I struggled with my weight and my energy my whole life. When I received my diagnosis of hypothyroidism in my 20s, the recommendation from an esteemed endocrinologist at a prestigious top-ranked medical institution was a prescription of Synthroid. With the new diagnosis all I wanted was the symptoms to go away and to lose weight. So I took my doctor’s words to heart: I ate freely. I did not manage my stressful life. I blindly took the Synthroid, tried to ignore my condition for years and to go on with my life the best I could.
But my hypothyroidism would not be ignored: my symptoms persisted, the side effects from the medication were taking a toll on me and nothing really seemed to work. I went and saw numerous endocrinologists. I tried every sort of thyroid medication and dosage. But things seemed to only get worse.
Then I entered middle-age and new symptoms were coming up for me as I entered peri-menopause: uterine fibroids (requiring surgery), more weight gain, less energy, puffiness and digestion problems. At this point I was starting to develop a self-loathing of my body.
Next I tried various holistic therapies and diets to see if I could regain my health. I went to numerous holistic health practitioners to see if their modalities would help. I spent a lot of money at this point on my health and realize that it prevented my from going on vacations and possibly buying my own home.
In desperation, I decided to pay big bucks for the expertise a functional medicine doctor and his advanced degrees. He drastically lowered my thyroid medication. After one month, all the things I once loved doing and kept me from totally hating my body––running, biking, and other exercise––were things of the past. It was so obvious that my current treatment strategy wasn’t working. And I noticed my personality was even starting to change—grumpy, short tempered and just generally negative.
My turning point was one day, feeling such low energy and an incredible amount of pain that I wanted to go to the emergency room. My sister talked me out of it by stating the truth that the ER personnel would be of no help to me. We hung up. And I started to cry. My thoughts and feelings were: I can’t live like this, barely able to get out of bed, going to work and coming so exhausted that I couldn’t do anything else. I felt horrible. Why go on living? What is the point of my life when I can’t do anything?
And after a long cry, then it occurred to me: I need to figure this out myself. I need to fix my health, so I can live a life worth living. Period.
So I became a detective and advocate of my thyroid disease. I observed that certain foods seemed to either worsen or improve my disease. Stress also seemed to worsen my symptoms I learned that there were other medications and that dosage levels were very important. And looking at my other hormones was also crucial in this complex hormone feedback loop.
Desperate for answers, I dove into the scientific literature and found dozens of scientific papers that supported my own observations: eating a specific and healthy diet helped; binders, additives, and other food made things worse; psychological stress has a clear biological mechanism that exacerbates inflammation; certain supplements and herbs have demonstrable scientific credibility for the treatment of thyroid disease.
I was starting to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. I began to understand how inflammation happened in the body during a diseased state. Why was there such a discrepancy between the scientific research in the lab and what I was told as a patient in the medical clinic? Why wouldn’t anti-inflammatory lifestyle measures be advised?
Armed with these new resources, I pieced together my own protocol to heal. I became an expert of my body and healing myself became my life’s mission. I worked harder than I ever to read scientific papers, make small adjustments of trial and error, speak to innovative doctors and practitioners, undergo numerous health modalities and educate skeptics within my circle of family and friends.
The biggest change was that I embraced the Paleo/Ancestral diet and lifestyle. And I incorporated meditation in my daily routine. My body slowly responded to my experimentation.
And then one morning, I woke up and felt the best I had in years. I thought I might be dreaming, but I could feel in every part of my body that something had clicked. My mind was clear. My gut was settled. I felt strong and energetic. I looked younger. And I was thinner than I had been in high school. And my body was contoured and strong. I was thrilled.
The life I once loved suddenly felt possible, and I found myself back on my bike and paddleboard. I reentered the dating world (with a few intentional changes) as a middle-aged woman.
Eventually, after firing numerous endocrinologists, I found a doctor who listened to me and prescribed the exact right medication and dosage. I knew my protocol worked because it was based on scientific research and informed by the literal mechanisms of biological systems. I simply followed the evidence.
I want nothing more than to help other thyroid patients get to where I am, to help give them the scientific understanding they need to develop a tailored and multi-faceted approach that will work for their individual body, and to help them gain control of their treatment and their disease (with or without the use of medication) to result in profound and life-changing results.
And I discovered that my health protocols worked for many women (and men) who have too much inflammation in their bodies—leading to disease, chronic conditions and stubborn weight gain.
You need support, you need to learn what’s going on in your body, and you need to take an active role in your health. What I’ve learned is that there is no one magic protocol that will work for every person, but there *is* a unique protocol out there for everyone to get optimal results, and I’ve made it my job to help you find yours.
Certified Life Coach: Fowler International Academy of Professional Coaching
Certified: New England School of Whole Health Education
BS Psychology, Tufts University
Trained in Reiki I and II
Trained in Emotional Freedom Technique (tapping)
Functional Health/Wellness Coach