No, I don’t have celiac—Going gluten free

Just in case you didn’t realize, I am not a doctor. What I am is a person who has been living with hypothyroidism for about 14 years. And quite frankly, was sick of feeling exhausted all the time. And the weight gain, anxiety, and overall brain fog. So I took my life in my own hands by researching and researching some more. Hopefully this will help you to try to find answers for yourself! And I think the first step is finding a doctor who won’t dismiss your concerns. And by first step.. unfortunately probably the hardest.

I mentioned back in June I believe that I planned on going gluten free in an attempt to feel better. Honestly, best decision I’ve made!

For years, I’ve been plagued with stomach issues. A few years ago, I had gone to the doctor numerous times to try to figure out what was going on. I was told to drink more water. I did, and nothing changed.

One doctor I finally went to, after telling him my family history, agreed to do a blood test for celiac. It came back negative. I just wanted to know what was going on with my body could actually be prevented in some way! But I did nothing. For years.

Last year, when I started feeling like my hypothyroid symptoms were getting worse, I went to my doctor yet again, and was told my numbers were fine. That’s when I found the Stop the Thyroid Madness website and Facebook group. They are a wealth of knowledge! Once I started taking both a T3 & T4 med (after finding a new doctor), I did begin to feel a little better, but the exhaustion, brain fog and stomach issues persisted. The doctor who prescribed my new thyroid medication also suggested the 21 Day Vegan kickstart. Which got me to thinking. After searching the internet, you might find yourself finding information about removing soy, dairy and gluten from your diet. Gluten kept popping up, so I searched and found this article.

As stated before, I went gluten free and it was hard to say definitively at first. Then I took two trips and didn’t stick to it. It was almost immediate regret. There was a lot of stomach pain and I struggled with exhaustion (even with enough sleep.)

It’s a tough road because I’ve had to go based on how I feel without a definitive test. I’ve had a person tell me it wasn’t necessary (gluten doesn’t affect thyroid!) and others who completely agree.

I just hope this information can help some!

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3 Weeks post stem cells & the ARC of Onondaga Race

I can’t believe how talkative Colleen is. She’s constantly babbling, and it’s so amazing to hear all the different sounds she’s making.

Just the other day, I laid Colleen down for a nap. She threw her toy out, and in order to get it, she went to the opening and was trying to carefully get herself down with one arm extended to the floor. Why is this a big deal? Colleen has the safety sleeper because she just didn’t understand that she could fall out of her bed and hurt herself, so to see her processing the situation and not just going after it is remarkable.

Another thing? You know all those posts of the past where I was desperately trying to get Colleen’s stomach issues figured out? She was in constant pain from chronic constipation, and that was even after daily doses of miralax and senna. I was sick of giving her this stuff. Now, almost a month post stem cells, she has had 0 issues. How do you put to words the amount of relief that is?

This was after 1 treatment, and we will definitely be going back for more. We have not received her EEG results yet, so I will be bugging them again on Monday.

That brings me to the ARC race. The amount of support these past few months have been truly amazing. Every year, the ARC of Onondaga has their Dunkin Run Arc Race 5k and half marathon. The ARC serves the central New York area, providing services to people with developmental disabilities. They also pair runners from the communities with athlete with disabilities and they can run tandem. My friend, (and manager and amazing design mentor) Karanya, wanted to do this for Colleen.

I would have run, but I’m definitely no where near ready to run a half. (Maybe next year?!) Her and her friend, Rosemary, pushed Colleen tandem for the half. I think Colleen enjoyed herself and I was told she even came some motivational yells! 🙂

Before the race, when we first arrived, a little girl ran up to Colleen. She takes Colleen’s bus, and I was happy to learn that her brother was Hugo! Last year, we had a cerebral palsy awareness day at school because of the efforts of Hugo’s parents. It was great to meet them.

So here’s to next year. Feeling inspired by the running community and I’d love to tandem run further than a 5k. Better start practicing now!

Personal health: update!

Last month, I shared that I was going gluten free in an attempt to try to feel better and I thought it was time for an update.

I'm still going strong! I thought about adding gluten back in about 3 weeks into this health change, but after talking with a number of people, it seems like it should be a longer process.

Do I feel better? Eh.. that's debatable. There's days where I feel I have more energy, and there was a week straight where all I wanted to do was sleep, even after getting enough.

So the jury is still out, but I also haven't eliminated other possible thyroid triggers like milk. I have an appointment with my doctor next week. While I think she's helping, I also think my thyroid levels are no where close to being optimal yet.

This brings me to my weight! My work gym hired a full-time trainer and nutritionist a few months ago and just recently started a fat loss competition. Since scale hasn't budged in months, I asked and got a nutrition plan focusing on Macro nutrients. I'm on the second week, and now that I have a food scale, I think this is going to be a powerful tool in making sure that while my thyroid isn't optimal, at least my nutrition can be!

Haven't moved the scale much at weigh-ins, but I'm determined!

(In picture, I am 146.8)

Going gluten free.

As with most things I set out to do, I tend to be the queen of starting something, and not seeing it through to the finish. Like, at the beginning of the year when I tried the 21-day vegan kickstart to eliminate inflammatory foods, and try to help my hypothyroidism symptoms. It only lasted so long before I fell back in to my old habits, and here I am, six months later and having gained even more weight.

As easy as it is to say, “I have hypothyroidism! Weight loss is hard” Is that really all it is? Am I doing enough to help myself? Nope. Not even close. I am a part of a thyroid group who share their experiences in trying to get their thyroid optimal. I am not there yet, but something that I’ve seen over and over is people who have started to feel better after going gluten free. It doesn’t work for everyone, but it’s something I am willing to try. How else will I know? 

“The problem is that your immune system can mistake the thyroid for gluten, causing it to come under attack. When people think of gluten intolerance, they typically think of celiac disease (CD), but this is just one manifestation of gluten intolerance.” 

Source https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-18316/this-is-what-gluten-can-do-to-your-thyroid-it-isnt-pretty.html

This is going to take some work, so I’ve been researching and pinning things to help. But starting today, this is something I’m going to try to see if it helps! 

Day 1: June 4, 2017

Weight: 148 

Symptoms: Even after full night’s sleep, still exhausted. Some days of feeling light-headed. Various stomach ailments, like bloating and pain. 

Do you have hypothyroidism and hashimotos? I’d love to hear if you’ve tried going gluten free and if it’s helped your symptoms! 

Special Olympics 

Last week, Colleen got to go to the special olympics with her school. It’s a very large event with many school districts attending. 

Of course, in true NY weather fashion, it has been in the 50’s and 60’s, but on Thursday, it was 90°. I knew I was going to have to send her with a lot of water.

She had three events; ball throw, assisted walk, and jumping! She placed 6th, 4th and 1st, respectively! So proud of her accomplishments. I came later in the morning from work, and knew from seeing her that it was way too hot out for her. Despite that, she did well, and drank a lot of water. I was thoroughly convinced that she was going to fall asleep on the bus ride back, but surprisingly, she did’t! But, she was so worn out and tired that she didn’t really care that  Anna and Elsa were there. 


I can’t wait til she gets to go next year! It was evident that they needed more pop-up tents, so we’ll have bring ours next year. 

I’m having a hard time believing that it’s already the end of May. Slow down, time! Colleen has a field trip to the zoo, then we’re just about at the end of the school year. 

Please, please, so down, time! 

The ups and downs of February

You know that feeling when you wake up, and you just know you’re coming down with something? This was me a few weeks ago; I was weak and tired. I was fighting headaches on and off, and it felt like I was barely fighting off a sore throat. I was also sure that I had a fever, but nothing ever came of it. This was Saturday-Monday. By that Friday, Colleen started running a fever. Nothing terribly high, but with how I felt, I thought with some Tylenol, she would be okay in a day or two. By Sunday, she still wasn’t eating. She woke with no fever, but I took her to the pediatrician just to be sure. (Thank goodness for weekend hours!) Her doctor ran a flu test, thinking it would be negative, but it came back positive. Then I felt guilty for not bringing her in sooner. her doctor felt like she should be given the Tamiflu, and I think it helped a lot. And not that I wanted Colleen to spend her school break sick, but I’m glad that she didn’t have to miss school.

 

img_2772-recovered
Frozen always makes Colleen happy!

 

She mostly eats her lunch in her class, and after the break, we were going to start having her go to the cafeteria. She had friends eat with her before, and I think she really thrives on having others around her. Her eating really suffered from this sickness, but she’s slowly eating more. Here’s to hoping tomorrow is an improvement!

Lastly, I started Couch 2 5k! I used to run track in high school. I loved sprinting but loathed long distance. I used to run more and want to make it a habit. More specifically, I want to not hate it. I want to be able to run a 5k and not feel like I’m dying. Plus, I want to run the Tough Mudder again. 🙂 #runninggoals!

Accountability Time

At this exact moment, I have had one pair of jeans that fit me okay. That was until this morning, where another pair of pants became the victim of the dreaded thigh rub wear and split when I sat down. *Insert tears here*  So, I now how two choices; buy new jeans or lose the weight I need to in order to fit back into my others. I do need new jeans regardless, but I am definitely going to lean more towards the weight loss side because, at this point, it is definitely needed.

At 5’0″, right now I weigh exactly 145. Nowhere near being happy at this weight, where at this time last year, I was closer to my low of 125.6.

That brings us to accountability time!

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This is me as of February 12, 2017. I started the 21 Day vegan jumpstart, so I was working on eliminating dairy, meat, and soy from my diet. My doctor said I likely have Hashimoto’s, so I was debating eliminating gluten. I haven’t been tested for Hashimoto’s, so that is my next step. And of course, this lead me to be overwhelmed with coming up with a new meal plan. There are plenty of things to eat, but I’m not the best in planning. And so the vegan jumpstart went out the window.

Today, I’m working on planning. I’ve written my doctor an email to see if I can get more definitive answers and I’m committed to finally feeling better, both in my own skin and with keeping my hypothyroidism in check!