Four years ago, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and elevated cholesterol. Without really knowing a whole lot, I did what I was told by my physician and went on a statin for my cholesterol and Synthroid for my thyroid, but the whole year that I was on those medications, I felt as if something wasn’t right. One day I decided to ditch the meds, follow my intuition and change my diet.
To give you a little backstory, six years ago I was hitting the scale at my heaviest (135lbs at 5’3”). I was running four times a week and thoroughly exhausted. After a long run, I would often come home starving, and in turn eat whatever I wanted, because I thought all that exercise allowed me to indulge. Shortly after, I would feel the need for a nap.
Fast forward to today. My thyroid is perfectly normal and my cholesterol ratio puts me in the “low risk” category for heart disease. To top it all off, I’ve lost 15 lbs and have more energy than ever!
Here is what I did in a nutshell:
I’ve been off the medication for three years and started checking my fasting blood sugar levels daily. I swapped out excessive running for fewer, more moderate workouts and changed up what I ate; replacing all wheat, grains and processed foods with proteins, healthy fats, fresh veggies and the occasional fruit. I have also added fermented foods to my diet such as kefir and kombucha. I am not saying that this protocol is for everyone, but it did wonders for me! The key is to find what works for you but in the end, whole foods are best.
A few things I learned along the way:
Pharmaceuticals (even ibuprophin) will alter your gut flora dramatically. In fact, I remember the horrible mothball breath I had while on the cholesterol and thyroid medications, and I know now that was because they were altering my gut flora, gross! Also, FORGET about counting calories and spend more time reading food labels! Know what is hidden in the packaged foods that you buy. Better yet, skip the packaged products altogether and eat whole foods that have a shelf life. The human body is an incredibly powerful and intricate machine, and just like a car if you feed it poorly it will break down, but if you feed it well it will purr like a kitten!
I wanted to share my story in hopes that it might shed a little light for someone else that might be dealing with similar issues. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE to eat, and it is my goal to start sharing with you all the recipes that I love. Be patient and most importantly, look in the mirror and love that body that carries you around day in, and day out, as it is truly amazing!
xoxo Mama Ferg