I have had my fair share of issues regarding my health, and to be honest, I am still figuring it out. BUT, I have learned so much about my body, and symptoms once I started connecting the dots and LISTENING to my body.
I had Pneumonia at ages 2 weeks old and 4 years old, therefore my body had multiple bouts of antibiotics at a young age. I grew up in an American household, eating tons of processed foods. Needless to say, my gut microbiome had a rocky start. I did, however, play in the mud, climb trees, played sports, and spent as much time outside as possible, which definitely helped.
I was started on Hormonal Birth Control (HBC) at 18 years old. I started having constipation issues shortly after. I mostly attributed it to college life (drinking a ton, eating crap, more stress, less exercise, etc). I went to a GI doctor and was told I had IBS constipation and was recommended Linzess, which just caused me diarrhea. So the solution was a laxative… Yea, no thanks. I basically learned to live with it, pooing every 3-5 days, always feeling full, BLOATED, and it changed my mood dramatically. Tons of 💩 embarrassment. Years went by. I graduated PT school, started exercising more, cooking at home more, dating a guy who was passionate about health, and then I found a book that talked about clean eating, elimination diets removing dairy, gluten, and legumes to fix a leaky gut. I tried a ton of different diets. I started eating more FIBER, drinking more WATER, focusing on stress reduction, mainly eating as many plants as possible, eliminating processed foods and refined carbohydrates/sugars as best as I can, and taking magnesium (my favorite), probiotics, and some other supplements. I can now say that my digestion is ALMOST perfect. There are certain things I know will mess up my stomach, and I try to avoid them 80% of the time, but sometimes I want to eat Pizza (dairy + gluten), have some ice cream (dairy + sugar), or slug down a few brewskies (alcohol + Hops + gluten).
I came off HBC in 2018. Everything was great until I decided to try intermittent fasting (IF, fasting for 16 hours a day). At the time, I was going to CrossFit 4-5x/week, working out INTENSELY. I lost my period. I also began having terrible acne/eczema-type rashes on my face. My bloodwork showed my hormones to be at a menopausal level at age 27. Because I didn't have a period for 2 months, my body didn’t OVULATE for 2 months, and on transvaginal ultrasound, this showed “functional cysts” on my ovaries (a swollen egg follicle that did not “burst” during ovulation). I was told I may have PCOS.
Typically for a PCOS diagnosis, you need 2/3 of the Rotterdam criteria:
Hyperandrogenism (hirsutism: abnormal hair growth in male-like patterns, typically due to increased testosterone), cystic acne (high levels of testosterone)
I had (+) menstrual irregularities, (+) cystic ovaries, (+) acne (at that moment in time)
I had ALL the emotions, thinking I would never get pregnant, a cyst could "burst", and just purely felt defeated, thinking things would never "return to normal". My hormones were all over the place and I had ALL THE FEELS. But, I kept reading books, blogs, listening to podcasts, digging into my diagnoses, and deciding to continue pursuing a natural approach. After tons of my own personal research, blood work, transvaginal ultrasounds, acupuncture, supplements, stopping fasting, eating more carbohydrates/food, gyno visits, slowing down at the gym, and saying no to medications like Spironolactone for my acne, I regained back my period naturally and learned WAY more about my body than ever before.
After a few more months of normalized periods, improved symptoms, and more gyno appointments, my functional cysts disappeared, and my gyno said “I think you are right, you don’t seem to have PCOS”.
I started ovulating again and I knew this because I began
TRACKING my cycle
Measuring my basal body temperature in the morning.
Checking for cervical mucus.
Peeing on ovulation sticks to test my LH hormone levels.
I also learned that PCOS is mostly lifestyle-related, triggered by uncontrolled blood sugar, STRESS, and could occur due to "Post Birth Control Syndrome". It is also VERY possible to have kiddos one day!
Moral of the story. It is important to learn what WORKS FOR YOU. It is important for YOU to be your own advocate, do your own research & become aware.
Awareness is EMPOWERING.
Due to my own health issues, I have pursued further education in functional medicine and nutrition.
My practice now revolves around helping others achieve optimal wellness via a holistic, client-centered approach.
Join me for either a FREE Discovery Call to see if we are the right fit!
A 1:1 90-minute Wellness Consultation
We will discuss your history, goals, expectations, and create a game plan going forward to help you achieve optimal function.
Want better digestion, sleep, more energy, and improve your entire life? Then I am your girl!