My name is Tina, and this is my Before to Beyond Story. I am now 55 and stuck in perimenopause. For the last 10 years, I have developed symptoms and allergies that most doctors didn’t have any diagnosis for or know the cause and could only prescribe meds to mask the symptoms. In the last 10 years I have been diagnosed with Contact Dermatitis, Fibromyalgia, Rosacea, Food Sensitivities, IBS and most recently Full-Frontal Alopecia. It all started when I developed an allergy to hair dye, make-up, soaps, candles and much more. In order to avoid horrible red burning rashes, I had to avoid chemicals that I couldn’t even pronounce and so I now live by a safe list of products. Right after being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, which is the worst because of the chronic pain, inflammation and fatigue, I felt like I had the flu all the time and this went on for years. All my labs kept coming back clean, doctors had no answers for me and no solution. Left to figure it out on my own, I decided to give up gluten, dairy and processed foods – my symptoms eased up enough for me to function and work but I was still tired, moody, and filled with anxiety. My quality of life had diminished and I was very unhappy but pushed through the best I could. I had gained a lot of weight even though I ate very healthy and I was very discouraged. In February of 2023, I realized being gluten free was not enough. I was getting extremely bloated after every meal and I had become “sad”, I won’t say depressed, this was more like a dark fog that would come over me. I slept a lot and wasn’t able to be present for my family. I went to a menopause specialist thinking it might be a hormone imbalance, but she just put me on hormone prescriptions which I didn’t tolerate well, didn’t work, and failed to improve my symptoms. The final blow came with a diagnosis that I had suspected for a while – I had lost most of my eyebrows, eyelashes and my hairline was thinning and receding – Full Frontal Alopecia. The problem was even though there are treatments, it would be exhausting finding one that worked and to be honest I was too sick and didn’t have the energy to fight. After 10 years of ever-changing symptoms I could not handle losing my hair and 60 lbs. overweight. I decided to focus on my health and my weight gain with nutrition – I knew that being gluten free had helped me so I decided to change my diet completely and use food for medicine, energy and hopefully weight loss. I just needed something to help me get going …. So, my research began.
I want to first thank the Facebook algorithm! Who knew when I googled “hormone imbalance, menopause, anxiety, mood” that Facebook would start bombarding me with remedies. But there was one reel that made me stop, watch, and join a Facebook group. It was a reel of someone dancing and excited about this drink that had all the ingredients I had found through my research and more. I ordered my first month of Zip Slim just a week after joining that Facebook group! I got started on the Reboot Rituals before I even received my Zips in the mail. One of my strengths is that I can follow a list, so from day one I was 100% on board with the Reboot Rituals. I had to make a few adjustments, but I thought one of the hardest would be giving up coffee with the sugar and creamer. From day one – just two lemonades a day replaced my unhealthy 7+ cups of coffee addiction. I went from feeling exhausted at the end of the workday to energized! I was left trying to figure out what to do instead of going to bed early and binge-watching TV shows! This energy fueled the Ritual to Move 30 minutes a day. Being 60 lbs. overweight, exercise was tough, and my back constantly hurt, but I did not miss a day for 66 days. Every night, I walked for 30 minutes. In the beginning, there were lots of breaks and didn’t get far. Eventually, I went from walking ½ a mile with lots of back pain to walking 2 miles in 30 minutes. I still walk 2 miles every day. I also play in a pickleball league and in the last couple of months I have added strength training to my regimine. The 2nd adjustment was food – Being gluten and dairy free, THINK THIN foods were basically what I had been eating but since I wasn’t losing weight I decided to focus on the First Tier foods only during those 66 days. I just had to go without sugar, which meant no more coffee or that occasional mixed drink. I even gave up fruit. Let me tell you the weight just dropped off! But the amazing thing was how I felt and the energy that I had. I felt like a teenager again! My friends could even see a difference in my personality on Facebook (not just the pictures). I lost a total of 32 lbs. in those first 66 days and I was a whole new person. My sadness that I would get – just gone!!! Bloating and fatigue disappeared. I am by no means completely healed but I am truly happy! I believe what we eat and drink is so important to our health and energy – and ZipSlims have become an essential piece for me that helped me stay on the path to greater health!! I am still following the Rituals and nutrition guides and in the 6 months since I started I have currently lost a total of 50lbs – just 10lbs away from my initial goal!