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    Will Wog for Food

    1024 683 Terri Rylander

    My journey to find answers to Hashimotos continues. Some days are ok and some are not. None are what I would call good. I have done a ton of research and reading.

    I was surprised to read the numerous articles that suggest Hashimotos, and autoimmune diseases in general, may have a diet component. Specifically, food sensitivities. I have never been one to feel like I was sensitive to food. But, I am open to the idea that some kind of sensitivity is causing my whole body inflammation. Unfortunately, the variety of articles suggest all kinds of possible culprits:

    • Gluten (or even all grains)
    • Dairy (yes, even Greek yogurt)
    • Soy (take a look – it’s in everything!)
    • Nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews, etc.)
    • Legumes (think kidney, garbonzo, green, peas, peanuts, etc.)
    • Nightshades (tomatoes, peppers, potatoes)
    • Raw cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, etc. – reduced iodine effectiveness)
    • Citrus (grapefruit, oranges, lemons, etc.)
    • Fungi (mushrooms)
    • Corn (also in everything)
    • Sulfites (wine, etc.)
    • Sugar
    • Caffeine

    I remember reading this one day, early on, around lunch time. I looked in my fridge and just started crying. What on earth does a person eat? One can only eat so much lettuce! I decided to start with gluten for sure, but avoid dairy, soy, nuts, beans, and nightshades. I am basically following a Paleo diet, sometimes called Auto-Immune Protocol (AIP), but not been overly strict about it. Although I am one who claimed I would be devastated if I ever had to give up my cereal and milk, it hasn’t been that bad. Plus, I am very motivated.

    In the morning, I make myself a smoothie with vanilla-flavored rice milk, vanilla-vegan protein powder, spinach, ginger, banana, avocado, and frozen berries. It’s a treat. Lunch is typically a big salad with vinegar and oil dressing. Dinner is pretty plain, with a protein source and steamed veggie. I am also experimenting with gluten-free things, but they are pretty expensive. So many people claim to feel so much better in just days. Honestly, I wish I could say it was a miracle cure, but it hasn’t been. After nearly 2 months, I really don’t feel much different. I have yet to give up sugar and caffeine but may have to consider that.

    Meanwhile, I continue to jog/walk (wog) at about a 14-15 minute per mile pace. It’s depressing but all I can do.

    And the journey continues…



    Do All Good Things Come to an End?

    1024 768 Terri Rylander

    It’s hard to believe nearly a year has gone by without posting about an exciting adventure. Truth is, I’m on a new journey – one I never expected to be on. I have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. An autoimmune disease where your body mistakenly attacks your thyroid.

    I had no idea that your thyroid controls every single cell in your body. I barely knew what and where it was. Sure, I had the signs. But, they were gradual and explainable. Last summer, I noticed some aches in my joints. I am pretty active, so maybe that’s the cause. I am also a “woman of age” and my periods had pretty much stopped and the hot flashes came on with a vengeance. They were more intense and frequent than anyone else I talked to. It was also a sign. I started gaining weight. Every time I stepped on the scale it seemed to go up a pound. I gained 10 lbs in 6 months. It was also a sign.The voice in my head said I really need to stop snacking, but I was so hungry all the time. I couldn’t go longer than 30 minutes after waking without eating. I carried snacks with me everywhere. I often felt hypoglycemic. Also a sign. I was running 35 miles a week, so I could explain it away.

    One of the more curious signs was that I was/am cold all the time (also a sign). I have two heating pads I use daily. One on my work chair and one in my bed. You mean that’s not normal? Sores seem to take longer to heal (another sign). My running pace got even slower. I was never fast to begin with but could never understand why, with all my efforts, I could never improve. My resting heart rate was in the low 50’s (a sign). My exercise heart rate easily escalated into the 160’s and 170’s on any small hill. It’s called exercise intolerance and is also a sign.  I was sleeping 11-12 hours every night and never feeling fully awake until mid-day (also a sign). I hated that I had a hard time remembering or focusing on tasks (also a sign).

    In a strange twist of fate, I was about to learn something that would change my life forever. My annual ob-gyn visit was in November. Again, it came back abnormal. After an attempted but unsuccessful colcoscopy (extremely painful – Google it), my doctor decided he should do surgery and perform a cone biopsy of my cervix. Even though it came back cancerous, they were able to tell that they got it all and the whole thing was relatively uneventful. However, my blood pressure through each of these checks came back somewhat high. It wasn’t alarming, just high for me (also a sign).

    What we did learn through the preparatory blood work was that my thyroid level (TSH) was really high. I remember, just before surgery, he came in all excited to tell me he found out why I am gaining weight – it was due to my thyroid. We did some follow-up work which looked for the Hashi antibodies and it was confirmed. I asked for a copy of the blood work and noticed some other interesting bits. My cholesterol was 210!! It’s never been above 150. It was also a sign. My alkaline phosphatase was low. It seemed random but turns out was also a sign.

    I was excited to find out all these oddities (signs) were related. Just give me that thyroid pill! It will be my fountain of youth! Well, even though I started taking thyroxine, it hasn’t helped all that much. I maybe feel about 20% better.

    Although it is difficult, I am still trying to stay active. It would be easy to stop exercising altogether but I refuse. I also refuse to think that I may not be able to experience and post about more epic outdoor journeys in the future. Till then….