At Integrative Health, I have seen patients markedly improve their overall health, lower their antibodies in lab results, and balance their hormones. Thanks to natural treatment methods. Today, I want to share with you a couple of examples to show you what these improvements look like and how you can access them for yourself.
Patient 1: Wendy
When Wendy first came to see me, when she was in her late 50’s, she was suffering from mood changes, memory problems, and fatigue. In fact, her energy levels were around a 5 out of 10 and declined as the day progressed.
She was regularly feeling anxious, mildly depressed, and overwhelmed. Wendy had been struggling for a while: she had been taking care of her father for the past couple of years, and he had then passed away. But she was also working a lot of hours at a demanding job and was finding it difficult to wind down during the evenings.
Wendy had been following a paleo regime for over a year and was able to fairly easily avoid processed carbohydrates and other unhealthy foods. However, Wendy was very tired generally, making it difficult to exercise.
It didn’t help that she was only managing to rest at night for around four hours as she found it so hard to get to sleep and stay asleep. Even during these few hours, she would toss and turn and wake up a number of times.
Wendy was also experiencing digestive upset, reporting gas and bloating on a regular basis for many months before she came to see me.
I decided to run a comprehensive wellness panel for Wendy. The results showed that she had:
- High thyroid antibodies
- High TSH
- Low free T3
We also found out that she had suboptimal ferritin levels (the storage form of iron), and low-hormone status. I sent Wendy for a thyroid ultrasound, which showed that she had a small nodule on the left lobe of her thyroid gland.
Key Insight: When we tested Wendy’s cortisol levels with a salivary test, her cortisol was low during the morning and high at night. This pattern is the opposite of what a healthy person’s test should reveal. No wonder she was having trouble sleeping!
Next, I examined Wendy’s stool analysis. They pointed to two issues going on within her gut:
- A lack of friendly bacteria, and
- The domination of two forms of bad bacteria within her lower digestive system
At the same time, her food sensitivity test revealed signs of autoimmune gastritis, and a sensitivity to eggs, gluten, and dairy.
All of the issues above required addressing right away. So I started with Wendy’s thyroid condition and recommended she begin taking Natural Desiccated Thyroid Medication (NDT).
We also cleaned up her diet further by eliminating the foods she was sensitive to and adding in foods and supplements to help heal her gut.
We worked on eradicating the bacterial infections in her digestive track with antimicrobial supplements, balanced her hormones and aided the normalization of cortisol levels with Wired and Tired Reset Packs (Click Here).
Our 3-Month Follow-Up Session
Wendy came to see me again after three months with more energy and the ability to do more for longer periods of time. She had more energy in the evenings, so she was no longer getting home from work and going straight to bed.
Wendy’s mood was also looking better. She was sleeping through the night and feeling rested upon waking. There was no more depression nor anxiety.
Key Insight: Wendy did admit to me that her work was still stressful, but she was finding it much easier to manage and handle that stress effectively.
I was also glad to hear that Wendy had been able to stay away from the foods that had been irritating her body previously and her ferritin levels had normalized. I adjusted Wendy’s NDT levels so they were more optimal for her body.
Our 6-Month Follow-Up Session
After 6 months, I tested Wendy’s thyroid antibody levels once again. What did I find? Her antibodies were now nowhere to be seen. Her thyroid lab values were optimized. And Wendy reported feeling normal again with a lot more energy.
Patient 2: Tracy
Tracy was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis 3 years prior to our first consultation. Some of the things she was struggling with include:
- Weight gain
Tracy had been to see her primary care physician before we met, who had prescribed Levothyroxine to normalize her thyroid hormone levels. However, she didn’t feel well at all while taking the drug.
She had opted to take Armour Thyroid instead and had been taking it for over 12 months when she came to see me, but she was still not feeling well.
In actual fact, Tracy was getting headaches around twice per week. She was feeling very tired and wanted to nap during the afternoon (the time at which she would experience energy crashes).
She was also feeling frustrated easily, edgy, and had a stress level of 10 out of 10. Tracy was a lady with a lot of responsibility at work. She owned her own business and had a family of four children.
Tracy had also put on weight progressively in recent years and had had trouble losing the extra pounds she had put on.
What About Her Diet?
Tracy didn’t follow any particular regime and often missed breakfast. Sugar cravings were a regular occurrence for her.
The good thing about Tracy’s lifestyle is that she was consistently exercising three times every week. She enjoyed both cardiovascular workouts and strength training.
However, it was hard for Tracy to sleep at night. She was also getting just four hours per night, going to bed late, and having difficulty falling and staying asleep.
Two cups of coffee in the morning was helping combat the fatigue Tracy felt every morning. But it was obvious that Tracy was really just borrowing energy this way as she would still suffer from extreme dips in energy late in the day.
Tracy told me that her digestive system had been out of balance for some time. She had loose stools every day, and this had not changed for many years.
Tracy’s Test Results
A comprehensive wellness panel revealed that Tracy’s thyroid antibodies were very elevated. As was her fasting insulin levels (suggesting insulin resistance). She was also severely deficient in Vitamin D, and Free T4 was being poorly converted into Free T3 (the active thyroid hormone).
When we performed a thyroid ultrasound, nodules on the left and right lobes of the thyroid gland were found. A salivary cortisol test showed that Tracy’s cortisol levels were high during the morning, afternoon, and evening.
We also found elevated lead and mercury levels in Tracy’s body, as well as a candida/yeast infection, and gut flora imbalance.
Her Treatment Plan
To help Tracy improve her symptoms, I switched Tracy to an NDT medication and recommended that she begin a Metabolism Reset Diet for a four-week period.
Key Insight: She also agreed to avoid gluten, dairy and eggs, take the necessary supplements and eat food to optimize gut healing.
I asked her to increase more resistant starch to her diet. Which creates little or no insulin response, leading to lower blood sugar and insulin levels (Read: Research update, resistant starch). This type of starch is also great for fat loss.
Tracy took away Stressed Reset Packs to help reduce her cortisol levels. I asked her to decrease her cardiovascular workout intensity, and incorporate meditation into her daily habits to help reduce her stress load.
We worked on eradicating her yeast infection and boosting good bacteria in her gut with probiotics.
Our 3-Month Follow-Up Session
During our 3-month follow-up consultation, Tracy told me she had a lot more energy. She had lost 11 pounds, didn’t feel as edgy and irritable, and reported generally more positive moods.
Tracy’s headaches had disappeared, her insulin levels had normalized, and she was no longer skipping breakfast. (Read: Skipping breakfast to lose weight)
It was easier for Tracy to get to sleep earlier, too. She was getting 7-8 hours of sleep and waking up more refreshed.
When we looked at Tracy’s thyroid hormone levels, I noted better conversion rates from free T4 to free T3. Though her lead and mercury levels were not yet at the optimal range. Due to this, I made a couple of thyroid medication dosing adjustments and we did another series of heavy metal IVs. Ready for Tracy’s next appointment.
Our 6-Month Follow-Up Session
The work we did at Tracy’s three-month consultation showed results three months later. Her thyroid antibodies had normalized, and her heavy metal toxicity levels were now within the normal limits. I was very happy with Tracy’s progress, and she reported feeling great.
Have you been struggling with symptoms just like the ones Wendy and Tracy were dealing with? If so, and you think you could benefit from an integrative approach to health and wellness. Your symptoms can get better.
Written by Dr. Roz Ranon of Integrative Health. Dr. Roz Ranon, NMD is an Arizona board-certified Naturopathic Physician practicing with Dr. C at Integrative Health with a focus on Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.