Thyroid and Hormone Imbalance

Posted by on Jun 18, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

Thyroid and Hormone Imbalance

How I overcame Thyroid and Hormone Imbalance

At the low point of my battle with my thyroid hormone imbalance, I got connected with a guy named Sam Visnic out of Santa Monica. He is the one that insisted I get tested for thyroid even though my doctor kept telling me it was ‘impossible’. Turns out it wasn’t ‘impossible’, as it was definitely off, and I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease.

My symptoms at the time were insomnia, irregular menstrual cycles, extreme mood swings, exhaustion, brain fog (the worst), depression and lethargy. ¬†“Traditional” treatments included HRT (hormone replacement therapy: ¬†estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone), anti-depressants and (for a short time) Synthroid.

What Sam’s approach is though, is that even things like thyroid and hormone imbalance are a SYMPTOM of what’s really systemically wrong. He helped me to regain my balance by approaching it from 3 angles.

First and foremost, believe it or not, was stress management. Stress plays a HUGE role in our chemical/hormonal balance. Until we learn to get it under control, problems will persist. He had me get a book call Heartmath, and a device called an Emwave to help me learn to get my heart/breathing back in balance (which i realize sounds COMPLETELY witch doctory, but I was desperate at this point and as skeptical as i was going into it, within the FIRST use I was already feeling better. Therefore, I’m a HUGE believer. I WILL say however, that I found an app for my iphone called Stress Doctor that does basically the same thing (without the fun games and bells and whistles of course) for about $5 vs. $99-$300.)

The second thing I did (well, actually at the same time, but you know what i mean) was to reduce the amount of exercise I was doing. Too much exercise stresses the body resulting in increased cortisol levels. The cortisol cycle will mess up everything else, just google it. This article breaks it down fairly simply. Note the part where it talks about sex hormones and fertility. http://www.livestrong.com/article/86687-exercise-cortisol-levels/

For these reasons, I had to cut out ALL exercise for about a month. Following that, I started with mild/moderate 20 min walks daily, in the morning, increase my pace a little each day (but never running). Did this for about 2-3 weeks. Then I started adding in strength training at 30 minutes MAX, 3 times a week, in addition to my walks. I kept it at that for another 2-3 weeks, then, when I was really feeling good, I finally started adding in more intense cardio, but limited to 20-30 minutes. HIIT’s are perfect. I was also able to increase my weight training to a max 60 minutes, but never, ever beyond that.

Utilizing a balanced program like Chalean Extreme, Power 90, Les Mills Pump (with added cardio like sprints or Combat, etc). P90X (this is the highest level and only one round at a time), or, my current favorite, Body Beast with TurboFire HIIT’s, is, in my opinion, the best long term approaches we can take to help people with hormone/stress issues (or anyone else really….they probably have issues but just don’t know it…digestion/exhaustion is often what tells the story)

The final component is FOOD. Learning how to really eat in a balanced way, and to cut out inflammatory foods was/is the final piece to this puzzle. I cut way back/out most polyunsaturated fats (PUFA’s), reintroduced saturated fats (so important) and included protein (usually animal) at every meal/snack. Food combination is extremely important. Here’s a simple blogpost i did on the topic.

http://1fitnation.com/healthy-easy-meals/

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