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My Story – The Complete Story

My Story - The Complete Story

Ok, so here it is – my complete story is quite detailed and it may seem somewhat unbelievable to those who may not know the extent of my health issues. I had to dig up my old journals and blogs I had written many years ago along with my medical history to piece together My Story. As a disclaimer, please note the below documents my personal wellness journey including what I done to overcome my illnesses. It should not be interpreted as guidance or advice on what may work for you.

“None of my specialists ever asked me about my eating habits or lifestyle choices. I recovered through my own endeavours and sheer determination which lead me to a complete career change and toward my passion for nutrition and natural therapies. As often, I was placed in the ‘too hard to treat basket’ by the medical community, I would sometimes take up a whole appointment with a doctor just going through my symptoms and medical history. I wanted to share my knowledge and help others overcome their own personal health battles.”

I grew up in a migrant family who wanted to fit in with the Western lifestyle, which meant giving up some traditional foods for the abundant supply of processed food. Some of my go-to foods would include white bread, processed meats, potato chips, Nutella packets, rollups and chocolates/lollies. Soft drinks were abundant in the house, with biscuits and ice cream often a daily endeavour too – and I hardly ever drank any water! Mind you, my parents would always have traditional cooked meals ready on the table, but I got a taste of all the processed food and didn’t want to give it up.

I had multiple silver fillings in my mouth by the age of 12 and thought getting them was a normal part of life. When I reached University, Chinese food became my new obsession. Eating out was common too as I was spending most my time at University and out with friends.

In August 2007, only a few months after being newly engaged, I had quite a bad car accident where I found myself sandwiched in the middle of a three car pile-up out of no fault of my own. I was taken to the hospital and told I had whiplash to the back and neck. I went back to work after two weeks and only had a couple of treatments with a massage therapist.

I was married at a young age and it became harder to cook anything healthy, as I was so busy with work and renovating our new house.

It was only 6 months into my marriage when my life turned upside down! Everything was perfect up this point. I was a young 24 year old with a great job in the Community Legal Sector, I had the perfect husband, the most loving parents, a great group of friends, and we had purchased our dream house in the perfect location – what else could I want.

The old days of me working at the Community Legal Centre in 2008 before I became unwell

I remember the time I first fell ill like it was yesterday. It was the time the Swine Flu was going around during the winter of 2009 in Melbourne. I was working at a Community Legal Centre in Administration and Community Development. It was a very stressful time in the office, as I was training volunteers and the lawyers would often be busy with clients. In addition to my degree, I had also started a Diploma of Community Development, and would have classes every second Thursday night, whilst also completing assignments during the week.

There was a huge flood two weeks before I fell ill. My work building was affected quite badly. We came into work one day to find the carpets VERY wet and there was a horrible odour. I could see huge sweat like marks on the ceiling. I didn’t know what they were at the time. The manager of the building decided to dry the carpets with a big fan. The carpets were never replaced!

The heating would be on constantly. That’s when I developed breathing problems and headaches. I thought it would go away. One of the lawyers at the same time had to take a week off work feeling unwell.

Another colleague returned to the office after two weeks of feeling unwell with suspected Swine Flu, and I would be working with him that day to prepare for an office function. I felt quite tired at the office function in the evening, as we had spent the whole day preparing and setting up the tables and decorations. I didn’t feel right. I was SO dizzy and I felt pretty nauseous. I went straight to bed after coming home that night.

I woke up the next morning and just didn’t feel the same. I felt tired, nauseous and dizzy. I also felt like I had the flu. I rang up my work and told them I would not be coming in. I spent two weeks pretty much bed bound!

During my sick leave, I saw a few doctors and told them I had symptoms of a sore throat, chills, dizziness, body aches, breathing difficulties, nausea, and headaches. The doctors told me I had a virus and to take some rest. I had a blood test done, as the doctor thought I may be pregnant. The test returned a negative result. One doctor took an X-ray of my chest to see if I had pneumonia, but it was clear, but ended up giving me antibiotics anyway! This was the first time in my life I had been on an antibiotic. I was a VERY healthy child touch wood, so this run of bad health was all new to me.

I took the recommended two week course of antibiotics and decided to go back to work. I still wasn’t feeling 100%, but pushed on in the office with my new found symptoms of chills in my body, dizziness and shortness of breath.

I felt different in the office. I felt like someone was taking all the oxygen from my lungs. I decided to see a Doctor again. This time, the doctor told me I had asthma and gave me an inhaler/puffer! I used the puffer when I had breathing difficulties, but it didn’t really relieve the problem.

Early December 2009, we were scheduled to fly into Sydney to be with family for our nephew’s first birthday. I wasn’t feeling very well the day before our flight. I woke up on the morning of our flight to Sydney, and my body had frozen – I could barely move! I felt exhausted like I just ran a marathon.

I felt severely fatigued and it was difficult for me to even get up on my feet. I had no idea what was happening, as this was the first time I was in fear of a lingering illness in my body. My husband called the Ambulance and I was rushed to hospital. The hospital completed all the tests, but nothing was found. I returned home feeling very unwell with no diagnosis. I saw a Physician shortly after, who diagnosed me with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) or Post Viral Syndrome. As much as we wanted to celebrate our nephew’s first birthday with family, we had to unfortunately cancel our trip to Sydney last minute. My life was turning upside down in front of my eyes. I did some extensive research on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and joined support groups – I realised this was not going to be a quick and simple fix!

My Physician prescribed me with an antidepressant for 3 months which was thought to give me a bit of energy. After taking the medication, I started to get digestive issues, abdominal pain and bad reflux. This is when things started to get real bad! I was then referred to a Gastroenterologist for my first ever Gastroscopy shortly followed by a Colonoscopy. I also completed a faecal stool test. The results showed that I had minor reflux, a bacteria called helicobacter pylori (h. pylori) and a gut parasite called blastocystis hominis (b. hominis) amongst gastritis. What a trifecta!!

The Gastroenterologist put me on Nexium for one month for my reflux. I was also put on a triple dose of antibiotics for two weeks that were extremely strong and consisted of over 10 tablets a day from three different antibiotics! I remember every night having the worst nausea from the antibiotics and wondering how bad things had become, and this was just the beginning! I kept a bucket on the side of my bed in case I would throw up. Over the next few months, I had to complete several faecal tests to check if the parasites were eradicated, which they finally were – but at a costly expense to my poor digestive system!

From December 2009 to mid-2010 I was on extended sick leave as I was not well enough to return to work and was rapidly deteriorating. It was mid 2010 when I decided to resign from my job as I had exhausted all my sick leave and was not feeling any better. It was a very sad day, but I had to focus on my health now. It was so hard for me to give up something that I worked so hard for. I had studied at the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Arts Majoring in Criminology, so I continued to complete my Diploma in Community Development even though I was still feeling so unwell. I had plans to work on new projects at work helping the Community with Social Justice Issues. I felt my whole future was dissolving in front of me at this moment.

My pain in my belly continued after the triple therapy of antibiotics for a further 3 to 4 months, and I began to develop quite severe food intolerances. I still didn’t feel better after all these treatments, and I had no idea about any of the consequences of heavy antibiotics at the time.

In December 2010, I was getting more tests done for my abdominal discomfort, as I was getting heavy bloating, horrible period pain and a lot of digestive issues. I was rushed to hospital not long after with severe pain in my pelvic area, and was told I had a ruptured abdominal cyst, and was now on heavy pain killers!

Next stop was the Gynaecologist. Whilst I was still getting investigations for my horrible gut issues, my Gynaecologist had me investigated for Endometriosis, and I was finally diagnosed with it as well as having Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and fibroids.

I was put on the pill for endometriosis, but it would send my symptoms flaring up. My doctor recommended to see a Naturopath. The Naturopath put me on a more natural path and gave me Progesterone Cream, St John’s Wort, and Kava to reduce my anxiety which I had developed as a result of all the intense symptoms. I ended up feeling awful and MORE depressed so I had to stop the treatment.

Shortly after, I had a laparoscopy and had my endometriosis removed. On my return home from the hospital I didn’t feel right. I started getting chills – I was rushed back to the hospital after two days and told I had an infection and fever, and was put on intravenous antibiotics in hospital for two weeks. When I returned home, I had a course of more antibiotics! It was a very horrific experience. I had never been in a hospital all my life, and now it was becoming a regular occurrence…

I did feel my energy return and my symptoms reduce after the antibiotics and laparoscopy, but I had lingering symptoms and my food intolerances (gluten, dairy etc) were still there. I was replenishing my gut bacteria with probiotics. My husband and I decided to book a trip to America in March 2011 as this was our first overseas trip together since we didn’t get a chance to have our honeymoon overseas when we got married in November 2008. We had a great time and apart from my food intolerances, I was feeling great.

In August 2011 I had tremendous pain in my jaw and teeth and went to the dentist to find that I had my wisdom teeth coming out and they needed to be removed. I still had lingering chills in my body. I came out of the procedure with a lot of pain and for weeks my mouth couldn’t open fully. I had to go back to another dentist and found out I have Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) as a result of the procedure! Things were not going my way….

I had to wear orthodontic splints in my mouth overnight, and I was losing a lot of weight as the dentist gave me another round of antibiotics! I was 43kg. My original weight was 56kg before I first became sick. I developed more food intolerances and became intolerant to fructose, lactose, spices, ginger and even lettuce! It was getting bad.

In August 2012, I met a guy who had similar digestive issues to me who had recovered through making and consuming a probiotic yoghurt called MAF314 (GcMAF). He was trained how to make this yoghurt by a leading Doctor internationally. The yoghurt contained colostrum, kefir, goat’s milk and the special probiotic bacteria mixture (MAF314 starter powder).

I was so excited! I saw how well he was feeling with no digestive discomfort. I was so desperate to have my old stomach back. I had the yoghurt, which by the way cost me approx. $140 a week and I had no results.☹ It actually made me feel worst and that is when I developed histamine like symptoms such as sneezing and flu like symptoms to certain foods. I felt very disheartened and upset, but what could I do. I was desperate to get better and have answers. I remember completing several food intolerance tests and having several specialised supplements such as 5-HTP, Tryptophan and Gaba through a Naturopath, but I just couldn’t stomach any of them. More money and medical paperwork. ☹

In March 2013 I was still getting pain in my abdomen and especially under my left rib. Off to the doctors I go once again! I had an abdominal ultrasound which found my coeliac axis artery was compressed greater than 70% which was abnormally high. This is an artery that goes from the heart to the abdomen and if compressed causes abdominal pain. I was on blood pressure medication to help with the compression, but I ended up being very sensitive to it. I had dizziness, pain in my legs and fatigue. I was then referred to another Gastroenterologist and Zantac was prescribed. The Zantac subsided the left rib pain after one week of use.

In July 2013 I went to see another doctor in regards to my food intolerances and this time I was diagnosed as having Small Intestine Bacterial Growth (SIBO). Through the tests the doctor ordered, I was found to have an overgrowth of streptococcus and clostridium bacteria (the bad guys) and virtually none of the Lacto and Bifidus bacteria (the good guys). The doctor prescribed me with some antibiotics (again!) for the SIBO but that just made things worst. After taking the first dose with little results, the doctor felt I needed a second line of antibiotics to kill off the bad bacteria in my gut. This treatment involved taking two antibiotics several times a day for 12 days. My rosacea (redness on my cheeks) did clear up and my sneezing dramatically reduced along with a reduction in my digestive symptoms whilst taking the medicine, but once I got off it, all my symptoms returned! Candida (similar to thrush) at this time was becoming a beast for me. Candida thrives in an imbalanced gut. My doctor prescribed multiple doses of Nystatin to combat the thrush, but it was an uphill battle.

In November 2013 I decided to get a Faecal Transplant done as I thought this might fix my gut issues after speaking to others who had success with it. Faecal Microbiota Transplant (FMT) basically involves inserting a healthy donor’s stool into my bowel through a colonoscopy like procedure under anaesthetic. The idea is for the good bacteria from the healthy stool to ‘take over’ and recolonise my compromised gut to create a healthy microbiome. As uncomfortable as it was, I didn’t care about the ‘yuck’ factor – I would do anything to feel normal again.

Before the transplant, I was prescribed 3 months of antibiotics again to kill off excessive bacteria. I had the Faecal Transplant in February 2014 at the Centre for Digestive Diseases (CDD) at Five Dock in Sydney. I had made an initial visit to the CDD in November 2013 when I was selected as a valid candidate for FMT and had to undergo a gastroscopy and colonoscopy. The CDD are the leading authority for FMT in Australia and also internationally recognised. It was quite an intense procedure where I was to have a colonoscopy and infusion transplants daily for 10 days.

I had rented out a bedroom with a beautiful elderly Italian lady to stay close by to the clinic. She could hardly speak English, but just through her warm welcoming smiles, we would be able to communicate in our own way. She was the most generous soul, and I seriously feel like the angels had brought her to me, as I just needed that love and compassion at the time. I had never previously met her, but I was amazed to see that a complete stranger would welcome my mum and I into her home with open arms, and show so much love and care. She would prepare food for me every day out of the goodness of her heart. She saw that I was so weak and would make me steaks every day to just keep me going. She was my angel nonna! I still keep in touch with her till this day. ❤

My angel nonna and I during my FMT Treatment

After the procedure, I started eating more foods and did gain a few kilos. I had gone down to 38kg before the procedure, but did go up to 43kg shortly after the procedure. I still had lingering symptoms of dizziness, chills in my body, fatigue and sinus problems. I was so sensitive to everything, from food, perfumes, multiple chemical sensitivities and even Wi-Fi!

Throughout my illness I persevered with my Community Development Diploma. It was actually whilst I was doing a project on food miles and sustainability that I developed a passion for Nutrition. My class were developing a newsletter that discussed the importance of food miles and nutrition in older people in the area. I had the job of writing the information on nutrition and the importance of food and buying it locally. The amount of information I learnt through this project was what planted a seed for me to study Nutrition.

I was fascinated by what I was learning. Why didn’t anyone mention the importance of food to me when I was first sick? I discovered the world of organic farming and local bought food. I learnt about planting your own food and eating it from the soil that has amazing microbes which are enriched from the sun. I wanted to learn more. I then enrolled myself to study Nutrition, and was introduced to the whole world of the gut and microbes. All along, I was killing all the good bacteria in my gut with unwanted antibiotics, which always made my situation worst. Why wasn’t I feeding those microbes with good nutritious food, instead of all the processed food I was obsessed with? I was destroying the engine room of my immune system and was giving my body the perfect environment for viruses, bacteria, fungus, candida and parasites to thrive.

I was also discovering the amazing powers of herbs, plants and aromatherapy around the same time, and one year later I enrolled to study a Diploma in Natural Therapies. I would use essential oils for everything from the smallest ailment to easing aches and pains. The healing benefits of pure essential oils was amazing in my journey.

In May 2014, after having genetic testing done, I went to see a Naturopath, who went through my history and suspected I had Lyme disease! I had no idea what that was. It is a bacterial infection passed on by a tick. I don’t ever remember being bitten by a tick, so I was tested using an expensive lab from America and my results came back positive. After being diagnosed with multiple chronic disorders such as CFS, IBS, SIBO, Endometriosis, PCOS, TMJ, I received my final diagnosis – Lyme disease. The cherry on the cake! ☹

The Naturopath put me on some Byron White drops, Zinc Picolinate, Lithium Orotate and a SHMT spray for my leaky gut and methylation issues. When I tried the spray, my body went haywire! I started experiencing a dazed feeling and major brain fog.

Lyme is not recognised in Australia, so it was very hard to get treatment done here. I did eventually find a doctor that was treating Lyme disease patients with Ozone treatment. Ozone therapy required me to extract my blood which is then ozonated and put back into me. So many needles being poked into me, but I just really wanted to get better and was so desperate at this point I would try anything.

I was telling my story to a lady I met at a medical clinic, and she told me about a treatment that is done in Germany for Lyme patients who had quite some success. As Lyme disease is not recognised in Australia, it would be expensive for me to do any sort of treatment here, and the ozone treatment was not working. I did some more research and spoke to a few people who were also planning to go to Germany for the treatment and others who recently recovered. After extensive research into the clinic in Germany who are the leaders in treating Lyme, hubby and I decided to go to Germany. It was a huge gamble to go to a foreign country for medical treatment with no guarantees of success, especially as the treatments are lesser known in Australia.

A couple of months leading up to our trip to Germany, I saw an Integrative GP who prescribed me with two more antibiotics and an anti-candida/thrush tablet for my gut! I had to stop the treatment only after 2 to 3 days as my anxiety, heartburn and chills in my body increased. I also tried weekly infrared sauna sessions to detox my body but it did not help much.

In October 2014, when I went to Germany I was quite frail. Only 38kg with multiple food and chemical intolerances. My battered body was crying out for help! We had decided to go to Germany as we exhausted all other treatments and options to get better. I paid tens of thousands of dollars for a treatment that wouldn’t be recognised in Australia.

We decided to spend a week in Paris with my mum’s good friend and take some time to relax before the intense treatment and I am so glad I did this. My mum’s friend looked after me so well and we had the opportunity to see quite a few touristy places without exerting my body. My best friend also came to visit us from London, and we had a fun day out together which took my mind off my illness. I was so happy to see her and she really made that trip more bearable to have some familiarity before the treatment.

The treatment was at the Klinik St. Georg in the picturesque town of Bad Aibling south of Munich in Germany. The treatment was intense, and because I couldn’t stomach the food at the clinic, I would do an almost daily trip to the local supermarket to buy my own food for the chef to kindly cook it for me.

Wow, I will never forget my time at the clinic – it was certainly different to anything I had previously experienced. The first day my husband and I arrived at the clinic, we saw a map of the world and each person that stayed in the clinic would add a pin on the country they were living in. Australia had quite a number of pins on the map! There were far more Aussies than any other country at the clinic! We felt right at home.

We each had an individualised itinerary at the clinic similar to a school timetable with a room and time for a specific treatment. The treatments would run daily from morning to afternoon.  From IV’s, blood ozone therapy and laser therapy, to detox treatments, colon irrigation, pretty much daily blood tests, and let’s not forget the dreaded ‘hyperthermia’! I had a cannula connected to me throughout the whole two weeks and I would sleep and shower with it too – quite uncomfortably. I have small veins and the nurses would struggle many times to find my veins for the blood tests, so I was pricked and prodded countless times and ended up having massive bruises on my hands and arms. At one time my whole hand was puffed up. It was scary!

One of the many treatments I received at the Klink St Georg in Germany

Hyperthermia was a different world of treatment. We were to be under anaesthetic for several hours whilst our body would be heated up to approx. 42 degrees Celsius, and in that time we would have an IV of antibiotics pumping through us. This treatment was done twice on our stay there within the two weeks.

The idea of hyperthermia is to heat up your core body temperature high enough to initiate a fever like response and sustain that temperature over several hours, whilst the antibiotics also assist in killing off the bacteria and viruses in the body that are active.

After the hyperthermia we would be in recovery and monitored for 24-48 hours in ICU. I had felt like a bus had ran over me as my body was so drained with the intense feeling of fatigue I had at the time. It was quite a traumatic experience but am also grateful to have done this.

In recovery after the Hyperthermia treatment

My husband, as well as my parents were my rock during this time, and right throughout my entire health journey. My husband was there with me every moment and was there to block out all the naysayers that were in the background pulling us down. He truly was my saviour. I could not have done any of the treatment in Germany without him. My husband managed all my paperwork, organised appointments, stayed up late at night and researched. He watched me crumble from the sidelines but picked me up when I was down.  He protected and sheltered me from people who emotionally hurt me. Equally, my parents always supported me and never doubted me. My poor mum, who had her own health issues was extremely worried about me, and it broke my heart watching her suffer helplessly and emotionally through seeing me in pain. I will always be indebted to my parents who supported me unconditionally with love and compassion. That was the one thing I needed to get through my illness!

Back to Germany and the clinic. We made a big group of friends whilst there, many of whom we are still in close contact with. We even had a couple of outings (even though we had our cannulas still attached in our hands). We made the most of a tough situation and lifted each other up. The clinic also treated cancer patients with a similar protocol, but with a low dose of chemotherapy in addition to the hyperthermia treatment.

One of my fondest memory at the clinic was meeting a beautiful lady who had stage 4 cancer. We became very good friends early on, and she was also my rock throughout the whole experience in Germany. She was from the UK, but had a German background and was so much help. She gave that perspective that really opened my eyes. I had just started my career in nutrition and she was really keen on me getting better, and one day blogging about my experiences and the knowledge I had obtained. A lot of my passion and drive to blog is from her.

She also kept me sane by taking me out one day for a random shopping spree. I felt so normal that day. How powerful it is to have support and compassion around you, which can make you feel so much better, even for a day! After the two weeks of treatment at the clinic in Germany, it was time to say farewell to our newly made friends. We prepared for the long journey back to Melbourne equipped with my suitcase full of expensive supplements, herbs and other medications needed for the post-German protocol to lug back home. I was so exhausted from the travel back to Australia that I had to use a wheelchair with my husband pushing me through the airports on our way back home.

My good friend and I on our last day at the Clinic together

I took some time to recover from Germany but the remaining issues were a tickling sensation in my stomach with brain fog and I still had food intolerances. I had a whole list of symptoms pre Germany, so I had to focus on the remaining symptoms.

Returning from Germany, the clinic suggested to continue with vitamin C and glutathione IV’s. I saw a couple more Naturopaths after Germany who used bioresonance and biofeedback technology. I also got ripped off by one of them who pushed me to purchase a lot of extra supplements knowing that I couldn’t tolerate them. I would only be able to stomach one or two tablets and then the rest of the product will sit in my pantry and expire. What a waste of money!

I really wanted to do something about my amalgam (silver) fillings in my mouth before I was to even think about having children. Why? Mercury in fish is frowned upon in pregnancy and I had a mouthful of mercury with a compromised gut. I needed to remove everything that was compromising my health.

In April 2015, I organised for a holistic dentist to remove 4 dental amalgam fillings in a safe manner, and I spent weeks after detoxing and doing coffee enemas too. The coffee enemas helped so much to clear everything, but I remember at that time I was thinking to myself how an average person would think I am crazy for doing these types of protocols, especially to get pregnant in the future.

I promised myself after Germany to not take any more antibiotics and focus on my gut health. I knew I had to heal my body once and for all after Germany. In June 2015, I was at the Mind Body Spirit Festival and I came across a strong probiotic called Progurt. After speaking to the representative, I decided to try their product to work on healing my gut. After a few months, at a similar festival I was introduced to ‘redox’ technology. I focused on using the redox protocol on a cellular level, and the Progurt to recolonise my damaged gut flora. I had to go slow with both products as I was quite sensitive. I still had lingering derealisation, brain fog and tickling in the stomach, especially at night and in the morning. It was like I couldn’t ‘feel’ my body. I was still quite sensitive to certain foods, but the foods I was able to eat, I would eat to nourish me.

In 2016 I finally decided to try homeopathy, as I was hearing about a lot of people making good recoveries, but I always thought in the back of my mind that it was too good to be true. Oh what a game changer!!! I was so blessed to find a traditional homeopath, as the homeopathic products I was having before were very mainstream and never worked on me. I had her focus on the weird tickling sensation in my gut, and after a couple of weeks of taking a remedy it went away! I then focussed on my gut health with homeopathy, and suddenly I was able to introduce more foods into my diet!

The redox, Progurt and homeopathy were a great match for my body! I also started drinking filtered water, as it was very important to nourish my body with healing foods and I was now building an environment to heal.

It was March 2017 when I was feeling a lot better, and my husband and I decided to go on a holiday to Hawaii. I started to put on some weight. It was amazing, and I felt normal besides having a few food intolerances. For the first time in a very long time, I was beginning to think maybe there is some hope for me to recover and there may be some light at the end of the tunnel after all….

Having a blast in Hawaii (this guy isn’t my husband! 😋)

In 2017, all of a sudden I woke up with nausea and dizziness and I was scared all my dreaded symptoms were coming back. I was eating very healthy and was focusing on my gut health – what was happening? Sadly, I had also just lost my dear friend I had met in Germany to her cancer, and I was quite upset. I remember thinking it might be due to the stress. I was so distressed and I remember looking to the sky and thinking of my friend and asking her for guidance. I had also missed my period for a few days, so I decided to get a pregnancy test the next day. It was positive!! I was shocked!!! Doctors told me that due to my endometriosis and detailed health issues, it would be very difficult for me to conceive. I knew in my heart my friend from Germany had my back and was watching over me.

I was pregnant with my first child, and one day I found quite a bit of black mould on our ceiling which was a result of a leak in the roof. We organised for the mould to be tested and it was in dangerous levels, so I had to temporarily move out of the house for several weeks whilst the place was remediated. My husband who was perfectly healthy stayed in the house during the remediation, developed a long term cough for months which he couldn’t shake with medicine and ended up getting a chest X-ray for his stubborn cough. Luckily I had the redox handy for him to nebulise, and his cough improved within days.

When I was 4 months pregnant and was quite anxious about my second mould encounter, I was in need of some help in rewiring my thoughts. There were so many emotions I encountered when I was sick, and I felt like I was stuck in the fear. I wanted to be a strong, healthy mum and I wanted to be able to tackle any situation with ease and calmness. I had decided to do the ‘Lightning Process’, which was a 3 day face to face course in using useful tools in retraining the brain out of your current thought patterns and into strategies that can help you turn around your thoughts and find new and healthier neural pathways in the process. I had also tried the ‘Gupta Program’ which had a similar concept of rewiring the brain years before, but it didn’t work for me at the time.

I continued to eat very healthy and remove all environmental stressors. I especially worked on my gut health in pregnancy through a healthy diet, Progurt and redox. One day, a few months into my pregnancy I was in excruciating pain and was rushed to the hospital. They found that I had a degenerated uterine fibroid. The pain was horrible and I was on Panadol as I couldn’t tolerate any of the stronger pain killers, due to my sensitivities. The doctors told me that the pain may be there throughout my pregnancy. I didn’t want to be on Panadol right throughout my pregnancy. I had my homeopath give me a remedy, and as hard as that is to believe, I was pain free within a few hours of taking the remedy.

I also had a private midwife to support me through my pregnancy, as I felt I needed the extra support due to my medical history. She was FANTASTIC and made my pregnancy the most stress free and amazing experience, as I wanted to birth naturally and that was what happened.

I had a little nausea during the first trimester which is to be expected but overall touch wood I didn’t have any major complications considering I had a uterine fibroid. I remember distinctively in Summer time, about a month before giving birth I woke up with a few red spots on my upper back and shoulders. The spots were very itchy, so I saw a doctor. The GP scared the crap out of me when he diagnosed me with having ‘scabies!’ Another WTF moment for me! I was a very clean person, and I didn’t accept that diagnosis. The GP also told me that hubby also needed to use a cream to rub all over our bodies. I freaked out so much, that I washed all our clothes and bed sheets in hot water and vacuumed the house countless times! I decided to get a second opinion and saw my trusty Homeopath who actually had a good look at the red spots with a magnifying glass to determine if there were burrows on my skin which is often a tell-tale sign of the mites. The GP didn’t do this detailed check.

My Homeopath couldn’t find any signs of scabies and said it was most likely a result of pregnancy heat rashes and the red spots could be a sign of my constant itching and irritation. She suggested a basic salt and vinegar bath to reduce the irritation and rubbing some iodine antiseptic. It worked!

I had back labour pain, which is quite painful but had a relatively normal birth in January 2018. We were so happy and thrilled to meet our first baby! We had only a few hours as new parents with our new born, when the midwives noticed an irregular breathing pattern and abnormal resting heart rate. We were told that blood tests had to be done. Turned out that the doctors suspected a sepsis infection and our baby needed to be treated through IV antibiotics immediately.

I had worked so hard to avoid antibiotics for myself and my child, but in this circumstance it was necessary as sepsis can be life threatening if not treated early, especially to a new born. We stayed at the hospital for about a week and it was quite difficult as new parents to see our child in the special care nursery in an incubation box hooked up to an IV and his heart rate monitored constantly. I persisted with breast feeding whilst in hospital as I was pressured to give my child formula by the doctors and midwives, but my private midwife was adamant to have me breastfeed and helped me every day along the way.

I lost a lot of blood due to internal lacerations from the baby coming out. I had to have a blood transfusion whilst in hospital and was very low in Iron. Due to losing so much blood, my body was in a weakened state and it was very difficult for me to produce milk. I would be persistent and pump between feeds to increase my milk supply. My private midwife guided me through the whole process.

Excited to take our baby home, I experienced excruciating pain and a burning sensation when breast feeding. Unfortunately, due to the antibiotics at birth, my baby developed horrible thrush in the mouth and had passed it onto me during breastfeeding. ☹

I tried over the counter anti-thrush medicine with little benefits. I persevered with breastfeeding for 3 – 4 months until the pain was unbearable, whilst treating our baby for his thrush through conventional medicine and also lots of probiotics. I decided to exclusively pump for a further 7 months so that our baby could receive the benefits of breast milk. My body healed over time when I stopped breastfeeding.

I was so lucky after the birth to encapsulate my placenta as my irons levels were still low. I know – it sounds bizarre and don’t judge me for it, but after a couple of weeks of taking the placenta capsules, I had a follow up blood test which showed normal iron levels. As unconventional as it sounds, this was a life saver for me and I’m glad my midwife suggested it! Nothing sounded outrageous to me since I had tried so many previous products and treatments; many of them unknown to the average person.

Around a month before our child’s first birthday, I fell pregnant with our second child! It all happened so fast and we were over the moon! My second pregnancy seemed to go by so quickly with minimal pregnancy related symptoms this time around. I continued to maintain a healthy diet throughout my second pregnancy and continued healing my gut. I actually wanted a home birth for my second child, but due to losing a lot of blood from the first birth it was suggested to birth at the hospital. I continued with my private midwife support for my second pregnancy. The birth of my second child in the winter of 2019 was extremely quick with no medical intervention. I birthed in the morning and was out of the hospital and back home in the afternoon!

This time around, thrush wasn’t an issue, but I had vasospasm with breast feeding – still very painful! This was a blood circulation issue and I managed to continue to breast feed with a heat pack. I used a combination of breast milk and formula after 6 months as the pain was too much to exclusively breast feed and pump. Even though I really wanted to breast feed both children exclusively, I didn’t want to jeopardise my health mentally and physically in the process as I had to be strong for them. I sourced the healthiest and most natural formula I could find and continued to FEED my children.

Your gut is 70 – 80% of your immune system. From the amount of antibiotics I consumed, my gut was so compromised, that I wasn’t able to absorb any of the nutrients from the good food and vitamins I was taking. I never allowed my body to fight back. I was so vulnerable and desperate to get better and never allowed my body to take a break to heal.

I know how hard it is to get all the medical tests done, only to be told that there is nothing wrong with me and it may be ‘all in my head’. I was mentally, emotionally and physically at my lowest point and was desperate for answers.

I had my pantry full of prescription medicine, vitamins, herbs, creams, gels and alternative therapies. At one stage, I was 38kg and was only able to stomach a handful of foods at my weakest. I had a stack of medical paperwork which ranged from diagnostic test results, appointments and product receipts to name a few, which my husband could barely fit in a single, expandable file. Over the many years I was unwell, I racked up tens of thousands of dollars on my medical bills!  I had every test and scan done from blood, urine, faeces, biopsies, ultrasounds, MRI, CT, saliva and even my own hair was tested! I saw the best specialists but also the worst ones too. My husband and I had doubted the future. We questioned if I would ever get better and if we could start a family and regain good health again.

I was prodded and poked with several needles. I travelled interstate as well as internationally to be treated by the best doctors and tried conventional and also alternate therapies – even less known, unapproved products and treatments. I was desperate to get better but remained determined.

None of my specialists ever asked me about my eating habits or lifestyle choices. I recovered through my own endeavours and sheer determination which lead me to a complete career change and toward my passion for nutrition and natural therapies. As often, I was placed in the ‘too hard to treat basket’ by the medical community, I would sometimes take up a whole appointment with a doctor just going through my symptoms and medical history. I wanted to share my knowledge and help others overcome their own personal health battles.

In hindsight, I should have addressed the trauma from my car accident from the beginning, as neck pain and anxiety whilst driving followed me for a while. I wish I also knew about the detrimental effects of mould and water damage to a building, as this could have saved me months of breathing problems and multiple symptoms as a result. Mould, viruses, bacteria and parasites thrive on a weakened immune system. Lyme disease and mould sensitivities due to genetic issues can also go hand in hand. This is why I’m so passionate in educating my clients about prevention and early intervention when it comes to their health.

Now that my children are a bit older, I really want to follow my passion to help and guide others as I know everyone has their own unique journey. Food is truly medicine. Through my long and hard journey to wellness, the underlying factor that was never addressed from my numerous appointments with medical specialists was GOOD NUTRITION AND A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE. I believe everything happens for a reason and if I didn’t become chronically unwell, I would have never found my passion for nutrition and gut health. Everything lead me to where I am now and I am much more mentally, emotionally and physically stronger and wiser as a result.

Fast forward to August 2021 as I’m writing this blog, I am very cautious to what I put into my body as I don’t want to relapse and fall into bad habits again. I learnt that the body does have the capacity to heal given the right circumstances, fuel and patience. I am also very reasonable and understand that having a piece of cake or a bowl of chips once in a while is ok. 🙂

There are too many people who are suffering from debilitating and chronic health conditions and have similar stories to mine. Many of these people have been unwell for many years and may not have the proper support and guidance to help them heal. Even the average person that may complain about their tiredness or bloating or other small symptoms may think this is normal, but they often overlook their food and lifestyle choices as the underlying factor.

Prior to getting sick, I thought I was the healthiest person. Even when I was sick, my blood tests would show that everything was perfect – but the actual truth was that I felt like CRAP! People would often tell me that I looked well – I didn’t feel well at all! Through my discoveries and research, I realised that the gut is often ignored as a major factor in the development of DIS-EASE!

In order to grow a healthy plant, you need to have good quality soil, plenty of water and sunshine, fertiliser and nutrients for the plant to flourish. Similarly your gut should be treated the same way – good quality nutrients and water, feeding the good bacteria through healthy food and eliminating environmental stressors.

I hope that by sharing my story, I have inspired you to be your own health advocate. Always remember to listen to your own GUT instinct when it comes to health! 😊

Wishing you all the very best of health always.

Armita.

8 Replies to “My Story – The Complete Story”

  1. Loved reading every word Armi. A very tough journey indeed and I wish you, Mahv and the kids all the success in the world with this new venture.

    1. Thank you Mahiyar 💗

  2. Wow…what an incredible story of perseverance and recovery Armita! I’m so glad you were able to document your experience for others to share. It truly is quite incredible what you went through. As amazing as modern medicine is, it can also be very short-sighted and compartmentalised at times, which is evidenced by the breadth of your diagnoses and treatments…what a whirlwind! I’m so glad you are happy and healthy today and thriving with your new career and beautiful family.

    1. Thank you so much Amanda. Certainly has been a long journey! 💗

  3. Wow Armi, thanks for sharing your story in detail. There were so many events and specifics that I wasn’t aware of. What an incredible, long, tiresome and frustrating journey you and Mahv have been on, but out of it you have two beautiful children and a loving and supportive husband. Love this website of yours! Wishing you all the very best of luck in your new nutritional endeavors.

    1. Thanks Rakhsh! 💗

  4. Thank you for sharing your journey with us Armita, we’re so glad you are able to follow your passion. I’m very sure your experiences and knowledge will help to support people in becoming their own health advocates. All the best always.

    1. Thanks Nils! 💗

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