For the majority of my life I was high energy, driven, positive and needed little sleep to feel fabulous every day. Over 10 years ago my health started to decline. Eventually I started feeling like crap on a daily basis. I loved my life but my health was making it difficult to do the things I had always enjoyed. These ailments started one by one until I was plagued with all:
Swelling of ankles and knees
With these issues I continued raising my children doing everything that a wife and mother does but with difficulty.
Over the years I went to a plethora of physicians. Each told me that my lab work was normal and my issue was just part of getting older. I began to think I was a hypochondriac. Most doctors suggested I lose weight and offered me pills for anxiety. I could lose 5-10 lbs but the weight always came back. And I was getting bigger not better!
In 2019 I heard about a doctor by the name of Lena Edwards. Several friends all around the country had gone to her with amazing results. At this point in my life I was willing to go anywhere and do anything for relief. Dr. Edwards lives in Boca Raton, Florida and treats patients via conference call. I scheduled a consult with her in October of 2019. In November, 2019 -February, 2020. she worked with me on a weekly basis. I continue to have annual visits with her.
My first week I had the most comprehensive medical exam of my life. Dr. Edwards is not a one size fits all physician. Every patient has a customized plan of treatment. We had weekly visits scheduled and I had access to her 24/27 via phone and email. Her response was very prompt to my extra calls or emails. I had tons of blood work done throughout the 4 months. I took saliva tests, bone density and a food allergy test.
The first month I did a 10 day detox. I had a list of foods that were allowed along with menus and recipes. To be honest I was nervous about this detox. I didn’t know if I had the will power to do it. Remember that strong food cravings were one of my symptoms. This detox was also during Thanksgiving. I have always loved coffee and wondered if I could function without it. No coffee or caffeine are allowed during detox. I also loved sugar. To be honest the first two days were difficult. By the 7th day I experienced a miracle. I felt great. I had energy and no longer had to drag myself out of the bed each morning. The headaches were gone. The food cravings were gone. I had energy. I thought about doing this detox forever!
After the detox I could eat a new food every 4 days. This was to determine if I had any reactions to food. My food allergy tests results came in. Would you believe I am allergic to:
Coffee (yes coffee)
The list of foods I am allergic to shocked me. I didn’t know if I would be able to eliminate them from my diet. Feeling great is what motivated me to eat clean. Physical health is a great motivator.
My lab work also revealed that I have a low thyroid which she prescribed medication for. The saliva test revealed my hormones were out of whack. Now I take hormones from. compound pharmacy.
Did you know that an alarming 75% of women experience daily symptoms due to hormone imbalances? Some of these symptoms are irritating, like insomnia, sugar cravings, fluid retention, moodiness and headaches, while others can be more devastating like infertility. Often, many of these symptoms can be written off as “normal” and just part of a woman’s cycle or transition into menopause. The truth is that there are many things we can do to reverse them to live each day more comfortably.
Dr. Edwards also diagnosed me with leaky hut. With probiotics and a change in diet this was fixed. I also had yeast overgrowth which was the reason the inside of my ears itched all the time.
The lab report also revealed I had a vitamin D and B12 deficiency. The B was so low that I began taking weekly injections for a while. She prescribed a high dose of vitamin D for me until new lab work showed improvement.
For years I suffered with insomnia. Dr, Edwards told me that sleep was the most important issue for my health to improve. I never took prescribed medication for sleep but her treatment had me sleeping through then night within weeks.
In addition to my symptoms disappearing from my life I also lost 40 pounds. This was an added bonus but not the greatest benefit. Sure it’s great to drop weight because this does enable you to have better health. Health is not just the absence of disease but the presence of optimal function and feeling.
Today I primarily eat meat, fish, seafood, vegetables and fruits. I can have goat or sheep cheese which is delicious. I avoid processed food. Processed food including soft drinks (even diet) are poison for your body. It has been well documented that artificial sweetener causes cancer.
Do I ever eat sugar? Yes, on occasion. I love the Dove dark chocolate bites and will spurge sometimes. Did you know dark chocolate can kill cancer cells? Two weeks ago I had some regular pizza. This was my first since October, 2019. I enjoyed it but did pay for it for the next 24 hours. The key for me is to do it on rare occasion. The pizza was a special time with my sister while she was visiting for her birthday. However I did not have cake!
Is there something you think you could never do without? Whatever it is I bet you can modify the recipe and have it. Mobile has a gluten free bakery. Many restaurants today offer gluten free food.
At the grocery store I read every ingredient label. Unhealthy ingredients are hidden in everything. Did you know that some canned black beans have added sugar? One can find food without added chemicals but it requires reading every label and maybe asking a cook questions at a restaurant.
After four months with Dr. Edwards every single symptom disappeared from my life. The bloating in my face and stomach diminished. My eyes seemed bigger and brighter and my lips fuller.
I’ve been thinking about people who may struggle with health problems as I did. This is the reason for sharing this post. I am not selling anything and Dr. Edwards does not even know about this blog. I am sharing because I know there are women who suffer in silence as I did with health problems. The main thing I hope you take away from my story is you don’t have to feel like crap. It’s not normal to feel like that on a consistent basis. If your health is suffering, find a good doctor. Look for a functional medicine doctor. You are worth it.
What you have just read is the beginning of my story. I will continue writing about health issues that I dealt with on my journey. Please subscribe if you want notification of new posts. And please feel free to ask questions here or comment if any of what I shared resonates with you.