For the past two years, I’ve been dealing with my own health battle. It’s been the hardest and most challenging thing I’ve faced in a long time. I promised myself I would not write about it until I had healed. I needed to give myself the space to heal, and the time to fully comprehend what was happening to my body.
Please forgive me. I did this for my sanity, and now I’m safely on the road to recovery and understand my diagnosis on a personal and professional level, it’s time to open up my own struggles with thyroid disease. I’d like you to come along the journey with me towards optimal health. We all go through challenges, and it’s so important to support one another. Let’s start the conversation.
My thyroid condition
In 2014, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, an autoimmune disorder that is 4 to 10 times more common in women. Hashimoto’s is usually associated with hypothyroidism, that underactive thyroid condition.
Basically, it’s when your own immune system starts attacking your thyroid. When it happens, your body is in a state of inflammation and compromised immunity. I know what you’re thinking – “what on earth?!” I was exactly the same.
Living the healthy life is not always easy. When I was practicing as a nutritionist, I saw just how much people struggle to actually LIVE the healthy life. How can you be expected to – when you are utterly exhausted and hating on your body every time you look at it? It’s too hard. We don’t always have the time, we’re struggling with low energy and self esteem, poor digestion, motivation and feeling good in our own skin. I get you. This is what motivated me to create my first ever online health program – released in February this year. This Program is different – it’s not about dieting, over-exercising or extremes. It follows my formula, which has helped tens of thousands of people look and feel their best again. It focuses on finding balance with food, building a positive relationship with yourself and nourishing your body with healing wholefoods. Due to the success of this Program, we’ve decided to launch the JSHealth Program Handbook – a handy, PDF printable version that you can access at any time, at your own pace. It’s simplified and shortened, for those who do not feel they need the week-by-week guidance. It really is the ultimate Christmas gift to yourself! You are welcome to start it now, or have it ready for when the new year begins. This could also be the ultimate gift for a friend or bestie – because there is no better gift than a healthy and happy life. If you have already bought the online program, you will be able to purchase the handbook at a reduced rate 🙂 EXCLUSIVE discount price of $79.99 until Christmas (RRP: $99.99)
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism
- Fatigue – deep, deep tiredness
- Difficulty focusing
- Foggy head
- Poor sleep
- Dry skin and hair
- Bodily responses to cold temperatures
- Muscle and joint pain
- Heavy periods
- Weight gain – inability to lose weight despite good efforts
The journey to diagnosis
After years of being incredibly healthy, I started feeling bad. Really bad.
I was away in South Africa for six weeks when I started noticing symptoms that were very unlike me. I had a puffy face, fluid retention around the thighs, heart palpitations, dry skin and suddenly gained three kilos. I was very irritable, and fatigued all the time. Everything felt heavy and hard. Intuitively, I knew something wasn’t right.
When I arrived home in Sydney, I went straight to the doctor to do my annual blood tests, only to find out my thyroid was collapsing on me. My TSH had jumped up (it should be below 3, and optimally 2 (mine was 4.4) and my thyroid antibodies were on the rise.
Cue absolute shock. I was dumbfounded.
These were some of the thoughts running through my head: “What was happening to me? I eat so well, I don’t take any prescription medicine, I manage my stress well, and I live a balanced life. This doesn’t make sense. I’m a nutritionist and health nut!”
It was devastating and it knocked my self-esteem massively.
This was the start of one of the most confusing times of my life. I feel I’ve only just recovered.
The worst part of this diagnosis? I felt like no one could help me. The only way to treat Hashimoto’s is to treat the trigger, the underlying cause, and we weren’t sure what triggered mine. Nobody could piece the story together, and it drove me mad.
So excited to announce my partnership with the Lilydale Free Range Tribe, encouraging Australians to embrace work life balance by disconnecting from the chaos of life and the demands of technology and getting outdoors more! You guys know, I’m a firm believer in mindful eating which is done best by avoiding distraction and all technology at meal times. This is the best way to reconnect with food and foster a more wholesome relationship with food. @lilydalefreerange #jointhefreerange #lilydalefreerange #collab
I stopped trusting my body – It took a toll on my body image.
Something I thought I had healed – I mean, I’d written an entire book about it!
The thyroid drama brought up my old demons of not feeling good enough, thin enough, perfect enough. Now I had a ‘disease’, so I wasn’t in ‘perfect health’ – this was a huge battle for my mind to overcome.
In my Program I talk about the factors that can affect thyroid function such as stress, hormonal changes, environmental toxins and nutrient deficiencies – you can find more about it here!
What I did next – the ultimate healing treatment
I buckled down and did my own research. I tuned into my body.
I simplified the information.
I then began doing everything I could to heal and restore my thyroid. I started a strict thyroid protocol, which I created based on everything I’d learned – I’ve shared this in my online Program.
I hope my story resonates with some of you. If you feel like any of the symptoms relate to your own experience, I encourage you to speak up and seek professional help.