My Health Challenge & Food Photo Journal

Good morning! I hope you are having a great week so far. I am having a tough time this week, I had a doctors’ appointment on Monday where I got some unsettling results. I will tell you more about it at the end of this post. First, I want to show you everything I ate yesterday since I participate in a blog link-up party called “What I Ate Wednesdays.”

Breakfast consisted of a smoothie made from a fresh mango, frozen banana, romaine lettuce, frozen pineapple, frozen broccoli florets, hemp seeds, sesame seeds, water, cinnamon, cacao powder, carob powder, goji berries, flax meal, chia seeds, fresh mint, fresh stevia leaves and frozen blueberries. Phew! That’s a lot of ingredients to make such a plain-looking thing:

I am so, so proud of myself for no longer adding dates or liquid stevia to my morning smoothies because they were simply too sweet that way and really fed my sugar cravings. I think I got a little bit of sweetness using some of the leaves from my new stevia plant, but it is much less intense than when I was using the liquid stevia or the erythritol.

Lunch was at a local restaurant that has several vegan options (more than the last time I was there!) with Alan and some friends. I ordered the tofu soft tacos with a green salad. Here’s what they looked like:

This lunch was pretty healthy for a meal out and having the appetizer salad made me feel satisfied enough that I wasn’t tempted to touch the bread or even consider dessert.

For dinner, I roasted some yams in the oven and then made a mixture of onions, tomatoes, green chilies, black beans, asparagus and kale for dinner:

It’s too bad the yam was a dud, otherwise this meal would have been really great. I think tonight when I serve the veggie mixture leftovers for dinner, I’ll make some guacamole or some other type of sauce and pour it all over some corn tortillas.

For dessert, I had some of my carrot pulp cookies that I mentioned on Monday. They turned out quite tasty! I’m still not ready to post the recipe, though, because I want to experiment with sweetening them with date syrup instead of maple syrup. Here’s what they looked like after dehydrating for nearly 24 hours:

Okay, so now you’re probably wondering what is going on with my health? I know I’ve written a lot about some of the issues I’ve had in the past including my migraines, anxiety, allergies and PCOS. I don’t want you to think that I am a sick person, though. The truth is that since I started following Dr. Fuhrman’s program nearly two years ago, 99% of the time I feel fantastic and the migraines, anxiety and allergies are distant memories. In fact, just in the last 6 months or so, I have started needing less sleep and I am consistently waking up between 5 and 5:30 a.m. now feeling rested and full of energy that is sustained throughout the whole day. It seems as if any health problems I have now are remnants of my first 35-ish years of not eating correctly.

The issue that is causing me a problem now are two thyroid nodules. When I did research on Dr. Fuhrman’s website about the cause of thyroid nodules, he mentioned that they could stem from poor childhood eating behaviors. I also have Hashimoto’s disease but so far I have not needed any supplemental thyroid medication. Since the nodules were discovered on my thyroid about 4 years ago, I’ve just had yearly ultrasounds to monitor their growth. They have not done anything until lately when the results of the ultrasound on Monday showed that one grew 30% since last year and has reached a size that now needs to be biopsied to rule out cancer.

<Sigh.> So, that’s my news. Tomorrow afternoon I will have my nodules biopsied, a procedure called Fine Needle Aspiration where the area on my neck is anesthetized and a needle is used with the assistance of ultrasound to remove cells from the nodules. A cytologist will be there along with my endocrinologist to make sure that enough relevant cells are removed for testing. The results will then be available to me in a week.

I’ve spoken with several people about the procedure who have assured me that it is not painful (although not necessarily pain-less…can you tell I am kind of a baby?) and that I should be good to go as soon as it’s over. It should only take about 20 minutes or so and that also makes me happy. Lastly, I really trust my doctor and that makes a huge difference in my attitude, too.

I really debated over sharing this personal stuff with you but ultimately decided that is what my blog is about, my story and my adventures, shall we call them, in life. I originally wanted my blog just to be a place to share recipes, but it has turned into so much more. So, I hope you don’t mind the personal stuff and I do really, really appreciate your support.

Have a great day and I’ll be back here on Friday morning with likely a slightly bruised neck, but hopefully a good report. :)

 

Comments

  1. Susan S. says

    Sending good thoughts – I know several people who have gone through this and are just fine. So glad you are getting great medical care. Warm regards,

    Susan S.

  2. Victoria Reed says

    Dear Carrie,

    We spoke online a while back. You still look like a young kid to me :) I am praying for you, that all goes well. We need you here to motivate us and entice us with your vegan dishes, recipes, etc…your personal sharing is what makes you special…thank you for being so open and honest. Lots of prayers and good thoughts are being sent your way. love, Victoria

  3. says

    So very sorry to hear about the nodule growth, Carrie :( I know all too well how frustrating it can be to “do everything right” and still have your health give you trouble. I’ve never had a FNA myself, but I’m told it’s quick and minimally painful, so I hope it goes by in the blink of an eye for you. My fingers are crossed that the results are what they should be.

    • says

      Thanks for the note, Amber. I am relieved to hear you say that you heard it’s quick and minimally painful. That’s my expectation and I suppose it’s worth it to have peace of mind that it’s not cancerous.

  4. Oly Jacobsen says

    Dear Carrie, thank you so much with your openness <3 You are in my prayers and lots of healing powers are sent your way. We hope for the best result tomorrow for you. It's always hard to wait! Lots of love <3

  5. laurie says

    First of all, I hope you take this as a compliment . . . I can’t believe you are 35! You look super young (well, you ARE young — I am 52!). I’ve had several friends who have had similar thyroid issues so it is good you are addressing it but I’m sure your’e going to be fine. What a blessing we’ve all found such a healthy, happy way to eat. Hopefully, even though most of us didn’t start life out with super stellar diets, I feel grateful that I now can make better choices for my health and for the planet. Sending happy thoughts your way!

    • says

      Thanks, Laurie! I do look young for my age but I like the compliments as I get older. :) I think I am going to be fine, too and I am equally grateful to have discovered this healthy way of eating. I think you’re right that the majority of us didn’t have the benefit of growing up eating super healthy, but I also know that the body is very resilient and I’ve already improved so much in 2 short years. Thanks again for the note.

  6. Laura S. says

    You are very courageous to share this on your blog! Anytime there is fear I find it is diminished when I face it head on and don’t allow it to get the best of me. We are all pulling for you and for good news! The waiting must be excruciating. Best of luck tomorrow…you are strong!! Hugs!!!

    • says

      Thanks, Laura! I feel strong and healthy and that counts for a lot. Yep, that waiting is hard but I feel so lucky to have great medical care and the ability to have the tests done that need to get done. I suppose it’s better to be safe than sorry, but I will definitely be happy when the procedure is over.

  7. Caroline says

    Thanks for your honesty and sharing Carrie. It is really brave of you. This year has been one of health issues for me with melanoma, a rare lung cancer and now the almost certainty of breast cancer hanging over my head (all as a result of treatment for lymphoma as a teenager 3o years ago). Throughout this difficult journey I have personally found that prayer, meditation and the love and support of family and friends has been essential (and you have lots of friends here on your blog!) The most difficult part for me was the uncertainty before diagnosis because even if the diagnosis was bad, at least I knew what I was dealing with and had a plan of action. Tempting as it is, I don’t look back and berate myself for what I did in the past (including bad eating habits) because I did what I knew at the time; I think of that wonderful Maya Angelou quote “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better” and quite frankly the treatment has given me an additional 31 years of life. I have tried to focus on what I can control in my life (admittedly very little!!) and that is my diet and stress level. Since learning about Dr Fuhrman’s approach, I have turned my diet around 180 degrees and feel much healthier and am hoping that my body will be healthy enough to combat any rogue cancer cells that are undoubtedly in my body. Like you, my doctors are wonderful and very sympathetic to my diet choice. However, one junior doctor told me after my lung surgery that I would never be the same again. I just smiled at him and thought to myself, “No I won’t be the same, I’ll be BETTER, just watch me!” My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time, but know that whatever the outcome of your surgery, your boat has just been buffeted by a storm, may be a little off course, but you still know that you are headed towards your ultimate goal of great health so just reset the navigation and go for it!

    • says

      Wow, thank you for your powerful and encouraging thoughts, Caroline! You are so strong and I feel better just reading your words and what you have gone through. I love the Maya Angelou quote, that is worth remembering for sure. Thank you again, I can’t tell you how much it means to me.

  8. says

    Carrie,
    You are such an inspiration to me. I appeciate you being forward with all of us on your health challenges. My prayers are with you! I believe you are at a healthy point in your life to deal with whatever challenges arise. I’m rooting for you!

    With love….
    Linda

    • says

      Thank you so much, Linda! It feels better when I write about what’s on my mind so I appreciate you reading about it and taking the time to leave me such a sweet and encouraging comment. :)

  9. Em says

    Hi Carrie,

    I can relate to what you are dealing with.
    I’ve had hashimotos for years although my hashimotos level is low now.
    I also am having to have a biopsy of the thryoid for the second time, in the next month. last was 20 years ago or so. It was fine.
    My thryo-gobulin antibodies are very high now and need to get another
    biopsy to rule out cancer. I’m feeling pretty calm about it, but it is
    still a stressor.
    By now you probably got your test done (good for you). Its going
    to be alittle while for me as I don’t see the endocinologist for another two
    weeks and then the biopsy has to be scheduled but she’s a friend of my
    doctor and its already been decided.

    Wishing you well and looking forword to seeing how it goes.
    All the best
    Em

  10. Arlene says

    Really wish you well Carrie and hope there is nothing to worry about ultimately. Thanks for being so upfront and honest. You are helping others by so doing. God bless x

  11. says

    Good luck…. any sort of procedure is no fun, but I hope it gets you some answers/info/a good direction to go in :) Here’s to good health!

  12. Rebecca says

    You have a whole community of friends here offering you support, warm wishes, and *big hugs* reaching right through these screens of ours. xoxo

  13. says

    Hey Carrie!

    I am hoping that the procedure is painless for you and that the results are positive (and I’m sure they will be). You are strong and have a resilient, beautiful body: don’t forget that!

    G

  14. Donna says

    Thinking of you Carrie! If you didn’t share, you wouldn’t have so many people encouraging you, now would you! The procedure will be a breeze… I had one, different body part, but it’s quick and easy. It will absolutely not be painful. Wishing you the best.

  15. Rich says

    Best wishes to you, Carrie. You’re in my thoughts today as you deal with this challenge. Whatever your past may have left you with, I feel sure your present is up to dealing with it.

  16. Integrator says

    Many nodules require biopsy if their structure changed (solid nodule became complex, for example); even benign nidules tend to grow over the time.
    Some nodules with strong capsule can respond to PEI injection treatment (an outpatient procedure)

  17. Susan says

    Hi Carrie!
    I just found your blog. I’m sorry for what you are going through. I have not one but 2 friends who have had thyroid cancer (at a young age) & had their thyroids removed & are 100% healthy! It was completely contained…as it usually is when found early. So even in the worst case scenario…which I bet yours isn’t…like my one friend’s doctors said, “If you’re gonna get cancer, this is the best kind to get.” :) Hang in there!

  18. Ginny says

    Carrie, sorry about your health challenge. You will be just fine. Remember we are all part of the WHOLE. And when one of us is suffering we all suffer. You give each of us encouragement throughout each week. Please accept all our encouragement. Continue to do what you do so well and keep us updated.
    Hugs, ginny

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