no longer hurt, and I could go FAR longer between meals!
But this was only the beginning. I continued to study, tweak, and find what worked best for my body. I stopped being fearful of fat, started eating clean meat, tons of veggies, and reduced my grain intake. The inflammation vanished, and with it, the myriad of side effects I had been dealing with from my previous lifestyle for 30 years!
Now my mission is to help others out of this same cycle. To help them see that feeling bad is not normal. Feeling fatigued is not normal. Feeling old is not normal. If you join me on the this journey, I pray that it gives you a glimpse into true freedom. If you’ve read this far, you need a hug. And maybe a nap.
Here’s to being your own health advocate and to a new beginning. It’s never too late!