Please don’t go gluten-free yet! That must sound strange coming from someone who just finished an 8 part series on how to go truly gluten-free! But I am quite serious for those of you who have not yet taken the plunge. I say this because if you skip some steps before going on your gluten-free journey, you may regret it later. Take it from me! I have a regret or two. Not because I ignored the information I was given, but because some of these important steps were not yet offered and understood just a few short years ago. So what could be the problem with just “biting the bullet” and finally just doing it? Well, over the last few weeks/months, it has become one of the main concerns in my head as I hear of people (especially on my Facebook Support Group) who decide one day to finally “just do it” without thinking through the details as to why they are doing it exactly. What my gluten-free series didn’t cover was the pre-gluten-free steps to consider. For this, I decided to do this very short post but with very important information. I will outline these thoughts below.
One of the most important things I learned a few years ago was how to make nutritious food at home. Yes, I always loved to cook, but the food I loved to cook was laden with my favorite foods, most of which I now need to avoid. And of course, I was a bit dependent on that box of chicken stock or cream of mushroom soup from the grocery store! Now I have so much more confidence in the kitchen because I am not dependent anymore on processed foods. To top it all off, the foods that can be cooked in your own kitchen are going to be more nutritious than any food you can get in the grocery store or a restaurant and of course, they will be much more safe from contaminants and toxins. It’s been at least 3 years now since I first started taking the online classes by GNOWFLINS and at that time, I was learning traditional food preparation as outlined in one of my favorite books by Sally Fallon called Nourishing Traditions. This is the main book that got me started with traditional food preparation but I was intimidated by the idea of cooking everything from scratch. When I found out that GNOWFLINS had online classes to teach me these basics, I had no hesitation to get into those classes and can you believe that I am STILL in her classes every week? Yes, she has since built upon these classes to include all kinds of offerings including cheese-making (for those who can still have dairy), naturally fermenting foods, dehydrating classes, and so many others. The pictures in this post represent just some of the foods she helped me learn to prepare for optimum nutrition. However, what prompted me to do this post was that she is now tackling the hardest thing for most of us and that is cooking around allergies/sensitivities! This is a class I have been looking forward to for many months now. If you are intimidated by the food restrictions you or a family member needs to avoid, look no further. Wardee will take you through all the common food allergies/sensitivities and help you learn how to cook nutritious alternatives with real food, not packaged food lacking nutrition! She understands your needs because her family has had great results in adopting these changes and have seen great health benefits along the way. Whether you are gluten-free, nut free, soy free, egg free, etc., Wardee will help you get around these allergies/sensitivities with ease (it CAN be done) and enjoy your food again! I owe a lot to Wardee because she really helped me get started on this journey to healing by her wonderful teaching skills and encouragement along the way. There are videos, PDF print outs, forums and more that are included in her eCourse packages but most exciting to me is that you have unlimited access to ALL prior classes and you can learn at your own pace! What a bonus feature! I still go back and refresh myself on how to make certain foods (I’m a visual learner) and just love the video format. It’s like having a video cookbook at my fingertips 24/7! So, if you are ready to get some nutritious and allergy free cooking going in your home, I highly recommend these classes. There is no long-term commitment but you do get a better deal when you buy the year in advance. And I want to let you know that although Wardee did not have an affiliate program for the first two years I was taking her classes, I am now happy to be an affiliate for her since I already promote her classes regularly. So, if you do decide to take these classes, you can also support my blog and Facebook Support Group efforts by using the links on my blog or in this post. Happy cooking!
My husband has put up with a lot due to my Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis over the years. We’ve been married 20 years now and I was diagnosed with Hashi’s only a couple years after we were first married. Neither one of us knew the impact this condition would have on our lives, especially since the doctor told me a little pill would take care of me for the rest of my life and I would live “normally” regardless of my thyroid destruction (my story here). Little did we know we would face together a complete “melt down” of my system including years of thinking it was “all in my head” until recent medical breakthroughs exposing the reality of my condition began to unfold over the last 2-3 years. I have Functional Medicine to thank for the help I found in my life and today, I am introducing my husband’s perspective on this journey. I want to thank Michael Wentz, who is Hashimoto’s Husband, for his wonderful video and Izabella Wentz for her incredible contribution through her new book, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: Lifestyle Interventions for Finding and Treating the Root Cause (see my book review post here for details). This book, if it were available when I was first diagnosed, would have changed the course of my life. It outlines the very journey to better health I have taken over the last 2 years and is allowing me to fine tune my healing journey from where I am now. And now, I would like to introduce to you my wonderful husband and support, Adrian.
When I was first diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, I immediately thought the doctors would have a handle on it and give me the right pill and I would live the rest of my life having control over this disease. Why do you think I thought this? Because I was told by my doctor that a pill would take care of the symptoms and I would live a healthy, long life because of it. That has never played out as true and honestly, I know no one in the Hashimoto’s community who has had that experience either! But, because my doctor said this to me, I spent years believing all the symptoms I was having had to be from “something else” and that I should never question that the thyroid medication might not be controlling my thyroid symptoms, especially since my lab results were “normal.” Boy, was I lead astray. It didn’t help that I had never heard of the condition prior either. I just trusted my doctor which is the way it was for me back then, now about 20 years ago! I sure wish Dr. K’s book was available back then! And as you will find out below, I wish I had access to the supplement I found this year which has really just changed my life and I am not the kind to joke around about that! Keep reading though because I have gone through a LOT to get to that point and I know I had been doing a lot of healing and want to share what I learned before that. Keep in mind as you read this that this is my journey. I am not a doctor and not an expert but I like to think I AM an expert in the suffering Hashimoto’s deals to us as a community and that is why I started my blog and I am thrilled at how far we have come since I started my blog over 10 years ago! It is so encouraging! There is so much more to help the community than when I was diagnosed so if you are a new sufferer, take heart, you have a LOT of support if you just make a point to find the help. So, today I thought I’d take a “snapshot” of the journey I took. It only contains the highlights as most of us know how terrible this journey can be when trying to find anyone to listen. You feel alone as you walk this road without support. That is why I created my support group. Not necessarily for answers, but for emotional support (although there are many resources now available you can find there to hook up to). I want this post to be a “snapshot” of my journey so you can see that nothing usually gets better without trial and error and that you must depend on your desire and intent to get better in spite of what your doctor might be telling you is not related to your disease. Truly, they don’t always understand autoimmune thyroid disease. They look at your TSH and make a determination that you must be fine, not realizing you may have a full blown attack going on inside of you. Here’s my journey in a quick and precise, order of events (with autoimmune disease, there is no real “quick and precises process” so I have made it as precise as possible) which I may go into further in the future depending on the interest level (all the steps below began about 15 years ago and progressed steadily over the last 15 years):