Well, after sharing these, these, and these test results I am left with one final test result to share.  Yes!  The not-so-fluid bodily fluid.  Let’s talk about my poop!  Because poop truly is fascinating – as long as you’re not the one who actually has to do the disseminating and testing part.  Getting it in the vials for shipping was plenty enough disseminating for me.

Collecting poop for testing is more involved than you might imagine.  Not that many of you are likely to sit around imagining what is involved in collecting poop for testing.  First you have to stop taking all medications and supplements 4 (or maybe it was 5?) days ahead of the first poop collection.  Yes, ‘first’ poop collection does indeed indicate that there is more than one required.  Then you have to make sure that you have eaten enough greenery the day before the first poop to ensure that you can produce something to collect.  Collection day means that you pretty much have to stay home unless you have a set daily poop schedule or can poop on demand.  Otherwise you might be somewhere entirely inappropriate for poop collection when the urge arises.  Plus, carrying vials around in your purse in order to catch poop at a moment’s notice is kinda bulky and annoying, not to mention all kinds of awkward, and don’t forget you gotta get that poop in the ‘fridge straight away.  If the ‘fridge you’re closest to is not your own things could get a little problematic.  Then you live life as normal for a day before it’s back to house arrest while you wait for some movement.  Once you’ve got all the poop required into the right vials, stirred and shaken, labelled and boxed up it’s off to the lab they go!

My ND emailed me as soon as she got the results back.  She was SO excited!  I love that my Naturopath is so excited about my poop!  I am sure you are too.  I bet you are all on the edge of your seats waiting to hear about my poop.  So here we go.

Nontoxigenic E. Coli moved into my gut, repainted the walls, laid down some fancy carpeting, brought a lot of furniture in, and took up residence.  Or, in less romantic terms – I have a massive E.Coli infection in my gut.  It’s been there for around 11 months and has created utter havoc – the most noteworthy being damaging the walls of my gut and making it leaky.  Bastard.

However, there is great news!  The infection has not (yet) caused irreversible damage to my gut, so I will be able to heal it once we have tossed Mr. E. Coli out onto the street.  We have issued an eviction notice, ordered the moving truck, and sent a team of packers round.  He’s on his way out.  This dude has one hell of a lot to answer for.

Adding in the adrenal fatigue, leaky gut, exhausted liver, and E. Coli infection into the mix, here is my updated treatment plan.


Treatment Plan #2 (around October 15th)


  • Multivitamin
  • Mitochondrial support
  • Vitamin D
  • α-Lipoic Acid
  • Heavy duty specially formulated B vitamins
  • Adrenal support
  • Thyroid support
  • Liver support
  • Heavy duty probiotics
  • E.Coli slayer (not a pharmaceutical or antibiotic)
  • Magnesium


  • KETO (very low carb, adequate protein, very high fat) diet – separate post coming on this!
  • Elimination diet – foods I can eat:
    • Kippers (smoked herring), mackerel, sardines
    • Avocado
    • Cheese
    • Macadaemias, hazelnuts, pine nuts
    • 100% fat dairy – butter, heavy cream, sour cream, creme fraiche
    • Lamb
    • Pork
    • Duck
    • Bison
  • We added the following foods (one at a time to check for sensitivity) to my diet because I was healing so fast:
    • Leeks (almost pee’d my pants in excitement!)
    • Cabbage
    • Fennel
    • Cucumber
    • Zucchini
    • Bamboo shoots (although that anyone would want to eat these is beyond me)
    • Crimini mushrooms (this made me so happy I about cried)
    • Raspberries (singing hallelujah!)
    • Strawberries
  • Rotation diet:
    • No food from list above to be eaten more often than every 4th day
  • Increase liquid intake
  • Water must be bottled
  • Keep food log and track any symptoms or lack thereof


My list of permitted foods was made a lot shorter because of my need to be on a ketogenic diet.  I will explain this in a separate post.

This list of permitted foods is unique to me based on my test results and needs.  I am in no way advocating that anyone else should follow this list.


  • Reduce stress as much as possible
  • Get as much sleep as you can
  • Do not exercise or over-exert


So, how come I have a massive E.Coli infection then, huh?


PS. Turns out those folks from Scrubs were right.  Everything comes down to poo!  Thanks, Danielle for sharing :-)



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  • Sandy P. - You did make me laugh … but I truly was excited to hear your poop results. Ha! Ha! Ha! I do want to hear what the E. Coli slayer is. I have a well and when we first moved in, we had to pour a gallon of Clorox down it to kill E. Coli. I suppose you may have picked it up during your travels? Our well sat “still” for a year until we bought the house. Just as a precaution, we still pour Clorox into it every 6 months. Sounds scary, right? I can’t wait to hear the rest of your diagnosis.ReplyCancel

  • Deb Sanders - This is so fascinating. You’re on a roll,now.ReplyCancel

  • Greg - I don’t know what probiotic you’re taking, but if you want the best of the best, you want to check out elixa-probiotic.com

    It’s a short 6 day dose of high strength probiotics. You get 50x (3 Trillion CFUs) the dose of the average probiotic.ReplyCancel

  • Susan - Curious to know what your E-coli slayer happens to be. I used wild oregano oil to kill off some overly abundant bacteria in my gut. It worked beautifully.

    Best of everything to you, especially good health.ReplyCancel

  • Deidre Edwards - I am so relieved that you are on the path to truth, discovery, and recovery! Clearly, you have a message to share and many will learn that they are not alone and that there is HOPE!

    I speak briefly about elimination diets in my up-coming book “Toolkit for Wellness” but your story takes things way beyond that! May I share a link to your blog in my blog?

    Best wishes and thanks for sharing-

  • Amanda - I’m so glad to read these posts and hear you are making some headway into what is causing all of these symptoms!

    I know this is all very specific to you, and likely if we want to do something similar we will need to undergo much of the testing you described in an earlier post.
    I’m wondering– did your insurance help to cover any of this and (if they did or especially if they didn’t) ballpark how much it is costing you to go through all of this?

    I think it is admirable that you are taking charge and making a difference in your health after all these issues for all this time. Many people would balk at the list of things you can eat (and the strict schedule about when you can eat them) as “too much”. Keep it up!! It sounds like you are feeling much better due to the efforts so I hope it works out well for you!ReplyCancel

  • Joe W - Carrie , can you pls explain to me what exactly is Mitochondrial ,thyroid and adrenal support? Out of curiosity, are you dealing with hashimoto’s problems (thyroid)?ReplyCancel

    • carrie - Hey Joe! Waiting on thyroid test to come back :-) Without telling you exactly the supps I am on the best way I can describe them is mitochondrial, adrenal and thyroid support. Let me think on how I can improve that…ReplyCancel

      • joew - Okay, thank you,and thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • Lynn Gibson - Hi Carrie, Glad to hear that you are getting to the bottom of all your symptoms. I am interested in trying this Naturopathic approach in the UK, As you know it is not so common over here and I wondered if you had any advice about finding a good one and not a ‘quack’ if there a proessional body that I should look for? Regards Lynn xReplyCancel

    • carrie - Hi Lynn – I would start here: http://bna.gcrn.org.uk/ I’ve been gone too long to have any contacts in that sphere, plus things have changed dramatically since I abandoned the mothership. Let me know how you get on!ReplyCancel

  • Deb Sanders - Carrie, where are you? We are all waiting to hear from you and know that you are okay.ReplyCancel

    • carrie - Deb! I am here! It’s all good – been a ride the last few weeks – posts imminent!ReplyCancel

After my tests came back declaring that just about every food that I had ever even thought about eating made my blood sad, it didn’t take any further testing for my Naturopath to announce that I have Leaky Gut.  It’s proper name is Permeable Gut, but that sounds so scientific and, well, dull.  If I am going to have something gnarly, at least let’s call it by a fun name.

I should have known I had Leaky Gut.  I’ve had it before.  Maybe I’ve always had it, but over time it can get to the point where your symptoms become normal – just a part of life – and you don’t even really heed them anymore, let alone sit and think about what might be causing them.  Life gets so busy that we don’t notice or question when symptoms ebb and flow, and the enormous number of different foods and chemicals we eat and breathe on a daily basis make it almost impossible to determine cause and effect.  One day we might wake up and notice that our joints are stiffer than normal, but to try and figure out what in the chaos of the previous few days may have caused that takes way more work and brain power than any of us have time for.  Added to that we have the media, the government, our friends, and family telling us that we should expect joint pain – we are, after all, getting older and these things just happen, you know.  I remember going to my soon-to-be-ex Doctor, 8 or so months back when I first started to feel blah.  After telling me that there was nothing wrong with me and upping my Bipolar meds because he didn’t know what else to do and of course when you have any kind of brain dysfunction any symptoms are really just made up because you’re crazy, I mentioned about the worsening pain in my thumb joints.  They were just painful all the time.  He looked at them and said, “Yeah, that’s what happens to joints when you get older.  I can give you some painkillers if they are bothering you too much”.  Funny then, that at another 8 months older I now have ABSOLUTELY NO JOINT PAIN WHATSOEVER.  ANYWHERE.  The pain magically vanished after I had been on my ND’s treatment plan for 4 weeks.  I wonder to what my now-ex Doctor would attribute the cure of my ‘age-related’ symptom to?  It sure wasn’t because I became younger.  But we’ll never know – I fired his a**.

Anyway, I digress.   Back to the Leaky Gut.  My point was that we can walk around with stuff and ignore it because it crept up so slowly, or we’re told those symptoms are just a normal part of life or aging or whatever, or the symptoms don’t manifest in a way that we can see or feel (initially), or we put it down to stress, or some other thing.  I didn’t notice all the reactions to my food and chemical sensitivities because I had had the symptoms for so long that I couldn’t see any correlation between what I ate and what my body was telling me.  I’ve had migraines since I was 16.  I’ve had psoriasis since I was 11.  I’ve had IBS on and off since I was in my early 20’s.  I’ve had bouts of depression my whole life.  And on and on.  Traditional medicine has offered me nothing except “I-don’t-knows”, painkillers, antidepressants, sleep-aids, anti-nausea meds, antipsychotics, and steroids.  NONE OF WHICH WORKED, by the way.  So, I just got used to them being there.  Back in January when everything started to get worse – headaches every. single. day., migraines so bad I needed to go to the ER, psoriasis appearing in new places or becoming raw in the places where it already was, increasing pain in my joints, getting more exhausted by the day, I didn’t pay any attention until July when things got so bad I could barely get out of bed.  Now I know better: these things are not normal, at all.

While this post is not a post on Leaky Gut but just to say that I have Leaky Gut, it will likely help if I give you the in-a-nutshell version of why knowing this is so important in unraveling the puzzle and making sense of all my symptoms.  I will be writing a huge post on Leaky Gut, but for now here is the gist.

Leaky Gut is when something damages the lining of the gut making little holes so that large particles of food can pass through it’s walls undigested.  Since they are all undigested the body does not recognize them and so concerned cells start calling 911 and the police department race all over with their sirens blaring, the fire department turn up with fire hoses blasting, and medical response units roar in – all generally trying to get rid of the threatening offenders – and this chaos produces a whole bunch of symptoms.  The symptoms are the cells way of saying, “DUDE.  YOU’RE POISONING ME!  Stop it!  Stop it right now!”

This is probably a good place to point out that when you have Leaky Gut the cells do not stop to ask, “Is it SANE?”.  Most everything looks like a poison (because it’s undigested) and so even the best and brightest of foods find themselves in the firing line of the emergency response team in your body.  I can only imagine the extra havoc and damage that would have ensued had I NOT been eating a fantastically nutritious diet.  The extra load of sugar, starches, and other toxic crap would have made my position even worse.  If you are even for one pecosecond entertaining the thought of saying, “See!!  SANE doesn’t work!  SANE is dangerous!  SANE makes people sick!” or “You should stop telling people about SANE.  You’re bringing SANE a bad name.  People are going to look at you and say you eat SANE and you’ve got all this stuff wrong with you.  You aren’t the poster child for SANE after all.  You’re not perfectly healthy so you make SANE look like a scam”, you need to READ THIS. Oh and then stop being an idiot.  None of what is wrong with me is anything to do with SANE.  None of it.

I have become increasingly sensitive to more and more foods as my liver has become more and more exhausted trying to deal with all this stuff that it now considers poison.  Once my liver got exhausted it stopped being able to process other stuff as effectively, so chemicals were not detoxified properly and I have become acutely sensitive to smells such as perfumes and gasoline and paint.  Walking down the detergent aisle in the grocery store literally makes me vomit now.  The other day I walked into a colleague’s office and after about 20 seconds said, “I am really sorry but I can’t stay in here anymore”.  (She had fresh flowers on her desk).  Then I went to the bathroom and threw up, and had a headache the rest of the day.   Life sucks when your liver is exhausted.

So, lovely people, as well as various deficiencies and toxicities, food sensitivities and adrenal fatigue, I have leaky gut and an exhausted liver.

We now know what is causing some of the deficiencies and toxicities, the food sensitivities, adrenal fatigue, and exhausted liver, but how did my gut get leaky?




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  • Susan - All I can say after reading these missives is good grief! I sincerely hope you’re back on track very soon!ReplyCancel

  • Dieanna - Wow……is all I can say! So glad that you fired your Doc that didn’t know s***. Happy that your with a ND that is making you feel better, your body work smarter and healthier and getting rid of your joint pain. Keep the info coming. Love and hugsReplyCancel

  • Sandy P. - Carrie, I swear I hear ya …. and I applaud you for being able to write this all down in a way that we all can understand it. I do sympathize with you as I have issues that the doctors just “poo poo’d” as getting old … I was just younger than most to have the weight gain and the edema so severe I could hardly lift my legs to go into the house … when it was no problem a few days prior. I relate to the aching joints and the eczema that just appeared one day. I am listening and can’t wait to hear the rest. Leaky gut … okay … I always suspected I had that and eating SANE has really helped but I didn’t stick with it. My fault. Can’t WAIT to hear the rest.ReplyCancel

In my quest to uncover WTF is wrong with me?”  I undertook a bunch of tests involving bodily fluids (or in some cases not-so-fluids), because it makes so much sense to me to look at what is actually there rather than just looking at the symptoms and trying to figure out what is causing them.  So many symptoms can be the result of so many different causes that if you just look at symptoms you can very easily find yourself meowing up the wrong scratching post.  Doing a symptom search on the world wide web can convince us in approximately 37 seconds that we are going to be dead by the end of next week because that patch of blotting-paper-dry-skin that suddenly appeared on our left cheek is obviously a symptom of complete thyroid failure.

Although I was pretty darn sure from my symptoms that I had adrenal fatigue – having been there 2 years ago – I wanted to know definitively.  So I sat down and had a long conversation with several plastic vials  – it takes far more work than you might imagine to produce a vial full of spit – and then shipped them off to an interpreter.  Here’s what they had to say: you have adrenal fatigue.  Stage 5 adrenal fatigue, to be precise.  The are 7 stages – so I am just 2 small steps away from adrenal hypofunction = NO BUENO.

This would be a really short post if I just left it here, so I’ll take this opportunity to preemptively roll my eyes at anyone out there who feels the urge to start yelling, “There’s no such thing as adrenal fatigue!  It’s a medically unrecognized diagnosis!”  Adrenal fatigue is a term used to describe a collection of symptoms that occur when your adrenal glands are not functioning properly – which is measurable via saliva.  Just because the term is not recognized by the mainstream medical profession doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.  Giving it a name simply makes it easier to talk about than saying, “My cortisol levels are depressed between 6 – 8 am, 11 am – 1 pm, and 4 – 5 pm, I cannot get out of bed in the morning for love nor money no matter early I go to bed at night, I am chronically tired, and my brain doesn’t come online until 2 in the afternoon.”

“But those symptoms can be caused by other things!”  Yes.  That’s why you get a saliva test done to see what your cortisol levels are up to over a 24 hour period.  And apart from all that – what do you care if I call my depressed cortisol levels adrenal fatigue?  And why do I care if the mainstream medical profession say it hasn’t been proven?  Am I going to ignore real live test result data because some people don’t believe in the data?  Just because someone doesn’t believe something doesn’t mean it’s not true.  If tests show that my cortisol levels are depressed and I take a supplement that corrects the problem and relieves me of my symptoms why do I care what the ‘experts’ think?  OH.  I don’t.

We added an adrenal support supplement to the treatment plan.

What we still don’t know is why my adrenals decided to stop playing but at least we do know – for sure – that they are not playing, and we can start making them feel better without knowing what got them down in the first place.



What does 'sane' mean? Click here...Want delicious uber-healthy recipes? Check out my Cookbooks!
  • Denise Luhman - “Sleep in complete darkness.”
    Have you tried a sleep mask? They are AWESOME. And you can get ’em on eBay for like five bucks. And did I mention they are AWESOME?ReplyCancel

  • Dave - Wow. I didn’t think it was possible to have that many food sensitivities! It’s amazing what the human body can do to itself. It seems that allow the meats you can have are the most expensive (except for the pork). I had duck breast at the White Barn Inn in Kennebunkport, ME (an actual 5 star restaurant). BEST meal I’ve ever had. If I could figure out how to duplicate it, I’d be in heaven. But it’s pretty darn expensive. I’d like to try cooking something in macadamia nut oil. Now THAT’S expensive. I love pine nuts, but those are megabucks too.

    I’m rooting for you. You’re the best!

    In Maine
    (If I could think of something else to say to make you “blush fiercely” I would)ReplyCancel

  • Sandy P. - This is really getting into the nitty gritty, isn’t it? Amazing tests and results. I can’t wait to hear the rest.ReplyCancel

  • Dieanna - Amazing how the right testing can show whats truly going on in our body and prove that we are not crazy!! I love reading your blogs. I can’t wait to hear the rest coming in the series. So happy you’re on your way to better health and feeling your absolute BEST!ReplyCancel

Lovely, patient readers: I am perhaps almost as frustrated as you are at the time it is taking me to get all these WTF is wrong with me?” posts written.  How best to deliver the flood of results and discoveries and accompanying abundance of awesomeness has been a constantly changing landscape in my mind for the last 6 weeks as this whole crazy thing has been unfolding.  My inability to decide how to break it down into the most meaningful and useful chunks is mostly what has kept me from writing anything, which is, frankly, ridiculous.

Today I woke up and decided to stop being ridiculous and just write.  My last thought on how to disseminate it all to you was by result, so I am going with that.  I have no doubt that if that approach doesn’t make sense you will raise your hand and wave.  I can always count on you to keep me on the {somewhat} straight and narrow.  The blood tests were the ones that came back first and got the ball rolling on where to start with unraveling the mysteries.

The various blood tests that I had done revealed all kinds of fascinating stuff: what was in my blood, what wasn’t in my blood, and what happened to my blood when a bunch of things were dropped into it.  I am only going to give the results that indicated where we needed to do some work.  If it’s not here, assume the result was normal or awesome.  Except in the case of food sensitivities where I simply got tired of typing as well as wanting to slash my wrists – you’ll see in a minute.

These are the {very short} cliff notes.  The full reports came with reams of notes, explanations, and complicated diagrams of Krebs Cycles and other things that would bore the pants off any of us who are not nerdy science geeks.  If you are a nerdy science geek then you may insert the right wording in your head where I have used language that the rest of us get.  Understanding enough of what was going on and making a plan to get well does not require one to be a scientist.  All you *really* need to know is what’s awry and how to fix it.  Simple is good.


What was missing (aka severe deficiencies) in:

  • Vitamin C
  • α-Lipoic Acid
  • CoQ10
  • All B vitamins
  • Manganese
  • Vitamin D
  • Glutathione
  • Homovanillic acid (HVA)
  • Phosphoserine
  • Arginine
  • Methionine
  • Alanine
  • Glutamine

What there was too much of:

  •  A bunch of acids with nauseatingly long, unpronounceable names which it makes no sense to detail
  • Cystathionine


  • Everything that there was too much of is directly related to the deficiency of B vitamins
  • Deficiency of HVA and phosphoserine is directly related to the deficiency of B vitamins
  • Deficiency of arginine, methionine, alanine, and glutamine is directly related to gastrointestinal dysfunction


What made my blood sad when they were added to it (Sensitivity testing):

  • Potassium nitrate (food preservative)
  • Sucralose (Splenda)
  • Bunch of artificial colors
  • Few molds
  • Fluoride
  • Ammonium chloride
  • Tetracycline (anti-biotic)
  • Almost every food known to man – including, but not limited to…apple, Brussels sprouts, all citrus (NOOOOOO!), mussels, salmon (this cannot be happening), almonds (wait, what?), asparagus, beef (THIS IS A JOKE, RIGHT?), bok choy, melons, celery, chicken liver, coconut (WTH??) codfish, mulberry, mung beans, mustard greens, scallops, sole, string beans, tomato (ok, this is not ok), tuna (this is not funny any more), turkey (just stop it), venison, squash, arugula, yeast, beans, blackcurrants, blackberries, brazil nuts, mushrooms (now I’m *REALLY* mad), carrots, cashews, cauliflower (now you’re just being mean), chicken (is there life without chicken?), clams, grapes, kiwi, onions, papaya, peaches, pork (JUST SHOOT ME NOW), pumpkin, radishes, soy, trout, all peppers, a bunch of spices, a bunch of herbs, most dairy (I AM CRYING), bell peppers, blueberries, potatoes, all grains, all sugars, eggs (I AM GOING TO COMMIT A FELONY).


Other things that showed up:

  • Mitochondrial dysfunction
  • Need for methylation
  • Toxic exposure to MTBE (common gasoline additive) and styrene



  • Hemoglobin A1c: 5.8 %  *** this is pre-diabetic ***
  • Cholesterol LDL: 208 mg/dL
  • Cholesterol: 290 mg/dL
  • Cholesterol/HDL Ratio: 5.47
  • Cholesterol HDL: 53 mg/dL
  • Triglyceride: 146 mg/dL


Treatment Plan #1 (September 1st)


  • Multivitamin
  • Mitochondrial support
  • Vitamin D
  • α-Lipoic Acid
  • Heavy duty specially formulated B vitamins


  • KETO (very low carb, adequate protein, very high fat) diet – separate post coming on this!
  • Elimination diet – foods I can eat:
    • Kippers (smoked herring), mackerel, sardines
    • Avocado
    • Cheese
    • Macadaemias, hazelnuts, pine nuts
    • 100% fat dairy – butter, heavy cream, sour cream, creme fraiche
    • Lamb
    • Pork
    • Duck
    • Bison

And you think following a SANE diet is hard???  SANE is the easiest diet on earth compared to this.  I CANNOT WAIT until I can eat a SANE diet again – it’s going to be like the holidays every damn day for my mouth.  Plus, now you know why there haven’t been any new recipes lately – not even I can conjure up anything with only that handful of things to work with.  If you’re staring at that list going, “So what else are you eating besides those things?  What veggies do you get to eat with that meat?”  NOTHING.  That list is it.

  • Rotation diet:
    • No food from list above to be eaten more often than every 4th day
  • Increase liquid intake
  • Water must be bottled
  • Keep food log and track any symptoms or lack thereof


My list of permitted foods was made a lot shorter because of my need to be on a ketogenic diet.  I will explain this in a separate post.

This list of permitted foods is unique to me based on my test results and needs.  I am in no way advocating that anyone else should follow this list.


  • Reduce stress as much as possible
  • Get as much sleep as you can
  • Do not exercise or over-exert


I still had no idea what had caused all this, and I couldn’t necessarily correlate symptoms with test results yet, but finally I had something I could hang my hat on.  There, written in blood, were some things that were not right.  If you know me at all you’ll know that I embraced these results wholeheartedly and with a considerable amount of glee.

Clutching my bag of supplements I toddled off to the grocery store to stock up on all (!) nine (!) things (!) that were to feed me for the next (!) three-to-six (!) months (!), and so began the start of what has become a fascinating science experiment with my body as the lab.  I’m nearly 8 weeks in now, and boy is this journey turning out to be the best thing I ever embarked on.




What does 'sane' mean? Click here...Want delicious uber-healthy recipes? Check out my Cookbooks!
  • MInta - We’re all happy to see a light at the end of the tunnel.ReplyCancel

  • Sandy P. - As I sit here with open mouth …. I am astounded at the foods that made your blood sad. Most of those are the foods I love. Cod? Blackberries? Eggs? Geez Louise! This is getting “curiouser and curiouser”. Mental note: Take my B-Complex vitamins everyday. Can’t wait to hear how you are doing now.ReplyCancel

  • Dieanna - I am in total and utter disbelief at the food list you are able to eat from. I wouldn’t be able to do it. So proud of you for embracing your journey with gusto and am looking forward to the rest of the “WTF Is Wrong With Me” series. You’re amazing and brave to share all of this with us. Thanks so much for being YOU!! 😊ReplyCancel

  • Kat - Hang in there Carrie. I went Keto a year ago and have never felt better at 66 years old. All my blood markers improved immensely. Lucky at least you can do dairy. I can not. I also added intermittent fasting which I find good for the brain and body. Love reading about your journey.ReplyCancel

  • Donna - Keep writing Carrie- I gave up on trying to follow my Alcat recommendations after 2 weeks and just threw my hands up and went back to BAD BAD eating. Tell me more about how you lived to tell the tale of coming out the back end of it.ReplyCancel

  • Wren - wow. that is a lot to take in, right? Do the food sensitivities mean you can NEVER eat them or is this just a healing period and perhaps in the future, you can start adding them back in?

    I learned about eating KETO about 6 months ago and have been enjoying it ever since. It’s been the key to keeping my weight stable and my brain loves it! At 51, I’m feeling more focused, more calm, more energetic, sleeping better, etc. I’ve also lost bodyfat and gained more muscle. Plus, it’s such a FUN and delicious way to eat! I find it very easy to stay in Ketosis and use my Ketonix to check my level regularly. And I love Jimmy Moore’s book, Ketogenic Cookbook. Everything in that book is great, thanks to Maria Emmerich. I highly recommend it.

    Thanks again for sharing your story Carrie. You are no doubt, helping many others. I’m on my way to the store now to stock up on some B vitamins. It’s one of a few things that are supposed to clear up some pre-menopause symptoms. (life is so fun sometimes).ReplyCancel

  • Debra Ulrich - Sure sounds like leaky gut doesn’t it? Yet we know you don’t it much in the way of grains. The next thing that comes to mind is that you don’t have sufficient microbes in your gut to break foods down to a from you can assimilate. I am thinking of the xylitol. We know it can stop a cavity in it’s tracks, and I recently read where people were dissolving it and putting it in their ears to treat ear infections.

    I will anxiously be awaiting your progress reports!

    Best wishes in your speedy recovery!ReplyCancel

  • Ellen - Wow, this is incredible. Those must have been some heavy duty blood tests. And I’m impressed that you’ve hung in there when faced with elimination of ALL your FAVES….and figured out how to make it work. Can’t wait to hear the next installment!ReplyCancel

  • Geraldine Denise Kuss - Dear Carrie,
    I have felt privileged to read about your various experiences in many fields. I have your book on Ice-Creams and I have Jonathan’s book on The Calorie Myth.I think both are excellent.
    Somehow I just can’t come to terms with what you are now writing as I live in Brazil and i almost can’t believe that such a diet would be possible anywhere in the world except The USA.
    People in India who are vegetarians wouldn’t subscribe to this prescription for good health and certainly here in Brazil I can’t imagine this being suggested as a cure. Still, I’m fascinated by it all and curious about the outcome. As you mention, you are the guinea pig. I wish you well, from Rio De Janeiro , BrazilReplyCancel

    • carrie - Hi Geraldine! Please remember that this current set of posts is unique to me given what test results have revealed. This prescription is for ME alone relative to the foods I am currently sensitive to. I am in no way suggesting that anyone else should follow my treatment plan. Once I have told the whole story you will understand the complete puzzle and see how it all fits together to heal me. Once healed I will be able to return to all the goodness of SANE! Trust me when I tell you that 8 weeks in I feel better than I have felt in more years that I can count :DReplyCancel

  • Take A Breath » Carrie Brown | Life in the SANE Lane - […] Written in Blood (WTF is wrong with me? #1) […]ReplyCancel

Back in July when I had to raise my hand and wave the flag of surrender, I really had no clue where to start in trying to untangle what was happening in my body that was making me unable to function.  I think it’s probably fairly typical for peeps with brain dysfunctions to assume that everything that isn’t working quite right stems from their neurological disorder.  Deepening depression, exhaustion, lack of interest in anything, inability to focus, inexplicable sadness, insomnia, desire to sleep at any given opportunity are all classic symptoms of various mood disorders, so there is a tendency to scurry straight off to the doctor to change or increase the meds because OH-HELL-NO I do not want to become suicidal, manic, or at the simplest level feel like I am feeling right now for one second longer.  We tend to assume that it *must* be brain related because our worlds revolve around making sure we are suitably medicated, so it’s easy to become fixated and believe that we are simply the sum of our medication(s).  We curse our broken brains and weep at the frustration of feeling like the rest of our lives will be controlled by a chemical concoction dreamed up in a lab somewhere, and without which life will plummet to every level of suckiness including the possibility of death.

So in July when I finally couldn’t keep going any more and had to decide on a course of action, my first thought was, “I must need to change my Bi-polar meds, since upping them a few weeks ago did nothing except stop me wanting to kill myself”.  Which was a good outcome, but still.  It seemed like upping them got me out of crisis but didn’t fix everything else so therefore – as the neurological disorder logic goes – I must need to change the meds altogether since these are no longer effective.

Hand on heart though, I was waging a war on the whole process of changing meds and the likely uproar and side-effects that would entail.  No.  I decided it was time to find out why I had Bi-polar disorder and how to cure it – or at least manage it without the use of medications.

I was going to figure this thing out or die trying.  Whatever it took.

My first port of call was to the brilliant Dr. Ted Naiman – who I irreverently refer to as Dr. 6-Pack – the ridiculously intelligent man who wrote the forward for my last cookbook, “Drink Smarter! Beverages”.  He is so not your ordinary family physician – not in mindset or in looks, and it’s hard not to pay attention to a Dr who has a body like his.  I mean, seriously?  He has to be doing something right.  I had remembered from our conversation over coffee a few months prior that he had said he was sure we could manage my Bi-polar with diet.  Now I was {more than} ready to hear about that theory.  Blood was drawn.  The first lot of testing was underway.

That same week a friend contacted me via Facebook and we got talking about all the food sensitivity testing that she had recently had done and how excited she was for what was transpiring as a result.  I was {more than} ready to be excited about getting some results of my own.  I called the Naturopath who had done the testing for her and made an appointment.  Blood was drawn.  The second lot of testing was underway.

During my consultation with this Naturopath she recommended that we also find out exactly what was – and was not – floating around in my veins in terms of nutrients, toxins, chemicals, and the like.  Seemed like a good idea to me.  Blood was drawn.  A lot of blood was drawn – now there’s a 3-hour-long-13-puncture-wound story I’ll have to share with you some day.  Regardless, the third lot of testing was underway.

Just to round things out we decided we may as well re-do the adrenal stress test that I had done way back in January 2014 to see what my adrenal glands were – or were not – up to.  Spit was hurled into vials at various times throughout a 24-hour period and shipped off to Tacoma.  You might be surprised to learn how much effort it takes to consciously produce enough spit to fill a vial, especially when you don’t get to count the froth.  Oh, and when you aren’t allowed to eat anything for an hour before each collection.  Producing a lot of saliva takes work.  The fourth lot of testing was underway.

A few weeks later I contacted another Naturopath about starting some NAET treatments.  NAET is a muscle-testing protocol which I have had before and which had a remarkable effect on clearing some of my allergies – notably cats, perfumes, and pineapple.  It made sense to me to check in on potential food sensitivities via this method as well as the blood tests.   While this Naturopath was doing my initial work up to get the full picture on everything that was ailing me, she suggested that at some point it would be good to do a full GI panel.  No, there was no spitting in vials required for this one.  Vials, yes.  Spitting in them, no.  A lot of shaking was required, and a strong constitution.  The fifth lot of testing was underway.

There followed a lot of waiting.  Apart from the blood tests ordered by Dr. 6-Pack to check on lipid panels and general health markers, the other testing takes a while.  The kit has to be shipped to you, the various substances removed from your body *ahem*, and the plethora of vials shipped back to various labs across the country for testing, analysis, and reporting.  It’s quite the process.

So why all the testing?  It made perfect sense to me that if I have symptoms, something is going on to cause them.  You don’t get symptoms unless there is a quirk in the system.  There *MUST* be something that shows up somewhere indicating where things are not working quite right.  Blood, saliva and poop (there! I said it!) seem to be the obvious starting places to find out what is happening since the body is continually producing these.  It makes sense to me that these would give me a snapshot of my health.

I am going to share all the results with you, but I am not going to just dump them all out there in one hit.  I promise you I am not telling you bit by bit to drive you nuts.  I am doing it slowly because  1. There’s a LOT 2. It would be overwhelming 3. It would be confusing, and 4. I want you to see the logical progression of how we figured out the whole puzzle.

While this whole testing malarkey started as a quest to unravel my Bipolar and find out how to stop all these dastardly symptoms, once we had combed through all the results we found that the vast majority of my symptoms were not related to Bipolar at all.  There was most definitely something else going on, and the domino effect was alive and kicking around my poor body.  This whole process killed two birds with one stone – literally.

So now we get to the exciting part: what the results were, what they meant, what we did about it, and what happened as a result.

The two most important things for you to know at this point is that the change in my health since I started on my ND’s plan is nothing short of miraculous, and that the root cause of my symptoms had absolutely nothing to do with my SANE diet up to that point.  There are things that can make you {very} sick that are not related to diet.  Furthermore, had I not been on a SANE (or similar real-food-no-crap) diet I would have been a lot sicker.

I confess that I am both mad as hell and happy as a clam that this whole riddle was solved with just blood tests, spit tests, poop tests, and all in just a matter of weeks.  Had I known at age 10 what I have found out now my life would have unfolded in a completely different (better!) way.  But that’s another story for another blog post.

Let’s dive in!



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  • Dave - You go girl! I do hate suspense, though.ReplyCancel

  • DavidFW1960 - You are such a tease :)ReplyCancel

  • Susan - I’m really looking forward to seeing your test results and getting all the details. Thank you so much for sharing and best of luck…ReplyCancel

  • Heidi - Anxiously awaiting the next post!ReplyCancel

  • Sandy P. - Not fair! I was hanging on to every word …. ready to dive in. Then nothing. That is so not right! :o)ReplyCancel

  • Wren - You got me on the edge of my seat! This is all very interesting. Thanks for the link to Dr. 6-pack.ReplyCancel

  • Fi - Hi Carrie,
    I’ve searched your site for some way of contacting you, to no avail.
    I’m in the UK and would like my hubby to receive similar testing to what you have gone thru. He’s presenting with a LOT of non-specific auto-immune disorder type ailments. We’re in Surrey near London but happy to travel for the right recommendation. You don’t mention the names of the Naturopaths you’ve met with altho I’ve msgd Dr Nailman on FB.
    Happy to contact your Naturopaths directly to see if they have UK contacts/recommendations – Appreciate any assistance you can give in directing our enquiry, ML Fi xxReplyCancel

    • carrie - Fi!! I am so sorry I missed this – you somehow ended up in the spam bucket – RUDE!!! Email me at cb @ carriebrown.com.ReplyCancel