Fertility, diet tweaks and finding mental health

We went on vacation! This vacation has actually allowed me some time to catch up on blog posts and enjoy some quiet mornings of writing once again. Part of my blogging has been sharing my journey with you. Its been awhile since I have done any updating with my story. Its always a struggle to find the balance between sharing too much and not sharing enough. 

I have talked before about my PCOS and my struggle to treat it naturally. I have been to several herbalists and naturopathic doctors. Each of them have added a piece of the puzzle but, I still felt like something was missing. I needed some bloodwork done so I could for sure know where my hormone levels were and how to best treat them. Until now it had just been educated guesses by my doctors. At the begining of this year, I was finally provided with health insurance that would allow me to see a OBGYN to begin looking at specific fertility issues. Not only that but, unbeknownst to me they covered my bloodwork 100%! What an amazing blessing. I now have specific blood results that show the levels of hormone in my system. I know that despite my previous thoughts, I am low on estrogen and I have almost zero progesterone. My body makes only the slightest of trace amounts. Now I am being supplemented with progesterone for part of the month in addition to my supplementation routine at home. So far this is working out really well. I am continuing my home supplementation because, even though my practitioner doesn’t believe in herbs, essential oils or natural medicine, when she seen my blood work she was so impressed with my health markers and other results, she was almost speechless. She told me that whatever I was doing at home needed to continue because it was working great. I had amazing liver, kidney and metabolic function. Yay me! Despite the goodnews, my practitioner is not optimistic about my chances of achieving pregnancy without fertility treatments such as IVF or IUI. The progesterone treatment is our first step and I chose this step over birth control pills. She was reccomending the pill due my combination of low estrogen, progesterone and LH hormone. I however, want to try as natural as possible first and see if my body will take its cues from there. Even in the face of my practitioner’s lack of hope, I am hopeful. I am seeing results and beyond that, I trust in Christ who I firmly believe has spoken that he will heal me and that I will have children. With God on my side, nothing can stand against me. 

While all of this was going on though, I was really struggling with food. I love food. My husband loves food. We love to expirence food together. 

(I submit for an example, this amazing breakfast we enjoyed with friends on vacation. If you are ever in vegas, you NEED to go to craft kitchen.)

I also love to cook, but with nursing school my time and energy have been short. Some nights no matter how much I prepared dinner would end up in take out or something from the store. Literally there were nights where my crockpot or the oven failed to cook despite setting it and turning it on. This was more than a little stressful. I was also working out 5 days a week, counting calories and STILL gaining weight. Not the good kind thay comes with building muscle either. This led to nights where I would burn 700 calories at the gym buy come home and freak out because I ate 100 calories over my goal. I was dissatisfied, stressed out and in an unhealthy cycle of restriction followed by binging. I felt so lost and I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to eat healthy, feel good and lose weight but, I had so many restrictions on myself, I couldn’t keep it up. I had to let go.

For several years I have been tryinh to cut gluten and dairy out of my diet. I was doing this for several health reasons not just for fad diets. However, I had a moment where I realized, I have been experiencing fewer symptoms of exposure as of late, and the stress I was causing with restriction counteracted any health benefits I could possibly be receiving. I literally felt like I was having mental breakdowns over FOOD. I was in real trouble and despite my best efforts, I had gained back all the weight I had lost anyways. 1 year of hard work had been destroyed by two years of struggling with food and it was finally all coming to a head. 

I realized I have a great oppertunity here to see how food really effects me. I have blood test results and these blood tests will be repeated in april. So I have changed my way of eating in the following ways. I am having no food off limits but, I am eating to fuel my body. I am eating high quality sources of food. For example unless I am on vacation or at a special occasion, if I eat dairy, it needs to come from grass fed cows. If I eat gluten I want it to be from the highest quality source available. A good example of that would be traditionally fermented sourdough. The fermentation process eats up nearly all of the gluten in the process. In all of this I will continue to work out, and track my food so I can have a good record of what I have been eating and doing. If in mid april I get vastly worse results, I will know it is time to go back to the drawing board. I want to approach this in a way that puts my health first and that includes my mental health. Without happinesss even being skinny is pointless. My weight loss may take a lot longer than it would take someone else but, if the worst thing I am is fat…. I think there are worse things to be. I have struggled to find balance in this new way of eating but, I am determined to find my way in a way that makes me and my husband happy. I have decided to share this with you as I go through it so that when I share my updated blood results, you will have background on what is going on and you can see how I opperate as a human being. Too often on these health blogs the only thing we see is the victories. I say you can’t appreciate my victory, unless you have seen my struggles. 

I hope you understand where I am coming from both in my choice to seek medical treatment and in my decision to eat from a whole food perspective. I also hope that you can enjoy my journey with my and somehow, be encouraged in the process. I share my journey with you in the hopes of making yours a better one.

-Lady Bug 

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