I’m not a doctor, nutritionist, or professional makeup artist.
But every day I’m confronted by the vitiligo on my face, hands and elbows, and the melasma and darks spots on my face seem to stare back at me in the mirror. I’m constantly asking myself: is it getting worse? better? Has it spread? Why am I dealing with all this at such a young age? How are all my “issues” related? How do I feel today? What did I eat yesterday? What do I need to change today? What can I do better?
I’m a newly 30-something gal in southern California with a decent amount of health baggage – insulin resistance, Hashimoto’s, vitiligo, melasma and frequent neck/shoulder tension, TMJ or sometimes carpal tunnel.
But most days I actually feel amazing!! Besides feeling a bit tired thinking about all this stuff all the time and living a normal life.
I’ve had to actively prioritize my health for the past 16 or so years. I think about this stuff every day and this blog is about sharing what I’ve learned and solutions that work – or don’t.
It’s not super-fun managing all of this, but I’m in pretty good shape:
- I’m over 13 years removed from constant brain fog, joint pain, muscle spasms, dizziness, fatigue, uncontrolled low blood sugar/insulin response and passing out every day. #winning!
- I guess that also makes me over 13 years removed from pretending to feel OK every day. Yippee!
- In hindsight, getting an insulin resistance diagnosis (revelation!!) when I was just a teenager has been a blessing. I wasn’t as diligent with my healthy eating and good habits when I was that young or in my early 20s, but I’m thankful to have had time to learn what works and doesn’t for me. With the help of medication and great healthy habits my quality of life is exponentially better than it was over a decade ago.
- Before: I never had a weight problem nor did I have any acne issues. I was actually pretty thin when originally diagnosed because of muscle mass loss.
- Currently: I’m in my best shape of the past 7 years. I don’t have excess belly fat and I’m not currently PCOS!
- While my glucose tolerance tests are historically abnormal, my A1C has always been great and the last few results were fantastic!
- I haven’t had a major hypoglycemic reaction in over 2 years!!
- I was recently able to reduce my thyroid medication for the first time in a decade!
- It’s easier for me to eat healthy things because I know I will quickly feel horrible if I don’t!
- My melasma has gotten less noticeable over time. Slightly. At a snail’s pace…but It’s at least not getting worse! It developed about 9.5 years ago (not due to hormonal birth control or pregnancy).
- My vitiligo doesn’t spread too much too often – the only visible expansion is more spots on my hands in the past 2 years (which i’m bummed about 🙁 ). It first developed about 8 or 9 years ago.
- The internet is a great reminder that my melasma and vitiligo may be better controlled and less noticible compared to others’ manifestations. I also know my melasma and vitiligo will always be more noticible to myself than others.
- I’m finding solutions to reduce muscle tension, TMJ and carpal tunnel like yoga, stretching and mindfulness meditation.
- Eating well, specific amounts of exercise, yoga, stretching and mindfulness techniques have helped to majorly reduce my stress and how I respond to stress over the last year and a half.
- I live in sunny California – it’s VERY easy to maintain a healthy lifestyle here!
Did I mention I’m also not a professional photographer? My pictures aren’t perfect. And my products have smudges – because I actually have or currently use these products!
If I want to feel better, like, tomorrow, what is your #1 tip?
- I’m not a doctor or certified nutritionist, but from my personal experience a great first step is to eat only savory things for breakfast. So you must eat breakfast and it shouldn’t be sweet. Aim for lower carb, low-glycemic. Try not to eat anything sweet or too much fruit until lunch or after lunch. If you really crave pancakes or french toast, then decide on a time when you will make breakfast for dinner. Get the best ingredients to make pancakes from scratch and pair with organic eggs and/or bacon or sausage.
If you’re so into natural makeup and beauty, do you make your own natural beauty products?
- I don’t and I don’t think I have the physical space to pick up one more hobby. But I love to support businesses and individuals that are making their own natural beauty products. I do have some friends here in California that are forging that path and they let me test their products 🙂 like my friend Erika at Walls Wonders Etsy Shop – Candles and Lip Balm.
Will you ever show a full face view in your pictures?
- Apparently I have a tired looking left eye that mostly only looks funny in pictures? It’s not the best look so I tend to only show the right side of my face in my before and after photos.