As I have aged, I have found that I have to “guard” my energy levels. I have to make wise decisions about where to use my energy and if I have a super busy day, I make sure that I rest that night by laying down with my feet up. Sometimes I have to miss out on night time events or I won’t make it through the next day! Do any of you suffer from this? I have friends who have a ton of energy and can’t understand that sometimes, my energy just runs out and there is nothing left to give. They seem to go and go like an energizer bunny while I need to lay down.
I didn’t know that I had thyroid problems until after I had had my third son at 33 years old. I was at a doctors office filling out forms for my oldest son who was 8 and having allergy problems and there were categories on the questionnaire with symptoms associated to glands and organs. I was reading and filling out the form for him, while saying to myself, “Hey, I have all the symptoms of a thyroid problem!”.
I found an endocrinologist in Beverly Hills who was old school and looked at many symptoms not just a blood test to determine that I did indeed have low thyroid. In my case, Hashimoto's. He felt my elbows to see if they were dried out and he made me do an ultrasound on my thyroid to see if it was enlarged, which it was with nodes. He also made me hold out my hands flat, palms up (like you were going to feed a horse) and looked at the length of my pinky fingers compared to the ring finger next to it. Both of my pinkies were shorter than the joint on my ring finger. I can see you checking your’s right now! He said that a shorter pinky than the joint of the ring finger may mean that thyroid runs in the family on one or both sides…
I started to take thyroid hormone and have been on a roller coaster going on and off of thyroid hormone for 20 years now. I even wrote an ebook about my “struggle” called My Thyroid Journey I know many of you have thyroid issues and would love to know what others have learned. I tried a couple of different medications for my hypothyroidism and decided that I felt better on Armour thyroid instead of the synthetic hormone. The synthetic claims that the dose is more accurate than Armour but only helped me feel better for 3 weeks and then didn't seem to work for me anymore. I wanted to be as natural as possible so I went back to the Armour.
As I aged more, I found that the thyroid alone wasn't enough and looked to my medical doctors who practiced using more natural ways, to find out what my problem was. I was put on elimination diets and anti inflammatory diets to calm my system down. I had run a marathon at 46 in New York and had GAINED about 15 pounds while training, instead of LOOSING weight. I had to find answers not only to feel better and have energy but also because I wanted to look good.
So, let’s introduce Cortisol levels. After asking around and doing a lot of research I found that the high cortisol levels probably had me gaining weight from too much running (stress) . I am still learning about cortisol but know that too much cortisol makes you retain weight around your middle and feel drained. When I feel drained, I tend to reach for food to give me energy and make me feel better. How many of you know that can be a roller coaster ride?
I feel like I have gained and lost 15-20 pounds for the last 20 years. What worked to lose weight when I was 20 doesn’t work anymore. I used to be able to go out and run 10 miles and the weight would come right off. Now, it just exhausts me and makes me feel run down so then I eat more to try to feel better. YUCK!
If any of this resonates with you, then I suggest that you find a medical doctor who can run a variety of tests on your blood to see if any of your levels of hormones are off. Cortisol testing can be done over a 24 hour period using your urine or saliva. Urine may be more accurate from what my doctor said as it measures more of the cortisol in the body. My wish is for all of us to feel our best so we don't miss any of the pleasures that this life can bring us.