Seems like forever since I’ve done one of these. So here we go today with Leaky Gut and More: Why Trinity is A Gutsy Girl.
A year ago today, on my 36th birthday, I wrote 36 Candles. Because I’m not into writing personal posts here any more, the way I’ve chosen to celebrate today is with a post to celebrate someone else.
I want to introduce you to Trinity Morrow. Trinity started working with me recently, and I adore her. Out of 40+ applications, she was the one who was my clear yes. (As the team grows, I’ll look forward to connecting with other applicants, as there were so many lovely women in the pool.)
Anyways, not only is she extremely intelligent (goes to Duke currently!), but she’s kind, caring, and one of us – a true Gutsy girl.
And today she is going to share her story with you.
Leaky Gut and More: Why Trinity is A Gutsy Girl
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Being from the South, eating has always been the focal point at gatherings or holidays.
I was taught to cook as soon as I was tall enough to reach the stove and have loved cooking ever since. To this day, nothing makes my grandma happier than cooking her family a meal.
Almost every food was a food I loved — until I found out most of the foods I loved didn’t love me back.
My first break up was with dairy.
As a teenager with acne, I was willing to try anything for clear skin. The first natural doctor I saw suggested I remove dairy from my diet. That very day I stopped eating dairy, and while it didn’t clear up my skin completely, it helped some.
Even this small improvement was enough to keep me away from all the cheese and butter I used to love.
I stuck with my dairy-free diet all of high school, but somewhere around senior year my acne got worse.
The summer before I went off to college my dermatologist suggested Doxycycline – a broad antibiotic that promised less acne inflammation and clearer skin. I was sold. I took it twice a day without ever missing a dose.
My skin looked great and the timing of fixing it before college could not have been better.
A few months into my freshman year my stomach started hurting. By the time I finished walking back to my dorm from the cafeteria I had sharp pains and was nauseous.
Not knowing any better I assumed it was the unhealthy college food or lack of sleep I was getting. By my second semester the acne was back to the way it was in high school and my stomach constantly hurt. Unfortunately, my solution was to take more Doxycycline.
The summer after my first year at college I worked in a biomedical engineering lab where I sat writing code most of the day. I liked my job a lot, and despite getting plenty of sleep each night I had to hold my head up at my desk to keep from falling asleep. I couldn’t concentrate and felt like my head was in the clouds most of the day. Later I would learn this is what brain fog feels like.
Seeing an Integrative Health Doctor
Finally realizing that something must be wrong, at the end of the summer I went to an integrative health doctor. I took my first food sensitivity test which revealed I was sensitive to almost half the foods on the list and had blood work done to look at my inflammation markers.
Initial Diagnosis: Leaky Gut and Celiac Disease
I was highly inflamed and sensitive to most foods. And I was told I had leaky gut and learned the massive role that over a year’s worth of antibiotics did to my gut health.
So I immediately stopped the Doxycycline and began the AIP (Autoimmune Protocol) diet.
With a family history of Celiac disease, I had other tests done for antibody indicators and found out my HLA genotypes. These tests, along with my symptoms revealed that like my mom, I also had Celiac.
This was my permanent break up with gluten, eggs, and soy and temporary break with all the foods I wasn’t allowed with the AIP.
After 3 months of AIP, I felt amazing. My skin looked great, I had tons of energy, no more brain fog, and I could eat almost anything (besides gluten, dairy, soy or eggs) without my stomach hurting.
And then a SIBO Diagnosis
However, things went downhill from here. After months of intense stress during my sophomore year, over a month of having mono, and being back to my college diet, my stomach was in a horrible place.
The summer after my sophomore year I made another visit to my integrative doctor. With a SIBO test, I found out SIBO was the source of my new gut struggles.
Unfortunately, I got my test results a few weeks before I was set to leave to live in Sydney, Australia for 5 months. Managing as much of a SIBO protocol as I could while living abroad and traveling to different countries for weeks at a time, I felt like I was on a roller coaster of healing and hurting.
I returned to the US the end of December 2019. And as I wrap up my third year at Duke University, I am also hoping to wrap up my time dealing with SIBO.
As a Biomedical Engineer I’ve looked for the most logical and methodological approach to healing. However, the past two years I’ve learned my healing journey with leaky gut, celiac, and SIBO is not straightforward. It’s not even always easily explained by science.
These past two years have taught me just as much about my body as they have patience and self-love.
Working with Sarah at A Gutsy Girl and learning more about the community of women she’s brought together has been inspiring. I am SO proud to work alongside Sarah to help this community grow.
So nice to meet you all.
Any questions for Trinity? Love her as much as I do? Good. Go for it, send her an email if you’d like. She can always be reached at opportunities (at) agutsygirl.com
If you liked this post, you might also enjoy:
- Share your own Gutsy story by submitting a request HERE.
- A College Girl’s Master Guide to Gut Health
- A Gutsy Story with FMT
You will heal. I will help.