My Health Journey for the Past Two Years

My Health Journey for the Past Two Years

In June of 2015, I went to a Health Fair on the ground floor of my company and had the obligatory cholesterol check and it was about 240, which was high (should be under 200), so they recommended I get a more thorough lab done with my doctor. So, instead of doing that immediately, I worked hard to change my diet per the typical routine – reduced calories, exercised more, and lost a little weight… THEN I scheduled my physical. Well, In August of 2015, I was diagnosed with high cholesterol (251 – so much for working hard to reduce it) and I was placed on a statin (Lipitor). This bummed me out, of course, but just assumed I had no choice.

To bring perspective, I have to tell you that I’d never really considered myself a truly healthy person. I tried not to go crazy with junk food and yo-yo dieted like a champion trying to keep my weight somewhat reasonable. I had chronic asthma (carried an inhaler everywhere I went and was on a daily maintenance inhaler), chronic migraines (to the point where I was starting a maintenance med for it as well), and my lungs were in such bad shape I got bronchitis at least twice a year. I was a mess. So the statins just added insult to injury.

Fast forward to December and I began to notice some changes in me that I didn’t really like. I felt like my brain was slowing down. I would have longer moments where I would just stare at my computer and wonder what I was working on and I felt like I was reacting more slowly to things. I felt like I was in this constant mental fog. This caused me to do a good bit of online research and, it seems, this is one of the potential side effects of statins.

As I said in a previous article, I work in a fast-paced and demanding technical job that requires a lot of thought and a sharp mind to succeed. So, in January of 2016, I decided to stop taking my statins and see what might happen. In just two weeks, my mental acuity had noticeably improved and the foggy brain I was experiencing began to dissipate and I felt like I was waking up.

I was, of course, still concerned about my cholesterol numbers and decided to get an independent lab check for a wide panel of tests. I knew I had health issues (remember: asthma, bronchitis, migraines, and now cholesterol), but I needed some new direction. I began to read a variety of things and discovered a whole mountain of evidence that cholesterol alone was a terrible indicator of heart disease and fighting it the way we’d been fighting it was not helping things. Oh yeah, and statins were more likely to hurt you than actually prevent heart attacks.

In all of my research, I came across a man by the name of Kevin Geary and began to listen to his Rebooted Body podcast. It was pretty compelling stuff. On one of the casts, someone mentioned a company called WellnessFX, a place where you can order your own blood test and make an appt with a qualified professional to help you to evaluate your results and make nutritional recommendations.

So, I took the plunge in February of 2016 and, again, saw elevated cholesterol, but I also learned about something called C-Reactive Proteins – an apparently better indicator of your heart health as it has to do with systemic inflammation (which more recent research seems to indicate is the actual cause of elevated cholesterol). These were also higher than normal. The test was depressing because it just completely confirmed that, well, I’m a hot mess.

So, I met with the nutritionist and she made one recommendation that I really didn’t like.

I’ll tell you that tomorrow…

Photo Credit: Jana Gross Photography