Project Description

Published June 5, 2024

Kristen M.’s Success Story

“I had gained weight, I wanted to lose weight, and I was doing all the things that you were supposed to do to lose weight, but it wasn’t working for me,” recalls Kristen, our latest success story.

But losing weight wasn’t her only goal; Kristen just wanted to feel better overall.

“I felt like other doctors that I’d gone to in the past weren’t really listening to me, and I wasn’t getting relief from a lot of the things that were causing challenges for me,” she continues.

For instance–Kristen had suspected a thyroid issue. Having this notion, she requested a thyroid test from her (then) doctor, who quickly dismissed her request, telling her she didn’t need any testing.

“I just didn’t know why I wasn’t feeling good. I felt exhausted and tired ALL THE TIME,” she recalls.

Kristen reports awful sleep, to include nights of 4-5 hours max of rest, and the inability to fall back asleep after waking. Her body ached in different areas, and her hair was falling out, all symptoms that left her guessing.

“Looking back, I had felt badly for a while, but I didn’t know how bad I felt until things started changing and I started feeling better,” she says, reflecting over the last 18 months.


Dietary changes

Off the bat, Dr. Jorge ran a number of diagnostic tests on Kristen to better understand data-wise what was going on in her body. He combined this with information from Kristen herself including symptoms, goals and overall feelings.

“Multiple markers of food sensitivity for dairy were positive on her testing and on her GI map her zonulin was elevated which suggests a gluten enteropathy and sensitivity,” says Dr. Jorge. For this reason, he suggested she remove both gluten and dairy from her diet.

“It was very difficult,” Kristen recalls of these dietary changes. “I can make cheese a meal! So the dairy part was very difficult. Over time, I’ve learned how to make swaps and figure out alternatives and have been able to eliminate both gluten and dairy from my diet and see the difference. But I’m not gonna lie–getting here was hard.”

Kristen’s health coach worked with her on nutritional education, including identifying new recipes and ingredients to promote her healing, and served as her accountability partner while making these dietary changes. And to Kristen’s delight, she did see positive results.

“It’s definitely helped with inflammation and weight loss,” Kristen reports of the nutritional changes. “I can see a difference in my skin from the food changes. I do think it’s a combo of all the things, but it definitely was worth it.”

Reflecting back, these changes were not immediate.


Change takes time

“I was very frustrated not seeing any results before 3 months,” Kristen remembers. “It took a little bit, but he (Dr. Jorge) encouraged me to stick with it. Once I got over the hump, I saw changes and used this as my motivation. This helped me to keep going; I saw more progress, and it encouraged me to keep adding. I started adding more weights, increasing walking; I wanted to do more.”

“I’ve definitely seen the change,” she says; “it was just hard to get started.”


Hormone testing and optimization

In addition to testing and addressing Kristen’s thyroid issues, Dr. Jorge was on a quest to consider hormones. Kristen’s age, her sleep issues, and hair loss were all indicators of hormonal imbalance.

To address her hormones, he ran a diagnostic test for further data and afterwards worked up an appropriate supplement and bio-identical hormone plan. Kristen explains the process as trying to find balance/some trial and error in finding the right mix. It’s a good reminder to all of us that it takes time to find out what works for each individual in the area of hormone management.

Another good reminder is how all parts of our body are connected: dietary changes, lowered inflammation, hormone optimization (including thyroid adjustments) and lifestyle changes all helped improve Kristen’s sleep. And to close the loop, these positive effects didn’t stop there: she finally began to see positive changes in her weight.


Kristen’s success with losing weight

Kirsten - JUNE MOM

While we often want to look to one thing that can help with weight loss, it’s actually often a combination of changes that can help us lose weight. For Kristen, the dietary changes, including removing gluten and dairy, helped lower inflammation in her body, which kick-started her weight loss. Sleep improvement, increasing her movement, the addition of strength training and upping her water intake all supported the change. And let’s not forget the individualized supplements, thyroid medications and bioidentical hormones, all of which contributed to her success.


More on her success

“I’m super calendar-focused,” Kristen reports..”My health coach and I decided that we needed to schedule all of the ‘better’ habits on my calendar. This helped in creating the habit – the tracking and scheduling were part of the plan for me, because that is how I work best. It helped me to be and stay consistent.

“I travel quite a bit for work, so trying to maintain these habits while I work was a challenge. I wanted to make sure that I kept my schedule.”

To that end, Kristen’s health coach reports two thumbs up in this area.

“She went through a job change, but still she kept up with her breathwork throughout,” says Kristen’s health coach. “She kept up with her exercise, and she actually made a more conscious choice to take care of herself. She held her boundaries, which again reflected how strong her self-confidence was and had become. She kept putting herself first, as she should.”


Reflecting back

“I didn’t think that I would ever feel better,” Kristen recalls. “I thought that the way I felt before I started at Companion Health–I thought I’d feel this way always and that it’d get worse with age. I had settled.

I wanted a change and wanted to feel better, but I wasn’t seeing it with traditional doctors. After going through the process, seeing how much better I felt and could feel, I’m surprised that I feel better–not that it wasn’t the goal, I just didn’t think I would ever feel good again.”

Kristen is proof that you should never “just settle” for suboptimal health, and that when you take life by the reins, find a practitioner who listens and supports you, and stay consistent— YOU are in charge of your health.