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Thyroid Immune Health + The Powerful Vitamin No One is Talking About

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Thyroid Immune Health + The Powerful Vitamin No One is Talking About


There’s an unsung hero among us that doesn’t have the mainstream attention that Vitamin D does when it comes to immune health, but this vitamin is as equally powerful and we are just as equally deficient.  


Say hello to Vitamin A.


What it does:


Let me guess...you probably haven’t given Vitamin A much thought because once upon a time you heard it was toxic and potentially dangerous.  Research has shown that Vitamin A can be toxic in high doses, so there is some validity there. Unfortunately, what many don’t know is that Vitamin A deficiency is profound and widespread and impacts many systems and functions in the body, including overall immune system health.  Specifically, Vitamin A helps to control inflammation, balance immune response and prevent auto-immune activation.  If you’re putting two and two together, you just figured out that suboptimal levels of Vitamin A can cause loss of immune tolerance, which puts you at an increased risk of catching the cold or flu.   


Are you deficient?


A blood draw from any physician can reveal if you’re deficient in Vitamin A or not.  Ideally, you’d like to be in the upper half of the reference range. If you’re not, speak to your physician about possible supplementation.


Start getting Vitamin A from real, whole foods:


It’s not lost on me that the food God chose to put into season at the onset of cold and flu season has a lot of beta-carotene in it.  Plant based foods high in beta-carotene:

  • Carrots

  • Squashes

  • Sweet potatoes

  • Dark leafy greens

  • Cantaloupe

  • Red Bell peppers

  • Apricots

  • Broccoli


However, it’s not quite as simple as just eating more of these foods.  


Beta-carotene needs to be converted in our bodies into Vitamin A before it can be absorbed and used.  Unfortunately, many of us do a very poor job of converting and absorbing beta-carotene due to a whole host of factors including but not limited to gut dysbiosis, genetics, parasite infection, digestive enzyme imbalance, and even hypothyroidism.  The health of the T3 hormone is very important to the conversion of beta-carotene into the whole, fully formed Vitamin A.


Due to these challenges, many people have more success getting Vitamin A from animal sources, since it’s already available in its fully formed state.  Animal based foods high in Vitamin A:

  • Eggs (including the yolk)

  • Butter

  • Beef

  • Oily fish


If you have had past experiences of getting sick often or can’t shake a cold or flu for a long time after, ask your physician to check your Vitamin A levels!  Most of us are walking around in a suboptimal state without knowing it! Start today by adding more plant based and/or animal based sources of Vitamin A into your diet to strengthen your immune system and to set your body up for combating illness this season.

I’d love to know what else you’re doing to boost immunity either for yourself or for your kids!  Leave me a comment below!

Thyroid Alive! Is now enrolling participants for the January 2019 session and I couldn’t be happier to offer a FREE Blood Chemistry Analysis Session to the first 3 people who sign up!

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Golden Milk w/ MCT Oil & Anise Pods

Question What You're Told

It doesn’t seem fair, but almost all the sources we might turn to for wellness education are broken and contaminated by financial gain. 

Until very recently, the majority of us would have never questioned the legitimacy of the USDA Food Guide Pyramid (now MyPlate), an organization from the beginning, riddled with deceit with close ties to food manufacturers.  We went to school, were taught that we should eat 6-11 servings of BREAD a day and went on our merry way.  Think about the last time you had 6-11 servings of bread a day! 

The 1991 Food Guide Pyramid

The 1991 Food Guide Pyramid

 

Unfortunately, this pyramid was suggesting people eat a lot of everything.    This is not a scientific document, but a political one.  Governmental ties to food manufacturers would shape the future guidelines of what we, as a whole, should eat, for the pure intent of financial gain and nothing else.  If this doesn’t madden you, it should because the 1991 Food Guide Pyramid was initiated and encouraged until 2005 and that's a long time to be eating 6-11 servings of bread a day.  And so many people did and still do!  No wonder we have such an issue with obesity in this country.  

A few law suits later that showed USDA had financial ties to the meat, dairy and egg industries happened at about the same time obesity rates were going through the roof across the country.  The Food Guide Pyramid was then renamed MyPyramid, which improved a bit, giving vegetables more of a preference, adding nuts and seeds as protein sources and admitting in the description that not everyone can properly digest cow’s milk.  It also encouraged exercise with a stick person running up stairs.  Better, but not great, since most Americans do not exercise and should not be consuming the same amount of dairy as vegetables.  

The recommendations morphed once again, but this time to a plate (MyPlate - our current nutritional guideline).  It’s easier to read and understand, but where does this image fall short?  How can you use these suggestions to adjust your own plate in order to feel better, lose weight and gain energy?

First of all, what does “grains” mean to you?  Are you eating refined bread with dinner or a whole grain like quinoa, buckwheat or brown rice?

Why are we still drinking milk with our meals when it’s one of the most inflammatory foods on the planet and most people have difficulty digesting it anyway?  Instead, try drinking water and here’s something to think about:  don’t drink it with your meal.  Wait…what?  You heard me.  Drinking water with your meal will dilute the stomach acids needed to properly break down and digest your foods optimally.  Aim to drink most of your water between meals.  This will also help to curb mindless eating.  People who are well hydrated have fewer episodes of impulse eating.  

There’s also a lot of food on this plate.  Most Americans eat too many calories per meal.  Start by using a small salad plate if your main goal is weight loss and fill it halfway full with vegetables. 

Add in healthy fats.  Eating a meal without healthy fat makes nutrient absorption more difficult.  Even if weight loss is your goal, you still need healthy fat as a staple in your diet.  Some of my favorites are avocados, hemp seeds, avocado, coconut and olive oil, and chia seeds. 

Bottom line is that we are all individuals.  My clients hear me say this all the time…the diet that I thrive on will not be the same exact diet that YOU thrive on.  The dietary guidelines published by the USDA are just that…guidelines.  It’s just unfortunate that the recommendations given to us since 1917 are biased by larger manufacturers trying to push their own agenda.  The same holds true for any company trying to sell you the magic weight loss pill or energy drink. 

Know your body, be a detective and ask questions because there is nothing out there better and more impactful for your health and longevity than good, clean whole food. 

Below is an EXAMPLE of how you could build your plate if your main goal is weight loss, to regain energy or to balance hormones, including the thyroid.  There is no one size fits all diet.  Every one of my clients has a slightly different diet and it's dynamic.  The foods my clients eat when they are healing are different than the foods they thrive on afterwards.  

How are you building your plate?  Does it still resemble the outdated 1991 Food Guide Pyramid or MyPyramid?  Evaluate for yourself the difference in that pyramid compared to the plate I have designed for you below.  What are the biggest differences you see?  

Are you sick and tired of wondering what to eat? Have chronic issues that just won't go away even when you do eat healthy and exercise?  I hear you and there's so much you can do to finally get that life of thriving energy.  See the success past clients of mine have had.  Send me an email or sign up for a free mini-session so we can uncover what's holding you back and put you on a path towards what you're really meant to feel like. 

Curb Your Anxiety

Have you ever noticed that life is all fun and roses...until it's not?  Along with life comes a whole host emotions and the most popular one, unfortunately, is anxiety.

That feeling of constant worry and turmoil with no end in sight is a scary one.  It can leave you feeling out of control, hopeless and depressed.  It can jolt you awake at night, turn you inside out and become a barrier between you and the people who care about you.  

What if I told you that you didn't have to live like this?  That you could reduce your anxiety levels...today...by following this simple outline that I've put together for you.  You'll feel more relaxed, confident and ready to tackle all that life throws at you.  

Anxiety is very common and like everything else, can range from one end of the spectrum to the other, but did you know that anxiety is one of the most common symptoms associated with a thyroid disorder?  If your anxiety is present day in and day out and is starting to debilitate you, please consider getting some thyroid testing done.   If you're not sure what to ask for, check out my mini training on the 5 Non-Negotiable Thyroid Lab Tests that you can request from your doctor.

Are you ready to make a change?  Because one conversation with me could change your life. Schedule a free coaching session now and together we'll get you living the life you've always wanted. 

 

 

The Secret to Eating Fewer Calories

Are you looking to eat fewer calories in order to lose weight? 

I have a secret to share with you and it’s not what you think.  I want you to eat more…

FAT.

It’s a combination of confusion and sheer terror when I suggest to someone wanting to lose fat that they should actually EAT FAT in order to lose weight.  In fact, our culture has done a fantastic job of demonizing fat so much so that the “low-fat” craze from the 90s is still very much a part of our everyday way of thinking.  

The truth is that our bodies NEED fat to survive and thrive.  After all, our bodies are made up of between 15-30% fat.  We need to have healthy fats in our system to nourish our brain, nerves, thyroid (and other hormones) and pretty much every cell in our body.  When we include healthy fats into our diet, we tend not to overeat.  We feel satisfied and therefore tend to eat fewer calories. 

Try adding the following healthy fats to your diet every day:

  • Avocados, olives, and coconuts are great sources of healthy fat, along with wild salmon and omega-3 rich organic eggs.

•  Whole nuts and seeds, and their butters like almond butter or tahini

•  Olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil. Words to look for: organic, first-pressed, cold pressed, extra-virgin, and unrefined. Avoid expeller-pressed, refined, and solvent extracted.

Want to chat a bit about your wellness and health goals?  Hop on a free coaching call with me so we (together!) can talk about a plan of attack that will help give you some clarity and insight. 


Please be advised that all information given on this site is intended for educational purposes only and should not replace the medical guidance given by your doctor.

Thyroid Symptoms & Signs

A thyroid imbalance can come with a host of symptoms, but a super common one is exhaustion and fatigue.  It's different for everyone, but for me, it was like trying to accomplish my daily tasks, job, etc. while I was underwater.  Everything felt heavy.  I had to give myself a pep talk just to raise my arms over my head so that I could wash my hair.  The thought of doing anything extra was just downright draining.  

Fatigue is probably the most common symptom that I hear about from my clients, but there are many other signs that may indicate a thyroid disorder.  Following is a list of some of the most common symptoms of low thyroid function:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Constipation
  • Sensitivity to cold weather
  • Numbness in hands and feet
  • Dry skin
  • Edema, esp. facial swelling
  • Loss of outermost portion of eyebrows
  • Brittle nails

If you feel like reading these symptoms is like looking in a mirror, you may want to seriously consider getting your thyroid checked.  Most doctors will test for TSH and Free T4, but if you want to request some additional testing that has the potential to give you even more answers, read my post about what I consider to be the top 5 Non-Negotiable Thyroid Tests out there. 

Want to chat a bit about your thyroid wellness and health goals?  Hop on a free coaching call with me so we (together!) can talk about a plan of attack that will help give you some clarity and insight. 


Please be advised that all information given on this site is intended for educational purposes only and should not replace the medical guidance given by your doctor.

White Bean Dip

Here is a great way to use the white bean dip as a leftover. I made my son cous cous for part of his lunch so I took some of that and topped it with tomatoes, cucumbers, pepper, avocado, PARSLEY, a squeeze of lemon, EVOO, s&P and a big dollop of the white bean dip. It was so so good. If you are gluten free use greens or quinoa as your base. If you're trying to lose weight, keep the cous cous or quinoa portion to 1/2 cup or less.  🙌🏻

Dinner & Dessert Menu for Valentine's Day

Are you looking for a fun, healthy meal to have Valentine's Day?  This would be a great dinner to have with your special love, with your family, or with a group of special friends!  Both recipes below are gluten-free, dairy-free and good for you and they are a cinch to make so you have less time in the kitchen and more time with those you care about.  

Homemade Chicken Stock

Homemade Chicken Stock

I roast a chicken every week for my family and I reserve the carcass to make a savory, nourishing stock that can be used immediately or preserved for months to come.  Enjoy!

Homemade Dried Italian Herb Mix

I know a lot of people who successfully grow herb gardens all summer long, but how about harnessing all of that homegrown goodness for use during the winter months?  In my most recent YouTube video I take you step by step through the process of harvesting, drying and storing your own dried Italian herb mix from your homegrown herbs. 

I also wanted to make it easy for you to gather supplies for making your own so I've linked some resources from Amazon for you below:

Would you like to see a specific health & wellness demo on video?  Let me know below in the comments!  Until next time, Be Well.