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.
As I look back over my 20 plus years of my Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis diagnoses, I see a blur of wasted time. For me, the time wasn’t wasted because I ignored the evidence of lifestyle interventions that can significantly help people with Hashimoto’s (see Izabella’s Wentz’ book Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: Lifestyle Interventions for Finding and Treating the Root Cause or for immediate access, the eBook is here). No, I am innocent on this one because these discoveries were not understood well at that time. Nor was Dr. Kharrazian’s book out then either!
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.
There are many things that go through the mind as you learn of your new diagnoses of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. However, what I have found is that these questions don’t go away after a year, or two, or three. In fact, I’m over 20 years now with Hashimoto’s and the confirmation that this is a “journey” as described in my previous post here, is still at the forefront of my mind. But for those who are relatively new to this condition, perhaps it is appropriate to help clear up some of these questions a bit. We have all kinds of areas to address when it comes to an autoimmune disease. At the top of my head there is everything including diet, exercise, hormone imbalance, insulin levels, food sensitivities, emotional issues, brain fog, thyroid medication, supplementation, gluten sensitivity awareness, and many, many more areas. It took a while for me to realize that the best way to deal with Hashimoto’s was a whole body approach. It’s like a full scale “goose chase” to do anything different.
I get this question all the time on my Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis Support Group Facebook page. I had hoped to do a quick post on this before now, but better late than never. I am not an expert on what a Functional Medicine doctor is but I will give you my experience as a patient and then I will link to you the experts who can tell you the technical details. To give you a hint about my experience with a Functional Medicine approach, let me make it real simple: A Functional Medicine doctor equaled a functional person for me. That’s the bottom line!
Big bumps, little bumps. They all feel horrible when you are trying to find a way to live a “normal” life with Hashimoto’s. Every time you think you are getting ahead, it seems something else takes the place of your last solved “problem” so you can start trying to figure out how to deal with the newest one! Up until the last few years, I truly didn’t realize all my little “bumps” were related to my autoimmune condition. I thought since it wasn’t actually my thyroid bothering me, it must be another issue altogether especially since that’s what my conventional doctor told me!