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Friday
Oct282011

Making the Switch: Christy's Story

Christy meeting a truly grass-fed dairy cow for the first time.

Battling Fibromyalgia
Christy | Omaha, Nebraska USA

“Fibromyalgia” stole several years of my life.

In 2002 (at age 25), my health began to deteriorate (click here for more details). After more than 15 different prescription medications, never-ending appointments with various specialists and more than a handful of diagnostic procedures, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia in 2005.

Suffering from an "invisible" illness.

I was in constant pain; many days it was too painful even to hug my own husband. On good days, I felt 90 years old; on bad days, I felt like I should be in the hospital. I was in pure misery, suffering from an “invisible illness” for which there was no treatment, no cure and no known cause. I had just completed graduate school and was beginning my career when the rug was pulled out from under me. After much consideration, I resigned—I resigned from my job, and I resigned myself to the medical “fact” that I would suffer with chronic, untreatable pain for the rest of my life.

Christy today ... healthy and pain-free.Was processed food making me sick?

Fortunately, in 2007, I stumbled upon some books that changed my life forever. Among other things, I learned that there are ingredients in processed foods that are making people sick—and even causing cancer! This information made such an impact on my husband and me that we immediately purged our kitchen of convenience foods and mystery ingredients—we threw food away, gave food away, and even sold some at our garage sale! We said good-bye forever to things like Lean Cuisine meals, Slim Fast bars, soda, chewing gum, ice cream and fast food. We began making all of our food at home...from scratch. We scrutinized the ingredients label on everything we bought; if it contained even one word that we didn’t fully recognize as having come from nature, we didn’t put it in our cart. We also began to seek out local farmers and purchase as much food as we could directly from them—we wanted to fill our bodies with foods from the earth, not chemicals from a lab.

Within months of changing my diet, my symptoms were gone!

In just a couple of months, ALL of my Fibromyalgia symptoms were gone. Completely gone! In fact, I now feel better and have more energy than most people I know! I kept reading every book I could get my hands on, and I still haven’t stopped educating myself. It absolutely fascinates me that we have gotten to this point where most people sustain themselves on unrecognizable ingredients...and most people are sick, tired or overweight! Something has got to give!


Loading up on additive-free food at Costco. In the past four years, I have witnessed first-hand the havoc that these ingredients also wreak in others’ lives, and I feel a moral obligation to share what I have learned with as many people as possible and to inspire them to take an active role in maximizing their own health. So I created my websites at www.GroceryGeek.com and www.CompletelyNourished.org to help support people in their transition away from processed foods.

It sounds so silly, but I never realized before just how good we should all feel. We should sleep well, feel great and have all of the energy we need to do all of the things we want to do. Each of us deserves that! People need a wake-up call – we truly are what we eat, and we need to make a conscious decision about what we are putting into our bodies. I’m not saying we need to spend half of our paychecks on obscure berries from distant lands; but we do need to stop eating FAKE food and return to eating things that are grown in nature rather than invented in a lab.

Eat well 80% of the time—perfection is not expected.

The Standard American diet is destroying our health! The way I see it, healthy eating falls along a continuum. Fast food and donuts are at one end. Whole, raw foods in their natural (unprocessed) state are at the other end. The closer we come to the whole foods end, the better off we will be. I assure folks that perfection is not expected; if we all just eat really well even 80% of the time, we’ll start to see massive changes! I KNOW that once we get back to eating REAL foods, the health benefits will be extraordinary!

We are bombarded with unhealthy messages everyday; and “dieting” has been turned into such a “rocket science” that it’s no wonder folks feel defeated before they even get to the grocery store. Low fat? Low calories? High protein? Biggest meal at night? Biggest meal at breakfast? It’s enough to drive a person insane! Unfortunately, what most experts fail to advise is that what matters most is what’s in the ingredients list!


Christy prizes her backyard garden. Four years ago, I was eating fast food, candy, diet pop and frozen dinners. If I can make these changes, anyone can. There is nothing special about ME that somehow makes it easier or more natural for me to live this way. It’s just a conscious decision that each of us must make. I am not a doctor. I am not a nutritionist. I am not a chef. I am just a person—a person who was blessed four years ago to discover some very simple, yet profound, health information that changed my life forever.

This may sound cliché, but I know that everything happens for a reason. While suffering with Fibromyalgia, it was really hard to see any purpose in the pain. Now, I realize that I suffered for those years so that I could educate and inspire others to take charge of their health. So many people are so apathetic about what goes into their bodies (I was, too!), and I must do all that I can to change that.

Although my particular symptoms were diagnosed as “Fibromyalgia,” you could insert countless other health conditions and get this same story and solution; and I’ve witnessed the transformation in many other people with a variety of ailments and diagnoses throughout the years. So if you’re still eating processed foods, I truly hope that you will consider this information and begin making changes in your own life.


Christy shares her story and helpful videos (like How to Chop a Pineapple) on her blog.

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Making the Switch, spotlights everyday people journeying on to better health and well-being by choosing pure food over processed. For some, it has been gradual. For others it was a complete about-face. 

Putting the modified diet focus of this blog aside, Making the Switch is open to all. The point being to bring personal stories to light that encourage young and old to get back into the kitchen to cook real food. As Jamie Oliver puts it, “make only a few small changes and magical things will happen.” Whether it’s weight loss, improvements in a child's behavior or the regaining of health, magical things will happen.

HEY GUYS! WHAT'S YOUR STORY? We've been hearing from a number of women, how about some of you men? Consider being featured on Making the SwitchClick here and drop me a line telling me a little about yourself. Someone is waiting to be inspired by YOU!

Reader Comments (7)

Love the post! So glad that something so fundamental made such a marked change. I will certainly let folks I work with know about what you've found in your treatment of fibromyalgia. Thanks for sharing!

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterseeks

This could so easily be my story, though I was already eating fairly unprocessed when what I was told was fibromyalgia hit. It took a lot of work, but I was eventually able to determine gluten was the main issue - within a week of removing it from my diet I felt 90% better. In the 15 months since, I began noticing that other grains were affecting me and removed them as well a little over a month ago. For the first time in years, I feel amazing and it just gets better every day!

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSamantha

I love this series! Thank you Christy for sharing!

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHannah

What an awesome post! Everyone who has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and been given a "that's the way it's going to be" prognosis needs to read Christy's story. I also appreciate Samantha's comment very much because so often folks are eating whole foods, but not getting better because they are making homemade breads, etc. from gluten or other grains and they are continuing to harm their bodies. Christy looks fantastic! Thanks so much for sharing your story, Christy. Thank you for hosting this series, Lexie, and congrats on being in the Top 25 Allergy Mom blogs listing! :-)

Shirley

October 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShirley @ gfe

Wow! I'll have to forward this to some of my family members - we are all plagued with autoimmune issues including fibromyalgia. I've always known the significant impact of a healthy diet but I've never thought about it in relation to fibromyalgia. Thank you so much!!!

Awesome post Christy! I too feel like our diagnoses were a blessing in disguise. Thanks for sharing your story!

October 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMaggie

Great story - thank you for sharing! So glad you have found your way to feeling great :)

November 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCara

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