A few weeks ago I received some hard news to swallow.
It was a phone call from my Naturopathic Doctor, Dr. Jodi Kunkel.
If you recall, not long ago I shared my struggles of hormone imbalance and adrenal fatigue which was contributing to my stubborn acne. (In case you missed it, you can catch up here)
Today I’m happy to report that all of those symptoms have resolved and it helped greatly with my acne. However, it still wasn’t gone.
Again, I was at a loss for “What am I doing wrong?!”
While I don’t think of acne itself as a rather life threatening diagnosis I knew it meant something was still out of balance in my body.
Dr. Jodi recommended we draw a Food Allergy Panel to see if I was reacting to something I was eating. (In her defense she recommended this LONG ago but I was too stubborn to do so because in my mind I had already given up all of the “bad foods” and it was rather expensive - almost $400.)
I finally reached my breaking point and decided to stop making excuses. I needed to get better and truly heal myself.
Five weeks ago Dr. Jodi called to explain the test results... “I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone react to this many foods. This means you have leaky gut."
She told me there was no way I could eliminate all of the foods I was reacting to because there wouldn't be anything left to eat.
However, she did recommend I eliminate the top 4 foods that many people are intolerant to: gluten, soy, eggs, & dairy.
Let the weight of that sink in for a minute…
I was devastated. 12 weeks with no cream in my coffee or fresh butter?! How would I go on?!
I began to question everything we’re doing at Nature’s Pantry.
I can physically see a difference in our farm fresh food compared to the grocery store. But why can’t I eat it?
It didn’t take me long to realize that it was over 2 decades of making poor choices that led me to this place. (Remember...I’ve only been “crazy” for about 7 years.)
Before that I was completely normal - which is the scary part! We followed the Standard American Diet (SAD) with lots of processed, sugary foods - never organic because that was a waste of money.
Remember all the antibiotics I took for strep throat and acne? All the birth control to balance my hormones? And so many other things....it all makes perfect sense to me now.
It doesn't matter that I buy all organic food, cook almost everything from scratch, or use “clean” beauty products. It also doesn't matter how hard we work to produce high quality food or how healthy our animals are... my body can’t handle it because the damage has already been done.
My treatment also includes digestive enzymes before every meal, a daily GI supplement to heal my gut lining, lots of bone broth, a probiotic before bed, and castor oil packs to my abdomen 3x/week to help with inflammation.
After 90 days of elimination and a healed gut lining I will start to reintroduce these foods once again.
My belief is that eating farm fresh food raised the way we do will be the difference. No hormones, antibiotics, chemicals, or altered in any way - just as nature intended.
Sadly, as an RN I know more about playing cards than I do leaky gut. Nothing about my job has taught me what I know today.
It was my desire for my kids to be healthy that led me down the path of diet and nutrition and how gut health is a huge piece of the puzzle.
After just 5 weeks into the treatment my skin is almost 100% clear. It honestly brings tears to my eyes.
It’s been a long road to get to this point and I’m proud to say my persistence is finally paying off.
Dr. Jodi has so graciously agreed to write up a quick overview on leaky gut for our community at Nature’s Pantry.
It covers the basics to get you started - causes, symptoms, and treatment. If you’d like to receive her expert take on leaky gut and also follow along with my progress you can sign up here:
I don’t share my struggles with you because I’m looking for sympathy. I share them with you to encourage you to listen to what your body is telling you and not to be afraid to question the answers you are getting.
I am far from perfect (clearly I’m more like a hot mess) but I’ve come so far in my healing journey and I wish the same for you.