Welcome to Mast Cell 360! I’m so glad you are here!
I’m guessing you are reading this site because, like me, you’ve been sick for a long time and have struggled to get well.
My mission is to empower those with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) to reclaim their health and realize their full potential.
Many of us have fallen through the healthcare cracks, especially those with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, and I am here to instill hope and support your healing process in a way that encompasses the whole you.
This process, Mast Cell 360, brings together genetic analysis, functional naturopathy, and emotional wellness.
I, too, have been very, very ill. Actually, I’ve been ill most of my life, and for a long time I felt that I was robbed of my full potential due to my chronic illness, until I was able to reclaim my well-being and health through exploring my genetics, personalized supplementation, lifestyle changes, and supporting my emotional wellness.
Eventually, I learned I have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, histamine sensitivity, oxalate sensitivity, lectin sensitivity, genetic neurotransmitter imbalances, and Ehler’s Danlos Syndrome – Hypermobility Type. I also have numerous gene variants that affect inflammatory processes in my body and disrupt energy production.
Does this sound like you? Do you have multiple issues affecting your MCAS? If so, you aren’t alone.
My passion is to help those like you with chronic illness stop your life from shrinking, reclaim your potential, and empower you to heal. Because we are so much more than Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.
I would like to share with you my story of how sick I was and how I got better, so that if you are also struggling, you can know it is possible to heal.
Before and After Photos
The picture on the left was from before I started healing. I had so much systemic inflammation that my face was always swollen and puffy. The picture on the right is from 2018 – the difference is really noticeable!
I had various health issues as a young child – anaphylaxis, colic, hives, rashes, sensitive skin, etc. However, things got much worse when I was 9. I was feeding a horse and turned around quickly. The horse reared up and kicked the top of my head. I had a severe concussion, and began having anxiety, depression, and worsened health issues.
By age 10, I was getting severe hives, frightening episodes of asthma, blood sugar crashes, anxiety, depression, and had difficulty sleeping. Menstruation started early for me, with debilitating cramps. I saw doctor after doctor who prescribed allergy meds and inhalers. Then I started getting acid reflux from the allergy meds and was prescribed H2 blockers. I was on continuous estrogen-based birth control pills to manage my periods and had laparoscopic surgery at 16 to remove endometriosis.
In college, I had a huge health crash and entered full-blown chronic fatigue. I could barely function in the mornings, and my anxiety and depression worsened with stress. I had a full scholarship to University of Louisville medical school, which I had to turn down due to my health issues. I was devastated.
My physicians did the best they could with the knowledge they had, but I continued to get worse. Side effects from medications became very disconcerting. At one point, I was on three nose sprays simultaneously, which eroded the cartilage in my nose to the point that a plug came out. (Don’t worry – I’m ok now.) This was a big wake up call for me though, that the medications were sometimes doing much more harm than good. I also realized that my doctors really didn’t have many answers for me.
I began seeking alternative practitioners, but didn’t have much luck there either. Some practitioners were quacks offering modalities that had no scientific backing. I tried everything they recommended anyway, but nothing they suggested helped. I saw alternative practitioners at the top of their field, and many of the “gold standard” treatments for my issues made me worse. For example, L-glutamine, which should be excellent for healing the gut, worsened my anxiety and insomnia. Curcumin, which should reduce inflammation, also made my anxiety and insomnia worse. Of the supplements I could tolerate, I was taking 60 pills a day and still worsening.
By the time I was 28, I had crushing fatigue, was unable to walk due to severe joint pain, my period had completely stopped, my digestion was a mess, and my depression and anxiety were so severe I could barely leave my house even on good days. I couldn’t sleep deeply, and spent 4 years drifting for 10-15 minutes and then waking up struggling to breathe. I became addicted to Benadryl to sleep. Many days I was mildly hallucinating due to sleep deprivation.
I had several diagnoses: Irritable bowel syndrome, allergies, anxiety, depression, urticaria (hives), insomnia, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, mold sensitivity, Lyme disease…the list went on and on. I was even diagnosed as bipolar at one point. The worst were the doctors who told me it was all in my head. I worked so hard at doing everything I could to heal, and to be told I was making this up simply because a doctor couldn’t admit he or she didn’t have any answers was the most hurtful thing anyone could say.
Have you had similar experiences?
Eventually, I ended up with a mysterious nodule on my left foot, which became very inflamed, itchy, and painful. The nodule grew around a joint and in between nerves in my foot and then the tissue necrotized. This nodule had to be surgically removed and the pathologist had no conclusions on what caused it. What in the world was wrong with my body?
I’ve had every lab testing imaginable. I have spent over $200,000 on my health at this point. I also did every diet change under the sun. I went 100% organic. I removed gluten, dairy, corn, soy, sugar, and grains. I did yeast protocols and low carb diets. I did Weston Price. I did low histamine, low oxalate, low lectin, and food rotation diets. The problem I kept running into was that no one could see the whole picture or pull all these puzzle pieces together.
When Functional Medicine was gaining speed, I thought this would be my answer. I saw the most experienced functional medicine physician in my area, and we worked together for two years. I continued to go downhill. It was a very dark day when he told me he didn’t have any other ideas for me to try. I felt so alone, scared, and hopeless, I drove home fantasizing about leaving my car running in the garage with the door closed. I knew I could never do that to my husband or my step-daughter, but what else was there for me to do?
Have you been here before where you gave up hope?
If so, please hang in there. There is a light at the end of this story, and it is very possible there will be a light for you too. That day when I hit my darkest point, I reached out to some online friends in a support group I was in for women who had chronic health issues. We were all struggling to find answers, sharing all the things we were researching, and supporting each other in the journey. I let them know I was at the end of my rope and that I didn’t know if I could keep going.
I’ll always be indebted to a friend in that support group who reached out that day and told me about genetic testing. She encouraged me to get my genes run and sent me some resources to start looking into genetics and chronic health issues. I was so overwhelmed with it all, but she stepped me through it. Back then the genetics field was so new, we were only looking at about 35 genes. I found a number of variants, though, that explained my symptoms at the biochemical level. I knew we were on to something.
I dedicated myself to learning everything I could about genetics and to healing. I learned how to work with my genetic variants through choosing the foods and specific supplements that my body needed, instead of following generalized protocols. When I targeted a personalized approach based on my genetics, labs, and symptoms, things started to shift. Within four months, I was off my cane. Within a year, I was getting up in the mornings and working again. Two years later, my inflammation was so much better, I even looked like a different person, hence the major differences in the photos above.
What got me through those dark places? I always knew there was some explanation for what was happening to my body, and I knew if I could discover the keys then I would be able to unlock the answers to my health mysteries.
What are the keys to unlock your wellness?
Fast forward several years, and I’m now analyzing over 9000 genes involved in methylation, detoxification, neurotransmitters, hormones, energy production, and immune system support. Through understanding these processes, I’ve found supplements that can bypass genetic variants and support the body’s natural healing process. I also did a lot of emotional healing. I had early childhood traumas, and I have learned how much the mind and emotions have a powerful effect on the immune and nervous system as well as on gene expression. Through exploring my genetics, lifestyle changes, targeted supplementation, food choice, and emotional wellness, I was finally able to see how all the puzzle pieces fit together for my health picture and have also been able to apply these tools to help many others.
I had been doing life coaching much of the time I was ill, often working with clients on the spiritual and emotional healing needed during severe chronic illnesses. When my clients saw me getting better, they wanted to know what I was doing and started asking me to help them through this healing process for themselves. To be able to serve them ethically and competently, I know I needed to get more education and training.
I wanted to understand the emotional, spiritual, and relational aspects of healing, and I went back to school to get a Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy. I became certified in MethylGenetics® through the Nutrigenomics Research Institute, and I hold a Doctorate in Naturopathy, specializing in Functional Medicine Approaches.
I spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and two decades figuring out how to heal my body. My mission is to help you to short cut this process and provide affordable and effective action steps to support your healing.
I’m a Holistic Health Coach, and my specialties are in how genetics, environment, foods, lifestyle choices and emotional wellness underlie chronic health issues. I work on uncovering personalized food choices, lifestyle changes, and supplementation to support optimal health. I emphasize the human connection in sessions, understanding the challenges, frustrations, fears, and sadness that can often accompany chronic health issues. My passion is to provide compassionate support and scientifically-backed action plans for clients so they can reach their full potential, regain their health and live life to the fullest.
I’ve now worked with hundreds of clients supporting and empowering their healing process through my Mast Cell 360 analysis and insight process of genetic analysis, functional naturopathy, and emotional wellness.
Healing from Mast Cell Activation Syndrome can feel like a lonely road, but no one with Mast Cell Disorders should have to do this alone.
I am always very straightforward with my clients. This is not a quick or simple fix. If there was a simple answer, I have no doubt you would have found it by now. I still have to be careful with my diet, and I still take numerous supplements each day. I exercise and meditate every day, and I take excellent care of my physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being. I do have to work harder on my health than the average person.
The beauty, though, is that it is possible for many people to get better through changes in food choices, through targeted supplementation, and through lifestyle and emotional wellness choices
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