This time around I’ve taken a completely different approach to pregnancy. Before falling pregnant with Gracie I did discover I had the auto-immune condition hashimotos and that I was insulin resistant. I was quite over weight and managed to lose over 20kg before conceiving. As I had a healthy pregnancy I didn’t really think I needed to do anything additional for my health.
It was only after having a traumatic labour and post-partum complications, combined with Gracie’s gut health issues did I start to realise that I should have probably have been more focused on my own gut health pre and post pregnancy.
One of the complications I suffered post-partum with Gracie was my thyroid completely crashed and I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Over the next couple of years I struggled to lose the extra weight I had gained from my thyroid dysfunction but it didn’t matter what I tried I could barely shift a few grams and the weight would creep up again.
I would like to add that unfortunately the majority of mainstream medical practitioners do not treat patients with hashimotos when their thyroid levels are still within range, when really this is the window of opportunity to prevent even further damage to your thyroid. If you have been diagnosed with hashimotos I would really recommend getting a second opinion or seeing an integrative practitioner for further support.
After getting to the point of despair I decided to go and see Dr Min Yeo an Integrative Medical Practitioner based in Sydney.
Dr Min did a couple of things that no other doctor had done in the past couple of years, she firstly tested my insulin levels and my thyroid antibodies. The results came back that I was insulin resistant again (the pre-cursor to diabetes) and my antibodies were extremely high and therefore so would the inflammation in my body.
We decided that I would follow Auto Immune Paleo protocol to reduce the inflammation in my body and hopefully ‘reset’ my system. I followed AIP strictly for several months and was able to lose around 8/9 kilos and this in turn resolved my insulin resistant issues and my thyroid antibodies went dramatically down – yay!
Once my weight was down and insulin levels back to normal we wanted to focus further on my gut health to make sure everything was nicely balanced before conceiving. I did a Faecal Microbial Analysis (FMA) at Bioscreen. These tests aren’t cheap, but I was keen to get tested after the journey we have been through with Grace (I think it cost around $400 and you aren’t entitled to a medicare rebate unfortunately). It takes a few weeks to get the results back and there is literally pages of information and results to go through. From the results Dr Min was able to work out what I needed to take to help re-balance my gut flora with certain supplementation/herbs. I also started on the usual pre-natal/conception supplementation and other supplementation for my general health and wellbeing.
Now I’m pregnant I’m on slightly different supplementation and one of the main differences is that this time around I’m taking a probiotic which I will make sure I take for the entire pregnancy and post-partum. I’m also having weekly chiro sessions as I suffer from chronic back pain and it’s got a lot worst since falling pregnant as well as a lot of ligament and pelvis pain and I’ve found its helped immensely. I’m also doing weekly pilate classes which I started last year as I have had pelvic floor weakness since having Gracie and I’m trying to regain my strength and keep on top of things throughout this pregnancy.
I would love to know from the other Mums out there what you did differently in your next pregnancies for your health.
Please note, this post is not intended as medical advice. If you have health concerns about yourself or child please seek medical advice.