"Health is not valued till sickness comes." Thomas Fuller
As I recently lay on my bathroom floor with a paramedic over me, administering much needed pain medication for a kidney stone, he asked if I have any health conditions. According to my foggy memory, our conversation was short. I said, "Hashimoto's" and I heard him distantly say, "What is THAT?" No one in my bathroom answered him. Why? Because none of the other EMT/Paramedics likely knew the answer. And yet, it's the most common autoimmune condition in the U.S. In fact, many people don't even know they have it. They have simply been told they are hypothyroid. The symptoms of Hashi that initially catch your attention are the symptoms of hypothyroid: fatigue, weight gain, hair loss, and poor concentration, to name a few.
As a Health Coach, I see women who are at varying places on the health continuum. But Hashimoto's (Hashi) is one illness that really catches my attention, because I see a lot of it. Did you know that one in five women will develop Hashimoto's Thyroiditis in her lifetime?
Seriously, what IS Hashimoto's anyway??
What really concerns me is the lack of understanding around Hashimoto's. Our local newspaper ran a half page article on it a month ago. I saw the headline and thought, "FINALLY!" Then I read the article and thought, "Typical". If you read such an article you would be led to believe that all you have to do for Hashi is pop a pill and you'll be fine. I'd like to add my two cents.
First, let's get to the original question. What is Hashimoto's? According to Dr. Izabella Wentz, Pharma FASCP, in her book, Hashimoto's Protocol, "If you have Hashimoto's, the immune system recognizes the thyroid gland as a foreign invader and launches an immune response against it as if it were an invading virus, bacteria, or other pathogen. This autoimmune destruction of the thyroid gland eventually results in the thyroid gland no longer being able to produce sufficient thyroid hormone. This in turn leads to a hypothyroid condition."
What I have found in my practice, is that most women think as long as they take their thyroid medication they are treating their Hashi. This simply is not true. Yes, thyroid medication treats hypothyroidism. If you're on it, stay on it until your doctor says you can go off of it. But did you know that 95% of all hypothyroidism is caused by Hashi? Pills won't treat or change that.
So what's a woman to do? Before you make any changes, I suggest you work with an integrative physician to determine what triggered your Hashi (i.e. environmental pollutants, food, etc?) You also can make some key food and lifestyle choices that will lead to a healthier you, no matter whether you have Hashi or not.
Here are a few suggestions to get you started:
grain (wheat, corn, rice)refined sugarconventional dairy and meat foods that are genetically modified processed foods
toxic chemicals (personal care products/household cleaning products)
REPLACE (add in)whole foods; grass fed, organic meat and dairycolorful fruits and veggies (lots of them: think rainbow)healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), coconut oil, walnut oil, nuts/seeds fermented foods like kimchi, sauerkraut, yogurt, picklesexercise, daily stress reduction, prayer, good sleep hygiene
supplements specific to your needs
begin taking a probiotic
As I said, all of this can be overwhelming. If you're newly diagnosed or just need someone to talk to about addressing your Hashi, email me or give me a call. Or maybe you know someone with Hashi. Let them know I'm here to help. I have implemented many of the above suggestions and am seeing a reversal of my symptoms. It feels good to be taking measures to return to a healthy me. I'd love to help you do the same.
You're not in this alone. I'm literally in the ring with you on this one! Renee
I will be teaching my class, Your Food Fight: Food Your Greatest Weapon at Green Top Grocery on March 20th at 6pm. It's loaded with good information for women on maintaining/regaining your health. Email or call me by March 13 if you or someone you know would like to attend. Space is limited. It's FREE! GREEN TOP GROCERY 921 E. Washington St. Bloomington IL, 61701 Renee@yourfoodfight.com 309-825-0424