The What’s UpDate- September 2017

What's UpDate

Much as I’ve wanted to blog lately, I haven’t. Life has felt rushed and crazy and “I’ll do it later” as more pressing things occupy my time and brain. My perfectionist tendency rears its ugly head as I envision lovely, informative posts with complete research, pretty pictures, and footnoted references.

Yeah, that’s not going to happen. At least not right now.

So to rip off the blogging band-aid, I am doing a periodic What’s UpDate where I can tell you what I’m currently digging, what I’m not digging, what I’m researching, eating, reading, and all the other randomness I come up with along the way. #streamofconsciousness

What I’m eating:

This is actually a complicated topic. Surprise. I seem to be stuck between a rock and a hard place (more like a ketogenic and a low-carb place) when it comes to figuring out ideal macros. I feel better in general when I eat AIP (autoimmune protocol Paleo, check out The Paleo Mom‘s site and books for more great info), but I feel like my energy lags even more than usual with so few carbs. I would try a higher fat ketogenic diet if my fat sources weren’t so limited by intolerances. I can’t eat more carby vegetables at the time because I break out from too many orange ones, especially sweet potatoes. I’m starting a conspiracy theory about my genes and beta carotene conversion. More on that later.

I’m eating a lot of grilled meat (pastured and local when possible, Costco when not), roasted veg, and jasmine rice from my Instant Pot. Some combo thereof. I post a lot of my meal randomness on my Instagram @roguepharmacist if you want the real life breakdown!

What I’m reading:

I’m a little bit obsessed lately with my homegirl Gretchen Rubin. Her new book The Four Tendencies comes out today! It’s a fascinating framework and I can’t wait to learn more about it—even if I can’t use it to my advantage in my marriage since my husband is hard to peg into one category. Though I’m pretty sure I tried to be an Upholder growing up, I’m now firmly in the Questioner camp. I’m owning it. I think. Or am I?

I’m currently reading her blast-from-the-past book The Happiness Project. She sometimes references it in the Happier Podcast (a current favorite while slaving away in the kitchen) and I thought it might be an interesting read. SCORE, I was right! I’m not to the point where I’ve had a chance to develop my own happiness resolutions, but she has a lot of great insights and ideas. I think she and my former Type A, Upholder-wannabe self would be buddies.

What I’m Listening To

It’s so much easier to chop piles of veggies and do mountains of dishes while listening to a podcast. I can’t say I’ve delved deep into the world of entertaining podcasts, but I do have some favorite informational ones.

  • (the aforementioned) Happier podcast with Gretchen Rubin
  • Balanced Bites Podcast (I may talk back to Liz and Diane like I’m part of the conversation)
  • Better Everyday with Sarah and Dr.Brooke
    • Check out episode #58. Their discussion of self-care is phenomenal. I want to write more on this after I’ve chewed on my own self-care related thoughts for a bit.

What I’m Digging

Kindergarten. My daughter’s teacher is awesome, kind, and laid-back. Everyone at the school has been super helpful even through some rough patches we’ve had during this transition (that is, let’s face it, a lot bigger change than even I expected.). Plus, it’s amazing how much you can get done at home when your messy child goes to kindergarten all day.

Massage. I finally made it happen to get one last week. (As my muscles break out singing the Hallelujah Chorus.) Much as massages are usually helpful for my aching body, this one was particularly effective. I’m not entirely sure what she did differently, but it was heaven. Afterward. During was uncomfortable.

On that note, I don’t understand why we discount massage as a legit therapy. It’s like, “Ooooh, aren’t you special for splurging on a massage!” but it’s so helpful to making my body actually function the way it should. Heaven forbid we should reimburse for healthcare that could be preventative and restorative! #endrant

My new baby niece. I got some auntie snuggles in this weekend! Be still, my ovaries. She is precious and perfect and I’m over the moon for my sister-in-law!

What I’m Not Digging

Kindergarten. Though my daughter usually wakes up in plenty of time every day, that does not mean that she is fully rested or ready (and willing) to go. We’ve been very busy on the weekends, which doesn’t help, and she is simply tired. As my astute sister-in-law put it, she seems to have “lost her sparkle”. I know it takes some time to transition to full-time school, but I’m starting to wonder if the daily battles and endless rushing are truly worth it. #Questioner

What I’m researching

This could be a huge section of blah blah blah, so I’ll try to give you the cliff notes version. TRY being the operative word. Feel free to skim if you’re so inclined.

My latest research binge has gone something like this: MTHFR —> methylation genetics —> SNPs in general —> epigenetics. I plan to write way more on the topic soon and point you toward the resources I’ve found the most helpful. Suffice it to say that Dr. Ben Lynch is a freaking rock star.

My genetic testing results helped me piece together my health puzzle, but I was still unclear as to what to DO about the picture appearing on the puzzle. How does this translate into symptoms and treatment? I was already doing everything I knew lifestyle and diet-wise to manage my symptoms, but I knew there was something missing.

I consulted one of Dr. Ben’s colleagues who really knows his sh-tuff. He basically told me what I already know (leaky gut, malabsorption, exacerbated by sleep deprivation and nutrient depletion, etc. etc.) but he had great ideas on how to go about improving it. He agreed that diet alone wasn’t going to fix it.

Am I saying that diet isn’t important? HEAVENS, NO. It is the only way I’ve been able to function at a basic level for the last ten years. Nutrition is vital. You literally are what you eat. Your cells and your mitochondria can’t function at baseline much less well without plenty of nutrients and cofactors and such.

So I’m still calling what I’m doing the Last Ditch Effort Protocol, but the supplement regimen is definitely different. I’m hopeful that I’m finally starting on the right track, and that hope in itself is worth the life savings (and time) I’m currently shelling out in pursuit of better health.

Fun (or not) fact about me:

My current favorite form of self-care is tap class. Yes, once a week I strap pieces of metal to my feet and gyrate in hopes of making a joyful noise. (<— That’s like an answer to one of those “Badly describe your hobby” prompts…) It’s decent exercise, and it’s a form of therapy. Because you can’t possibly be thinking about your To Do list when your brain is occupied with shuffles and flaps.

Have a stellar week!

-Lindsay, the RP

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