Ep. 3 - Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Living Positively with Hayley Tamaddon

 

 

Season 1. Episode 3.

Hayley Tamaddon is a British actress, singer, and writer. You may have seen her on screen in Emmerdale and Coronation Street, Dancing on Ice where she won the fifth series or live on stage at the West End. It’s safe to say that Hayley has had a long and extremely successful career in the entertainment industry! But, not everything looks as it does on-screen. 

In this episode, Hayley joins Nicole to discuss her recent Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis diagnosis, the impact trauma, stress, diet and lifestyle has on her health, and why she believes everyone should have a positive outlook on life.

DISCLAIMER: The content in this podcast and related website is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice. It is not intended to be used to diagnose or treat, instead it is designed to help educate and inspire. Always seek the advice of a professional medical practitioner or qualified health practitioner. Never ignore or disregard advice given to you based on information in this podcast or related website and do not delay in seeking medical advice.

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Episode Timestamps

[02:55]

Hayley’s lifelong battle with bowel issues

[08:16]

Balancing a busy life, Panto and feeling like something wasn’t right

[10:25]

Why Hayley initially thought she was going through menopause

[13:14]

The difference between what people see online vs. what’s actually happening in reality

[15:46]

Why a positive mindset is vital for dealing with a chronic illness

[18:32]

Accepting and navigating the hashimoto thyroiditis diagnosis

[21:44]

Hayley’s experience with removing gluten, sugar and dairy from her diet

[24:23]

Why Nicole believes in the 80/20 methodology and why sometimes restricting your diet completely can cause more issues

[29:04]

The impact consuming nutritious food has had on Hayley’s health

[32:00]

The decision to take the natural approach

[34:38]

The link between gluten and our immune system

[37:22]

The important role healthy relationships play when you have autoimmunity

[40:46]

Hayley’s experience with thyroid nodules and swelling of the pituitary gland

[42:43]

The difference between functional and conventional medicine

[43:09]

How the brain, thyroid, adrenals and stress are all interlinked with each other

[46:07]

 Trauma and why it’s something we shouldn’t ignore

[49:27]

Hayley’s advice for living positively with Hashimoto’s

“We’re all human, and any form of trauma on your body is gonna make you ill. The longer that you keep hold of that trauma, the less your body can handle it. You, you can’t take that much stress.”

HAYLEY TAMADDON

Essential learnings from this episode…

The effects trauma has had on Hayley’s body and health

The new things Hayley has implemented to help with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and IBS

Hayley’s decision to try and take a natural approach as much as possible

The important link between the brain, thyroids, adrenal and stress

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You may also be interested in:

Episode 10: Why It’s Important to Understand and Track Your Thyroid Antibodies [Coming Soon] 

Hey there, I´m Nicole

LLB(Hons)  DIPION  MBANT  CNHC  mIFM  mRSM

Functional Medicine Practitioner
Registered Nutritional Therapist BANT CNHC
Registered Nutritionist BANT
Podcast Host – The Goode Health Podcast
Media Contributor – Women’s Health, Marie Claire, Thrive Global
Tatler Approved Nutritionist
Founder of The Goode Health Clinic – WINNER Best Functional Medicine Clinic UK 2023 

Nicole is one of the UK’s leading voices on immune health and optimal health, a specialist in autoimmune diseases, further specialised into thyroid, brain and fatigue conditions and optimising health for ambitious high achiever’s. Providing bespoke, personalised functional medicine programmes for clients worldwide.

Nicole has partnerships with worldwide global leaders in functional medicine including practitioner only supplement companies, testing laboratories (inc. from USA), to assess health, discover underlying imbalances and root causes of sub optimal health. In doing so Nicole works with clients on their own personal health history, root causes and genetics to achieve long lasting, effective results, providing optimal health status. 

EPISODE 3

Transcript

Please note: Transcript is automatically generated.

 [00:00:00] Hi, and welcome to the Goode Health Podcast. I’m your host, Nicole Goode, a registered nutritional therapy practitioner and functional medicine practitioner. Join me as we explore thyroid, brain and fatigue conditions with positivity. From Hashimoto’s to multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue to adrenal dysfunction.

I’ve got you covered with expert advice and tips to help you take action now and inspiring real patient stories from successful individuals who refuse to let their health hold them back. Start your journey to goode health today. And don’t forget to come and join the conversation on Instagram at Goode Underscore Health.

That’s G O O D E, or visit my website at nicolegoodehealth.com to find out more. In this episode, we welcome Hayley Tamaddon, British actress and proud mum to The Goode Health Podcast. Hayley’s already had a long career in the entertainment industry, starting her journey from a young age. Many of you will know her from her portrayal as a member of the iconic Dingle family in Emmerdale.

For others, you may recognize her as Andrea Beckett from [00:01:00] Coronation Street. Not one to stop there if you didn’t catch her in a soap, you may have seen her in hit productions on stage such as Chicago or the Rocky Horror Show, or learning a new skill in Dancing on Ice, which led to her radio show with Dancing on Ice Pro Dan Whiston, and if you haven’t seen her on tv, you may have seen her on Instagram dancing with her new best friend and entertaining the nation.

What you may not know about Hayley, though is some of the health battles that she has faced. Hayley talks to me today about her recent diagnosis of Hashimoto thyroiditis, the impact of trauma, stress, diet, and lifestyle on her health, but more importantly, how she stays positive, where she finds happiness and what she’s doing to support herself moving forwards.

Let’s jump into this hugely positive conversation. Hayley, welcome to the Goode Health Podcast.

Thank you for having me. 

Yeah, it’s brilliant to have you here. I’m so pleased that you’re doing this. So for people who don’t know , you’ve recently been diagnosed [00:02:00] with thyroid issues, and we’re going to jump into that in a moment.

But before we kind of get into the sort of the thyroid side of things, I’d love to talk a little bit about your lifestyle. Prior to you having the diagnosis yeah. We know that you are a very busy woman. You ‘re an actress, you are a mum. You’ve done soaps like Emmerdale and Coronation Street.

You, I imagine they’re pretty intense to film as well. I imagine. You know, the, that sort of in terms of getting scripts and the turnaround and everything on a, on a soap is, is pretty intense. You’ve done

Yeah. Huge.

Yeah, I would imagine. And you know, you’ve done theater as well, which I assume is pretty intense as well.

And doing that sort of, every night you’ve done things like dancing on ice, you know, I imagine, I imagine you require a vast amount of energy for the lifestyle that you, that you lead. That, and you keep really, really busy with all of it. So can you tell us, like, you know, what was an average day, sort of week, what does that look like for you when, when you are, you know, working and you’re a mom and you are managing [00:03:00] all of these projects that you work on?

The thing is, I, I think for me, I have to separate this. So before I had Jasper, I was a girl that thought she couldn’t have kids. I, I got to my forties and I’d not had any children and was told I probably couldn’t have children, but I’d lived an exceptionally busy life, career-wise, social-wise, and when I was a kid, people would say I was like a duracell bunny.

I had so much energy. I never, ever, ever stopped. But the one thing I always did have, all throughout my life, I’ve always had bowel issues. Right. Okay. Which were always labeled as IBS. Okay. 

Yeah. That sort of generalised term where we don’t really know what that is, but it’s just sort of, there’s something there and going on.

Yeah, and I’ve had it since I was tiny. You know, my mum would take me to the doctors with bowel issues when I was a kid and I’ve lived with this bowel thing, whatever [00:04:00] it is. So many times it’s put me in hospital. So many times it’s wiped me out and kept me in bed for a few days. But my mindset and hopefully my mindset continues to be positive, has always been, well, you know what? That’s happened. Let’s move on. We’ll deal with it and you move on to the next thing. Then I had Jasper and I was 43 and I had Jasper, and very quickly everything changed and I sometimes now say, I wish I could go back. To when I had him and start that process again because I had really bad postnatal depression and then I had really bad issues with my partner and in the end he, we’ve, we’ve separated and now it’s just me and Jasper and I have the most incredible boy I never thought I’d ever get, but from having him, things just seem to go downhill health-wise.[00:05:00] 

Right. And what I’ve kind of come to the fact is that your body is the most incredible thing in the world, right? Yeah. How it handles trauma. I never really thought of, before I had Jasper, I would just deal with things. I got ill, I dealt with it. I, I’d move on, you know, and I lived this really busy life and I was always full of energy.

And trauma is a huge trigger for autoimmunity. And I think people don’t always necessarily realise that, but it is, it’s, it’s such a big, 

 I didn’t know this. I it was only till somebody told me I had no idea. The amount of trauma I’ve been through in the past couple of years is huge. The effect that’s had on my body, it, I now know is massive.

I was always ill the past couple of years. I’m just always ill in and out of hospital with things. I’ve had meningitis twice. I had covid so bad it put me in hospital. The, I was [00:06:00] constantly getting ill is not me. It’s no, and and that wears you down and then you think, well, I’m tired because I’m just a single mom who’s trying to work and earn, but also take care of a child.

And I’m going through and trying to heal myself on this trauma journey I’ve been on with my ex-partner. All of this is like, it’s a lot, right? Yeah, it’s a lot. 

And then you put your health things just down to actually, do you know what, this is just me because of what I’m going through and lifestyle, and I just have to kind of accept it and put up with it and yeah.

Correct. I wasn’t eating very well. I’ve become this mum that like, you know, I was doing panto I was getting up at 5 30 in the morning. Yeah, I would get up, get myself ready for panto. Luckily, I was doing it in my hometown last year. I would get Jasper in nursery bang on 8:00 AM then I would drive to Panto and via Panto I would drive past McDonald’s.

Okay. And [00:07:00] have a McDonald’s breakfast. Right? Yeah. Because if I eat something at that time, and this is just ridiculous, the thought process that I had there. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Why wasn’t I doing this at home? I was getting up early enough, but no, I’d go to McDonald’s and get a McDonald’s breakfast, and then I’ve eaten something, and then I do two shows in a day.

I’d go home, I pick Jasper up, I’d go put him to bed, and I’d do the whole thing again. And we all do this. Everybody has their own story and everybody works so hard. I know. 

It’s being on that treadmill, isn’t it? It’s that sort of, it’s, and it’s hard to get off once you’re on that treadmill. It’s very difficult to, you know, you had a, you know, you’ve got a child, you’ve got a career, you know, and it’s very difficult to step off that treadmill once you’re on it.

Yeah. True and what you don’t realise is the effect I say, I don’t realise. You do know in the back of your head, you know that infinite McDonald’s every day is not healthy. You know this, but we still do this, right? We still do it. So, My body [00:08:00] isn’t changing. I didn’t put any weight on over Panto because I’m doing two shows a day.

I felt great on the go. Yeah, I’m on the go. I’m doing a job that I love. I’m so happy. Things feel okay. Then Panto stops and my body goes, Ugh. And I’m like, oh my God, what is, because I’m not having the McDonald’s every day. Now I’m eating my mom and dad’s healthy cooked food every night and I, I remember thinking after Panto, I’m ill again, I’m tired.

I feel like I get up in the morning and within an hour I can go back to sleep. Yeah. I ache all the time and I, there’s something wrong. Things like my balance. My balance. I kept falling over. Why am I falling over? Oh, it must just be because I’m tired. 

That’s a really interesting one because I see a lot of, a lot of thyroid patients have that, they have the balance issue and they don’t realize the connection between the thyroid and the brain.

Yeah. And we see a lot of, there’s, [00:09:00] there’s an area of the brain called the cerebellum and you get cerebellum degeneration in people who have thyroid and a lot of people don’t realise, but we see it with things like balance issues. And if you ask people to sort of stand up and close their eyes, you might slightly see them sort of tilting to one side, or they might walk into doorframes quite a lot and find they’ve got bruises and they think, how have I got those bruises? And you know, little things like that. And actually they can be signs of thyroid, but people don’t realise, they don’t make the connection. No. You just put things down to tiredness. 

And that’s what I kept doing. And then I started gaining weight. I probably, actually, I started gaining weight last year and just kind of put it down, I am a foodie and I love food, right? Yeah. I, I eat, I love food. My whole family are foodies. I’m half Persian, so we eat a lot of Persian food and I started to put a bit of weight on, but I just go to the gym.

Because I go to the gym, right? Yeah. So I’m going to the gym, but I’m not losing the weight now. So something has changed. My bowel issues get [00:10:00] worse. Things are getting worse. And then you kind of go, okay, something isn’t right. Things not right. Another little thing that kept happening, and this happened in, in the space of two weeks, I was suddenly covered in skin tags.

Okay? Little tiny skin tags. I’m like, why? Where are you coming from? And I went to the doctor. I have a fantastic doctor. I’m so grateful for her. She’s just wonderful. And I sat down and I said, Something isn’t right, and I think I’m menopausal. I said my brain. My brain is just like, I can’t remember what I’ve just said and I’m stuttering over my words.

Yeah. Which I’ve never done before. And I said, the, the weight gain, my moods, everything is changing. I feel ill the time. And the first thing she said was, let’s check your thyroid. 

That’s really good because I know a lot of people who go to the doctor repeatedly with, you know, symptoms like that and they struggle [00:11:00] to get that the testing done and they, and get to the right thing. So you’re really lucky to have that. A doctor behind you who is doing that? 

A hundred percent. And that’s what I’m hearing from a lot of people now, since I went on Morning live and talked about this, so many people have contacted me to ask, how did you get your doctor to listen to you? Yeah. And, and things along those lines.

Now, I’m, you know, I, I have a fantastic doctor. I’m very lucky. I, I don’t know what other people’s situations are, but personally, I think, and maybe you can correct me if I’m wrong here, but if you’ve got all these symptoms, I would just ask the question. You know, is it possible to get a blood test? Yeah. If, if, if people are aware that these symptoms can be linked to thyroid, then you can go to your doctor and say, you know, is it possible to have that thyroid blood test done?

You know, can we get that done? Can we check it? Yeah. And I think if people are more aware of the symptoms, and that’s why it’s great people like you speaking out. Because if people are aware of those symptoms, they [00:12:00] can go and ask that question that may then get them the right blood test to, you know, if, if they’ve got a doctor that isn’t necessarily one who is doing these tests.

Sounds like you were lucky that you did have, but a lot of people that come to me, they don’t, they haven’t had that. Yeah. And I think that’s it. I think it’s education, being able to you know, know what to ask and almost guide your own healthcare as well, be involved in it, you know, rather than just leaving it up up to other, you know, doctors or practitioners.

But being able to be a part of it and understand what’s, you know, what’s going on in your body, I think’s really important. 

A hundred percent. A hundred percent. And only you knows your body. Only you knows, you know, and this is such. , partially quite a hidden disease because on the outside, especially when I’m at work, I am like this, you know, I’m super positive.

Yeah, let’s get the job done. And then I get home and I lay down on the bed and I can’t move sometimes, and I’m like, why? What’s wrong? And then you blame yourself. And then [00:13:00] you’re like, come on, get, you know, get up, get your, but actually what my body’s telling me is that you just need to lay down for an hour.

Yeah. And people probably look at you and see what you are doing and look on, you know, see you, we were just talking before this started about you dancing on Instagram and you know, all of this. And they probably see that really bubbly side of you. Cause you have a, a wonderful, bubbly per personality. And that really comes across and people see that and probably think, well, you know, she’s not really that tired, you know, and sort of, sort of almost judge you on, on that personality that you put out there. 

But listen, Instagram is, we won’t do that. Not, of course you do. Instagram, as I’ve said in many posts before, is not real, right? And the, the, the people, the celebs or well-known faces that come on there and use the platform in a really good way to talk about issues like this, they’re the ones you wanna follow.

They’re the, you know, go follow those. Me, my [00:14:00] happiness, my, my positive, happy vibes come from when I am dancing, when I’m with my best friend. When we are laughing. Laughter is the best medicine I think, in the world. Yeah, a hundred percent. And when, you know, we’ve all got trauma, I think in our lives. At some stage we’ve gone through something.

And for me now, Things feel quite balanced in my life. They feel quite settled. Yes. I’m always thriving to work. I need to work to support my baby. There’s just me and him. You know, I don’t have outside money coming in, so I have to work. Yeah. So little things like that. That’s, that’s one thing, my happy place is when I’m working, when I’m dancing, when I’m being silly, and those things are really important for you to put into your life as well. However, you can laugh. Put a silly TV show on that makes you laugh. And have a laugh and, and, and do something that’s a bit ridiculous. And then if you need to go home like I do and lie down, this morning I got up and took Jasper to [00:15:00] nursery. I came home and I laid on the bed and I, we live with my parents and my mum and dad both shouted you okay up there? And I was like, yeah, I do. You know what? I’m just doing nothing. I’m just laying. Yeah. I literally laid on the bed for two solid hours. I just gave myself a breather, you know, just a chance to have a rest.

I went to the gym yesterday. I feel great for that because I’m, I’m doing things that I love. I love going to the gym, but before I had this diagnosis, I’d go to the gym, feel absolutely exhausted, and not have an answer for it, not understand why. Yeah. The best part of this for me was getting an answer. 

Oh, okay.

I’ve got Hashimotos. Oh, that’s an autoimmune disease. Oh, right. So how can I fix that? Well, there’s no cure for it. Okay, but how can I make it better for myself? It’s all a mindset, I think. Yeah, and if you can [00:16:00] put that little positive spin on your mind and go, okay, this, we’ve got this. Now we’re gonna work out how to make it better, how we can cope with it.

If we get tired, don’t beat yourself up. Have a rest. You know, we can sit and rest. A hundred percent. It’s all of these things that. Personally for me, I wanna help other people to understand, because I’m not a doctor, I’m a, I’m learning this as I’m going along. And I’m learning from people like you. You know, I followed you straight away.

And I’m looking at what, and I’m learning constantly learning things. And people are saying, go gluten free, go dairy free, you know, stop drinking alcohol, stop doing this. And so this is a personal journey for each and every person. Yes. I have really bad IBS. Cutting out gluten, cutting out dairy. I haven’t stopped drinking alcohol.

I, I like a glass of Prosecco on a, on a, on a Friday night. Yeah. You know why not? I, I am trying things, but some things won’t work for [00:17:00] everyone because we are all individual. And that’s what I always say in clinic. It has to be so people sort of, Sometimes people say to me, why, you know, do n’t you do shorter packages or do you do, do you just do like a one-off consultation?

And I will say people, no, I don’t. I work with people, minimum I work with people is three months. And I say the reason for that is because there isn’t, I can’t just give you a diet. There isn’t a, you know, the autoimmune diet that is gonna solve all of these problems. There is, you know, you will read about things like the aip, the autoimmune paleo and things like that.

But I mean, I’ve had people come to me who’ve been doing autoimmune paleo for years, and it’s such a restrictive diet that actually it’s done them other harm because they’re on such a restrictive diet, they’re not getting the nutrients they need and things like that. And these diets always need to be personalised and everybody is different.

And you know, I could have five of you with Hashimotos in front of me, and the underlying trigger, the underlying cause of that Hashimotos could be different in each person. Hundred percent. But the what we do needs to be , [00:18:00] you know, different. Some could have hormone imbalances, they could have mold toxicity.

They, you know, there’s all different things that can be going on that can be pushing that autoimmunity up. And it’s finding those for the individual is so important. And that means that there isn’t, you know, the set diet, you know, the autoimmune or the Hashi’s diet. It’s a personalised, it’s a personalised process.

And, you know, you’ve, you’ve kind of touched on this, but just how did you kind of navigate the process of accepting and adjusting to life with a chronic illness. I know you said for you that getting that diagnosis and it was the same, it was the same for me. Getting the diagnosis for me was was a relief.

I’d had sort of 15 years without a diagnosis. So for me, getting it, I was like, thank God, I finally know what’s happening. So for me it was a, it was a good thing. It was a positive thing. But I know there are people out there who really, you know, they struggle with getting a diagnosis and they maybe are not, don’t see the sort of, the positive side of it.

But how did you. How did you kind of navigate that acceptance? Cause I [00:19:00] think, like you said, mindset around the acceptance of a, of a diagnosis is really important. 

Yeah. I, I knew nothing about Hashimotos, nothing about it. So when she told me I had it, I was a bit like, oh. Oh, okay. And then I looked it up and read about all of the symptoms and as I’m reading it, I’m going, oh, this is me.

This is me. You know, I’ve got this and I’ve got, that’s why I’m tired. And it was almost like I say in my video, I, I, I kind of sobbed with happiness. But I understood why I felt like this. It wasn’t just because I was a tired mum, you know? Of course. Mum’s we’re all tired. Yeah. Well, I had an answer for, for why suddenly, well, maybe not suddenly. Who knows how long I’ve had it. 

My energy is depleting and I’m just not, you know, I’m, I’m just, I’m gaining weight and my muscles are aching more. But it, it wasn’t just, I’m getting older. There was a [00:20:00] reason and I think to find out that reason. Was, was brilliant for me. Then my mindset whether or not that’s because how, how I’m rigged up here, but straight away I’m like, okay, how do we make this positive?

How can we change things to make things better? My main thing was the weight gain and the fatigue. Two things. For me and my personal wellbeing, I knew I had to address. I go to the gym more, I lift more weights, which I am so obsessed with lifting weights. I’m surprised I’m not a bodybuilder by now. I love it.

I do less cardio. Yeah. And the cardio I do is in my dance videos that you say, and I kid you not, I do one making one of those videos and I have to sit down for off an hour afterwards. I’m absolutely exhausted, but they make me so happy. And happiness is such a big key [00:21:00] factor to how a person feels.

And how, that’s what I think I, correct me if I’m wrong, cause obviously again, I’m not a doctor, but I just think when you feel happy, other things are happy. Yeah, you are ill less. You know when you have trauma in your life and things are going wrong in your life, suddenly we can, we can feel like everything’s gonna do this and is, suddenly it gets worse and worse.

There’s got to be that mindset where we go, okay, let’s change this. Let’s try and sort this, and how can we do it where it doesn’t feel like a burden. Cutting gluten, sugar and dairy out of my diet when all I eat is ham sandwiches and chocolate was so hard, and have I fully done it? No. I’ve cut what I’ve done.

I’ve cut all added sugar. Yeah, for me, that’s massive. I don’t have sugar in my tea and coffee anymore. When I was having two, I don’t have any sugar on my cereal. [00:22:00] I haven’t had a I’ve had one gluten free chocolate bar. I’ve, I’ve not had a chocolate bar in weeks. Like I don’t even know who I am anymore. But you know what, it was a little challenge for me to do that and I’ve succeeded in that.

Right? So that, that’s one thing I’ve tried, cut out gluten. I have cut out gluten hugely. Have I cut it out completely? No. I think there’s maybe been a handful of times where I’ve probably had a meal with some gluten in it. Have I felt horrific or guilty the next day? No. No, it’s not beating yourself up about it.

No. Yeah. Dairy, I have cut out a lot of dairy and I’m now on coconut milk and oat milk. Yeah, which are delicious by the way. I dunno if people are a bit like, oh, you know, I got, they are so delicious. Yeah. But it is, you just have to test these [00:23:00] things and it takes time. This is not an overnight fix or solution or things won’t change overnight.

This is a test. So I’ve got IBS and here’s something I’ve noticed. Recently, you might be able to help me with this, but recently I feel like I am bloating. I’m bloating. I’m bloating way more than ever before, right? So now I’ve got to readdress this because what did I always bloat like this when I ate gluten?

No, not really. Maybe the gluten slowed my energy down, but this bloating is new. Right. So is it something in the coconut milk? Is it something in the gluten-free products that I’ve been trying? It’s another now it’s another. Okay. Now I’ve got to eliminate something to find out what, find out what that is and what’s going on.

And, and I think, and sometimes it can be, you’ve touched on one there that it, it often can be people because people go gluten free and, and for me as a practitioner, I know some [00:24:00] practitioners are like, you know, a hundred percent you’ve gotta be a hundred percent perfect from day one. And that’s, that’s the only way it’ll be.

And you know, I’ve been, I’ve been on the other side of this, so I’ve been the patient before I was the practitioner, so I know how hard this is, and I am very much of the opinion, you know, if you can kind of get yourself to 80 20 and don’t beat yourself up about the 20 because again, that, like you are saying, that positive mindset thing.

Staying positive around all of this and not beating yourself up, not getting down on yourself about it. If you can kind of do that, you are on the right track and you’re doing really well, and it will take time to build these new things in and this new lifestyle. And. Anyway, it’s like you are saying, it’s a complete change.

It’s, you know, for you, I mean for you massively, a complete change going from, you know, chocolate bars and sugar and McDonald’s breakfast and all of that to how you are now. I mean, it’s a huge change and you’ve done amazingly well to do that. But one of the things I do see that people do is they sort of go, I’m gonna cut gluten out.

And actually what they do is, Replace it. Replace foods. Yeah. Foods come into the diet as you know, gluten-free [00:25:00] alternatives. And actually there’s some really great like natural gluten-free foods out there that you don’t, you don’t need to be buying the processed stuff. And sometimes people go, I’m actually, you know, a bit like you are saying, you know, I’m actually, I’m more bloated or I feel maybe a bit more tired, or, you know, things like this.

And I’m like, okay, let’s look at what you’ve actually switched. Because sometimes the switches are not always healthy and people think. You know, if there’s something in the supermarket and it says gluten free and it’s on the aisle, it must be a health food. It must be because it’s in the healthy section, right?

Because they call it the healthy food section. So it’s got to be healthy, but it’s so not the case. You know, there’s a, there are, you know, things, there’s things that are absolutely fine, like your coconut yogurts and coconut, you know, milk and stuff like that are fine. But there are things that are on those healthy food aisles and things like that, that are heavily processed and processed foods are not good for autoimmunity.

So it is, it’s learning and understanding about foods and what you can make, how you can make those replacements to make sure that you, you are keeping healthy and still getting everything in the diet as well. Because sometimes [00:26:00] people go really restrictive with it as well. That’s the other thing they do.

It’s like, I’m going to just keep, I’m going to cut out gluten, I’m gonna cut out dairy, I’m gonna cut out the next thing. And they just keep cutting food groups out and end up actually where they’ve not got enough nutrients in the diet. Yeah, exactly. Hundred Percent. I would cut, you know, gluten and dairy are things that we would cut, we would cut out. But it is making sure that you are, you are replacing those with positive food choices. Yeah. And getting enough in there. 

I think for me it was because, you know, my career, a lot of my career, especially when I was young and I was dancing a lot as a kid, and, you know and being on telly, it’s always been, well, you’ve gotta watch what you eat.

You’ve gotta be careful with certain, you know? But I’m a foodie and I’ve, I’ve been, no, it’s not a secret to anybody. I tell everybody I love to eat. I love food. I love chocolate. That’s my biggest downfall. Chocolate. I love it. So making these changes has, you can’t make these changes and feel negative about it.

[00:27:00] Yeah. And that’s what I wanna try and help people with because people message me a lot on Instagram saying how down they feel and they’re cutting this out and it’s not working and nothing’s changing and, and these, these changes you are making. They’re not going to fix this problem overnight. It might take a long time what the changes you’re doing is, and I, and this is where we talk about certain foods, you are putting more goodness and good stuff into your diet.

So for example, I’ve brought my lunch with me today because I’m about to do my radio show after I finished with you. And usually right, I’m going to just show you this. I’ve got my little boy’s lunch bag with me, but usually this. would have, when I first started doing this radio show, I would have a whole packet of chocolate biscuits, like kit kats or penguins or whatever.

It would’ve a ham and cheese sandwich, a packet of crisps and a bottle of water, you know. Now it’s got some gluten-free crackers, right. Which I’m [00:28:00] again, testing the water with because I’m unsure whether gluten-free stuff like this is helping this bloating that I’ve got or not. So I’m testing the water, but I’ve had some actually, and I’m not bloated, so it might not be that.

Right. I’ve got a whole bag of carrots. I’ve got a pot of hummus that I’ve made at home and I’ve got an apple. Okay. I love this. I love that. we’re going through your lunch box, right now. I know. Cause this is really important. It’s this, this is you’re gonna laugh at this. This is my sweet treat. Some of my sons crispy tiddlers that are gluten free, dairy free, and sugar free.

Yay. Honestly, I, I never in a million years thought I’d pack a lunchbox like that, which sounds ridiculous. But I’m so enjoying eating really good stuff. I’m enjoying it. In the morning, I bought a juicer, just spent a bit of money on because I wanted to get a good one. But [00:29:00] I’m so glad I did. So every morning I have a glass of celery juice, which apparently is the, the thing to try, right?

Because I, I read it somewhere, but you know what? I actually think that’s been helping. And I’ve been doing it for about six weeks now. Having a, a glass every morning of celery juice. I actually really enjoy it and it feels like it hydrates me and it makes me feel good, so why not? Right? 

And sometimes it is as simple as it is, it’s actually, it’s making you drink something that’s hydrating you as opposed to necessarily you know, being the, the celery itself, sometimes it’s the little thing, like it’s the fact that it’s actually hydrating you first thing in the morning. Yeah, yeah. Whereas normally we live that life where we, we get up and we rush out and, you know, maybe we have a cup of coffee or a cup of tea or something like that.

Yeah. And we go whizzing out the door, you know, it’s actually making you do it and it’s making me every morning. I’m getting up a bit earlier in the morning. I mean, I get, you know, I’m up at the crack of dawn anyway. I’ve got a three year old, but I actually get up half an hour [00:30:00] earlier now than him. I go downstairs, I make myself my juice and I set, make myself a smoothie to bring, to work with me, which is full of, oh, I’ve, I put a post out about my smoothies all the time, but they’re full of really good stuff anyway.

And sometimes I’ll have a carrot and ginger. I add turmeric to things. 

You know, so anti-inflammatory. Yeah for the inflammation. Yep. I do a lot of again, never thought I’d say this, but I do a lot of natural stuff. Right, because I don’t really want to be taking medicine or tablets all the time. I’ve done that.

I’ve been on a lot of medication for different things. And with this, when my doctor said, actually, you are, you don’t actually need to go medication right now with your t t t remind me. TSH yeah. Levels only been slightly elevated. And I straight away went, no, no, no, no medication. Let’s just.

Let’s just see what happens with this. Let me just, yeah. Change my diet. I, I wanted to talk to you about this because [00:31:00] I think, you know, medication, obviously it’s a very personal decision for different people. Some people will want to be, or, will need to be straight on medication. Other people, for other people, you know, like you, like you’re saying your TSH levels only slightly elevated.

There’s not necessarily an important need for you to get straight on it, particularly if it’s balanced and we’re not seeing, you know, it’s not spiking and things like this. Yeah. But. It is personal for everybody, but there, for some people there is time where you can, you know, you can try protocols and things first and see what works for you and see if you can bring those levels you know, back down to a normal, sort of a normal level.

And you’ve just said that for you, that decision was quite instant, but, You know, was it some, did you think about taking the medication or was it just a complete, you were just because you felt that those levels were okay. You just went straight in with No, I, I really wanna take the natural approach.

And, and did you feel supported and kind of informed around taking that choice? My doctor straight away and I trust her with everything. She’s just brilliant. [00:32:00] My doctor said I, I don’t really want to put you on medication right now for this. Do you agree? And my instinct straight away was if she’s saying that because I trust her so much that that for me is a, a very quick decision.

And I said to her, okay, I’ll, I can do this with, with, let’s try it with other things. Let’s, first of all, address my diet, okay? Because I eat what I want, when I want, let’s address it. Now, here’s the thing. Years ago if I’d have addressed my diet the way I have now, when I was training for Dancing on Ice maybe, and I was going to the gym every day, and I, I cut a lot of things out of my diet years ago to train and get fit for dancing on ice.

I lost weight so fast, it was like a click of the fingers and I dropped weight. Even a few years ago, I, I dropped weight. Now for some reason it’s, it’s absolutely impossible. Had I have done this diet for six weeks, not diet, can’t call it a diet, [00:33:00] it’s a change of food habits. 

Change of lifestyle. Yeah, change of lifestyle.

It’s not a diet. Sorry, I should never have said that word. I hate that word as well. It’s, if I had, had I have done this oh ages ago, I’d have lost weight very quickly. I haven’t lost any weight. Okay. But yet, I’m obviously eating such good ingredients. Please don’t let that put you off. Don’t do this and go, but I, but I haven’t lost any weight, so it’s not working.

So, but this is about every part of your body. It’s about your brain. It’s about, yeah, your bowels. It’s about your fatigue levels. It’s, I think again, you’re the doctor, correct me if I’m wrong. 

All the inflammatory processes in the body as well. 

Yes 

You know, the, it’s the things we don’t see. And I think that particularly with, with gluten as well.

Gluten has such an impact in the body that we don’t see. You know, people always think, oh, well, you know, I don’t have gut issues. And it’s like some people who have problems with gluten don’t get gut issues [00:34:00] at all. They might get brain fog instead, and the brain fog can be being caused by the gluten and they think because it’s not a gut symptom, it’s not, it’s not going to be the gluten, but some people don’t get any symptoms.

But we know, we know that gluten, so gluten opens up these tight junctions in the in intestine wall and lets things, lets molecules through into the bloodstream. And the idea is that with these junctions that they open up just a certain amount to let nutrients and the things that we want through, the good stuff, and it doesn’t let the bad stuff, which is larger molecules through, gluten actually opens up these tight junctions further so they can open up wider, and then we get the rubbish getting through it into the bloodstream.

What that means is, Something’s got to come along and clean that up. And the thing that has to come along and clean up is your immune system. So if you are eating gluten and you’re opening up those tight junctions and the rubbish is getting into the bloodstream, your immune system’s got to be switched on all the time.

And if your immune system is switched on all the time, your are at risk of an autoimmune flareup because that is what [00:35:00] autoimmunity is. It’s that over overactive immune system. Yeah. So, You know, there’s things that are happening, processes that are happening in the body that we don’t, you know, we don’t necessarily see as a symptom, but we know that these things will be flaring up autoimmunity and you might be seeing different symptoms going on around the body or you know, other things happening and like the fatigue or brain fog or you know, like you’re saying, the weight gain, things like that.

And I think it’s important. I always say to people when they come and work with me, look, you know, yes, weight might be one of the things we want to look at, but don’t look at this as a weight loss programme. Yeah. Look at it as a health programme. This is about protecting your health for the rest of your life, not about just a quick weight loss win.

You know, that’s not what we’re after. 

A hundred percent. And I, I mean, I can’t speak on behalf of everybody, but certainly for me, I, I, you know, it’s, I’m not, it’s not like I’m dropping loads of weight and I’m in the gym three times a week and I’m dancing my socks off on my Instagram videos and I’m eating so well.

But what I am doing, I know [00:36:00] full well, I am building muscle. I’m getting fitter. I feel better. You know, I, I look at myself working out and I’m training and I’m lifting weights. I think I’m, I’m 46. And I’m, I’m pretty darn fit. I’m doing all right, and I’ve got an autoimmune disease, so give myself a break. Do you know what I mean?

Just yeah. Go easy on yourself. You have to go easy on yourself. With this it, as I keep saying, and we all keep saying it’s not going to fix overnight. It’s just a process and it’s a little journey for you to go on. And if you can keep a positive mindset about it. I promise you it will feel better. It, it will.

You might still feel tired or you might still have these symptoms, but the mindset, get behind yourself and give yourself a break. And the mindset thing really, it just really helps. Yeah, it does. 

And I think as well, something else that you’ve, you’ve kind of touched on, you said, you know, things like being happy, going out and laughing, being with your best friends, relationships as well.

And also you’ve talked about the other side of that, the, the [00:37:00] trauma of a bad relationship in your life. 

Huge. 

Which we know can act as a trigger as well. And I think relationships as well are so important when you’ve got autoimmunity having good, healthy, positive people in your life. Yeah. And those relationships that, like you are saying, you know, you, you can go out and just have a laugh and yeah, you’ve got some, you know, you’ve got somebody to talk to in, you know, if there’s bad times going on, but they’re also there for the happy times and the laughing and you know, that’s so important as well. I think relationships play, a lot of people think it all just comes down to diet. And a diet, yes, plays a huge part. But you know, exercise plays a part and sleep plays a part. Stress plays a part mindset, you know, relationships, it’s about building all of that stuff out and I think having positive relationships is a huge thing 

Yeah, a hundred percent. I, you know, I’m a very I’m a positive person.

When other people come to me, other friends come to me with their issues or, you know, if they’ve got relationship problems or anything like that I, I’m so good [00:38:00] at steering them in the right direction. And, you know, my, my thing is, is if something makes you unhappy, keep it at arms length. If you feel that there’s toxic around you, step aside from it.

Don’t you know, don’t let it enter your energy field, but sometimes that is impossible because you might live with that, or you might have that every day at your workplace, or you might, it’s hard. And that for me is where I knew what had brought, I think trauma and stress are the two things I think made me really poorly and were making me continually, poorly are, are those two things. And it’s taken me a lot to kind of, and therapy, a lot of therapy as well to go, okay, just take a step back from that and let’s see how we can make this situation better. You know, because I don’t, I don’t wanna be ill, I’m a single mum.

There’s no way I can be ill. I, there’s no, you know, That’s it. So, 

And it’s partly about [00:39:00] protecting your future as well, to be 

My word yeah. 

To be able to bring him up and, you know, 

It’s all I think about, it’s all I think about is keep healthy, keep fit. Especially now I’ve been diagnosed with this, I, I have been told by numerous people that where you get one autoimmune disease, Surely it will come with the second one.

The average is five. So once you’ve got one the average, the average is that you get a five, which is a, is something that, you know, I think really people hear it and they’re just like, Ugh, great. Yeah. 

But you know, that’s why if you do get diagnosed with one, it’s so important to work on it because… yes, they’re incurable. We can’t cure them. If they are chronic illnesses, you, you have them for life. But you can push them back down that sort of autoimmune spectrum and into remission and live well with them. And if you can keep your immune system balanced and people always say, we wanna do things to boost your immune system. No, we don’t. We don’t wanna boost your immune system. We want a balanced immune system. 

Yeah. And if you can keep it balanced and do things to support that, then your risk [00:40:00] of developing those further autoimmune diseases massively reduces. Yeah. And or, or at the very least, pushes them back. So you will start them you know, older when you are, you know, much older than you sort of yeah maybe would’ve done. 

And it is about preventative medicine and it’s about protecting your future with them. 

Yeah. I had him when I was pregnant with Jasper and obviously now, we’ll, I don’t suppose we’ll ever know if this is connected or anything, but I, I got a lump in my neck when I was pregnant and it literally came, I looked in the mirror one hour and it wasn’t there. And the next hour. There was a lump here and it terrified me. And I was doing a show at the time in London, in the West End, and I was three months pregnant. And I went straight to my doctor in London and said, what, what is that? And he said, I, we need to get that scanned. A S A P that’s looking like it’s on your thyroid.

And it was a thyroid nodule. Yeah. That was [00:41:00] massively inflamed. And then they had to keep an eye on it and keep taking my blood and stuff like that. And you just for, I forgot about it. I forgot about that. A few years ago I had a swelling on my pituitary gland. Again, connected to hormones. Yeah. 

And again, that’s the thyroid brain link.

Cause the no one told me that. 

No, but it’s the pituitary that is releases these hormones and things like this that help to run the thyroid. So that pituitary thyroid link is huge. 

Yep. No one. We’re talking, I don’t know how many years we’re talking, maybe six or seven. I didn’t have the doctor I’m with now cause I, I live in Blackpool now.

And then I lived to Manchester, Leeds, wherever I was, nobody at that time checked my thyroid. I was taken into hospital for, for being really poorly. They did a brain scan to check for meningitis and found the swelling on my pituitary in, in the brain [00:42:00] scan. And then I was under a doctor for the pituitary gland for about a year and then kept having a scan and it, it went down.

And that was it. That nobody said anything else. That was it. 

And this is, this is sometimes the problem, and this is the difference between conventional and functional medicine. Conventional medicine, you go to a doctor for a body part. So you know, you went and have the brain checked and you’ll go to an endocrinologist, have your thyroid checked, and yeah, you know, all of this, and you go to different people and… 

that’s the beauty of functional medicine is that it is a whole body approach. Yeah. And we have these axis going on through the body, you know, everywhere with, with everything. But, you know, we have particularly with thyroid, there is, you know, brain, thyroid, adrenal. There’s an axis that runs between all of those, and that’s where stress comes into it a lot as well.

Because your adrenals are very linked to your thyroid and your adrenals are the stress hormones and that’s where stress can become a trigger for thyroid. So everything is very interlinked and I think looking at all those different body parts together and building that whole picture [00:43:00] means that you can really take a, kind of a full approach to, to dealing with things and working on, on your health.

I hundred percent believe that for me. All, a lot of all this has been brought on by stress and trauma. 

And do you still currently do anything for that? I know you said that therapy and things like that, sort of over the trauma, but do you still do things for stress? Now actively, or is it more for you is it more a, you know, the dancing on Instagram and the laughing and those sorts of things? Is that, is that the stress relief? 

Yeah. Like how how lucky am I that I get to work with my best friend every day? You know, we were on dancing on ice together. We work on the radio show together every day and every day we do something ridiculous or something silly or we, we, I, I’ve never had anyone in my life I laugh with as much as I laugh with him, it is, So what’s the word?

Therapeutic. He just is therapy and he says the same thing. Sometimes we’ll walk in, we’ll say something, we’ll cry laughing, and [00:44:00] he will go, you are my therapy, Hayley. You are. And I, and I feel the same about him. 

And this is Dan. This is Dan. Dan, \ whistonj , Dan? Yes. Yeah. We are, we are each other’s therapy.

We all need a Dan in our lives.

That’s what we say. We do, we do. 

I have a brilliant therapist, she’s called Sarie Taylor. She’s on Instagram as well. She is one of the best and I’ve had a couple, but she is, just quite mind blowing how she can solve something for you in an instant by just making you change how you, how you feel about things, your mindset about things.

And she has helped me so much with how I think my thought process behind things, and probably it’s, you know, a lot is down to her. The fact that I got this diagnosis and kind of went, Ooh, okay. Right. Let’s not think negatively about this. This is all right. We can make this a good, you know I’ve always been a positive person, but things do get you down in life, right?

Yeah. And I am, of course, I’m, [00:45:00] everybody is human. We all, yeah. You know, we all have that. My god. Yeah. You know, there’s been nights over the past kind of year, God, where I’ve just not known if how, how to make things work or how to carry on. But we do, we get through things. Yeah. 

But even as positive as you are, and obviously you, you know, you come across as a hugely positive person, but even for positive people who are naturally that way, there’s still gonna be times where it gets you down or you sort of think Yeah… oh, you know, like, just today I’ve had enough. You know, that happens to everybody. We’re all human. That’s, that’s a normal, yeah. And any form of trauma on your body is gonna make you ill. It, it it is. And the longer that you, you keep hold of that trauma and that stress, the longer you have that inside you, the, the, the less your body can handle it.

And, and I think that is where a lot of illness stuff comes from. You know, not in a doctory way, but just in that kind of, that stress level. You, you can’t take that much stress. No. You know what, we just, we physically, we do. And [00:46:00] then we kind of collapse at the end of it, you know? Yeah. 

And life has got more like that. I think. You know, it’s a lot more of a fast paced life these days that we live, so I think people we’re all struggling feel like yeah. Everyone is struggling with money. Yeah. With paying the bills, with how we’re gonna cope. The mortgage next month, everything. Everything is stressful that you’ve got to find just a little bit of light relief in this madness, in this crazy world. 

We’ve gotta find a little bit of light relief where we can just laugh for five minutes. And, and I honestly feel a million times better when I’ve laughed. I really do. Yeah. Yeah. I, I love that. I think that’s it’s a really, I think it’s, you know, as said to you, at the beginning of this… 

The point of this podcast is to spread positivity around these conditions and around chronic illnesses that, you know, people look on and say, oh, you know, well I’m stuck with it for life now.

And it’s putting a positive spin on that. And it is so important. And I, you know, you have, you know, instantly, as soon as, you know, I approached you after I saw you on morning tv. Morning Live. Yeah. Yeah. [00:47:00] And you were just so, I just instantly saw that positive attitude around it and just knew that I wanted to have that conversation with you because 

Thank you.

It’s, it is important, I think, to spread that message. 

I hate the thought of anybody. I’m, I don’t cope well with people being sad. I’m not good at it. I’ve, I’m like a therapist myself. I’ve got to instantly fix things and fix people and, you know, the thought of other people going through this and not having an an answer yet, or you’ve got an answer, but you don’t think it’s ever gonna get better.

So you may as well just, you know, I don’t, we can do this together, you know? And I said on the telly, my door is always open. On Instagram. I mean, not really my front door don’t be coming round, but my Instagram door, if you want to message me things, I’ll try and help the best way I can or point 

And we’ll link your I Instagram below this.

Yeah. In the direction of people like you, you know, who are so helpful. You know, I, I’m, it’s a learning curve. We’re, it’s, we’re learning. We’re just learning. And. Yes, [00:48:00] I’m trying to take out gluten, dairy. Am I, am I 80 20? Yes, I am and I’m okay with that. I am okay with 80 20. That’s what like, yes. All about the mindset It is.

Be positive. It is. And we’ll link, we will link your Instagram below so people can follow you and, and follow your journey. And also watch the dances because I found watching those gave me a little bit of a laugh and joy. So maybe that can be people’s little bit of positivity. Do you know what that is? That is why we do it?

We just wanna put a smile on people’s faces in this crazy world we’re living in right now. I, we just wanna make people happy. So if we’re doing that then thank you. We’re doing good. Brilliant. Well, we will put that in the show notes. What I always ask people just to kind of everybody that I, I’m interviewing for this, I’m asking them the same sort of final question.

Yeah. What, what little nugget of advice or information would you really want people to walk away from this conversation with? What’s the thing if they are going through Hashimotos or getting a diagnosis or think it could be, [00:49:00] what’s the one little thing you’d really love them to walk away from this conversation with?

Just knowing that. It’s okay. It’s, it’s okay. We can, you can help yourself. There’s a whole bunch of people out there, us two included, me and you, who will help in any way, shape or form. I’ve had strangers on Instagram messaging me, just, just random people messaging me. Offering me all sorts of help and advice and saying, welcome to the Hashimotos Club.

You know, one lady said, it’s not the best club to be part of, but it’s certainly not the worst. And I loved that. You know, we, we can be positive about this and we can help each other, and you can put your symptoms into remission hopefully, if we can. Fantastic. Don’t beat yourself up about this, you know, let’s just do it together.

Be positive, be happy, and laugh. 

I love it. A lovely final message. Hayley, thank you so much for joining me and doing Oh thank you. I think this [00:50:00] conversation’s going to be so beneficial for so many people, so thank you so much. 

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