It’s been an honor and a gift to serve you on your healing journey. I am humbled that over the last decade as the Thyroid Pharmacist, I have had the pleasure of reaching almost one million people with thyroid conditions through my books, programs, social media channels, The Thyroid Secret series, and the very newsletter you are now reading. I am able to help so many people, because I recovered my own health over 10 years ago!
When people see me today, they tell me that they just don’t believe that I was ever sick because I am so calm, happy and full of energy most days, and to be honest, most people never knew that underneath my smiles in my twenties, I was suffering from numerous mysterious symptoms.
The symptoms started during my first year in college and continued to get worse with each passing year. For over a decade, I endured a series of chronic symptoms: debilitating fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), anxiety, panic attacks, palpitations, acid reflux, chronic cough, hair loss, dry and dull skin, weight gain, cold intolerance, allergies, carpal tunnel in both arms, brain fog, emotional dysregulation, and muscle and joint pain. Of course, I sought the help of numerous doctors…but the answers I got were always the same:
“You’re just getting older.” I was in my twenties when I heard this gem.
“Maybe you need antidepressants.” But I’m not depressed. I just have these weird panic attacks that come out of nowhere.
“Your lab tests are normal.” But they didn’t do the right ones, and, at the time, I didn’t know any better.
Finally, in 2009 after finding a doctor who was willing to do more comprehensive lab testing for me, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune condition in which the immune system recognizes the thyroid gland as a foreign invader, eventually leading to enough thyroid damage that the thyroid is unable to function properly and produce enough thyroid hormone.
I was excited to start on thyroid medications, and while meds helped a little, I still did not feel 100 percent well…not even 20% well, haha.
When my integrative doctor suggested I get tested for adrenal fatigue, I was skeptical. Like most conventionally trained healthcare professionals, I was only familiar with one type of adrenal issue, known as Addison’s disease, an autoimmune condition that is life-threatening and requires lifelong use of medications for survival.
When I searched “Dr. Google,” I found that “adrenal fatigue” was considered a bogus “quack” diagnosis. I thought I knew better, and didn’t want to be tricked, so I delayed testing my own adrenals for a long time. It wasn’t until I spoke with another pharmacist about my lingering symptoms, and he suggested adrenal testing, that I decided to give it a try. Maybe I was more open to it because we had similar training and he wasn’t trying to sell me anything, or maybe the timing was just right.
Sure enough, the integrative adrenal test showed that I had an advanced stage of adrenal dysfunction. I followed the recommended protocols and saw incredible improvements in my energy levels, emotional state, blood sugar issues, and hormone balance—quickly! A lightbulb went off in my head: This voodoo stuff works and actually helps! 🙂
I wanted to know more about the “how and why” behind these strategies, so I dug deeper into the physiology of the body’s stress response, and read every book and took every course I could find on the topic. Little did I know at the time, this would come in handy, as I would experience two more bouts of adrenal fatigue. I also went on to discover that healing the adrenals is often a key part of reversing symptoms in my thyroid clients.
Four years after I initially healed my adrenals, I burned myself out…again. My workload as a health consultant, author, and entrepreneur had drastically increased. I think a part of me was making up for lost time because after pharmacy school, I was frustrated by how my fatigue kept me from pursuing my dreams in my 20’s, so I overdid it. I had recently released a documentary series, The Thyroid Secret, and published my second book, Hashimoto’s Protocol. I was all-around burning the candle at both ends. One afternoon, when my mom called to say hello, and I became annoyed at such an “unreasonable” demand, I knew I’d slipped into full-on adrenal dysfunction and needed to give my adrenals attention. So I did what I was trained to do.
I cut out the caffeine, slept for twelve hours each night, and supported my adrenals with the ABC protocol (adaptogens, B vitamins, and vitamin C). I took a sabbatical and decommitted from most of my travel, speaking, and work engagements and focused on relaxing and catching up on things I felt like catching up on. Additionally, my husband, Michael, and I made a plan to scale down and reorganize our business, which allowed for a better work-life balance. And it worked! By following my own proven approach, I saw results in about a month.
After that second bout of burnout, it felt amazing to restore my energy to do my work, and continue to help people once more. But nowhere near as amazing as finding out that I was pregnant and my husband and I would be welcoming our first baby!
I dove into personal transformation and trauma work, to address some of my old stuck patterns and the fears I had about motherhood, and to prepare for motherhood, but of course nothing can prepare someone for such a major life change. 🙂
New motherhood was full of wonder, joy, trauma, and shedding of my former self. Seeing my son for the first time, my heart expanded a thousand times, and it still does every time I look at him! In the beginning, I embraced every moment of motherhood, the baby snuggles, the nighttime feedings, the messy bun and bags under my eyes because I knew it would be only temporary.
Everyone knows that having a new baby is a major life change, however, in addition to welcoming my sweet, dreamy bundle of joy, I was faced with additional, less joyful life changes. My super-energetic, marathon-running, early-waking, super-hero love of my life husband started having major health issues after a bout of food poisoning.
Beyond worries for my husband’s well-being, I felt like my support system vanished. Before the birth of our son, my husband used to jump out of bed and would do a run or hike outside before I woke up, yet after the birth of our son, he was sleeping into the late afternoon and was too exhausted to care for a newborn. I felt torn because I wanted to help my husband heal, yet I needed to mother our son, and I, too, needed to focus on recovering after giving birth (not to mention going back to work and all of the other challenges of new motherhood).
I hadn’t found a nanny or even thought about childcare because we had planned that my parents would move to Colorado from Chicago to care for our son for a few days a week. But unfortunately, my parents ended up canceling their move. Instead, my wonderful mom came to stay with us and helped me to care for our son.
I had read that babies can sleep through the night at three months old, and I had the expectation that this would happen, but of course, it did not. By the time the Colorado winter came, my son was eight months old, he was still waking up numerous times per night, and I recognized the signs that my adrenals were getting off track again. Sleep deprivation is the fastest way to get into adrenal dysfunction, and I guess around eight months of sleep deprivation was my limit! I didn’t know it at the time, but there was also a reason my symptoms worsened in winter (I’ll share more in my next email, so stay tuned).
Testing confirmed what I’d suspected. And here I was, again, facing adrenal dysfunction for a third time. I knew how to heal the adrenals and had healed my own adrenals before, and helped others heal as well, but I hit a major roadblock. Everything about the tried-and-true protocol I’d used in the past seemed impossible at this moment of my life!
That Is How My New Adrenal Transformation Protocol Was Born
I felt like I was starting from square one.
No caffeine? That just wasn’t going to happen. I needed it to get through my day. I’d gotten off caffeine in the past, but there was just no way, no how right now. Even though I knew caffeine weakened my adrenals in the long-term, caffeine needed to remain a part of my daily routine. I think most new parents can relate. 🙂
Sleeping for ten to twelve hours each night for two to four weeks? The idea of getting more sleep was hugely appealing, but not exactly practical. My son needed care and feeding throughout the night. The times my husband tried to help with nighttime caregiving, he would have ulcerative colitis flare-ups from the sleep deprivation. When I was pregnant, I read a book that suggested children could be night weaned by twelve weeks of age, but due to my son’s slow weight gain and feeding challenges, lactation consultants and sleep consultants recommended keeping the night feeds. It was impossible for me to sleep for six, let alone twelve, hours straight. Again, it worked great for me before kids, not so much with a little one at home.
What about supplemental adrenal hormones? These, including DHEA and pregnenolone, can work well for some, when used in the right doses under the guidance of a well-trained practitioner, but I wasn’t comfortable taking them as I was still breastfeeding.
I wondered…what was I to do? And if this protocol seemed impossible to me, how many others faced the same challenges?
A New Way to Heal the Adrenals
I knew there had to be another way, and I set out to find it so I could help myself and others. I dug in and learned about additional causes and healing modalities through continuing research and education, insights from brilliant and generous colleagues, and, of course, my own experience and my clients’ experiences.
I came to understand that anxiety, insomnia, and caffeine dependency were not the causes of adrenal dysfunction, but rather symptoms of it.
I implemented what I had learned into my life, and despite my sleep deprivation, caffeine dependence, and the many stressors in my life, I was able to not just survive, but also heal and thrive!
My passion has always been to help as many people as possible, and it suddenly became clear to me that the original adrenal protocols I’d developed, while effective under the right circumstances, just weren’t possible for everyone.
That is how the Adrenal Transformation Protocol was born.
What Is the Adrenal Transformation Protocol?
After I found a way to heal myself for the third time (third time’s a charm, right?), I outlined the process so I could share it with others. I knew that many of my readers with adrenal symptoms needed help and weren’t able to connect with a knowledgeable practitioner, yet, I knew that I had to limit my one-on-one clinical work due to my own personal life challenges. I wanted to continue my life’s mission to help people heal, so I utilized the time and energy I had to focus on creating a program that could empower lots of people to take charge of their own health.
That is how Adrenal Transformation Protocol came to be! In the book, I outline a simple but effective four-week program to help you balance your stress response and gradually build up your resilience, to prevent excess stress from overwhelming your adrenals. Adrenal Transformation Protocol will set you up with a strong foundation to return to and stay in homeostasis through turbulence.
Who Is It For?
This book is for anyone experiencing brain fog, fatigue, sleep issues, chronic pain, low libido, and/or mood issues. If you have come to a healing plateau in your thyroid journey or are looking for a way to become more resilient in the face of all the stress life throws at you, this book can truly transform your health!
Over 3,500 people have now been through my Adrenal Transformation Program, and participants have seen staggering improvements:
- 92% had reduced mental fog
- 89% reported reduced fatigue
- 89% reported reduced forgetfulness
- 86% reported reduced anxiety
- 85% felt less irritable
- 83% improved their cold tolerance
- 82% improved their morning fatigue
- 81% experienced less trouble sleeping
- 81% improved their libido
- 80% reduced feelings of nervousness
- 78% reduced feelings of depression
- 77% experienced reduced emotional lability
- 76% reduced their joint pain
Are you experiencing any of these symptoms? Are you ready to overcome them and start thriving?
If you’re ready to experience more energy, better sleep, less brain fog, and less stress, I highly recommend getting your copy of Adrenal Transformation Protocol.
It’s based on years and years of experience and research, and I’m so excited to finally share this book with the world. Get your copy now!
Wishing you all the best on your journey!
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P.S. Would you take a moment and share this information with anyone who you think might benefit from it? I’m on a mission to spread hope and help as many people as I can!
I wanted to report good news bad news. I studied and applied your materials, and had some success. At one point my tsh was 27 with both antibodies numbers around 130. I was put on levothyroxine 150mcg and the tsh went to around 4. I then applied your materials, and over maybe 2 years on, at least one of my antibody numbers went to 10, in the normal range. The doctor for some reason only did one antibody test, but over 2 years I noticed they went both down in lock step, so I assume the other is normal now. However, two doctors have said antibody numbers are irrelevant , and I am inclined to agree, which I will get to in a second. I also followed the tsh advice, and my lowet score was .50 or so. I have wanted to reduce my levothyroxine prescription, so experimented with half a dose. Once I did this, my voice was a little horse and my stomach still seemed a little bloated . If antibodies are no longer an issue, why do I still have these symptoms? Lastly, are there any other supplements you could recommend for improving tsh score? I am not sure I could cut out coffee or bread (as I consume a minimal amount). Other than ashwaghanda, nac, hexo or selenium, ( armour thyroid or cow glandular s as well but I dont want to take them) what else could I try to get tsh down and truly heal the beaten up thyroid gland, Do you have any suggestions>?
Dr. Izabella says
GE – thank you for sharing. The optimal reference range for TSH is between 0.5-2 μIU/mL. If your symptoms continue to worsen, then I would start considering medications under the guidance of your practitioner. Medications can help reduce many patients’ symptoms. They may also help reduce thyroid antibodies. In people who have really high antibodies or who have a lot of symptoms and antibodies, it may be a good idea to get on medications right away. There are quite a few options for thyroid medications. In my experience, what works for one person may not work for another. If your doctor will not prescribe the medication you are looking for, you may consider asking your local pharmacist for doctors in your area who prescribe the medication you are looking to try. I’m a big fan of using everything we can to get ourselves better, and medications are not always life-long. Some people are able to get off of them if they figure out their triggers and root causes. Hope this helps! Here is an article I hope are helpful as well:
A Pharmacists Review of Medications
Joanne Sellers RN says
Can I schedule a call with Dr Wentz?
Very worried about a family member.
Dr. Izabella says
Joanne – thank you for reaching out. At present time I am not accepting new clients. I do have a 12 week online program called Hashimoto’s Self-Management Program, that covers all of the strategies that I go through with my one-on-one clients, in a self-paced format, so that participants have access to all of the things I’ve learned about Hashimoto’s without having to schedule costly consults with me or another practitioner. There are a few requirements that you should pay attention to before enrolling to this course, like reading my book. Here is the link to the program:
Hashimoto’s Self-Management Program
If you would like to be notified of any future consulting opportunities and educational events, you can sign up for my waiting list: https://thyroidpharmacist.com/dr-izabella-wentzs-waiting-list/
I started following the protocol 2 days ago, mostly to deal with my fatigue/energy problem. I eat most of the recommended foods in the protocol except the high oxalates ones (due to secondary hyperoxaluria), I also skip eggs (due to sensitivity).
My problem while on the diet is that I’m hungry between meals. Normally when I eat starchy carbohydrates with meals I don´t go hungry between meals.
Do you have any suggestions on how I can still follow the protocol without feeling hungry most of the time?
Dr. Izabella Wentz says
Belis – thank you for reaching out. I’m sorry to hear you are feeling fatigued. You could try adding a healthy snack between meals that may help keep your blood sugar stable. Check out the snacks in the recipe section of the book for some ideas! Please email my team at firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any other questions about the protocol and they will be happy to help.