Skinny Love

All women have been there. You see an image flash across your television screen. It makes you think – I want to be skinny. You see a billboard pushing the latest fad diet – I would look good if only I was thinner.

As a woman I am constantly told that thin is in and that I shouldn’t indulge in any good food because food = fat.

So this summer I decided that I would forgo all other birthday gifts and settle for something I actually needed – an expensive diet to make me thinner.

My freshman year of college, late night snacking and pizza made me (what I thought back then was) fat.

I was so tired of looking in the mirror everyday and hating what I saw. I was tired of not fitting into my clothes. I was tired of being the biggest of my friends. I was tired of feeling jealous looking at other girls. I was tired of trying to diet and failing. I was just tired.

So I started a strict diet that involved no exercise and was under 1,000 calories a day.

It. Was. Fabulous.

I was all about this diet. I told all my friends, measured all my vegetables, and didn’t cheat but once.

The pounds began to fall off.

The first week I lost two pounds – more than I could manage to lose after a year of “diet” and exercise.

I felt great. Sure, the hunger gnawed at my stomach every night making it hard to sleep, but it was worth the weight loss.

Each day became a routine:

Wake up.

Weigh myself.

Measure out breakfast and eat.

Think about food.

Measure out lunch and eat.

Think about food.

Measure out snack and eat.

Think about food.

Measure out dinner and eat.

Struggle to sleep because of how much I was thinking about food.

What started out as a goal to lose weight became an obsession. I would get angry over unmeasured food or restaurants that didn’t have nutrition facts. Even vacation was a nightmare because the only thing I thought about the whole time was when and where I was going to eat.

But still, the pounds continued to fall off and the praise began.

Everyone said I looked happy and healthy and thin. I enjoyed the praise I was getting. I enjoyed fitting into my clothes from freshman year of high school.

The only thing I didn’t enjoy was the hunger.

Three months into the diet, I moved back to college. At this point I was only 115 pounds – underweight for my height. My smallest clothes were too big and I hadn’t had a period for a whole month because my body fat was too low. Friends and family urged me to stop, but all I could think about was the numbers falling on the scale.

At my lowest weight - that's a protein shake in the cup.

At my lowest weight – that’s a protein shake in the cup.

I was aware that I was unhealthy. I was aware that I was unhappy. But I looked good and that was all I cared about.

Then, one day, I stopped.

I don’t really know when I decided to stop dieting. I just did.

I saw how happy my friends were. They weren’t obsessed with food. They weren’t super skinny. And they were content with life. After months of frustration and anger, I just wanted to find that happiness again.

So I slowly began to eat like a normal human being. I let go of my body dysmorphia and ate what my body told me to eat.

The first time I ate sugar in three months

The first time I ate sugar in three months


I’ll admit, I am forever changed from dieting. I still struggle with binging and calorie counting and I weigh more than I did to begin with.

But no matter the struggle I went through, I am so thankful for what dieting did for me.

Yes, it made me lose weight, but more importantly it made me realize that I am the same person, no matter how much I weigh.

I thought that, when I reached my goal body, I would be happier. I wasn’t.

 I still loved myself skinny the same as I did average size.

I realized that being thin didn’t make me a better person, it just made me look a little different. At the end of the day I was still Ivey. I needed to be happy on the inside.

So now I don’t diet and I don’t count my calories and I don’t exercise. That may make me lazy or unhealthy, but it’s the truth.

Instead I’m living my life. I go get ice cream with friends when we need to destress from school. I drive people to Sonic when we need to talk about life. I go on food-truck adventures with my sisters. I bond. I smile. I laugh and I laugh and I laugh.

And I don’t worry about my waistline or the scale, because Ivey Dyson is too busy working on the woman she is on the inside.


Low Carb Cauliflower Pizza

Attention everyone that has ever existed ever! I have FINALLY perfected my cauliflower pizza crust recipe and let me just tell you that it tastes as amazing as it looks. As I have been following the Ideal Protein diet, I have been trying to create fun recipes that still follow protocol. I have worked on cauliflower pizza crust for awhile and recently created the best recipe using ideas from multiple people on instagram. Read on if you’re interested in indulging without all the carbs.

Healthy Pizza


Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 packet Ideal Protein Potato Puree
  • 2 cups frozen cauliflower
  • 3 egg whites
  • Seasoning

Directions for Crust:

-Pre-heat the oven to 350

-Cook frozen cauliflower in the microwave for 10 minutes or until warm

-Pulse in food processor until cauliflower has a rice texture (my food processor is broken so chopping until this texture is reached works as well)

-Using a cheesecloth or coffee filter, squeeze moisture out of cauliflower until dry

-Now add IP Potato Puree, egg whites, and spices (I used garlic powder)

-Using a spoon, create a crust-like shape (starting from the outer rim inward) on well greased parchment paper

-Bake for 25-30 minutes

-Remove crust and set oven to broil

After the crust is made be as creative as desired with toppings.

I topped my pizza off with Walden Farms Italian Sun Dried Tomato dressing, an organic spring mix, white mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, chicken, more garlic powder, thyme, and rosemary. Then I popped it in the oven for about five minutes on broil.

The pizza serves one person and is extremely filling. It is a great low carb option for pizza lovers on a diet. If anyone in the Enid area is interested in the Ideal Protein diet, like Ideal Health and Weight Loss Clinic on Facebook. They have been great to work with, especially for someone like me who isn’t overweight but is just looking to lose a few pounds. Their transformations are amazing.

Thyroid Problems

Thyroid (according to Google)
1. a large ductless gland in the neck that secretes hormones regulating growth and development through the rate of metabolism.
2. a large cartilage of the larynx, a projection of which forms the Adam’s apple in humans.
I first found out about my thyroid problems two days before I left for college. It took many blood tests, a serious talk with my doctor, and an ultrasound to finally diagnose my issues.  But let me rewind to the beginning.
I didn’t randomly stumble Into thyroid problems. They actually run in my family. My mother has hypothyroidism ( a condition in which your thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough of certain important hormones – Mayo Clinic) which basically slows down your metabolism and causes weight gain. My grandma has hyperthyroidism  (is a condition in which your thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine – Mayo Clinic) which can cause weight loss and anxiety. Because I knew about their problems, when I started having issues, I knew just what was wrong. So here is a list of signs I had, that you should also watch out for.

Weight Gain/ Slow Metabolism

As a teenager, I have always had a slow metabolism. While my friends could always eat junk food and still look like supermodels, everything I eat sticks to me like glue. The only time I was able to ever lose weight was working out twice a day and giving up all grains, dairy and red meat. I have always felt like a teenager with the metabolism of a 40 year old. Throughout high school I gained 30 pounds even though I always stayed active and watched what I ate without avail. My senior year I had the final straw. I gained 15 pounds in a matter of months. I knew it wasn’t normal because I was working out harder than ever and had not changed my eating habits. But that wasn’t the only change.

Hair Loss/ Change

The summer before my senior year I worked outside all day everyday as a swim instructor (this was before I realized the importance of sunscreen). So my hair came into contact with burning sun and chlorine constantly. I also played Amber in our local theatre’s production of Hairspray. So not only was  I baking my hair and swimming in chemicals, I also straightened, curled, and teased my hair for three weeks straight. It was hair hell. And, at the end of it all, my hair was never the same. I used to have beautiful, shiny, ringlet curls. After that summer, my hair was wavy and dull and frizzy with dead ends and no life. Come a year later, my hair still had not changed. My hairstylist had never seen anything like it. I told her what that summer had done to my hair, and she explained to me that my hair should not still be affected. My solution was to chop it all off. So I did. BUT IT CHANGED NOTHING. My hair still fell out in giant clumps (which clogged the drain over and over again). When I finally decided to research thyroid issues, I saw that one of the symptoms was hair loss or change. HALLELUJAH! But now that I’m taking medication, nothing has changed. I’m still wondering when the medication will kick in.


UPDATE: Went to get my hair cut and colored and she said that she sees curls at my roots and that her other hyper/hypothyroid clients took four-six months for their hair to go back to normal.


Hormone Issues 

Talk about hormonally challenged? Let’s just say that my hormones have been off the wall since this thyroid thing started. I have developed bumps all over my chest (I promise they’re not pimples). They itch and will not go away no matter how hard I try. I have been sweating like I just ran a marathon. No matter what deodorant I use, by the end of the day, I’ve sweat through it.


UPDATE: I lost two clothing sizes!!! The medicine is really kicking in and I am beyond excited.


The road to fix my thyroid issues is far from over, but I am so thankful that I took the initiative to talk to my doctor and that I caught the issue early, before my symptoms got even worse. If you think that you may be experiencing the same problem, check out WebMD. A lot of women experience thyroid problems and worse (cancer). Like I always say, better safe than sorry.