If you’re reading this, I’m going to assume that you have been diagnosed with Graves Disease. Of all the things you and I have in common, no doubt this is the most unfortunate and the most cruel. But what I want to offer here is hope. Hope and a plan.
It has now been more than three years since I was first diagnosed – but five years since I first started having symptoms and feeling that things just ‘weren’t quite right’. I was tired, but working long hours. I was stressed, but work was crazy & demanding. I was constantly bloated and/or constipated, but knew I had food intolerances & little restraint. I had frequent chest infections, but I was asthmatic. My eczema had started to flare, but I’d had it on and off since a child. My hair had started to thin, but I’d always had a problem with iron depletion and at times, anaemia. My intolerance of temperature extremes had become more pronounced, but I’d lived in a temperate climate for so long that surely it was just acclimation to a new country, right? You can see how there was always a plausible explanation from my GP and inevitably the same advice: “You need to work less, exercise more, get more sleep and find ways to de-stress.” These explanations and recommendations were reasonable, but deep down I knew there was something going wrong. I just couldn’t put my finger on it.
Fast forward 12 months and I had dropped to a dangerous 46 kgs, my hair was coming out in clumps, I had a tremor so vicious that I couldn’t hold a cup and saucer without spilling, I had a pallor to my skin, would wake up every night covered in sweat, ricocheted between constipation and diarrhoea and then, it hit me: One day, on a work trip to New York, in the middle of winter, I was surrounded by a foot of snow and realized that I was the only person who was walking to the car in just a dress, while everyone else was covered up in coats, gloves, hats and scarves. It was like an epiphany. I realised I was very sick and feeling sicker by the day. I felt like there was a storm raging in my body.
I made an appointment with a new doctor that very day, raced in to see her as soon as I landed back in London and together we agreed that the most likely diagnosis was an overactive thyroid. She ran some bloods and told me she’d wait at the clinic for the results to come in that night. At 8pm I got the call that rocked my world and set me on this journey. I had Graves Disease. My initial results were so bad that my doctor wanted to hospitalise me until I could be stabilised.
In the two years since that day, I have lost count of the number of specialist appointments I’ve been to. I have seen the very best private endocrinologists in London that money can buy. I have sought second and third opinions. I have seen nutritionists, osteopaths, naturopaths and functional medical doctors, and read more books, medical journals, research studies and forums than I care to count. I have had hundreds of tests done on me and spent tens of thousands of pounds on my treatment. In all of my research, appointments, discussions and experience, I have yet to find a simple guide that helped me understand this illness, navigate the treatment and jargon, and set out a simple, achievable plan to fight this.
Amongst the fog, there has always been one thing I was certain of and remain so today: This disease can be fought. I (thankfully) made the decision to defy my specialists’ recommendation that I have a thyroidectomy or Radioactive Iodine treatment to kill off my thyroid, and my innate stubbornness and strong-will led me to the conclusion that I wanted to explore every other possible alternative first, before resorting to the nuclear switch, which would require me to be on lifelong medication.
I hope that you have found this guide before you have taken this drastic step. If you have not, there is still immense value in following this plan, as you likely still have an errant immune system that may go onto find another victim: If it’s your nervous system, you will develop Multiple Sclerosis, if it’s your joints, Rheumatoid Arthritis, if it’s your skin, Vitiligo. You get the picture. You MUST deal with the root cause.
Most Graves patients I know are go-getters. We are frantically busy and used to burning our rechargeable, ever-ready candle at both ends, in work, at home and socially. And up until now you’ve managed to get away with it. It’s time to apply that same dedication and effort to taking responsibility for your own health and wellness.
I cannot guarantee that this plan will cure you – no one can. But what I am confident in, is that if you follow this guide, you will see and feel results. The next 12 weeks will be bumpy. If you start to feel like it’s too hard and it would be easier to have your thyroid ripped out and just take a pill every day for the rest of your life, it means you’re doing it right. It also means that change is just around the corner.
I achieved remission, and you can too. I feel better now than I ever have, and I hope you get to feel how incredible that feels. How liberating, rewarding and exciting it is. The good news is that your health is salvageable. The bad news is that you cannot do it without hard work. No amount of money can buy it. You can’t inherit it. You can’t steal it. You can’t borrow it. You can’t fake it. And you cannot hold onto it without constant work.
This guide is an attempt to give you the resource I wish I’d had. My own results have shown that it is possible to reverse your autoimmunity, calm your thyroid, eliminate your symptoms and feel well again. It IS possible.
This plan has evolved from just being a desperate hunt for a cure, to being a sustainable lifestyle and toolbox that I can refer to every day. Seeing the transformation in my own health and that of my family has been the most rewarding, fulfilling thing I have ever done and I hope to see yours too. I look forward to hearing and sharing your stories of radical health transformation and success.
With love always,