Yours Hormonally, Nikki
I’ve got an underactive thyroid, meaning that hormonal problems have pretty much always been a ‘thing’ for me. I never had much luck getting my GP to help me out with managing my thyroid problems. I got so bored of being told over and over again that I was ‘fine’ when I knew my body didn’t feel right. I was constantly tired, I often found it impossible to concentrate, and I had a really low metabolism. Taking matters into my own hands, I started to research alternative approaches to coping with thyroid problems. I learnt that If I wanted to help my body feel well again, I’d need to take a holistic approach to my wellness and health, taking into account nutrition, exercise, and, of course, lowered stress levels. I focused a lot on my diet and exercise routines; yoga became a daily essential and I slowly learnt which foods were inflammatory for me. I cut out gluten and dairy and (heartbreakingly) a lot of sugar. Sidenote: this shouldn’t read like a how-to, what worked for me might not work for you! It can be frustrating being so restricted but it was so worth it once I started seeing the changes in my body every day.
This worked for me for a couple of years. Then, suddenly I went through a period of super high stress and everything went haywire again. I wasn’t sleeping well due to the stress, my cortisol levels were at an all-time high (which is seriously unhealthy for sustained periods of time) and, going through a horrible break-up, I decided to come off the pill after being on it for three years. This cocktail of chaos threw my hormones into what I think of as pure panic-mode. My periods straight-up stopped – and didn’t return for an entire year.
It was a really confusing time. I started going to a homeopath to try to understand the combination between my hormones, my thyroid, and my cycle. After some balance was restored to my life, my periods came back… with a bang. Sometimes I was having a cycle as short as three weeks, sometimes as long as four months. My PMS was out of control, but the ‘best’ part was the hormonal acne I developed as a result of my still seriously unbalanced hormones. I was 27, trying to start my own company (this was about a year before we launched OHNE) and I felt like my skin was suddenly that of a teenager! I was so self conscious about it, trying every skincare product with a decent review and was desperately trying to keep my stress levels in check and make sure I was eating right. But the PMS, skin, and horrible period cramps wouldn’t ease up.
Eventually, I discovered CBD. This was long before we ever dreamed we’d end up making our own, and I was just impossibly relieved to have finally found a product that seemed to be helping me. I ingested CBD daily and, after just three months, my skin completely cleared up. It honestly felt like a miracle. It also helped me emotionally, because without the added insecurities and worries about my skin, my anxiety levels eased. By managing my stressors, continuing to focus on a strict diet that I know works for my body, and, of course, my now ride-or-die relationship with CBD, I now experience a regular cycle with no hormonal acne or horrible bouts of PMS. I put in a lot of energy into learning about my body and what it needed, but I definitely credit CBD oil for helping me balance my hormones which had been affecting my daily life for years.
Yours Hormonally, Nikki