part two of Healing Hashimoto’s

part two of our guest post by Liz Schau. (if you haven’t read, part one – check it out here: Healing Hashimoto’s)

I started an anti-Candida diet that winter and four months later, my thyroid numbers were surprisingly better, so much so that my medication dose got reduced.  This trend continued for the next few months until I hit a plateau and realized I was missing a few things.  I so valued the work that Dr. William Crook had done for me in writing The Yeast Connection And Women’s Health, but, with time, started to see that I needed to eliminate food allergens; that they were causing this fungal infection and all of my symptoms.  There’s much more to this food story, of course: I did a bunch of research and trial and error and finally figured out what my body needed and what I had to avoid.  It turned out to be a long and transient list and a whole new world of information.  Mostly, I realized that the food I had been eating wasn’t food at all, it was industrial product; I learned what real food looked like and that fats were actually good and necessary for life.  I learned that bacteria were my friend and I had to stop sanitizing my body, my emotions, my food.  In short, I learned that everything I had ever known about eating was wrong; it was simply too modern for my own good.

About one year later, my thyroid improved so much that I was weaned off of my medication.  I no longer had any evidence of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.  My doctor told me he didn’t believe I had done this myself (it was “spontaneous” according to him) — it was “possible, but highly improbable” and that he liked to see empirical evidence; “published work, you know”.  I was in total unmedicaded remission, much to my doctor’s dismay.  Years later, I still am.  I did this all from intuition.  Something inside of me knew this disease would be passing.  I had no reassurance from anyone or anything other than this drive inside me to work as hard as I could.  I was even working against a family history of thyroid disease and autoimmunity.  In my case, my hard work paid off.  I found my own way into the world of Functional Medicine, before I even knew it had a name.  I learned to find the cause, instead of treating the symptom.  I also learned that medications never heal, even though there are alot of companies and agencies working hard to make us think otherwise.  I learned that medical independence and true health is possible, and along with them come personal growth and mental clarity.  I stopped supporting the fallacy of the permanence of modern chronic illness.

Because I had success healing my Hashimoto’s thyroid disease, I started sharing my experience with other people in similar situations via health writing.  Quickly, I realized I needed to put my expertise and insatiable curiosity to good use, and enrolled in formal nutrition school at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.  I now work as a Holistic Health Counselor, guiding people to heal their symptoms and causes of thyroid disease, autoimmunity, Candida overgrowth, and food allergies.  I empower my clients to live their best lives, overcome fear and limitations, and live out their unique purpose in this world.

In working with my clients, I find that they also inherently understand that they can heal their diseases: they are always fighting and working hard and researching; they know that they shouldn’t feel this way and that there has to be an answer to their dilemma.  Even those who are not interested in natural health understand that this isn’t the way things should be for them and that there simply has to be a solution.  My job is provide these people with all of the information, guidance, support, and care they need to overcome their illness in the form of listening and action plans.  My work is very important to me because this is a calling, not a job.  Guiding people to medical independence, true health, and ultimately, fulfillment and happiness isn’t something that can be done in a doctor’s office.

And I would know.

Liz Schau is a Holistic Health Counselor and Health Writer who helps those with thyroid disease, autoimmunity, Candida, and food allergies overcome their health problems and embrace radical wellness. She’s always looking for motivated and intelligent clients. You can find her at lizschau.com.

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About Donielle

Donielle is an amateur herbalist and natural momma to two littles (with another babe in heaven) after dealing with being less than fertile. She has a passion for nourishing nutrition, natural living, and spreading the word on how food truly affects our health.

Comments

  1. Wow! I am so glad I subscribe to this blog and got to read this! I was diagnosed this last summer with Hashimotos. I am blessed to have a rather wholistic doctor who put me on the Armour, but also had me go on a two week yeast clearing diet and test for allergens. Right now I am mostly glutten and dairy free and considering going on the GAPS diet. I am also 11.5 weeks pregnant. I am struggling with my energy levels and my blood work is requiring an increase in meds. :( I know I need to do more for my body than just sort-of avoid the foods I shouldn’t eat, but it seems so overwhelming (especially when I’m this tired). My SIL has chronic fatigue syndrome and I know needs help too. SO MUCH TO LEARN. I hope you wrote a book I can read! Thanks!

    Liz Reply:

    @Andrea, So sorry to hear you’re going through this! Well, I can’t make any real suggestions just based on what you’ve said here, but I will say that a two-week yeast cleanse probably was not long enough, unfortunately. Clearing the dysbiosis from our bodies really does take years, especially for those with chronic illness and food allergies (both of which are a sign of imbalanced gut flora). Would love to chat with you more! :)

  2. I love this story. I was plagued with gastro-intestinal issues that no doctor could really explain. I took test after test after test and all they could come up with was gastritis, IBS, and GERD. I was put on Nexium and told I’d be on it for life. This didn’t set well with me so I started researching and found Dr. Mercola and an article about how Nexium actually causes the symptoms it is supposed to cure and causes patients to be on them forever. I weaned myself off and manage my symptoms with diet. I’m still not 100% so I recently went off gluten. My doctor suspects I have Candida. I hope I don’t have to remove more foods from my diet, but I realize that I may eventually have to do that for total healing. I also am hypothyroid and on Armour, and I have low iron and am experiencing inexplicable hair loss. Again, doc things I’m not absorbing nutrients since I eat so well. I hope I can heal my body by figuring out and avoiding whatever is causing this. Your story is an inspiration.

    Liz Reply:

    @Musings of a Housewife, Thank you so much for sharing your story! Those of us who are healing our bodies naturally have to speak up because there is so much hope, but this knowledge isn’t mainstream yet… people don’t realize they have these natural options. I am so thrilled that your health problems are clearing up. It is a long road back to health and it does not happen overnight, but there are always gains and we can look back and see how far we’ve come. :)

  3. A friend sent me a link to this blog. Please please help me, steer me in the right direction, tell me where to begin. After 2 pregnancies and YEARS of unsucessful synthroid treatment I am completely hopeless. I have been diagnosed with hypo-then more recently Hashi’s and I’m supposed to keep taking the meds that SOMETIMES kinda work but mostly not. I’m miserable and I’m so tired of fighting it. Sometimes i wear the same clothes for days at a time because the thought of showering shaving and blowdrying my hair is so overwhelming I give up before I’ve begun. I never had memory or concentration problems before the thyroid problems started and I take adderall daily just to get myself off the couch, and don’t get me started on my addiction to diet coke. Any advice, a starting point…would be so helpful, something has to change. I can’t live the rest of my life like this.

    donielle Reply:

    @Angela, If you have itunes, you can download a really great podcast from http://www.UndergroundWellness.com that he did last summer with an expert on thyroid issue. GREAT to listen to! You can also listen to it off of his site.

    One of the biggest things you may start doing though, is eating more whole foods and less processed foods. *ahem* bye bye diet coke! :-) Going gluten free may also be immensely helpful! The proteins in gluten look very similar to proteins in the thyroid and the body attacks them – so cutting out something that is causing your body to attack itself (a.k.a auto-immune) is very important.

  4. Where do I go to find the info on what foods to get out of my diet and other info. Google is so confusing and I seem to be in a constant fog.

    donielle Reply:

    @Pam, Here’s a good link with some of the menu plans we’ve posted here. The top few are the best. :-) http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/tag/menu-plans/

    This link includes many of the posts I’ve written here: http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/table-of-contents/
    Check the links near the bottom of the page – specifically the podcast on gluten.
    On that same page there are also a list of posts under Fertility Diets that will be helpful in what foods to cut out and which ones nourish the body.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your inspiring story! So easy to google and find forums to commiserate on. I, too, have SUCH a similar story to yours. Through a self-imposed mind and diet revolution two years ago, I went from a TSH of 202 to 3.81 in 4 months without medication! But now in the long run, I realize that healing is not static. So even though the chocolate chip cookies and ice cream are organic, I can’t indulge like before. I’m on meds now, breast feeding a super healthy baby (lucky me), and having to wait to go back to a more hardcore approach to wean myself off of the meds. I just learned about the connection and became gluten free two months ago. I am also a research junkie and am resolute in healing myself for good. I will read that book! Thanks for the recommendation! Have you hard about the Marshall Protocol? What are your thoughts? Many blessings to you!!! Continue shining that beautiful Fifth Chakra of yours and using your Voice! 😉

  6. I need HELP! I am going for a biopsy on my thyroid due to multinodular thyroid gland with two subcentimeter left lobe nodules which may contain calcifications. I am very nervous about this…Am going on August 8th…I believe the doctor mentioned that he thought it might be Hasimotos Thyroiditis which I hope it would rather be than anything more serious…I also have food allergies to wheat/gluten and all grains…What’s left to eat? It’s just awful….It is making me depressed…Can you help?….Any thoughts?

    donielle Reply:

    @Gayle, If you have allergies to wheat, it could very possibly be causing issues with your thyroid. One of the reasons is that a protein in wheat looks similar to that of gluten and so the body attacks the thyroid. It may also be that you have had this underlying problem over the years and it’s just now bad enough to really notice the symptoms.
    Being grain free may actually help your body heal! And there’s a LOT left to eat! :-) My family was completely grain free for a few months, and the only difficult part is getting rid of previous notions on what you eat for meals.
    I’d highly suggest reading through a few blogs and doing some research on the paleo (also called primal) diet. This diet is grain free and you can pretty much find any recipe you need by searching on google for “grain free recipes”. A few of my favorite sites are:
    http://www.marksdailyapple.com
    http://www.healthhomehappy.com (she offers grain free meal plans)
    http://www.scdkat.com
    http://www.modernalternativemama.com

    I hope you find something that helps!

  7. P.S. I should mention that I am in my 60’s and never had a problem with my thyroid or food allergies to this degree…I have been on natural thyroid replacement for over 20 years and this problem started six months ago…Also, I am experiencing a mild sore throat and have had intermittent hoarseness which is worrisome….I read this is part of the thyroid problem, also….

  8. Trina Acevedo says:

    Hi Donielle,

    My name is Trina and its funny that I came across your website in search of more information on healing Hashimotos. In May this year I enrolled in the program with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and have been making changes in my diet. In doing so I’ve been able to lower my medication so much so that I’m praying I can stop the meds all together. I just had blood work yesterday so I’m awaiting the results. I’m so excited to hear that you healed your thyroid, I know its possible. I’m excited to learn more of what you did on your journey. Thanks so much for sharing I can’t wait to start doing the same.

    Trina

  9. Stop giving false misleading information to women. Not every woman has good quality ovarian function. Sure this may work for some women but not all. You are breaking some women’s hearts with these false claims.

    donielle Reply:

    @grace, I don’t believe that giving information about alternative treatments is misleading……and I’ve never once mentioned that there is a cure for everything. Many times I mention that we live in a fallen and broken world, and much to our dismay, there may be things that we can not overcome. It’s also why I often talk about different types of whole foods diets and different treatments, because what works for one person may not work for another.
    I personally don’t have good quality ovarian function, but I try to work holistically to remedy that situation and so far I’ve been successful even though my ‘treatments’ have changed over the years as I move through different phases of life. And again – what I do may not benefit another woman, but I try to offer enough information so that others can be equipped and also be inspired to research for themselves. Because no one knows our bodies like we do and I’ve found that personal research can often be the key to a diagnosis and healing.

    Ana Reply:

    @grace, It is sad to see that people are gun hole in the comercial aspect of life…that you take a pill for life and eat a industrialized cheeseburger and call it a day! I’m doing clean eating as well and I always have the purse of Natural Holistic approach and after a decade of plague of host of thyroid problems I gave it a go..it 2008 I did clean eating and avoid gluten and sugar and coffee ..after 5 months I lost 40 pounds and I felt alive for the 1st time in yrs!!! went on vacation and everything went out the window..gained it all and then some, I developed GERD again, Pasta Addiction came back and Felt miserable…I started again and slowly getting my energy back, Determination is the key …..I’m a living proof and on the way to recovery!!!

  10. jean delaney says:

    Hi, I have gone to a naturopath that has said I have hashimotos. I have been off gluten for several months and the improvement in my overall health is amazing. For the past several months I have had a tightness in my throat, I have a goitre. Is there anything you would suggest to help with this?

    Thanks, Jean

    donielle Reply:

    @jean delaney, I’ve recently been writing about healing the thyroid, so you can check out those posts: http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/tag/thyroid/
    I’d also recommend the book “Why do I still have thyroid symptoms when my lab tests are normal?” by Dr. Kharrazian.

  11. Amy Ferguson says:

    I don’t know for a fact that I have Hashimoto’s, but I have all the symptoms and have had most of my adult life, worsening after pregnancies. I can’t afford to see naturopaths. I just got insurance after ten years without, but that’s the md world, a route I don’t want to go. I want to cure this naturally, but I don’t know where to start.

    donielle Reply:

    @Amy Ferguson, You can use an MD to get a diagnosis and then do your own research for treatment. Here’s a list of the tests you should ask for http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/the-thyroid-tests-you-need-to-ask-your-doctor-for And then you can also ask their opinion on if they think your symptoms may require other tests as well. It can be frustrating working with conventional doctors, but getting answers to what’s going on with your body is really important!

    I’ve also been writing a lot about healing the thyroid naturally, so you can also check out these posts: http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/tag/thyroid/

  12. Hi I was wanting to speak with Lis Schau, as I am desperate to stop this hashimotos cycle in my body, I have been on meds for 7 years and do believe it can be done but need help.

    donielle Reply:

    @Lis, You can contact her through her website at http://www.lizschau.com

  13. I have all the symptoms of Hashimoto’s. Plus, I have alopecia universalis, another autoimmune problem. I wonder if the two could be related? I can barely function, but thought it was menopause. Thank you for this information!

  14. I have Hashimotos and am gluten & dairy free… which changed my life, by just doing that! I have only seen a natural path doctor and have been taking specific supplements for Hashimotos! I recently, became pregnant!! Looking forward to others comments and advise with Hashimotoas.

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