Ok … that could be taken a couple of ways … but mostly I’m itchy (and irritated that I haven’t received much valuable help until now)!
It certainly doesn’t help that I’m awake again at 3am today 😦
Oh well … I guess I’ll take this opportunity to update y’all on the call I had last night to get me some advice – cuz I’m “fixable” apparently 😉
Having updated this wonderful, sweet lady by email the night before last with a LONG list of what’s been going on with me, it took a while to cover everything, so this might be a long post … but I’ll try to summarize.
- There’s a lot more going on than just digestive issues – basically my endocrine system (adrenals, pituitary, thymus, thyroid, ovaries, etc.) is taking a nose-dive … and if the endocrine system isn’t functioning properly … NOTHING functions properly.
- She believes I’m experiencing adrenal exhaustion … not adrenal fatigue … adrenal exhaustion/burnout. This can be chalked up-to my years of chronic and often overwhelming stress, and the loss of one ovary (with the 8lb dermoid cyst attached) didn’t help matters at all (in fact this surgery and/or the timing and prep for it seem to be the tipping point in my health decline)
Adrenals – The ‘Burnout’ phase
After some time the body simply runs out of ways to manufacture stress hormones, and cortisol levels finally begin to drop. Now, the levels of both the sex hormones and the stress hormones are low. Levels of neurotransmitters are often also low. This is what is sometimes called ‘burnout’ (a term coined by Dr. Fredenberger), and it is what happens when we finally crash after a long period of coping with stress.
During this final stage of Adrenal Fatigue, an individual can suffer from extreme tiredness, lack of sex drive, irritability, depression, anxiety, weight loss, apathy and disinterest in the world around him. In fact, this general hormonal insufficiency has important implications for almost every part of the body. To recover from Stage Four Adrenal Fatigue requires significant time, patience and often and complete change in lifestyle.
- Thyroid is also a concern to her, especially the fact that I’m now considered auto-immune thyroid, being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Unfortunately we don’t know when that actually came about since Doctors wouldn’t test for anything but TSH since the onset of my complaints years ago. Unfortunately too I haven’t seen any improvement since my meds have been upped, nor since I was put back on Synthroid instead of Levothyroxine.
- The itchy-pricklies (face, feet, where-ever) … while this can come from Candida/yeast issues, this can also be due to an overwhelmed liver … which we pretty much know I have, since the poor guy has to filter everything that’s going on in my body! It’s no wonder he’s inflamed! Apparently too, liver issues can be the cause of feelings of nausea which I’ve been having, and it’s not uncommon to be unsure if you’re nauseous or hungry – so at least that explains a few things!
- Candida … while this may be a factor in my issues, it’s apparently the least of my worries, and we’re considering it a “peripheral problem” that we’ll deal with at a later stage.
- Parasites … she doesn’t think that’s my issue at all … this is a case of poor digestion leading to malnutrition and a serious lack of absorption. It’s the chicken and egg scenario … we’re not sure if I developed Hashimoto’s first and that triggered the EGID/Gastro problems, or if the reverse is true … though in reality it doesn’t matter – either way … Houston, we have a problem!
- Inflammation – we need to figure out why I have so much inflammation, it has to be caused by something. I suspect that so many rounds of antibiotics, two purgatives, and two bouts of food poisoning in the last seven years certainly can’t have helped the situation – that completely wipes out all the good bugs in your belly! … But it is still odd that everything just seemed to shut down over the past 8-10 months. This shall remain a mystery for the moment … and maybe we’ll never figure it out!
- Fatigue – while there are all kinds of obvious reasons for this, aka the adrenal exhaustion, I was also told that digestion takes up a huge amount of energy … so with my body so depleted and the digestion system not working properly, my body is being completely taxed.
- Low Albumin – she’s aghast that the doctors are so clueless on this. #1 we know I’m eating protein at every meal – that’s not the problem. #2 we know I’m not losing protein in my urine – that’s a very good thing cuz that’s serious business. #3 we know I have diarrhea and gastro/digestive problems – EUREKA … I’m losing protein because I’m simply not digestion/absorbing it … it’s going straight out the other end! Unforutnately this means the swelling, so I’ll stay on the diuretics for now, but these too need to go ASAP.
So now what???
That’s a darn good question!
First of all before we formulate a complete plan, she’s going to do a little more research herself on EGID/EGE. She herself has been through adrenal burnout several times before, so she’s all too familiar with that, and how to deal with it. She’s going to send me some links to read and try to provide me with a list of the particular supplements I need to get, though this might be a challenge since we can’t always get the same products here in Canada.
Basics of the Approach:
- Deal with Digestion – Food alone is NOT going to cut it – this won’t reduce the severe inflammation. The supplementation that’s been suggested, while good, is simply not good enough! #1 I need to be on “therapeutic doses” of supplements, not maintenance doses … I’m too far gone for that! #2 I need to be on liquid supplementation (liquid minerals and liquid probiotics), not capsules … my gut can’t break them down to get any good out of them. ** IMPORTANTLY: Since I’m not absorbing the supplements I’m taking, my body is “mining” itself … that means pulling minerals from teeth and bones … which is why the doctors get concerned, but they don’t give good advice how to fix it! 😦 #3 I need to stop many of the supplements all-together for a while because things like zinc and selenium and more are just far too hard on the digestive system and mine’s already compromised.
- Eat Extra Clean – While I’m being pretty careful, I need to get carefulller 😉 Cut as much sugar as possible – no garbage, eat good quality protein and cooked vegetables only. This isn’t much different than what I’ve already been doing, but despite not wanting to eat soup in the summer I’m going to have to be eating 3 cups of quality bone broth per day … this gives the gut a break from heavy digestion and helps to rebuild (I knew this – just haven’t been doing it .. #SickOfSoup!)
- Supplements – for now continue on all supplements that are liquid only, and await further direction on best brands to buy (things like Bio-K probiotics were mentioned and something called Latero-Flora which apparently eradicates Candida! YAY!)
Anyway – overall I’m thrilled with the information I received in a little under an hour from this wonderful lady! She told me she can’t guarantee me this is going to fix me, but she’s been through the adrenal exhaustion and knows how it plays havoc on the system. While she’s not personally certified as a Naturopathic Practitioner, she’s completed a lot of courses and has assisted in many sessions (insert disclaimer 😉 … this is not to be construed as medical advice, bla bla bla). Somehow however, I feel she’s given me more logical information than anyone at this point … more answers and fewer question marks.
In summary she told me to remember these basic things:
Things That Take Us Down:
Things We Need To Build:
- Essential Fatty Acids
For now … that’s about it in a nutshell!
So …. a little more waiting to do, but I’m feeling confident that these folks are actually do the research they’ve promised (unlike some others who’ve obviously been stumped by all this) and follow up with me to move forward with a plan! YAY!!!!! 😀