“I believe you have a mild case of Irritable Bowel Syndrome,” said one of the many gastroenterologists I saw for my stomach issues.
In high school, I randomly started feeling crappy, bloated, and gassy whenever I’d have dairy products and I did not understand why. I never had any issues such as that in the past, so I was a bit confused as to why it hit me so randomly.
From there, I went to about 5 different gastroenterologists to get opinions because each doctor would not be able to tell me what was wrong with me. So, I often left each office feeling the same way - frustrated.
There had to be a reason why I felt like crap all the time and no one was telling me.
No one asked me what my diet consisted of.
No one asked me what toxic cleaners I was around.
No one asked me what toothpaste I was using, what soap I was using to wash my hands, what shampoo and conditioner I was using to wash my hair.
No one asked me what perfume I was using or deodorant.
The doctors never asked me those questions simply because they weren’t trained to. Most of them aren’t taught that information in school and I can’t fault them for not knowing. I can’t fault any of them for not getting to the root of the problem instead of masking it with medicine after medicine after medicine.
By the way, one doctor prescribed me medicine and said I had to wait 30 minutes before eating, so each day, I’d take my pill at 5:00 because I knew dinner was always ready around 5:30. But, guess what? The medicine never did anything. It didn't make me feel any better, unfortunately.
During the many doctors I went through, they found a cyst in my ovary, so they removed it through surgery thinking that might help me. Nope. It did nothing but cause me discomfort after the surgery. I even went and had a colonoscopy to make sure everything in my body was working properly. Again, they found nothing!
Then, on our honeymoon, there was a nutritionist on the ship we were on and he told me I had “toxins” in my body. I had never heard of that term but trusted that he knew what he was talking about and went on his recommended cleanse to get rid of the toxin overload in my body. I have to tell you that it did work. I mean, it’s not like I was all of a sudden cured, but I could definitely handle certain types of food way better than previously. That was the start of my health journey.
After that, my husband and I moved to Tennessee where we began cooking for ourselves. We made meals from scratch. Then, he lost his job a year later and we found ourselves back home living with his parents. We still continued to cook through.
The following year, we decided to move to South Carolina where we stepped it up a notch and began to read food labels, buy organic meat and stop eating processed food. I even went onto school to become a holistic health coach and learned even more about toxins, heavy metals, chemicals, and the environment we live in.
Suddenly, I was aware of the chemicals I used to clean our apartment, non-organic meat was not something my body enjoyed, snacks linked to hyperactivity, and the brand of vitamins I was consuming mattered.
When it came to my health, I was a work in progress and whenever I’d take a step in another direction, my body would remind me that I can’t eat that way because it didn’t make me feel good. I mean, I’m not saying I’m perfect all the time, but I’ve found alternatives to the foods I used to love.
After I had my daughter, I became even more aware of everything. I wanted to set her up for success, so every food I put in my body while breastfeeding mattered. Then, once she began to eat, I would only give her organic or minimally-processed foods. No matter what though, I always read the food labels.
A few months ago, I started feeling very tired. I felt like if I didn’t take daily naps with my daughter. I would fall asleep anyway or have to drink 3 cups of coffee and I did not want to do that. I thought it was sleep deprivation because my daughter has always been a terrible sleeper.
I kept getting by taking naps, going to bed when my daughter did, and drinking more coffee. But, I knew there was something that must be wrong. There was no excuse for me to have been that tired because I don’t do any physical labor. More than anything, it was annoying.
So, I went and saw my naturopath, who told me I have MTHFR, adrenal fatigue, high levels of cortisol, and my hormones are unbalanced. Boom. Oh, and she told me I have candida, which explains everything and parasites. So, here I was searching for answers from doctors who probably didn’t have a clue as to how to check for those listed above.
Wherever you are in your health journey, I want to encourage you to always ask questions, never give up, and always advocate for yourself! Most of all…. Never lose hope!
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