Note from Kelsey and Laura:
We are so incredibly happy to hear of Karrie’s success (note: name changed to protect privacy), and we’re thrilled that she learned so much about her health during the time she spent in the Paleo Rehab program. The path to health is never a straight road, but Karrie shows us that there’s progress to be made.
I had been sick for almost four years before Paleo Rehab. It started with a life-altering case of mono in 2012, the effects of which resulted in chronic fatigue that has not gone away. In 2014, I was introduced to the Paleo world and went gluten free, sugar free, and pursued radically clean eating and living. I had been under severe life stress since 2012, including the loss of my health, career, friends, home, belongings, an almost-fiance, and finally, my ability to live independently as an adult.
Following a cross-country move back to my parents’ after unexpected job loss and unemployment, my body went absolutely crazy. I began to experience severe insomnia at night, anxiety and panic attacks, and major heart-pounding in the middle of the night as though I were having a heart attack. I would wake up hungry and go to the kitchen and eat bags of chips, licking the salt off my hands. But when I tried to eat enough before bed to keep myself from getting hungry, I would feel severely bloated and that would keep me awake too. I was up for hours at night, feeling like I was dying, completely exhausted but completely unable to sleep. I was exhausted all throughout the day and could rarely leave the house. I would get weak and shaky and had no energy, and I didn’t know why.
I went to an alternative doctor, who diagnosed me with adrenal fatigue and hyperthyroidism. He put me on supplements that included glandulars and adaptogens. For a week or two, things would get better, but then it seemed as though the supplements made me even worse, so I stopped taking them and stopped meeting with that doctor, who had improperly diagnosed my hyperthyroidism anyways (I was actually hypothyroid).
Since doctors couldn’t help me, I learned to be my own doctor, researching everything I could about adrenal fatigue online. However, there seemed to be conflicting information, and it seemed as though everyone was just copying what other websites said, with no scientific or objective data to back up their claims. And since glandulars, and adaptogens seemed to make things worse, there wasn’t much I could do to help myself, other than trying a regimen of vitamins and minerals that are important for people with adrenal fatigue, as well as some essential oils.
Having been an avid follower of Chris Kresser, I happened to learn about a webinar he was doing with Paleo Rehab. I almost didn’t even watch it, because I truly thought that I knew everything there was to know about adrenal fatigue, and I didn’t want to waste my time. But for some reason, I decided to watch it. I was instantly intrigued by new and insightful information that I hadn’t heard before. And since I’d been to numerous Western and alternative doctors, as well as conducted my own research, that was saying a lot.
My biggest hesitation about joining Paleo Rehab was the price. I’d been unemployed for a long time at that point, and spent a lot of money on doctors who didn’t help me at all. Thankfully, Laura and Kelsey offered a money-back guarantee if you weren’t satisfied with the program after the first two modules, so I figured that I would start the program, and then just get a refund when it proved to be as unhelpful as everything else. I am SO glad I moved forward, and so glad they believe in Paleo Rehab enough to offer that guarantee for those of us who are sick, out of funds, and frustrated by a lack of help with other avenues we’ve tried.
Little did I know that Paleo Rehab would be a game changer for me. I began to learn about HPA-axis dysregulation, which is a more appropriate medical diagnosis than adrenal fatigue, as well as the various causes and symptoms. I took detailed notes of all the modules and Q&As, making my own Paleo Rehab medical binder. I was actually just waiting for module 3, because I thought my problems would be most helped if Kelsey and Laura could just tell me the right supplements to take. I was shocked when we hit module 2, and I realized that my biggest problem was something that I never suspected — my relationship with food over the previous 3 years.
I had always blown people off when they thought I had an eating disorder or was anorexic, because I knew it wasn’t a body image issue for me, and that I really liked food. What I was completely blind to was that “healthy” food does not equal “nutrient-dense” food. My daily calorie and macronutrient intake were very low. I had been orthorexic for two years without even realizing it, all the while so proud of my “healthy” Paleo clean eating!
The modules in Paleo Rehab were organized so well and had such helpful information. Some of my favorite aspects were the Q&A sessions in each module, especially the Q&A with Dr. Carrie Jones going over recommendations for different DUTCH test results.
Another huge help and encouragement was the Facebook group, where I found people who understood what I was going through and experienced many of the same things. It is a wonderful place to ask all types of health questions and get feedback from people who have experienced and tried a lot. I was no longer alone and thinking I was crazy with my odd symptoms!
After getting on a more appropriate diet, with the program’s suggested macronutrient ratios, and tracking my calories per day to keep myself from undereating, as well as taking the general supplements, I gradually began to improve. The middle-of-the-night heart attack and palpitation sensations went away, as did the panic and anxiety, and also the shakiness from not eating enough. I still struggle with insomnia, fatigue, and higher nighttime cortisol issues, but Paleo Rehab has helped me improve so much from where I was when I started! It is shocking to me that no Western or alternative doctors over the previous four years had ever asked me specifically about my nutrient intake.
It’s been six months since I started the Paleo Rehab program. While I still have a number of health issues, I was finally able to start working full-time again, which I have not been able to do for the past two years! I have to pace myself, and I still can’t be out at night, or else my body won’t calm down to sleep. I have to stay on top of my eating every single day, making sure to have high protein and fat breakfasts and lunches. The one day that I “cheated,” I had horrible insomnia that night, which shows just how important the right food at the right time is for health!
While a few people have miraculous, magic-bullet experiences, I think that for most of us, health is a process. Sometimes it’s two steps forward and one step back. But as I look back, I have seen progressive improvement as a result of Paleo Rehab. I can’ t thank Laura and Kelsey enough for being such gifted, knowledgeable, balanced, and caring practitioners, and for putting together a program like nothing else out there. I am forever grateful that I found them and for Paleo Rehab!