My labs are normal and I no longer have Grave’s Disease – however I now have Hashimoto’s (?)

I know I haven’t written anything in well over a year, and after reading my last post over again last night I feel really bad cause I said that I was going to be writing more, and it took me 9 months from my previous post to write THAT post. Whoops. So now I have this really guilty feeling in the pit of my stomach, like the feeling I have when it’s May and I still haven’t written out Thank You cards for Christmas gifts. I probably feel that way because I haven’t been writing, like AT ALL, for the past year and the above metaphor isn’t so much a metaphor, it’s very true, I haven’t even written friggin’ thank you cards. (Sorry Aunties and Uncles!) I just haven’t been writing.

But that’s about to change.

You all deserve an update because I’m doing great and I should really be sharing my story. Cause maybe I could actually help someone else save their thyroid too.

If you haven’t been keeping up with my story, 4 years ago I was diagnosed with Grave’s Disease and Hyperthyroidism and was told by every single doctor I saw, natural or otherwise, there was nothing I could do to help myself and that I had to “kill my thyroid” (that is a direct quote from a Doctor).

I opted not to do that because it didn’t make any fucking sense to me. I went an extreme route and found a medical medium who told me to go on a vegan, corn free diet for a year, and that the virus I had that was masquerading as hyperthyroidism would die off. I did that, and cured myself.

I followed the diet for a year. I AM NO LONGER VEGAN. If you want reasons, you can read my last post. At this time, I follow a primarily organic, vegetarian diet. I do eat cheese and eggs and corn. I also eat fish. I believe the diet saved my thyroid, in addition to me finding my voice, speaking my truth, and healing my 3rd chakra. I 100% believe there is a correlation between thyroid disease and speaking your personal truth. This is something I have struggled with my entire life. I am a recovered bulimic, a perfectionist, a people pleaser, constantly seeking other people’s approval, and not being truthful with my words for fear of not being liked for it. This character trait is DISASTROUS for your thyroid. If you are reading this and you have thyroid disease, I really want you to dig deep right now and ask yourself if you are speaking your truth. Are you living true to yourself? You can heal yourself, I promise you. It all starts and ends with you.

That is what this blog has been about.

Okay so apologies for the horrible photos below but these are my most recent labs, taken December 2015.

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My most recent labs show that my thyroid is producing all hormones within a normal range. However, they also show it is still producing antibodies, even though my other numbers are normal.

The strange thing is that the antibody profile is completely different from the last time I had the test done, which was about 3 1/2 years ago.  I only had it done once before because I didn’t have insurance at the time and the test was really expensive. But that test showed I had Grave’s Disease, and this test shows I have Hashimoto’s. So I don’t really know, my current doctor is kind of confused, as am I. But the bottom line is that even though I feel great now and everything is in range, my thyroid is still basically attacking itself, and I’m not 100% in the clear. I still need to be careful with my diet and everything else because there’s always the chance the symptoms will come back.

Yes, the route I took was extreme, and I cured myself yet I’m still at risk – but I STILL HAVE MY THYROID.  And I feel awesome! And I’ve learned so much about myself throughout this whole illness. If I had to do it all over again, I would do the exact same thing.

So do me a favor, listen to your body! Ask yourself what you can do to help yourself. Have trust and faith that the path you choose is always the right one, no matter what anyone else thinks.

That’s it for now.

Love, Shauna

I really have saved my Thyroid.

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Everyone who thought I was crazy for starting this diet can suck it. Seriously. Sorry, it wasn’t my intention to start off my first post in 9 months with a statement of anger, but I just really wanted to say that. I can’t even begin to tell you the number of doctors, friends, acquaintances, strangers and loved ones who berated me for sticking to my gut and trusting myself, rather than trusting a bunch of doctors who believed they knew my body better than I did. Sure I took the long way around, and yes the method I chose was definitely extreme, but look at me now! After 1.5 years on a (mostly) vegan diet, I still have my thyroid, and most of my numbers are actually IN NORMAL RANGE. Take a look at my newest labs again if you haven’t already.

If you can’t see the photo,

TSH                                              <0.006 uIU/mL

Triiodothyronine, Free, Serum       2.9  pg/mL

T4, Free (Direct)                            1.23 ng/dL

I do apologize that it has taken me so long to write an update. This year has been tumultuous to say the least. The main reason I haven’t posted in so long is because when my relationship ended, so did my health insurance. These are the first labs I’ve had done since February, simply because I wasn’t having any symptoms, and I really didn’t want to pay to get blood work done. Last month I finally got health insurance again through Obama Care, so I can now at least continue to post my future labs.

After my last post, and many situations that evolved in my personal life thereafter, I realized that there definitely is a time and a place for the truth. And sometimes the truth isn’t always the best choice for the moment. At this moment, I choose to be limited with the truths I reveal. So here are my current truths I believe you should know:

1. I am no longer vegan. I am still vegetarian but it is difficult to label my diet. Since I moved in January, a lot has changed. I try to eat as vegan as possible, but dairy has definitely worked it’s way back into my diet. I try not to eat a lot of cream and milk because it bothers my stomach, but I do eat a lot of cheese. I still avoid eggs as much as possible, but every so often, I eat something fried or some kind of baked good that I know isn’t egg-free. I also eat fish once, maybe twice a month. And I definitely eat WAY too much bread. And pizza. Living alone, I cook a lot less. And cooking for one is very different than cooking for 2 or 3. Honestly I’ve gotten really lazy, I hardly cook anymore. I started making a lot of quesadillas, grilled cheeses, salads, reheating frozen stuff, eating take-out…. that’s the truth. I’m not advocating the current diet I’m on in any way though. It’s not how I really would like to be eating. At least my thyroid isn’t suffering. But I would like to make more of an effort to cook more, I miss it.

2. I am no longer working with Anthony William. Simply because he was too busy, and I needed more attention. Through a mutual friend I found an amazing doctor who I have been working with since February named Dr. Sierra Levy. She works out of Maui, Hawaii. I speak to her on the phone, I have never actually met her in person. I don’t know how to describe what she does exactly but she is AMAZING. She is an MD, but works mainly with homeopathy and a technique she developed called Resonance Therapy. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND her for anything and everything, she is one of the most gifted healers I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.

3. I have Manic Depression. I really hate labels but I feel the need to explain that the last post I wrote was written during a manic episode. I wish I hadn’t revealed everything I revealed in that post, but it’s too late now, it’s out there. And everything I wrote was definitely true. But I read that post back now and I almost feel like someone else wrote it. It’s a really strange feeling.

Anyways.

That’s enough truth telling for 2014.

I still firmly believe I saved my thyroid by going vegan, and speaking my truth. I also believe that if I continue moving forward on a path of health, healing and staying true to myself, I will have a much better chance of staying healthy. I am not cured, by any means. My body is still producing Thyroid Peroxidase (TPO) at a very high rate, meaning I still do have Grave’s Disease, and for whatever reason my body is still basically attacking itself. But I am not in any danger at this point. Unless I start to show any symptoms I don’t have to get my labs done again for another 6 months. Even the nurse practitioner who went over my labs with me said, with my numbers at where they’re at now, she wouldn’t recommend any medication, just to watch my gluten intake and to come back in 6 months.

So my advice still remains, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! TRUST YOURSELF! I am saving my thyroid, and so can you!

Thanks for reading.

Shauna

Update – Day (I lost count). So 7 months and 3 weeks later….

Hello All! Obviously it has been awhile since my last post (like 5 months or something terrible – sorry! I’ve been so busy!) and I have had so many people ask me how I’m doing, I figured I should at least take 10 minutes to give y’all an update.

So it’s been almost 8 months since I started my diet, and I have to say, I FEEL AWESOME! Since my last post, my life has changed dramatically. I moved, got a new job, 2 new jobs actually!, and got off my ass and stopped feeling sorry for myself. That was HUGE. I think the change in attitude has probably helped just as much as the diet has. As for the diet, I am still (almost 100%) vegan, BUT I am not as strict as I was in the beginning. I eat bread, I eat other gluten products, I eat out about twice a week, I have a beer every now and then, I eat (some) sugar, I drink coffee, I eat soy, and on special occasions, I cheat and have dessert that is definitely not vegan (like on Thanksgiving!). I have to give myself these lee-ways or I go crazy. Literally, months 2 thru 4 were not fun for anyone.

As for my symptoms, they are much less noticeable and for the most part I can carry on my day like any normal person. I have TONS of energy (almost too much, but I do have some manic/depressive tendencies and I’m definitely going through a manic phase right now), and I feel really good! On bad days, like if I’m working too hard and overwork myself, I’ll overheat, but not to the extent that I was overheating before. I can sit down for 10 minutes now and be OK whereas before I would sit down and not be able to get up for hours. And I’ll just get a sheen of sweat all over my body instead of dripping sweat everywhere.

Overall, I could not be happier with my progress. My labs are still whacky, my T3 and T4 are still high, but they are lower than they were when I started… not dramatically, but every time I get labs done, they are lower. My TSH is and always has been >.0006, even on/off thyroid drugs, so that is one # I have not seen change. I am scheduled to have labs done at the end of this month so when I get those numbers I will post comparison labs from now and when I started so you can all see my progress. 🙂

Ok I have to run! Wanted to say though that I purchased a book called Veganomicon, which I have been cooking from for the past 2 months and everything I have made from that book is AMAHHHHZING so if you don’t already have it, go get it! I got a used copy on Amazon for $10.

XOXOXO Shauna

@The Farm Kitchen

Day 6 – Chihuahua Races

Yep. You read that right. Today I actually went outside and got some sun. A lot of sun. The high today was 94. And it actually wasn’t so bad.

Because of my hyperthyroidism, I usually sweat buckets the instant I step into the Phoenix sun, but I actually got through 2 hours of standing around in the heat to watch a bunch of very small dogs run around. This was probably the first time in 2 years that I stood outside for that long and didn’t completely sweat through my clothes. Or vomit for that matter. I think that’s a sign of improvement! I have to attribute it to my new diet. Really there is no other reason for it.

Back to the races, if you didn’t already know, I have a very sweet chihuahua whom we call Little Girl. This was the only reason we went to this event today. As we’ve discovered, most of the festivals in Phoenix are hot,  run-down, and not terribly festive. This being Cinqo de Mayo we didn’t have very high expectations, we just wanted to see Little Girl race. Unfortunately she didn’t actually end up racing, we tried a practice round and she didn’t quite get the concept.

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She’s supposed to be running in the lane, on the other side of the fence.

She did compete in the “beauty pageant”, but we didn’t know we were supposed to put her in a costume so that was kind of a bust.

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At least we all had fun, and the only one who got overheated was the dog.

Day 5 – Mojito Fruit Salad

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I’ve been told to eat a lot of fruit. Thankfully I love fruit, so that’s not really a problem, the only problem was that I had a giant watermelon in my fridge that was taking up way too much space.

Before I started on this diet, one of my last meals was a yummy brunch at one of our favorite local spots, Vintage 95 in Chandler. They offered a fruit salad as a side option, it was so good that I ate more fruit than anything else on my plate. Since I had to do something with the giant watermelon, I figured why not make that delicious salad. Here’s what I came up with:

Mojito Fruit Salad

  • 1/4 of a large seedless watermelon (around 3 cups)
  • 10 organic strawberries
  • 1/3 of a sweet pineapple
  • 3 organic persian cucumbers
  • 3 T fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 3 T raw honey
  • 2 – 3 T fresh mint – chopped

Directions

Chop all of the fruit (and the cucumber) into bite size pieces and place in a large bowl. Whisk the last 4 ingredients in a small bowl until smooth, then pour over the fruit. Mix well and serve. Best eaten within 1 day. Serves 8. (or 2 if you eat it all day like I did)

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It was reaaaaalllly good. Almost exactly like what we’d eaten at the restaurant. The cucumbers give the salad a really nice crunch, and also add a pretty color to the mix. We have fresh mint growing in our kitchen so this was a perfect dish to utilize some of the excess. If you’re in the mood for something sweet and refreshing, I highly recommend this salad over ice cream, I guarantee you will feel much better afterwards 🙂

 

Day 4 – Raw Curried Cabbage Salad

I just got back from an eye exam and they dilated my eyes, so I can hardly see but I’m going to do my best to get through this entry! Please forgive me of any typos, if I can see them I will fix them.

So today I took my supplements a little differently than yesterday and it was a much more pleasant experience. Putting the Spirulina in my smoothie definitely helped, even though it turned the whole thing black. I was so scared to try it but it really wasn’t that bad, I just couldn’t look at it while I drank it.

I know it’s only been 4 days but I’m definitely sinking into the rhythm of this diet. It’s been fun experimenting with new recipes and trying to figure out how the hell to make vegetable entrees more interesting. I’m still looking for ideas though, so if you have any, don’t hesitate to throw them out there!

Since I’m limited to only raw fruits and veggies during the day, I tried to recreate this Curried Cabbage Salad that I’d eaten previously and really liked. My parents live in Sedona and the grocery store I always go to there is called New Frontiers – it’s like a small Whole Foods. They have a really great little deli in the back with lots of vegan and raw salads and entrees. I tried this cabbage salad one day and kept the label in hopes to one day recreate it at home. Well, now seemed like the perfect opportunity!

I Googled “Raw Curried Cabbage Salad” and found something pretty close to what I wanted to make, so I changed it up a little and this is what I came up with:

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Raw Curried Cabbage Salad

Ingredients

  • ~2 lbs head of green cabbage, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut flakes or chips (unsweetened, and raw)
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 T cold-pressed olive oil
  • 3 T coconut aminos
  • 2 T black sesame seeds
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger

Directions

In a large bowl (or pot), toss together first 3 ingredients. Whisk the remaining ingredients in a small bowl. Pour dressing over cabbage mixture and toss, making sure the cabbage is evenly coated. If possible, chill for at least an hour or overnight to let the flavors blend and the cabbage break down.

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That’s it! It was so good, I ate 2 big bowls of it. Since I’m not really supposed to have a lot of oil in my diet, I lessened the olive oil and increased the lemon juice. If you don’t really like lemon, you probably won’t like this salad, but if you do it’s a winner.

Day 3 – Supplements

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Today is Day 3. So far it’s better than Day 2. Not feeling so deprived today. And I’m super excited that all of my supplements came in the mail! I’m not going to list exactly how much I’m taking of everything because I am NOT a doctor and don’t want to give anyone any information that could potentially harm them. Every body is different, this particular protocol is tailored for me and my body, and my specific issues.

As you can see above, I am taking quite a few supplements. Most all of them are in liquid or powder form, I was told I could take them all at once so I did. BAD IDEA. I put everything in a glass and filled the glass with water, it was thick and black. I put more water in. BAD IDEA. I put so much water in it I had to drink it in 3 installments, each of which was chased with a lime wedge. It was one of the grossest things I have ever drank. But even though it was fowl, it takes a distant second place to the concoction of Chinese herbs I was given by a Doctor in Chinatown to make into a tea. I literally threw up for 3 days after drinking that tea. No bueno. So next time I think I can handle all of the liquids in one glass but the powders I will put into a smoothie. 6 months of this is definitely not the easy way out, but if I get to keep my thyroid I’ll be happy as a clam.