Why Start this Site?
I love learning about health and mindset. I dive into books, research online, listen to podcasts, take workshops, and I even occasionally read scientific journal articles.
I am also someone who feels compelled to share the fascinating information I learn. There are some incredible facts out there, and I can’t possibly hold them all back – unfortunately for the poor souls who spend the most time around me.
Sometimes I get an eye roll.
Most often a head nod and acknowledgment that, yes, this new information is somewhat interesting.
Once in a while, I am met with genuine fascination and interest in learning more.
And sometimes I even overhear others sharing what they have learned from me.
So I do have proof that my diatribes about health, wellness and mindset do get through on occasion.
And, when you talk as much as I do about these topics, eventually people ask more questions. Lately, I’ve been answering many of the same questions – gladly. I realized there is a genuine interest in learning some of these things, but just the key facts and why they matter. For a long time, I would recommend my source material – authors, books, blogs, etc – only to quickly realize that’s the last thing they want to do.
Turns out not everyone wants to read the books, research online, listen to podcasts, take workshops, or, gasp, read scientific journal articles.
So, this is my attempt to disseminate interesting information about health and mindset in a format that is easy to digest (pun intended).
The science nerd.
I have been a science nerd for long time. I love thinking about how the body works – and how the mind works. This naturally led me to study physiology and psychology in my undergrad. Unlike many of my classmates, however, I did not pursue medicine or dentistry (or law – so many lawyers!). Instead I focused on my passion for education and worked in the university environment. As a consummate learner, I continued my education part-time studying adult learning and eventually business. Yet, I kept coming back to health and mindset. Mostly because of my own health history.
The lactose-intolerant one.
I lived with fairly consistent abdominal discomfort and gastro-intestinal issues for about 15 years. This was just part of my day-to-day living. I would be sidelined by cramps, bloating, and pain. I was told it was IBS, which I translated to “tough luck”. Towards my late 20’s, it got so bad that I finally saw a specialist and went through one unpleasant diagnostic test after another.
All the tests came back negative.
But the last test did help, just not in the way I had expected.
After my last test, which required an empty GI tract, I decided to cut back on sugar. This inadvertently shifted my intake of dairy products since I switched from coffee with milk to green tea. I was feeling much better for about a week or two until I ate a sample of ice cream and it floored me. Lactose intolerance. I didn’t want to believe it even though my lactose-intolerant friend had suggested this on numerous occasions.
Unfortunately, even cutting out dairy or taking lactaid didn’t seem to be enough.
A few years after the lactose intolerance discovery, I was still struggling with GI issues. I referred to this as ‘my angry insides’.
Around this time, I stumbled upon Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food, and it was transformational for me. Reading his book was like a knock on the head that I desperately needed.
I decided to embark on a 100-day journey of only eating real food. This meant cutting out the processed foods and refined sugars or flour. I thought I would feel amazing.
How was it possible that eating real, whole foods was causing all this trouble?
The next two years involved multiple kinds of elimination diets that helped me eventually find a personalized eating template that finally calmed my angry insides.
About a year into finally feeling good – and knowing which foods work for me – I started to feel really off.
The symptoms were vague, but I knew I wasn’t imagining something. My doctor took my concerns seriously, ordered bloodwork, and noticed my thyroid was off. I was referred to an endocrinologist who ordered a series of tested that confirmed Graves’ Disease (autoimmune hyperthyroidism).
Through my years of nutritional experimentation, I knew how important diet was to health, so I delved even deeper into the research about autoimmune diseases and nutrition.
Armed with useful information, I focused on nutrient dense, whole foods to make up my diet, and I made progress with other lifestyle changes, like improving sleep quality/quantity. My endocrinologist was surprised and impressed with how quickly I got into remission and off medication, and at the six month follow-up, was again extremely pleased with my monthly lab results.
I know first-hand how much health is impacted by your daily choices, like what you eat and how you live. This has motivated me to share what I have learned with others in the hopes something will resonate or help.
So here we are.