Doctor’s Orders

Way back in October, I went to see a doctor who specialized in hormones. I originally went because I found his information on a website about low dose naltrexone – something I was looking into as it’s being trialed as a treatment for gluten-intolerance. I ended up spending a better part of our hourlong consultation talking about how unhappy I was with my thin/thinning hair. (Honestly, I know 80 year olds who have naturally thicker, nicer hair than me – and I’m 26!!!) I’ll write more on that topic at a later date…

Anyway, I’m really glad I ended up at this specific doctor. He was incredibly knowledgeable and taught me a lot about diet and how it can affect every part of your body – especially hair. He guessed straight off that I have a sweet tooth, that I probably have too much dairy and red meat, and that I really don’t eat enough cruciferous vegetables. All because my hormones were out of whack and all the things I just listed contribute to that. He changed my birth control pill and suggested a bunch of ways I could change my diet to help rebalance my hormones. I gave it a good, honest try for a week or two, but I think I went too hardcore and gave up shortly after. I just don’t think I was really ready for a change back then…

I just recently came across the blood work results from that visit as well as the doctor’s notes on what they mean and what I should be doing about them. What really shocked me at the time, and still does looking back on it again now, is my lipids and diabetic profile. My cholesterol was 4.5mmol/L (should be <5), HDL 1.74 mmol/L (should be >1) and LDL 2.5mmol/L (should be <3). Those are all in the “normal” range, but pushing it. My fasting glucose was 5.0 mmol/L (should be 3.5-5.4). Again, getting pretty close to the edge of that “normal” range. Not cool for a seemingly healthy mid-20 year old!

Reading the notes that follow, a lot of his suggestions are things I’ve started to do naturally as part of this whole lifestyle transformation. Avoid: cream, butter, ice creams, takeaways, pies and pastries, sausages and luncheon meats, cakes and puddings, chocolate, salted nuts, alcohol. Eat more: high fibre foods, veggies with skin on, muesli, fresh fruit? Done! Get more exercise? I’m getting better at that.

There is also a note from him about PCOS and how diet can help treat it. While he doesn’t necessarily think I have PCOS, he thinks following the eating tips of someone who does have it would be beneficial to me. That includes: relatively low-carb with adequate protein for energy, reduced saturated fats, lots of water, minimal caffeine/alcohol/sugar and adequate essential fatty acids. It’s also suggested I take supplements that include zinc, magnesium and B vitamins – all in the thyroid supplement I started taking last week. I was also low on my vitamin D and he suggested I added it as a supplement, as well. Check!

I’m interested in knowing what my test results would look like now. While I slightly altered my diet after getting these results almost a year ago, I have only really been actively following his advice for the last 3 weeks. I might see if I can have the same tests done again in October – a year since my first test and about 3 months into this new lifestyle. It would be interesting to see how and what has changed. Regardless, it’s reassuring to know the changes I’ve made are all ones that are going to positively impact the specific areas my doctor told me – all those months ago – that I need to focus on.

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1 Comment

Filed under Diet, Life, Stats

One response to “Doctor’s Orders

  1. Pingback: Rural Chinese diet « The journey to get fit and fit in

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