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Wellness above all else.

In my mid 40s, I followed my passion, opened a fitness studio, and completely wrecked my health. How’s that for irony?

Two years into this fitness adventure, I was so sick. I was exhausted, sick to my stomach all the time, my hands and feet were swollen, my hair was thinning, my thighs were rubbing, and I gained 15 lbs. I was a complete mess. I felt awful! I looked like someone had taken an air pump and just blew me up. No matter what I tried or who I spoke to, no one had any answers as to what was happening to me.

Two years after opening sculp’d.

After seeing multiple doctors who could not fully explain what was going on, I found my way to a functional, integrative MD. Dr. Sisu took a total and personalized look at the root cause of what was going on through a series of tests performed over a couple of weeks. What we discovered completely shocked us both. I had significant inflammation, increased intestinal permeability, known as “leaky gut,” and my cortisol and insulin levels were way off. According to Dr. Sisu, I was on the cusp on an autoimmune disorder, pre-diabetic, and had the worst leaky gut she or her partner “had ever seen in 20 years of practice.” All the while, I had been eating healthy — eating clean, mostly real food, watching my gluten and my dairy intake, and consuming what I thought was a healthy diet as well as exercising regularly. What?!

Dr. Sisu prepared me for a loooong road ahead (i.e., years not months) to fix the damage that had been occurring for so long. She prescribed a supplemental regimen that was pretty intense and really expensive but also very effective. Within the first two weeks, I noticed certain changes right away — less bloat and a diminished feeling of overall malaise. I did exactly what I was told, followed the doctor’s orders, and simply stayed the course.  Looking back, I don’t know how I was so disciplined for so long with such few tangible results but I didn’t give up and just plowed ahead. How could it get any worse, right? Overall, it took me almost ten months to lose the weight, fix my gut, fix my sleep, and fix my energy. Ten Months!!

So, what did I get for 10 months of pill-popping, eating clean, and avoiding all the food sensitivities? First, the best sleep of my grown-up life, no joke! I mostly sleep eight hours straight every night. Second, I no longer suffer from uncomfortable bloating. Third, I have thick hair for the first time in my entire life (well, thick for me!). Fourth, that puffiness (seen in my first pic) along with 18 pounds are gone. I had chronic diarrhea for so long I almost forgot what healthy poop was. Guys, it really truly all comes down to healthy poop. That was EVERYTHING for me — a healthy, balanced gut. And finally, finally, my weight dropped to a healthy, “my clothes fit again,” range. 

May 2018 / August 2019

I continue to get blood work done every three months so Dr. Sisu and I can measure success and continue to fine-tune what is working or not working for me. For example, my Vitamin B levels were too low and then too high so we monitor my levels to find the right balance.

My Vitamin B levels over time.

We are now focused on optimizing my cardiac and brain health, so I am excited to see how my levels and tests continue to improve. Most exciting to me is that my daughter saw how much better I felt and wanted to get a gut check as well. She is now addressing her food sensitivities and resulting gut unease in order to nip anything in the bud now so she won’t suffer years down the road like I did. I also made my 79-year-old mother see a functional integrative doctor in her hometown after suffering for her ENTIRE adult life. She has never felt better. 

I was relentless in the pursuit of feeling better. I did not accept the lousy, non-answer answers I was getting from other professionals and educated myself on how to get better for the long haul.  I used to treat myself to ridiculously over-priced purses and shoes but now I am making the smarter choice to invest in my health and wellness instead. I learned the hard way that nothing else matters if you don’t have your health.  People always said I was one of the healthiest people they knew with my diet and exercise regiment. Who would have guessed how the stress, gut disintegration, and lack of sleep would take its toll on me. It’s not an overstatement to say that Doctor Sisu pretty much saved my life. If I had allowed my situation to continue, I was destined for a life full of chronic illness and discomfort. Or worse.

For more information about Dr. Sisu and to receive your personalized sculp’d code for 10% off your first visit please call us at 703-567-4442.