C.E. ” A Real Gluten Story”
First off, a big thank you to Dr. Weed. A good doctor knows the right questions to ask. I came to Dr. Weed to explore a minor skin condition I had and found out in the end that I have an autoimmune disease. I’m eternally grateful to have had his good advice and to have been diagnosed at 44, rather than to be living with the ill-effects of AI and not have the opportunity to treat it.
I initially requested a Heidelberg test from Dr. Weed because I’d heard that rosacea could be related to GI bacteria and wanted to explore. Based on the results of my Heidelberg test, Dr. Weed recommended I follow up with a Comprehensive GI Analysis, food allergy testing and eventually a GI Permeability test to look for the presence of Leaky Gut Syndrome.
Below is a record of my experiences over the last several months. Apologies for the lengthiness!
I reduced gluten in my diet in December 2012, then went to Yosemite Park Dec. 22-24th and (since I was on vacation, as is my habit), ate whatever I wanted while there. This included pasta and toast.
On the third day, driving home from Yosemite, I’m a wreck. Sneezy, itchy, watery eyes, major congestion, misery. All I could think was that I must be allergic to pine trees, as someone had suggested to me. It takes me 3 days to recover.
First week in January, I get lab tests that confirm that I am gluten sensitive, so I eliminate it all together.
My “normal” lately (for the last year or so) had been puffy face and puffy eyes, especially in the morning. At night time, my eyes would be very sensitive to light. Would run around dimming lights in the house. Also itchy. After 3 days of eliminating gluten, this went away.
Then accidentally ate gluten, “hidden” in the rice vinegar in my sushi. Within a few hours of consuming….itchy watery eyes, sneezy and irritable. This is a tell-tale sign.
Back on the horse. After another two weeks, I feel better than I ever have…ever?! My body/joints move really freely, I have great energy, and my morning “brain fog” has dissipated. Used to sleep 10 hours and not feel rested; get up really groggy. Happy girl.
That night, I tear into an Asian salad that must’ve had gluten in the chicken marinade. By the time I put down my fork, I’m projectile sneezing. Within an hour, itchy, watery eyes and a head full of congestion. Flu symptoms for a week.
About a month later, I took a test to determine if I had any cross-reactive food sensitivities. Labs came back indicating no other sensitivities, other than gluten. Dr. Weed thought that this was highly unusual and likely not an accurate result. We decided to take the “try and see” approach. Gladly ate a teacup full of ice cream that evening. Next day (all day): intense brain fog and lethargy. Didn’t leave the couch.
WEIGHT, EXERCISE, ETC.:
For 10 years, I’ve played a sport competitively and loved it. Beach volleyball is an intense workout and during spring, summer fall, I played on average 8 hours per week. Plus throw in a yoga class. My diet was clean clean clean: fresh, whole produce; lentils; greek yogurt; a little fish or chicken here or there, but not much. Juiced fresh veggies a few times a week. Brown rice. Srouted wheat toast (one slice) with an egg for breakfast. Couldn’t lose weight. Had about 5-10 extra pounds on me. Which is not a lot. But I felt like I was working AWFULLY hard to be carrying that extra weight.
It’s now the first week in March. I changed up my exercise routine when I started my new diet. Instead of volleyball, I walk 2 miles, 5x per week. This is easy and less strenuous than the previous routine.
I am 3-4 pounds lighter and have lost some girth: clothes are fitting better. Most importantly, I don’t feel like I’m working so hard (at all?). I am maintaining or slowly losing weight with ease.
FOOD SENSITIVITIES, ANTIBODIES, GOALS, STRATEGY & RECOMMENDA TIONS:
My food sensitivities are clearly severe and my antibody numbers are indicative: thyroid peroxidase antibodies = 424 per blood test results.
My goals are as follows:
To not get (powerfully, significantly) sick from accidental gluten consumption.
I’d like to feel like I have a safety net.
To get my antibodies levels down; as close to normal as possible
To do this, I’ve chosen to also add meds to my strategy: this week, I started taking 1.5 mg per day of Low-Dose Naltrexone (LDN). Taking LDN for Hashimoto’s is an off-label
use for the drug. LDN appears to regulate the immune system and bring down antibody levels. Especially when used together with thyroid/hormone meds. When used together, antibody levels reportedly drop quickly. According to fellow LDNers, most patients reduce their thyroid meds as they increase their dose of LDN, sometimes eliminating the thyroid meds altogether. These patients remain on LDN.
For anyone else considering an approach like this one, I strongly suggest the following:
Read the book “Why Do I Still Have Thyroid Symptoms When My Lab Tests Are Normal?” by D. Kharrazian
Be sure to do a comprehensive GI analysis and address any possible issues with Candida, yeast, etc
Take care of your adrenals and support your thyroid gland as much as possible through diet, lifestyle and dietary supplements, as necessary
Consult with others. I highly recommend the Facebook support group run by Deb Anderson Eastman: Beating Thyroid Disease with LDN. Be sure to share your info with Deb and the group and if you’re considering taking LDN, let Deb know. It is a “closed” group, for privacy purposes. Click to join, introduce yourself and give Deb a day or two to get back to you.
DOWN THE ROAD:
This ties in with my goals and strategy above…to get my immune system functioning properly and to have optimal health as I grow older!
I can now look at my mom and see that all the symptoms of Hashimoto’s that I’ve had…my mom has, times 10. My mom also had breast cancer in her 70’s. Had surgery, chemo and radiation and is now in remission. Now in her 80’s, she is well down the road with dementia.
Both cancer AND dementia are NOT un-related to our immune systems. In a backhanded sort of way….I am INSANELY lucky to be finding out about all this at 44, so that now I can do something about it.
A GOOD REMINDER:
I was a little freaked out by a) my diagnosis and b) what seemed like a radical diet (and lifestyle?) change when this all first happened. My neighbor, who’s been gluten-free for years, told me this: it won’t seem like a big deal when you start feeling better. Couldn’t have been more right.
I live in Berkeley and here are my new, gluten-free-friendly haunts…
Gather Restaurant, for date-night, etc.
Café Gratitude for dessert, especially the chocolate almond, mousse-like cake. All their desserts are gluten- and dairy- free and when I say tasty, I mean BETTER than any gluten-FUL desert I’ve had. To die for.
When you feel like pasta….Go get Thai Food – order pad thai. Or go to Paisan Restaurant for gluten-free pasta and Bolognese sauce, with a salad. It’s KILLER and you won’t leave feeling like you have a brick in your stomach.
Thai Food in general is a good choice. Curries and brown rice – can’t go wrong.
La Mediterranea on College Avenue. Ask for their gluten-free menu. Café Colucci A funky Ethiopian restaurant on Telegraph at Alcatraz. Ask for the gluten-free injira (flatbread). Seriously great food.
STUFF TO STAY AWAY FROM:
I am 0 for 2 when ordering a chicken salad that’s not specifically labeled gluten-free. Seems like a good choice on the face of things, but marinades are death. Stay away.
If others out there are like me….I need to eat often and don’t want to be caught in a pinch without something I know I can eat safely. Especially when traveling. I keep snacks in my purse and in my car.
Justin’s little packets of peanut butter are essential. I also keep gluten-free turkey jerky and corn nuts. Lara bars are good too.
I found the staff at Genesis to be friendly and very knowledgeable about proper exercise and nutrition to maximize my results. I’m 5′ 6″ and wanted to remove the the last 3 inches off of my midsection. This treatment itself is not a diet nor will you lose 10 pounds of fat. I had a course of 5 treatments followed up by healthily eating and exercising. My exercise was about a 45 minutes a day during the program, caused me to loss a total of 2″ off of my midsection. I was determined to get the most out of the process and I plan to keep it off.
The offices were clean and bright. And the treatment room was clam and relaxing during the laser sessions. They even have a well equipped gym to help reshape your body immediately after each 40 minute laser treatment. The lasers they use are two rectangular paddles that lay against your skin for 10 minute periods of time. They
are moved around every 10 minutes, so my
complete midsection was treated in 40 minutes. The laser is pain free but feel a little warm. If you would like help getting rid of a problem area, I would recommend the Genesis Health Institute in Fairfield.
Genesis Health Institute is such a remarkable business. Im currently a patient for their lipo laser treatment and I recommend it to everyone who wants to lose a few inches off the waist. It’s a painless procedure that actually works. I also recommend the infrared blanket! The staff is so amazing! They answer all your questions and cater to your needs! They truly are an institution that cares to get you back to a healthy you :)
The lipo laser really works and you can truly see marked results even after one treatment. It’s painless, and I’ve even fallen asleep during one! Also, Joanna is very friendly and knowledgable and the facility is clean, inviting and up to date!
I’ve been going to Genesis Health Institute for the last 4 weeks. Been having Laser Lipo and Infrared Blanket sessions with workouts following only once a week. I lose weight very slowly, and only lost 2 lbs on the scale, but after being remeasured I lost a total of 3 inches from my thighs! My clothes are fitting better & I notice that my thighs are definitely firmer. The staff are friendly, positive, & encouraging. Every week I can’t wait to go to my appointment. Going to work their program until the end of the year! Will let you all know my final results by the end of the year…with Genesis & a healthy diet I know I’ll reach my health & fitness goals.
I found the staff at Genesis to be friendly and very knowledgeable about proper exercise and nutrition to maximize my results. I’m 5′ 6″ and weight 147 pounds, wanted to remove the the last 3 inches off of my midsection. This treatment itself is not a diet nor will you lose 10 pounds of fat. I had a course of 5 treatments followed up by healthily eating and exercising. My exercise was about a 45 minutes a day 3-4 days a week during the program. I lost a total of 2″ off of my midsection. I was determined to get the most out of the program and I plan to keep it off.
The offices were clean and bright. And the treatment room was clam and relaxing during the laser sessions. They even have a well equipped gym to help reshape your body immediately after each 40 minute laser treatment. The lasers they use are two rectangular paddles that lay against your skin for 10 minute periods of time. They are moved around every 10 minutes, so my complete midsection was treated in 40 minutes. The laser is pain free but feel a little warm. If you would like help getting rid of a problem area, I would recommend the Genesis Health Institute in Fairfield.
I’ve completed about 6-7 sessions of the Laser Lipo and I can feel the difference in my clothes. Jeans that my belly would bulge over no longer have that bulge, they actually fit! The machine itself doesn’t hurt a bit, and afterwards you do some light exercises. They do of course recomend that you exercise in addition to what you do there and follow some sort of healthy diet. The staff are all very friendly and do their best to accomodate your schedule
This place has a great friendly staff and they are enthusiastic about your health goals. I had 14 sessions with the laser treatment and the infrared wrap with GREAT results! I went 3 days a week for about a month. I lost 6 lbs total, but that was broken down into a 10 lbs loss of fat and a gain of 4 lbs muscle. I lost a total of 9.5 inches from my midsection alone. Those results amazed me, to top it off my body fat % dropped from 32.4% to 25.9% in one month! That was the most amazing part for me.
I do live a healthy lifestyle, I workout about 30 min a day at least 3 days a week and eat fairly healthy, maintaining a specific calorie diet that suits me. I am by no means a health nut. I had lost 20 lbs prior to going to Genesis and thought it would be a great way to maximize my progress. On that note, I also had a food allergy test that Dr. Weed suggested in order to help with my weight loss and adult acne. I found that I do have various allergies and now know what not to put into my body. It has actually helped with my acne (which was the biggest reason for having it done) and my weight loss plateau. Who knew what foods can do to your body!
I recommend specifically Genesis Health because you do get results with awesome friendly service and staff. My girlfriend went to a place in Walnut Creek and it just seemed like they wanted her $ and were very rude to her, she didn’t even want to go back. Nothing like Genesis. I wish I could do more, but for now I just don’t have time for it, but I am so happy I went.
I went to Dr Weed complaining of stomach and digestive issues. I had severe cramps, diarrhea, weight gain, hair loss and I was fatigued. I showed him the results from my endoscopy and colonoscopy and said my GI Dr prescribed a proton pump inhibitor and an anti-inflammatory drug which was going to cost $325/month.
I went to Genesis for a second opinion.
Dr Weed did 4 tests which showed my GI Dr didn’t have a clue.
1. Stomach acid- instead of having too much I NONE. So taking the proton pump would have just made things worse further down the line. GERD can be caused by too little acid as well as too much. I have learned a lot from Dr Weed about stomach acid.
2. GI Stool test- This test showed that I had parasites and yeast build up. When you have no stomach acid your first form of defense is gone and so EVERYTHING goes straight thru to your intestines. If it’s a good match it will cultivate and cause problems.
3. Leaky gut test- This test confirmed that I was also suffering from leaky gut which explained my weight gain and my cholesterol shooting up in a year’s time. When you have low stomach acid you can also develop leaky gut but also from sugar and wheat creating little breaks in your lining. The food particles, bacteria, yeast, viruses all escape your intestines directly into your blood stream and cause inflammation and in my case my liver produced cholesterol to protect my blood from the “foreign invaders”.
4. Food allergy test- This test showed I was producing antigens to all kinds of foods. This is because when they enter your blood stream your body creates antigens because again it thinks that they are foreign invaders. If you don’t fix the leaky gut these thing develop into full blown food allergies.
So what am I doing?
1. Take HCL (acid supplement) with every meal
2. Take RepairVite to fix the leaky gut
3. Take Undecylenic acid?? to fix the yeast
4. Took one time to RX to get rid of the parasites.
I kid you NOT. 3 weeks later I feel fantastic. I’ve lost some weight but more importantly all the digestive issues have cleared up.
I would very STRONGLY recommend anyone with digestive issues to see Dr Weed. He is very knowledgable and instead of trying to just give you a pill to make some symptoms go away he will actually treat the root source of the problem.
All of the tests cost about 1/4 of what the colonoscopy did. Highly worth it.
Why couldn’t anyone else find that I had a parasite?
Here’s my story: After sudden-onset of weeks of diarrhea & bloating, I started doing what most people do, researching online and making self-diagnoses based on my symptoms. I cut out dairy, spicy foods, coffee, and alcohol. Even tried cutting out gluten. Nothing helped. The diarrhea persisted and the sleepless nights were taking a toll, only getting 45min to an hour of sleep every night on and off. I was going to the bathroom every 30-45 min and hadn’t had a normal stool in almost a month. Then came severe fatigue, lightheadedness, and flu-like symptoms, so, out of frustration I went to the doctor. Since I am a Doctor of Physical Therapy, I work in skilled nursing facilities and hospitals. My primary care doctor and I concluded that it had to be a bacterial infection of some sort. I was prescribed Vancomycin and was ordered to submit a stool sample. The Vanco cost me $1000 and didn’t even touch it, and in fact upset my stomach even more. The stool test then came back negative. I took another stool test that my doc ordered and it was sent off to a lab to evaluate for ova & parasites and other common buggy-bacterial things… This also came back negative. I was now even more frustrated and now, getting scared. My stool was getting more frequently bloody and I was getting more lethargic and unable to exercise, unable to climb stairs, and was getting weaker by the day. I lost 35 pounds in 6 weeks, all while eating as normally as I could, following a combination of BRAT diet and Paleo, based on what my primary wanted me to do, and what made logical sense at the time. I was now anemic and had white blood cell, eosinophil, and inflammatory markers through the roof. I was referred to a GI doctor but after looking at my case my GI skipped the exam and went straight for the colonoscopy. At the same time my PCP ordered the Promethius panel, which gives general markers for inflammation and can serve as an initial diagnosis-point for UC and IBS. These came back “likely Ulcerative Colitis, and definitely Irritable Bowel Syndrome” but inconclusive unless a colonoscopy is performed. So, off I go for the scope. And what does the GI see? A ton if inflammation. I was diagnosed with UC and was prescribed two commonly used anti-inflammatory UC meds, costing a total of $1500, and hydrocortisone enemas, every night. The UC meds were horrible, and obviously nightly enemas are no fun either….No relief at all, and made my cramping 10x’s worse. I was very, very scared and frustrated fearing my active lifestyle and way of life in general would be changed forever. There is no way to describe the depression, frustration, and helplessness that I felt throughout those 3 months
Then it all changed….I was referred to Genesis by a good friend of mine and after looking at some basic lab tests that my PCP had done at the very beginning, Dr. Weed did two things. He asked me if I had been anywhere on vacation in one to two months preceding the onset of my symptoms. I told him I had been to Mexico. He then told me that an eosinophil count as high as mine (15% of all my white blood cells were eosinophils, they should be 3% or less), was virtually diagnostic for a parasite infection with a Helminthic worm. He explained that eosinophils evolved solely for the purpose of fighting infections with this type of parasite. He ordered a Comprehensive Digestive Stool Analysis, which included a much more sophisticated method of determining parasites, called a DNA-PCR test. He got me the answers I was literally dying for, and recommended to my PCP exactly what medication I needed to take to get rid of the worm parasite (It’s called Strongyloides or whipworm, to be exact). Dr. Weed believed that I probably picked it up in Mexico, where it is common. After only two days of taking a very commonly prescribed anti-Helminthic medication, I was 90% better. A week later, 100% cured. Symptom-free. Back to normal. I was very frustrated my PCP didn’t pick-up on what Dr. Weed easily saw. Mad that I had to spend close to $5000 out of pocket for tests and meds that were in no way related to what was REALLY going on. I couldn’t imagine how this would have turned-out without Dr. Weed’s knowledge, as I would have likely been on UC meds and having colonoscopies for the rest of my life. I will be forever indebted to Dr. Weed and Genesis for the incredible service they provided and have recommend Genesis to anyone who is looking for any kind of wellness-related information, food-sensitivity questions, or anyone battling with weight-loss or inflammatory issues.
Dr. Weed just repeated all the labs that were out of the normal range when I was ill. All lab values are now normal and my eosinophil count dropped from 15 to 3, showing that killing the worm restored normal balance of white blood cells.
19 March 2014- My Hypothyroid Story
Thanks to his extensive knowledge of hypothyroidism, Dr. Weed successfully improved my hypothyroid symptoms, after many years of unsuccessful or partially successful thyroid treatments.
I am a 62-year-old male who has had hypothyroidism for 17 years; a severe case according to the doctors — my original TSH tests were 850.0 and 966.24 uIU/ml. Over the years, I saw multiple doctors, including thyroid specialists, and tried various forms of thyroid (levothyroxine, liothyronine (synthetic T3), and desiccated (natural) thyroid), along with other treatments to help thyroid function, such as DHEA, cortisol, Vitamin D, and other nutrient supplements. These were partially effective at best, and I still had frequent fatigue along with various other symptoms of hypothyroidism before seeing Dr. Weed. He did a thorough analysis of my hypothyroid condition and had me do a number of laboratory tests, many of them for the first time. One of the new tests was a halide test, for excretion of iodine, bromine, and fluoride. This test showed my iodine levels were low, so Dr. Weed advised taking iodine. Within a couple days, I noticed a clear reduction in fatigue. Fatigue was the most debilitating symptom of hypothyroidism for me, so his treatment has much improved the quality of my life.
During the process, Dr. Weed showed a deep knowledge of hypothyroidism, and a willingness to share and explain what he knows. None of the other doctors I saw, or the research I did on my own, suggested iodine. Without Dr. Weed’s help, I would most likely be asleep right now, instead of writing this.
I highly recommend Dr. Douglas Weed of Genesis Health Institute for anyone with hypothyroidism, especially if they are not having success with their current treatment.
San Pablo, California
My Weight-Loss Story
I started at GHI, in November of 2013. I weighed 171 lbs. at 5’ 5” and was about to turn 50 in February of 2014. I was very unhappy about my weight. I knew that if I didn’t lose weight now, I would continue gaining it and it would make it that much harder to take the extra pounds off. I decided to go for a consultation at GHI. I didn’t know really what to expect, but the technician there, Laurie, explained to me fully how everything worked. She answered all my questions and I found her to be very knowledgeable, pleasant and easy to talk to. I ended up purchasing six sessions of Lipo-Light treatments and the infrared blanket, which improves the results. Doing this for myself was the best thing I could have done. My results were fantastic and the experience was life changing. Throughout the sessions, Laurie and Dr. Weed educated me about the “Paleo diet.” Laurie was kind enough to share some great tasting recipes and Dr. Weed provided me with other resource material about the diet. I started going Paleo and it really boosted my weight loss. After the six sessions, I had lost 10 lbs. and a total of 9 1/2 inches around my torso. Another great benefit to my weight-loss, was that the sleep apnea that I suffered from was vastly improved.
I had such great results with my initial sessions that I purchased eight more. Dr. Weed and Laurie were right there with me through the process as they had been for the previous sessions. They continued to educate, encourage and inspire me. In the end, I lost a total of 21 lbs. and 13 ½ inches. I finally started to feel in control of my weight and not let it control me. I truly felt empowered.
Losing weight didn’t happen over night. I had and have to put in the work to get the results I wanted. I feel fortunate to have had Dr. Weed and Laurie as my coaches and cheerleaders on my journey not only to lose weight, but to be healthier and in the end to be happier, for this reason I highly recommend Genesis Health Institute.