Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Today is the first day of the rest of my life

Ok. That title was a little overdramatic, but not much. For the past few weeks I've been preparing for some dreaded news. News that would keep me separated from things I love to do and things I love to be with. News that would radically change my life from here on out. This horrid news came yesterday when I went back to see "the Dr. Song".

Most of you don't know, but I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism about 5 years ago. My thyroid seemed to be umm...majorly sittin' down on the job so my doctor at the time just prescribed medication and sent me on my way. I've been on that medication ever since, but Dr. Song however, thought something else was going on. Turns out, I actually have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, an auto-immune disease that attacks your thyroid. Dr. Song believes I do not need medication and can control this condition with diet changes alone.

And there begins the dreaded news. In addition to having built up some serious antibodies against my thyroid, I recently found out I have 103 food allergies. Yes that's right. It's pretty much every food or spice besides chicken, some fish, brown rice, broccoli, and carrots. They determine your food allergies by doing a blood test and measuring your antibodies built up against them. Apparently, I am in a crazy ridiculous "high" category of allergies and this must be dealt with. Now these foods don't cause me to break out in hives or threaten my life instantly, but they have wreaked havoc on my intestines and left me with what Dr. Song calls "a leaky gut."

Fabulous.

So all that to say, Dr. Song is committed to getting me healthy which consists of calming down my immune system, lowering the antibodies, and rebuilding the integrity of my intestines. "How will he do this?" you ask? Through diet and some basic supplements.

So today I started my new regime, removing all 103 foods from my diet (sadness), but yesterday I went out with a bang and gave my intestines one final hoorah. I knew I was going to be going off gluten and dairy for an indefinite amount of time so I had to taste and enjoy some of my favorite things for the last time. Zach and I went all over town getting me the things I wanted. It was sort of pathetic. Ha!

Monday's lunch at Cow Fish so I could have sushi.
Tuesday's lunch at Bad Daddy's so I could have a big nasty burger, tater tots, and lemonade


Bruster's Ice cream so I could have real ice cream that was super chocolatey in a waffle cone

And I also downed some Donato's pizza and brownie pie. LOL. Yes, I felt horrible after, but it was worth it. Zach has been so great, encouraging and supportive, even agreeing to do the same dinners as me so I don't have to prepare two dinners every night. Now that's love considering how bland and boring our table is gonna be for the next few months!

My new diet started today and consists of a green shake for breakfast and a green shake for lunch made from the Renewal Greens mix and rice milk to get me the nutrients I need.

For dinner, I can have any combination of chicken, some fish species, brown rice, broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, green beans, avocado, bell pepper, and walnuts. And that is all.

I'll do this for roughly 6 - 8 weeks and then slowly start reintroducing some of the foods I had the most mild reactions to and see how I react. In 6 months, I will have a second food allergy test to see how I have improved. I am really hopeful that this drastic diet change can help me regulate Hashimoto's without the medication I've been on and can also restore my tummy to a happy place that processes nutrients correctly.

I am really going to miss cooking though and enjoying food. Obviously, due to all my recipe and restaurant posts, I love me some food! Oh and sugar. Who doesn't heart sugar? But there is no sugar in the new diet in an attempt to regulate my glucose levels as well. Sadly, these three things will be missing from the blog for the next 2 - 3 months or maybe longer.

I've realized my mindset about food has to change from "something to enjoy and create" to "something that sustains my life." It's a really hard shift, but I don't really have a choice. If I continue on this road, leaving my body the way it is, it will eventually lead to more health problems, more medication, and become an even greater threat to my quality of life.

So pray for me as I throw out my medicine bottles and start this crazy diet and road to renewed health. I am sure I have hard days ahead and even as I downed my first green shake I was praying, "God help me do this. And while you're at it, take this time to not only fix my body, but continue to make a new creation in me."

Anyways, I'll keep you posted on my progress and health changes as they happen, but wish me luck! One day down, 60 something to go! :)

3 comments:

  1. I have had Hashimoto's for years and simply take Amour thyroid, the thyroid hormone that my body doesn't make on its own. It isn't "medicine", it is a hormone that your body should make but isn't. Sounds like you're going to a holistic doctor. Good luck to you.

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  2. Hi Shelly

    Leo sent me the link to your blog today after reading it because it sounded like you were going through some similar 'gut adventures' as I have been on and am continuing to explore. I don't have Hashimoto's but have lived with extreme IBS for years.

    Short story is that I have been researching the SCD diet lately and am getting ready to start the intro portion of the diet on Monday. It sounds very similar to your diet. No grains, dairy, sugar, etc. I have to eat a basic diet for 4 days and then start reintroducing one food at a time in a pureed form to see if my body reacts. It will be a 60-90 day process just to get through that phase but I may not be able to ever eat "normal" again depending on what I react to.

    I understand your pain and will be praying for you! Maybe the next time I drop Asher off at Exploratorium, I can ask you about Dr. Song.

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    1. Michele,
      Yes! Let's talk! I'd love to share with you what I know, especially about food allergies, and Dr. Song! It's been one week so far and since I removed all my "allergens" I've had not a single stomach problem. Uh-mazing. No aches, bloating, or unpleasant bathroom experiences. LOL. Also no headaches or cravings. I feel great. Let's talk soon! I'm out of town this weekend, but will be back after that.

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