My body has been through a lot in almost 58 years. Most recently Lyme Disease & 3 co-infections plus, I've battled MCAD (Mast Cell Activation Disorder) which sent me into anaphylactic shock twice in the past 5 years. That in itself is enough to kill ya!! And if it doesn't kill ya, it will beat you down to a pulp!
Also in the past 5 years within a 2 year span we lost 3 of our 4 parents. That too is enough to break any heart.
Although the MCAD has been much improved, there have been other things ailing me. Things I can't shake. Things that for a while had no name.
I've been doing a lot of testing in the past month trying to name these dragons.....and I think we've got some names.
One big thing is, I'm suffering from Adrenal Fatigue. I don't believe it's complete exhaustion....thank The Lord, but it's not been pretty around here. Most days, I sit on the sofa trying not to cry so I've been doing some art. The other days when I have a good one, I maybe do the laundry or scrub a toilet. I'm just trying to keep my head above water. Trying to take it easy and love my adrenals....they are like a bank account; money in money out...ok...money out no money in....not so ok! And frankly some people bounce back from stress....they don't suffer like others do.....I envy them!!!
My DUTCH (dried urine test) checked my hormone levels....and behold they revealed what I knew....I'm runnin on empty! They are all depleted. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Nothing. Which at 58 and never having been on HRT....duh!!! I was on Bio-identical hormones for a year until my general doc wanted me off....and because he scared me, I quit....I'm just a smidgen resentful about that!!!
It also revealed that my metabolism is at rock bottom. So no matter what I do, I can't loose a pound. So, I'm keeping a diary trying to find what helps and doesn't help these symptoms of a messed up thyroid and adrenals. A metabolic nutritionist I'm consulting with wants me to up my carbs to 60%, proteins to 25% and fats to 15%. I tried it for 3 days and felt awful......me and a lot of carbs just don't work well. I know my body more then most. I have been listening to it for a long long time. And it needs more healthy fats and protein and less carbs. I haven't really been able to pin down what makes my thyroid happy; because a happy thyroid makes happy adrenals. It's a vicious cycle....of course God designed it that way for one organ to play off another.....we just need to find that happy dance.
I have no idea where all the stress came from....duh!!! JK!
AND I am also undermethylated.....which still bogs down my brain ........my methylators (is that a word!!) only work part time...slowly....they are lazy. As you can see this is a biochemistry subject and is WAY above my pay grade!!!
"DNA methylation is a process by which methyl groups are added to DNA. Methylation modifies the function of the DNA. When located in a gene promoter, DNA methylation typically acts to repress gene transcription.
DNA methylation can stably alter the expression of genes in cells as cells divide and differentiate from embryonic stem cells into specific tissues. The resulting change is normally permanent and unidirectional, preventing a cell from reverting to a stem cell or converting into a different cell type. However, DNA methylation can be removed either passively, by dilution as cells divide, or by a faster, active, process. The latter process occurs via hydroxylation of the methyl groups that are to be removed, rather than by complete removal of methyl groups. DNA methylation is typically removed during zygote formation and re-established through successive cell divisions during development. Methylation modifications that regulate gene expression are usually heritable through mitotic cell division; some methylation is also heritable through the specialized meiotic cell division that creates egg and sperm cells, resulting in genomic imprinting. DNA methylation suppresses the expression ofendogenous retroviral genes and other harmful stretches of DNA that have been incorporated into the host genome over time. DNA methylation also forms the basis of chromatin structure, which enables a single cell to grow into multiple organs or perform multiple functions. DNA methylation also plays a crucial role in the development of nearly all types of cancer. "(1)
Currently all I know is that foods high in Folate have been bothering me big time! That would be fresh greens, broccoli, asparagus, legumes.
The entire field of genomics has exploded! Therefore allowing us more knowledge then ever before in human history. 23 and Me has given way to 56+ genetic variants to tell people what the heck is wrong or right with them, what they can expect and if they want to cut off their breasts early...go right ahead.....I've seriously thought about getting my personal genetic roadmap read....but frankly I don't know if I can handle any more right now. I think it might just send me over the edge.
I also think that we can live peacefully with what we do know through plasma tests and various other tests. I'm not ruling out a genetic test but for now....I was advised that it may not be accurate due to our ability to turn on and off gene expression.....OH YES we can!!!
The term epigenetics refers to heritable changes in gene expression (active versus inactive genes) that does not involve changes to the underlying DNA sequence; a change in phenotype without a change in genotype. This in turn affects how cells read the genes. (2)
What it does change is the genetic expression of your DNA. Epigenetics has proven that your environment, the food you eat, the people you hang with, the thoughts you think, the prayers you pray, the walks you take......they can turn on or turn off certain genetic expressions!!!
Now if that isn't totally cool, then I don't know what is!!!!
Of course we eat really well and another Doc told me to balance those good proteins, carbs and fats to nourish the thyroid and adrenals. And I'm drinking the Chinese Herb, Rhemania tea 3X day to love on my Adrenals. Sometimes those thoughts when you feel like burnt toast are hard to reign in....so I am doing a couple different intention directed exercises each day to redirect my thoughts when they are lost.
If you see me around then I must be having a good day. If you don't see me or you see a lot of watercolor pics posted on FB, then I'm most likely having a pretty bad day. When those bad days hit, I just don't want to talk cause frankly forming thoughts is difficult....finding anything in the brain is a challenge.
But please do not translate any of this into whether I still have joy! I draw my strength from The Lord and I run to him when I am afraid.
Habakkuk 3:17-18 expresses my heart completely.
- Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.