Monday, May 19, 2014

Food allergies and Thyroid is there a connection?

Hello everyone,

I know it's been a while since I have posted.    As usual, I got very busy with work and school!  I have a break form school right now so I decided it would be a good time to write something. I wanted to share my question, see if anyone has an answer, so here it goes!
  As we all know problems with the thyroid often means problems with something else.   Well, I have now discovered a new problem.    Sometimes I feel like I should be my own experiment,  just when you think you have things under control you are given a present.  A present that throws you off, and reminds you that you aren't under control, and that you aren't "normal"!      Don't you just love those kinds of presents, they are kind of like little reality checks, like ha ha I got you now!!!  But,  I refuse to let this presents take a hold of me, instead I am on a mission to figure them out!
Before I present my hypothesis that I need to research let me give you a little background.

   It was probably around February that I started getting itchy skin.   I wasn't concerned at first, because in the winter (well what is considered winter for Texas), my skin gets itchy and dry so I thought it was just my yearly itchy skin.    Fast forward to March,  and I was still itchy!   Figured it was probably just stress.   Around the same time a friend of mine who also doesn't have a thyroid was also experiencing itchy skin.  She went to the allergist and low and behold some food allergies were discovered.    I continued about my way, scratching and scratching noticing little bumps on my skin but being the stubborn mule that I am I just chose to ignore.    Until, one day after eating a snack pack of mixed nuts I noticed hive like bumps.    Uh-oh, maybe I am allergic to nuts, no not me I always eat nuts never had a problem.   I LOVE nuts, it can't be that.     After being convinced be a family member that maybe I should get checked just in case, off I went to the allergist.       I discovered I now have several food allergies: rice, egg white, pistachios, cashews, yeast, and salmon.   Yeast and Salmon have come up before but I don't eat Salmon and yeast is in everything so I typically avoided yeast rolls and stuff just seems like it would be filled with more yeast then normal,  but now my list got longer!             I was given a epi-pen just in case, and told to keep a food journal and write down my reaction to foods.   I was told to pick one category and if I continued to itch then move to another category.   So, I started with eliminating nuts ( not just the ones that came up positive , but all nuts) .   In case your wondering why I eliminated all nuts, well one because I got freaked out with the thought that a nut could send me into shock, and two because of cross contamination.      Hip Hip Hooray, eliminating nuts has helped tremendously, but I have noticed some itchy skin reactions with eggs , and also beer.     I am now starting to convince myself to eliminate eggs, and more yeast from my diet.         It's not easy, but if it means feeling better then one step at a time right?       Of course, I am also trying to figure out if it's in my head, or if it really is making me itch!

So,with these food allergies comes questions.  My friends and family have said that's so weird that you would get all these food allergies, and then they typically follow up with a question.  Is that normal, for adults to get allergies?    My answer, thanks to google and a little bit of  "research" : why yes people can develop allergies at any age, they can also be allergic at one point in their lives to something and then no longer allergic.            

Being the curious person that I am, I have now developed a hypothesis or maybe it's more of a research question.   
Remember back to when I said my friend also developed some food allergies around the same time, surprisingly one of her allergies is also rice.      So,  I started thinking hmm is their a connection between being thyroidless and developing allergies?       Maybe, but she doesn't have Hashimotos, but maybe there is something some kind of connection.    Of course I got on google right away and started hunting for an answer.  Unfortunately,    I didn't come across much information.  This could be because it was a quick hunt, and I haven't had much time to really "research" this.       Then from there I started thinking, really thinking.   If Hashimotos is an autoimmune disease that attacks your thyroid then maybe ,just maybe since I don't have a thyroid anymore my body has decided to attack food??       Some people say, well yeah but no thyroid means you don't have Hashimotos anymore: WRONG!!!  Most things I have read say taking out your thyroid doesn't mean Hashimotos goes away.   Oh!!!!!!! is the reaction I get when I say that.       So what about my friend the one who doesn't have a thyroid and doesn't have Hashimotos, well that goes back to my original question. Is there a connection to food allergies and no thyroid or thyroid problems for that matter?      I do plan to do some google research on this, I am sure there are others out there, or maybe no one has really looked into this.     Either way, I think it worth looking into!    

Any of you thyroidless friends or thyroid issue friends noticed any new food allergies? If so, have you found any info on this?  Please share, I am very curious!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

New Year doesn't always mean New Goals!

It's been sometime since I have been able to sit down and write.   I ended my last semester with A's in both my classes, and getting ready to start a new semester.     However, this semester I decided to slow down a little and only take one class.    I am hoping that this time around  I will be able to make an A, and get back into the exercise (in particular running) groove.     A friend of mine and I decided to get back on our 1x a month 5k.   We are supposed to do one on the 25th, which is coming up, and  I have yet to start running.   I have been using my stationary bike/elliptical trainer at home though, but I know it not enough!  Unfortunately, not to far from me a woman was stabbed to death at a park where many runners, walkers, bikers often go. She was young (I think 24), and studying to become a Physician's Assistant.  She had come home for the holidays to visit family, and of course turns out that many of my friends and family knew here.    I myself often went there to find peace in the outdoors, and enjoy a nice run, walk or bike ride.  However, after this incident the whole running community has been shaken up.    I in particular have been really shaken up, since I often went by myself.   I had pretty much stopped going after one time I saw a unusual looking male walking opposite the direction I was running.  After that incident,  I decided that I needed to be prepared to defend myself.    Well, because of work and school I never had a chance to look into this the way I had intended.    Now, since the woman's death,  I have decided to take action.   I am attending several self defense classes.   I am hoping this will make me feel safe again, but I have also decided that I need to probably start running on a treadmill until I can get over this fear.    I do not want this fear to impact my love for running and walking. 

 I am also hoping that I will have more time to cook my own foods, and monitor my food intake!  Those of you with thyroid issues know that exercise and proper nutrition is key to feeling good.      Recently, I have been hearing so much about nutrition and eating properly.  It seems the trend is to eat my vegetables and fruits,  cut back on processed foods, and even dairy.  Last weekend I made a Vegetable Kale Soup.  It was delicious, while this is not the exact recipe I did here is one that you can try.    It  looks pretty similar except I used red beans, and black beans and used vegetable broth instead of cubes so I didn't need to add water.     I have mentioned Kale before in previous posts, and it's benefits.   It is bitter but, once mixed in the soup it was delicious, I know my dad loved it and so did I. 

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/vegetarian-kale-soup/

  While it is a New Year, and I most people make resolutions, I decided since I didn't really accomplish many of my goals that why not just continue on my journey.   Why add more to my plate, when I have yet to accomplish everything I have set forth to do??    I think that if  and when I accomplish my goals it will be more rewarding then letting go of the goals I have set forth, because then I can say I finally accomplished my goals.     I think I said this last year to ha ha , but hey who ever said anything about setting a time let on tough goals.  One thing at a time right?!   
Did any of you set any new goals??      

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Reaching the peak..

Hello!!!!  Once again I have been MIA, as I mentioned in a previous email I have a full plate.  As, a matter of fact my plate is so full, that I am surprised I am still functioning.  Actually, just as in previous years by the time I get to Thursday I am pretty much out of gas.   I don't know what it is with Thursday's, it's like my body says.. hello it's Thursday time for vacation.  Unfortunately, I don't have time for vactation.       This semester, has been very challenging for me.  I am enrolled in a Neurobiology class, and a Neurobiology Lab (which I don't have much time for),  my diet has gone down the drain, mostly because I am working all the time.  I get up early, travel around the city to do therapy, go to class, travel around  some more to do therapy again, get home late, shove down dinner,  work on stuff for work, get to bed at midnight or later,  and then repeat.     In addition to work, and school  I decided to help with an retreat at my church.   This was a difficult decision for me, as the last time I helped with a retreat I got sick, and got so angry at my body for letting me down.  I was also was mad at not having a thyroid, and not being able to function the way others do. It's like reality hits you in the face, and your mind starts to take over with negative thoughts.     
 Come to think of it, it's kind of weird because when I got called I say yes right away. However, prior to the phone call, I had already been thinking about my decision.  Something was telling me,  I needed to have a decision so my saying yes immediatly, was because I had already been thinking about it for several weeks, actually I think months before.     As, the time gets closer to the retreat, I find myself going in to freak out mode.   Of course, it doesn't help that my appointment with my endocrinologist is on Monday.   I am worried about how my blood work will come out, especially since I have no time to exercise and I have been eating nothing but junk!!!!    People keep saying I look good, but honestly  I feel like a Zombie and am pretty sure I look like one.    I am very close to hitting my maximum peak, however I have decided that I am not going to give in.     I am going to do my absolute best to push beyond my peak and create a new peak.    What do I plan to do if reach this  new peak???    I am going to take a step back, and say hey I did it, and if I don't reach the peak I am still going to take a step back and say hey look what I attempted. 
I do have to admit, that this home health therapy job is bring back some very vivid memories of why I left home health a couple years ago.      No thyroid + driving around all day =     energy drain
I also have to admit that I am very disappointed that  I did not get to complete my exercise, and nutrition goals I had set forth for myself.      I guess in the end I have to be proud of the things I do accomplish, and rethink strategies to get my health back in order.  Also, as a side note:    fingers crossed that my doctors appointment goes okay, and that I am able to find a job that better suits energy level and getting my health goals back.  

As I typed this up, I started to reflect on a mission I had accomoplished.       Earlier in the semester, before my job got super crazy,  I decided to go on a run. The challenge was to go up an area called towerview.  Well, these were not hills these were mountains (in my mind), especially if you are trying to run up them.  I ended up not being able to run up them, it was a very slow walk/climb.  As a matter of fact, one of the running coaches ended up waling/climbing with me.      I am beginning to think that this was a foretelling of my semester,  nothing but one large hill after another. However,   at the top the result was a beautiful view.    It was also a lesson,  when I reached the top I discovered that if I can do this without a thyroid, I can do anything I set my mind too.    So,  I hope everyone out there reaches for their peak, or beyond whatever that may be.   

 

 





    

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Yeah me 4.5 miles, and my poor stomach

Hello everyone!!!!     I am very proud of myself, ever since having my thyroid removed I have had a serious mental block.   I can't seem to get myself past running/walking 3 miles well the past couple weekends I have done a little more then 3 almost four, but today I smashed my mental block and did 4.5 miles!!!!!  While to some this may seem minuscule to me it is a great accomplishment.   I was even told that I should probably move up to the next pace group!!  As exciting as that is I am not exactly sure I am ready for that kind of challenge.  Small steps!!          

Well after many years of not getting my stomach checked, I finally went to the gastro doctor and had an endoscopy and colonoscopy done.  For those of you who have never had this done, it sounds much worse then it is.   Basically they call you back, get your vitals hook you up to fluids, then wheel you off to the procedure room where they give you some nice medicine and then you wake up!   Thank goodness I don't remember the procedure at all!!!  Other then being wheeled in, and them putting a mouth piece in my mouth for the endoscopy I have to say the whole experience was probably easier then running/walking 4.5 miles.    The worst part of it was the prep, and now trying to get my system regulated again.      The other not sure fun part was the results.  I am still waiting for the results of the biopsies, however his first impressions were not surprising and very surprising.   He basically said I have reflux, erosive gastritis, and diverticulosis.  Now the reflux and the gastritis don't surprise me, but the diverticulosis I have to say I am very surprised.  Of course,  I probably did the worst thing anyone can do, I googled it.   This was not a good idea, because now I am freaked out and not sure what I can and can't eat. I do know however, that I do need to increase my fiber intake.  I thought I was eating enough, but apparently not.  In my search of stuff I also found out that many people have found that by cutting out gluten they are better able to manager their symptoms.   So here I am back at square one, with that GLUTEN warning flashing at me.  As if that wasn't enough, I then saw a episode of Dr. Oz on gluten sensitivity and I checked off 7 things.  So what does this tell me, something else I have been suspecting, I am pretty convinced I have a gluten sensitivity.  
What my next steps are, I am not sure.   Well I think I know, but I guess I need to come to reality and suck it up and change my eating habits.  So here is my list of to do:1) eat more fruits and vegetables, 2) eat less meat (which isn't a problem for me b/c I am not big on meat), 3) take fiber supplements, 4) drink more water, 5) eliminate bad carbs including cutting back on gluten, 6) figuring out if I can eat or if I can't eat things with seeds (much controversy on this with diverticulosis)...        UGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    
So with all that, let the new lifestyle begin, and just like with running one step at a time.

I found this picture online and I think it pretty much sums things up :)   

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Where have I been???

Geez isn't that the question!   I have been very busy, lets see where do  I start???     I changed jobs, I was working as a Speech Pathologist in the school system and now am working in the home health setting.   I do enjoy it, but boy is it a lot of driving.      Why the change in jobs, well I have also been going to school to finish up a B.S. degree in Biology with a neuroscience concentration.. ......crazy right???  I am hoping the home health setting will allow me to schedule in my classes, the way I need to so I can finish.   Why am I doing that, because before I got my masters I had started on this degree and found out I only had 24 hours to finish it which is now 15.     My ultimate goal, of course would be to finish the degree, and eventually apply to a PhD program in my field or a related field.    
   So besides school and work, what else have I been doing?? Well I have started to run again, as in I signed up for half marathon training, but I don't know if  I am actually going to do the half marathon.  I am doing the training as more of a get myself into shape thing.      My health, well it's still not where I would like it to be, it's like a domino effect one things falls apart and everything falls apart.      My latest blood work, showed my tsh at a little over 2, my non-hdl cholesterol was 1 point over, and my glucose was 1 pt over, but my A1c level had come down and was normal.  I know it's only one point, but hey  I don't want 1 pt to turn into 10 and then 20, etc,   so I have been focusing on trying to eat better, however this has been a real challenge because of my new job which requires me to eat on the road a lot!!!!   
Let's see what else????   Oh, on Monday I am supposed to go for a colonoscopy and endoscopy, I am nervous about this, but it's time I stop putting if off and actually follow through.     My last appointment with my endo, basically went like this...  I feel better when  I don't eat bread... Endo.." Well don't eat bread and starches it's not good for you anyway."     Then he went on to say that even though my blood work showed that I didn't have a gluten intolerance, that it is very possible that I have a mild intolerance or a sensitivity.   Say What???????  An endocrinologist, actually saying that test don't always tell the truth.. hmmm.   However, in this case I think he may be on to something.    Although, I still have yet to completely cut out gluten from my diet,  I really need to and plan to.  This whole blood sugar thing, and increased diabetes risk due to Hashimotos and lack of thyroid really scares me.      The last thing I need is to be taking more medication, for something I could have tried to prevent.     So I have decided, I need to STOP coming up with excuses, and just cut the junk!!!!     When will this happen, I am hoping right after I get the colonoscopy and endoscopy done, why then because I know it too will scare me out of my socks!!!!!      

Oh and guess what else???   Since I have so much time on my hands between work, school, and my never ending health concerns, I was called to help out on the ACTS retreat at my church.    While part of me wanted to say no,  I know it is for a reason  I am being called, I am not exactly sure what the reason is, but I am sure I will soon find out!    
On a fun note, I did get to travel to Florida!!!  I went through New Orleans, and Bioloxi and spent some time in Pensacola!!!   Wish I could go back and have another vacation!  


Well, that's all for now !  I just wanted to check in and give everyone an update as to why I have been MIA.    However, I have come across lots of interesting stuff and hope to share them very soon, hopefully this weekend since I will be home prepping for the procedure.        

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Kale!!!!

I have been doing my own little recipe and information search on Kale.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Kale, it is a vegetable that comes from the cabbage family.    It is said to be very nutrient rich, and have very good health benefits. 

I have also read that is has more protein then beef.    If you have ever tasted Kale by itself, it has kind of a bitter taste, however  I have come to enjoy putting it in my smoothies in the mornings.  This summer I really want to spend time, increasing my fruit and vegetable intake, as well as cutting out more gluten!!     It will be tough, but it never hurts to challenge yourself.    Not to mention, it gets so hot here in Texas, eating a big heavy meals isn't always pleasant.     Interestingly I came across this recipe, and I can't wait to try it!!!     I may try to modify it, but using gluten free lasagna noodles.. may be worth trying!       Have any of you tried Kale, and if so what have you done with it.     


Mushroom Kale Lasagna Rolls | Skinnytaste

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Shedding hair,to bad it's not pounds

One of the things that often accompanies thyroid problem is hair loss.    This is something that really bothers me.    I used to have nice thick curly hair, which sometimes  I do have to admit the thickness was annoying.     Although, having my hair thinner is kind of nice, I really hate it that so much of it falls out.      I find hair everywhere, some days more then other's and the longer it gets the more it falls out.     Unfortunately,  thyroid medications don't help because that can be one of the side effects:  hair loss.   TSH level to low, hair loss, TSH level to high, hair loss.   EEEEEEEEEEK!         So,  what's a girl to do, I am tired of feeling like a shedding sheep or dog or cat ha ha.   I really wish weight was that easy to lose.       I have tried some things, but never been consistent enough to know if it actually works, but  for those of you wondering what things may work here is a little bit of information.      

1)  Check your dosage of medication:   I know for me when my dosage was really off, my hair really started falling out more.       I also noticed that I have had less hair loss on Levoxyl vs Synthroid (which due to the recent Levoxyl recall,  I am a little worried about going back on Synthroid)
2)  Evening Primrose Oil :   I have never tried this only because I have had a hard time finding it and there can be side effects as with most things.    
3) Vitamins C and E
4) Biotin ( I did try this for a little while, but I really bad about taking pills so I don't think I saw the full effects)
5)  Ojon  and Aveda have thickening shampoos, again I haven't tried either I have samples of both which I plan to try soon, although I don't know how much benefit I would see from a small sample.
6)   Keeping your hair at a manageable length,  again I have noticed that as my hair gets longer it seems to fall out easier.        Of course my hair is also naturally curly which tends to get a drier a little easier.
7) Fish oil
8) The amino acids: L-lysine and L-arginine can stimulate hair growth.  You can take a supplement, or  by eating foods such as poultry, fish, and legumes
9) coconut oil  , now this I love !!!  You do have to be careful because if you put to much you hair might feel to oil, but just the right amount is great!    It smells good, and maybe it is just me but I do think it does help.  I prefer buying the extra virgin organic it comes in a jar, kind of pricey but hey coconut oil has many uses.       From cooking to skin.. here is a quick list I came across  http://healthimpactnews.com/2011/80-uses-for-coconut-oil/
10)     Rose Water:  I have tried this consistently either because I haven't had a chance to buy some but again it makes your hair smell nice and it has many other benefits.  My hairdresser told me about this one. 


That's about all I can think of right now, if anyone else has any other ideas please share!        I hope this is helpful to all :) 

Adventures in weight loss

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