Hi, I'm Sheryl a certified Functional Nutrition & Lifestyle Practitioner and a Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. Through my own health journey I discovered the importance of uncovering the root cause of my dis-ease. I learnt to feed my body food appropriate for my diagnosis and symptoms so it could heal. Slowly but surely I changed my lifestyle and learnt the importance and art of self-care. If you are suffering with a health issue and looking for that missing piece in your wellness journey, integrative and functional nutrition may just be what you need to Rediscover Your Wellness.
At the time we were living in North Wales, and had headed down to New Zealand to catch up with family and friends and have a holiday. After about 6 weeks of 'holidaying' one should feel refreshed, revitalised and ready to go .... unfortunately I didn't. I booked a doctors appointment, had blood tests and found out my thyroid antibodies were very high and I was on my way to Hashimoto's (an autoimmune condition). While I was struggling to function, my other bloods tests were not ‘bad enough’ to warrant medical intervention for which I am now thankful. A change in food and lifestyle became my medicine.
One of my sisters, also with thyroid issues, was having success with Auto Immune Protocol (AIP) which include a paleo style of eating. I already ate in a way most people think of as was healthy, but AIP meant I would need to eliminate gluten, dairy, nuts and coffee (amongst other foods) .... I decide to 'ease' myself onto this and let my body adjust. This was going to be a lifestyle change, not a temporary diet, to reverse the damage in my body and keep Hashimoto’s at bay.
Once back in Wales I transitioned further onto AIP and also started to look at lifestyle factors as they are equally important as food for full body health and wellness. I never truly realised how important it was to make time for myself and self-care. I think Mums are often notoriously bad at doing this, or rather not doing this for all sorts of reasons!. Over the years my Dad would checked in and ask if I was looking after myself – I was looking after all the household needs and our family so assumed yes but to be honest I really had no idea what ‘myself’ really meant. I have since learnt and understood what this means. Learning to make time to care for myself has taken time and something I am still working as I find it easy to put everybody and everything else before me.
I also reflected that in a period of 9 years my husband and I shifted from Australia to New Zealand just before the arrival of our first daughter, then had another beautiful daughter. As a family we have shifted from the southern hemisphere to the northern hemisphere and back – twice. We had bought two houses, sold three houses, lived and rented in another two houses, and then temporarily lived in a number of holiday houses. Simultaneously we worked from home, and for at least two of the years home schooled our children. While this was all exciting, it did have the inherent stressors and probably not surprising life and my health caught up with me and said slow down.
With the brain fog gone, more energy, my hair loss less, my moods more stable, my level of patience returning and my antibodies down – I regained my zest for life and took on several courses, one via the Institute of Integrative Nutritional and two via Holistic Nutrition Lab (Digestive Intensive, Full Body Systems). I then followed this up to become a certified Functional Nutrition & Lifestyle Practitioner. Prior to the nutritional and lifestyle changes there was no way I could have contemplated studying and starting a new career.
And life continues with ups and downs that we must adjust to and help our bodies through. I will continue to post updates about My Journey.
I continue to work on my health and lifestyle. What I did to my health happened over a number of years and took time to undo and re-learn new habits. I am mindful that life continues to happen and I am continuing learning how to keep my body functioning well and in balance.