We’re all familiar with the classic Dateline mystery: the inexplicable disappearance of a small town cheerleader sends shockwaves through her community. Her wrestler boyfriend appears distraught at her candlelight vigil but the detective on this case picks up on some inconsistencies in his interviews. We spend forty-five minutes convinced that he’s responsible until his rock solid alibi comes through. No additional suspects emerge so this time, the case goes cold.
An autoimmune disease is the cold case of conventional medicine. You, the affected, become the detective and try to diagnose what happened with tests and specialists. If you’re lucky, you eventually identify the foul play that’s occurring in your body, but no one can explain “who” (or what) is responsible for it.
By now you probably know that I’m the unwavering detective that refuses to give up on solving her case—no matter how much time goes by. I research, interview, experiment, and follow every lead to figure out why my immune system started attacking my muscle tissues and how to fix it; my case won’t go cold because I won’t let it. And even though I’ve had a few chilly bouts here and there, every dead-end has been followed by a promising detour.
Happy to report that things on my case have been heating up since I uncovered new evidence from Viome. It’s an at-home, gut microbiome test that you can read more about in my last post. I took my first test in December ’19, followed all of their food and supplement recommendations for ~65 days. I retested again mid April. Here’s what changed:
Some anecdotal observations:
- Food recommendations didn’t change a whole lot from v1 to v2. I was excited for tomatoes, cucumbers, and potatoes to be back on my “Enjoy” list this time.
- Supplements were completely different in v2. This time they suggested two probiotics, one prebiotic, one mixed polypeptide, Berberine, and Zinc.
- Gained weight after not being able to break 104 lbs for years (I was underweight for my height). I credit my improvement in protein digestion for this.
- After being on the v2 protocol for just over a month I got the feeling that I wasn’t taking enough of the probiotics. So I doubled the dose. Now I sleep noticeably more deeply and my voice has been consistently stronger. The white coating on my tongue is vanishing.
- Hives have been at least 50% smaller, appear less frequently, and go away 2-3x faster.
- My gut is not in good shape. And ironically, I’m thrilled to have scientific evidence that something is biologically wrong with me! My blood tests are beautiful. My muscle biopsies show an uncharacteristically low amount of inflammation for an autoimmune case…but here is proof that my gut is inflamed.
Last week a family friend reached out to me because her cousin was experiencing an onset of rheumatological symptoms (not COVID) and they didn’t know where to start. #1 on the list of steps I sent her was to take this microbiome test— the faster she can balance out the bacteria in her gut, the better. But my question to those of you who aren’t necessarily “sick” is: why wait until bad bugs overrun your good microbes to do something about it? STEM can now provide you with information that it took disease detectives like me years to access. So, this summer, I hope you’ll take off all your clothes and take this stool test.
***Use STRUGGLEBUS10 to take $10 off of your test. I don’t receive any monetary or product commissions from this code.***