My Health Update & Autoimmune Disease Diagnosis

Finally sitting down to write this post for you guys. I’m not sure why I’ve been putting it off for so long – maybe just a bit stressed and overwhelmed, maybe because I feel like there’s so much information I’m sure I’m going to leave something out, but whatever the case may be this is my current health update. Also – sorry if this is loaded with typos, I’m not going to be proofreading or editing, just going to type it out and publish. If you’re new here you can read this post first to get a little background.

After I wrote that post in June, I ended up gaining another 3 pounds and hadn’t changed a thing. I now weighed the same as I had 9 months pregnant . I felt like something was off. I was feeling so tired, sluggish, struggling with headaches, brain fog/confusion, and my hair was (and still is) shedding much more than normal, an alarming amount every time I shower.  I was wanting to take naps during the day which is so unlike me – I cannot nap – and for a minute I thought maybe I was pregnant. I wasn’t. I made an appointment with my doctor, and that’s when she ordered a full blood panel. I was anxious to get it over with and hopefully figure out what was going on with my body. It turns out the (unhealthy) cycle I was constantly battling was not the only problem. Something was off.

3 days after my bloodwork, my doctor called me and told me she had some answers for me. She said, “You have an autoimmune disease.” Hearing that was shocking and scary. My heart started racing and I had no idea what was coming next. Having kids makes everything health related so much scarier and of course I started to go to the worst case scenario which is something I really struggle with. Thankfully, this is not worst case scenario! She continued to tell me that I have Hashimoto’s Disease which is an autoimmune disease that causes your body to make antibodies that attack and damage the thyroid. It explains every single symptom I was feeling, and is treatable which was such a relief. I was still shocked and nervous, but relieved. Relieved to hear it was treatable, and relieved to finally have an answer! I was ready to start my journey back to health. In addition to Hashimoto’s, I am anemic, and deficient in several vitamins and minerals. My doctor is a naturopath, so I am currently taking supplements, and I go back for bloodwork in several weeks. If my levels have not changed at all, she will refer me to a doctor who can prescribe medication. I am open to either option, as long as I am healthy and my levels are normal – I will keep you guys updated as to whether or not I have to go on medication. So that is my overall health/body update, but I know many of you are wondering how I lost the weight without going to the gym.

Another thing my doctor asked me to do is stop intermittent fasting (which I was already taking a break from if you remember from my previous post) because she said that’s not what my body needs right now. She recommended I meet with a registered dietitian to figure out a new plan. I also learned there is a big difference between a registered dietitian and health coach. I am not knocking health coaches at all (I personally know several who are a wealth of knowledge), I just think it’s something most people don’t realize, at least I didn’t. You can become a health coach online in 3 months. A RD needs a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree (most often in nutrition) that includes coursework accredited through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics. Anyway, I started googling trying to find the right registered dietitian to work with and decided to google Hashimoto’s and registered dietitian to see if there was anyone who would be able to understand more of what I was going through. That’s when I stumbled upon Samantha’s profile on the F-Factor website. Not only was Samantha a RD, she also has Hashimoto’s and struggled with many of the things I did as well. I was shocked to find her profile, because we had already been following Tanya Zuckerbrot (F-Factor’s founder) on IG ever since we heard her on the Skinny Confidential’s podcast. I started reading the book after listening to that podcast, but never finished, and just implemented some of the principles here and there, but was never really sure about the F-Factor Life before. Back to present day – I decided Samantha was the dietitian I wanted to work with, and signed on to be her client. She has Hashimoto’s, has it under control, and is a registered dietitian – I felt like who better to help me than her?! So in short, to answer everyone’s number 1 question – I have been following F-Factor since July and am down 12 lbs. I have not gone to the gym more than 5 times (although I should be!), I go out to lunch or dinner at least 3 times/week, drink wine (at least 3 times/week), and obviously have been working out less. I have been on several trips, and easily lived the F-Factor way on those trips. I actually continued to lose weight while traveling which was something I had never experienced before, usually it’s the opposite for me.

If you have never heard of F-Factor, it is a high fiber diet – I am eating at least 35g of fiber/day, which is actually not a crazy amount. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends 28-35g of fiber per day, but most of us are only getting about 5% of that. I was worried at first, wondering if I made the right decision…there was a lot of information, and I wondered if I would struggle to stay on the right path. You guys know my struggles. I’ve tried every diet, lifestyle diet, and trending diet available. But never F-Factor. Would I be starving? Would I have energy? Would it be sustainable? Would it be hard to track like I felt Faster Way was getting for me?  There have been times where it has been somewhat challenging, but I’m happy to say overall it’s so much easier than I had expected, and I’m enjoying eating breakfast again ;). I have learned so much about food/the chemistry of food that I never realized, and I do not feel deprived! I just feel so. much. better! Only time will tell if I’ll be able to continue with living healthy, but I feel like I have more motivation to get my body as healthy as possible since being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, I’m taking it a lot more seriously than I have in the past. I don’t want to just reach a “goal weight,” then binge for a week. I want to be healthy and live a healthy life. I have said before, I do not think health & nutrition are a “one size fits all” subject – that’s why there are so many different options available and you have to find what works for you and your body. But since I have always shared my ups and downs as it relates to health with you guys, I wanted to open up and let you in behind-the-scenes and share what has been going on for me personally. Let me know if you guys are interested in hearing more/me sharing what I eat on stories, etc. Also, I would love to hear from anyone who also has Hashimoto’s. I still feel like I have so much to learn and overcome with that, so I would love to hear from you. As always, thank you for the support! xx