I started this blog to share experiments that worked well for me to share with others who may be juggling family, work, and striving to live a happy, healthy life like myself. I married my husband Andy in 2003. We brought two amazing children into this world: our daughter in 2008 and son in 2011. I have worked in higher education for 8 years and enjoy my job as a Training Coordinator/Social Media Liaison.
I love the beach, sunshine, bonfires, board games, music, and to learn new things.
Health and Paleo
Paleo in combination with supplements prescribed by my doctor have helped make a huge improvement in my health and I wanted to share this with others who may be suffering with migraines or other illnesses.
In 2000 I became ill with a GI disorder after taking a medication (Noroxin). I went through several years of trying different medications, trying acidophilus, psyllium husks, or anything that I could try to get back to a normal life again. It was rough. Many trips, dates, days were spent making sure that I knew where the closest bathroom was and hoping the cramps would go away so I could finish attending my college lectures. Eventually I discovered a medicine that worked for me – Cholestyramine and that I needed to cut out lactose from my diet. I felt pretty well. I found myself relying on a lot of refined sugars – some veggies caused discomfort so I ate a lot of carbs and cheddar cheese (it’s ok for many lactose intolerant people due to the aging process).
My second health issue began in 2004. A doctor switched me from Ortho-Tricyclen to Ortho-Tricyclen-Lo and I immediately began suffering from hormonal migraines. Every month I began having terrible debilitating migraines. At first Sudafed Sinus Headache and rest was how I coped. Then that stopped working and I began trying many medications: Relpax (made me feel flu-ish), Naproxen (went to the ER with intestinal bleeding), other birth control pills (caused migraines to worsen), and Immitrex (most helpful, but often had rebound migraines so bad it stopped working and I had to go in and get a shot of Toradol and take steroids to abort the migraine). The migraines starting increasing in frequency from 1 to 2 a month to 7 or more. They were easily triggered by lack of sleep, low blood sugar, eye strain, one drink of Malibu and pineapple juice, allergies, etc. I was beginning to feel like there was no hope in living pain-free again and depressed. I spent so much time fighting through the pain. I didn’t like the person I was on migraine days. It affected my work, it affected my ability to play with my children, I was short with my loved ones, or I just had to go lay down in a dark room and toss and turn in excruciating pain. I was desperate for change. Obviously prescription medications and I have not had a great relationship.
For several years both a friend of mine and an uncle had encouraged me to try eating a grain-free or gluten-free diet. I resisted. I thought it would be too hard. Now I was ready to try. I knew I wanted to take a more holistic approach to treating my migraines. I didn’t want to go on beta-blockers as a migraine preventative. I hate the idea of taking medications everyday (especially with my history). I sent a message to my friend who had encouraged me to change my diet several years before. He was just completing his medical degree, but also had a background with more natural approaches to healthy living which was exactly what I was looking for. I am so thankful to say it has changed my life for the better since I became a patient of his.
In November 2013 I changed how I eat to the Paleo “diet”. The first week was rough. I wanted to cry after going to my local grocery store and realizing all of the food I couldn’t have anymore and how many yucky ingredients were in so much of our food. I did it cold turkey. Since then I have experimented with many foods and recipes. I have found so many delicious foods and I don’t feel like I am missing out at all. Am I perfectly Paleo 100% of the time? No, but I try really hard to be as much as possible. I have been completely gluten free since November. I have also begun taking supplements to treat the true source of the migraines and GI issues, rather than treat the symptoms and have had osteopathic manipulation as well.
Here’s the best part: I went from taking 7 or more pills of Immitrex a month to taking zero most months. I still have a headache for about two days prior to my cycle, but I can usually get through the day and feel relief with Ibuprofen. I have stopped having migraines in the middle of the month. They are not easily triggered. The pressure I used to have in my forehead is completely gone most days. My allergy symptoms have nearly completely disappeared. My head feels so much clearer. My energy is so much better. I also lost 11 pounds! My stomach has felt much better as well. My family sees a happier and healthier me. I used to have a purse full of prescription meds and I am down to one daily prescription. I have realized the benefits of eating real raw foods and going back to the basics – meat, fruit, veggies, and nuts.