Your Doctor Didn't Tell You This

weekly memo

I took off last week and passed my final exam for nutrition school with a 93% and turned 55!  I’m delighted about both!


There was a fight last week on Instagram between a dietician and a nutritionist who both fancy themselves menopause experts.  They were arguing about the dosing of progesterone.  It got ugly.  Accounts were blocked and they both milked it for about a week.


What struck me in all of this fighting is at the end of the day we’re all different.  What you need is likely different from what I need whether we’re talking about pharmaceuticals or food.


What was also missing from the conversation is that while hormone replacement therapy can do wonders for women it’s not going to fix absolutely everything.  I kept thinking they needed to discuss the foundations of health: sleep, stress, nutrient-dense food, digestion, and blood sugar.  But they didn’t.  They kept on and on about the correct dose.


Lately, I’ve heard from a handful of people in my life that the prescription they’re on just isn’t making them feel better.


I was talking with Frank at the gym where I work out.  He’s in his mid-70s, has type 2 diabetes and takes metformin to manage his glucose, and takes a statin for cholesterol.  He wears a continuous glucose monitor and showed me his readings.  


What’s troubling is his glucose numbers are consistently too high.  This will impact his cardiovascular health and put him at risk for dementia.


I asked him if his doctor had ever discussed nutrition with him.  He did not.  I asked him about his carbohydrate intake.  You’ll remember I discussed this last month.  I gave him some tips for making small changes but cautioned him that he must work with his doctor.   He’s taking the medication but the foundations have been totally overlooked.


Whether you’re taking hormones, managing diabetes, an autoimmune condition, or an illness it’s always important to consider how the foundations: sleep, stress, nutrition, digestion, and blood sugar may be playing a role in not feeling your absolute best.


Obviously, I’m not giving you advice on what medications you should or shouldn’t take.  That’s between you and your doctor.  I do hope you’ll consider taking a few deep breaths, getting into bed earlier, and eating real food as a compliment to whatever medication you are taking.  Together it may help you to feel better.

Midlife is a powerful transition, not an ending!

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