Case Study

This is Elizabeth.

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She gave me permission to use all the following information. Some things I have omitted for confidentiality purposes.

The Goals: To improve overall health while identifying underlying causes of extreme menstrual pains, brain fog, chronic fatigue, low energy + some joint pain.

The Approach: Elizabeth is addicted to coffee. She already knew that her motivation to determine underlying issues was present, but she also already knew that her will-power to cut out caffeine was a little on the low end. So, the approach I took was a gentle one. 

During our initial consultation, I asked her a series of important questions that helped me shape the plan I created for her. Throughout the Q + A process, I determined the following:

  1. That Elizabeth is extremely routined, rarely venturing from the day-to-day normalcy she has put in place. So with that, I created a plan that respected her routine to add a sense of normalcy that didn’t stress her out or imply that she would have to go to the extreme in order to find lifestyle changes.
  2. That Elizabeth has a fear of relapsing. She has a fear of quitting something (i.e. caffeine) and then going back to the habit. Upon talking with her about this, I discovered Elizabeth is very hard on herself, and so I created a plan that would remove the anxiety of failure. By doing that, we set tiny goals, so that if in the event Elizabeth did fail to reach a small goal, it wouldn’t discourage her to the point of quitting the program altogether.
  3. That Elizabeth also has a fear of failure. I discovered that some things Elizabeth doesn’t even try because she assumes she might fail. So, like the second approach, I created small goals that she could easily envision herself reaching. For instance: making sure she got at least 8 hours of sleep at night so that she didn’t feel so exhausted. This was a small goal she could set for herself, and very easily obtain.
  4. That Elizabeth’s true concerns with her health needed to be investigated. As a nutritionist + health coach, I could very easily have given her a guideline by which to live. However, because I make it a point to make fact-based + personalized programs for each of my clients, Elizabeth agreed to blood work. To my surprise, she has never done lab work before, so we were both very eager to see what would be revealed!

The Results:

  1. After receiving the test results back,  Elizabeth was given so much insight into her concerns. With a family history of anemia, Elizabeth and I were shocked to see that she had very high levels of iron. Her fear is that she may have hemachromatosis, and she is planning to speak to her GP about it in the near future since clinical diagnoses are out of my scope of practice. Her AM Cortisol levels were on the high end as well, and combined with the high iron is a strong indicator of why she suffers from fatigue. Because her Alkaline Phosphate was decreased, it indicated the potential for a Zinc deficiency. Because her Anion gap was elevated, and her Co2 was decreased, there was potential for needing Thiamine supplementation. She received her sixty-page ODX wellness report, which outlined exactly what she needs to know in order to read the results. Her report:
    1. Explained an introduction to what was done.
    2. Provided her the thorough assessment that was done.
    3. Gave her the full analysis of her lab work.
    4. Personalized a health improvement plan. This, of course, in addition to the plan I have come up with for her.
Follow our ever-evolving journey into health and wellness, and see how Elizabeth overcomes her fear of failure.

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