We gave you all a very special sneak peek of chapter 2 from Dr. McCarthy’s soon to be completed debut book! And now we’re back with a very exclusive preview of chapter 8 from Dr. McCarthy’s book.
Chapter 8 is a callback to Julie and her story from chapter 2. In chapter 8 we see an alternate reality for Julie, one that sees her take control of her health. Chapter 8 shows us how empowering it is to become educated about your own body, and in a way that most doctors won’t help you achieve.
Dr. McCarthy details the steps a woman can take to become better acquainted with her own body. Let’s look at a bit of chapter 8 and see what we can learn from this version of Julie, who is in control of her health.
Julie’s New Story
Do you remember the story of Julie that I shared with you in chapter 2? Julie was lost and struggling after a lifetime of feeling ignored and dismissed by her doctor.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. After Julie learns the same information you have just learned, and understands her body and her mind, she has a new story. And the earlier she learns it, the faster her new story begins.
At age thirteen, Julie experiences irregular periods complicated by severe cramping. Julie’s mother and father—her healthcare advocates while she is a minor—seek out a physician experienced in treating young women her age. They find one who first works to discover the cause of hormone problems before prescribing birth control. Her doctor tells Julie that she was right to come in—this is not normal. He also informs her that it can be common to have symptoms like this if you have low progesterone, which is also common at her age.
Julie’s doctor runs a battery of labs to make sure that nothing more complicated is happening. When the labs confirm his suspicions, her doctor prescribes a course of low-dose natural progesterone. He re-tests her each month and keeps Julie on this therapy for a few months, until she begins to naturally generate her own progesterone. Then she is able to stop taking it because she no longer needs to—her body makes enough on its own.
When Julie enters college, she does so with a normal level of testosterone because she never took oral contraceptives. She finds that she doesn’t have the same weight gain that her classmates experience. With normal testosterone levels, Julie’s body responds to exercise with healthy muscle development and healthy fat metabolism.
When she has her children, Julie doesn’t suffer from post-partum depression. She knows that low progesterone can cause depression, and she is aware of how common it is for a woman to have lowered levels after birth. Her obstetrician follows her case, periodically testing her labs. When she does notice a deficiency, the doctor prescribes natural progesterone to maintain Julie’s neurological health.
Julie never needs to take an anti-depressant.
After her three children are born and before she goes back to work full-time, Julie consults her doctor regarding work-life balance. She and her husband create a healthy schedule that equally distributes the housework as well as the responsibility of parenting. With this balance, she is able to advance her career and feel fulfilled in her home life.
In her mid-thirties, Julie begins to feel some anxiety. Her physician affirms that this is possibly due to diminishing levels of progesterone, common for a woman in her age group. She is premenopausal, and her body is losing its ability to generate progesterone naturally. Once the level is confirmed, Julie is given a long-term protocol including prescribed progesterone and regular lab work. Her anxiety disappears.
Julie notices some weight gain when she is in her forties. Her physician runs a thorough exam of her thyroid and discovers she has a diminished amount of the active hormone T3. Julie is told this is a normal aspect of aging. Her physician prescribes her a very low dose of natural thyroid. Her weight normalizes within a few months. Julie sleeps well, has a healthy libido, and feels good. More importantly, her body feels right.
Now Julie is empowered to change her narrative.
She is ready to take her health into her own hands.