One year on…

*** This blog is not to be prescriptive nor give you advice, merely to show you my way of navigating true health in a jungle of advice and pharmaceutical pressure. Please do your own research, ask your own specialists or contact those I have used if you wish to find out more about your personal condition and symptoms. To your very best health. ***

It’s been a year!

When I started this blog not only was I just coming out of the realisation that I had the auto-immune diagnosis, I was also under the illusion that I’d be able to tweak my diet and sort it all out.

I gave myself 12 months.

As you know if you’ve been reading this, this hasn’t been the case.

I’m 12 months on, no better on paper as far as the antibody readings go, but definitely better for what I’ve learned along the way.

When I look back over these last 12 months I think that what I’ve experienced is two natural processes blurred with the Hashimoto’s diagnosis.

Firstly, as I mentioned last blog, kinesiology-Annette confirmed that I am in peri-menopause. Once again it never crossed my mind I might be, there’s a pattern here! However when you look at the symptoms associated with this early stage prior to menopause it’s very much like a list of hypothyroid issues I’d been reading about. The chronic sleep issues being one of them.

Secondly, there is a natural decline in DHEA as we age. I had an adrenal test in the back end of last year and my levels were low. Men and women both experience this as they age and it manifests in symptoms like unexplained weight gain, inability to build muscle, low mood, reduces sex hormones, libido and mental fogginess and decline.

Once again, this list looks very similar to the hypo thyroid / Hashimoto’s one and the ease with which this can be confused is apparent.

My new thoughts on this are that I suspect that I’ve been auto-immune for a long, long time and living well with it.

There’s hypo-thyroidism in the family. I’ve had several of the key triggers to cause it from as early in my life as my teenage years, plus gut health and food tolerance issues that have been underlying and weren’t noticed in my childhood but I accidentally acted on as I got more interested in health and diet. I really think being gluten free for 10 years plus has helped enormously with this and that’s why my antibodies aren’t shifting, because it aint about food for me.

So at the time of an unexpected auto-immune diagnosis I also started to experience and notice symptoms that matched this ‘new’ condition. In my view these symptoms last year were peri-menopausal ones that I was confusing for Hashimoto’s because that was the newest thing to be diagnosed and considered.

My improvement to how I feel has been from the work that I’ve done with Annette to balance the basic functioning parts of my system to better cope with this phase of my hormonal life. She’s been able to test and manage my levels and treat appropriately. Yes, I’ve had some wild and fluctuating months when it feels like it’s getting worse, to some pretty awesome times (like right now) when I feel I am able to surge ahead.

And the plan now for my Hashimoto’s remission?

Oh it’s still there alright! And I am still working with a great diet with the addition of an occasional glass of red wine and a coffee when I fancy. I’ve worked on the assumption that given that my antibodies went up when I was at my nutritional best I can probably allow myself the sheer joy of a decent coffee every now and then without any negative impact. And, as you probably know, I bloody love it.

If one of the triggers for Hashimoto’s is prolonged, underlying stress then I have some way bigger personal work to do. I have a work mindset, I need to be doing something, helping someone, coming up with a new idea. And this isn’t conducive to recovery. I am so used to how I am that if I am suffering with stress I don’t feel it.

How I address this has yet to be seen or discovered, but I am confident that more than ever I can manage this better even though I have made 2019 a particularly exciting and busy year with work, physical challenges and personal projects all lined up and signed up already. My head is definitely in a way better place than it was this time last year, my sleep is improving, my energy is up and there’s less brain fogginess. I still squint a bit, have cold hands, feet and nose and have a raspy voice and scalloped tongue. I can cope with that.

What else? Well, I’ve discovered a love for the REV5 way of strength training for health and that one thing alone has kept me sane these past 18 months.

I’ve seen I can manage on less sleep than I expected. I don’t endorse it, but it’s not been the energy-sapping car crash I thought it might be.

I’ve shown myself once again that all things pass. Wherever you are, whatever shit is going on it will pass. Amen to that.

I don’t expect that there will be huge changes that will necessitate a weekly or fortnightly update. However I am still seeing Kinesiology-Annette, have my annual GP review for the hypo-thyroid meds and have all these big things coming up that may challenge me in some way. So whilst I won’t be posting quite so often, I will update and share with you anything that’s relevant to the Hashimoto’s journey as that’s afterall where it all started a year ago.

Thank you for being interested. I hope at some point it’s made you smile, do something differently or get yourself checked out sooner.