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O Candida…(this ain’t the song or the country)

So, since I wrote about my research into my health issues, I have talked to several people about suspicions that they may be struggling with Candida.  Whenever I learn something in life, I like to share it.  So, I am going to try to compile some helpful resources and things I have learned to help with Candida.  Want to know if Candida might be what you are struggling with?  Here is a questionnaire to assess your symptoms.  If this might be you, here are some suggestions…

***Know that I am not a professional, just a sufferer.  You are responsible for your journey and your healing.  I am just trying to point you to places that I read and found helpful.

1.  First things first–Take a good probiotic (this is one a friend recommended to me).  Actually, ANYONE should be taking a probiotic–your babies, your mommas, your cousins, your neighbors–e’rbody!  Why?  Our body, specifically our guts, need good bacteria.  When you have a bacterial infection, your doctor has given you antibiotics.  Antibiotics can save our lives–they are not bad.  Too many antibiotics can wreak havoc by killing the good bacteria that helps us function in a healthy way in our body.      There is a book called the GAPS diet that has a great explanation as to how many of our issues like ADHD, depression, Autism, autoimmune disorders etc are exacerbated by our diets and the leaky guts we have due to the imbalance of bacteria there.  I began taking a probiotic when I had mono over a year ago, and I have seen it transform our family and others.  This is not just something you take when you are on antibiotics!!!  Take it all the time!

2.   Your Diet drives this ship.  You cannot fight Candida without changing your diet.  If you are miserable enough, you WILL change your diet.  The interwebs:) have all kinds of information, and sometimes that can be completely overwhelming especially when you are feeling poorly!  There are several websites that helped me in compiling a plan for how my diet should change.  You have to plan for this–you CANNOT wing it.  I used this site and this site to come up with a plan.

Basically, you will need to cut sugar (of all kinds–even naturally occuring in fruits and veggies), gluten (and no not even “gluten free” items that are processed), and dairy.  You can do the reading of all the “whys” in the GAPS diet and on those websites above.  Candida yeast feeds on sugar, even the stress hormone cortisol that is released in fight or flight turns to sugar and the yeast rejoices.  You will start with a cleanse–homemade veggie broth, and raw or roasted legal veggies, lots of water, for several days.  You will experience die-off.  This can be significant–I was in bed for 3 days sicker than I have been in a long time.  This occurs once, and it IS WORTH IT.  The yeast has wreaked havoc on your body, and it will not leave quietly.  All I could think was, “if this is what it is doing to my body in die-off, what in the world was it doing to all the systems of my body when I was feeding a happy monster????”

3.  Look into Anti-fungals.  You fight with dietary and supplemental anti-fungals.  I chose to use some essential oils from my research–lemongrass, oregano, cinnamon bark, clove, ocotea.   I basically have used them in a variety of different ways.  You can also talk to your doc about a prescription anti-fungal.  Do your research.

4.  Realize that your symptoms show you the train wreck that has been going on in your body.  Your body might need help in figuring out how to function properly again.  Along with probiotic and anti-fungals, there might be food and supplemental help.  We have been through a stressful season where our adrenals are a joke.  Here are some that I have chosen to take–do your research.  Just want to point you in a direction.

Candida support supplement, Vitamin D, Omega 3, Evening Primrose, Licorice Root, Magnesium and Potassium support, Vitamin C, Vitamin B-12, Multi-vitamin, Milk Thistle, (and I am probably forgetting some).

5.  Some practical things I like in my diet-Most Kombucha and Probiotic Drinks I would avoid–because of the sugar and fermentation.  I have found this drink to be 1)refreshing 2)aiding detox with lemon and cayenne 3)legal since it has 1 gram of sugar.  Whole foods has it for the cheapest price and then Target and Kroger carry it.

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Another thing that I do weekly is cook a whole organic chicken and then make bone broth.  ADD homemade bone broth to your diet.  I drink it and freeze it to use in all my cooking.  Whole Foods and Earth Fare are places to get bones from other animals to make beef broth.

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Use the heck out of Apple Cider Vinegar–add it here and there to recipes (just a smidge).  Drink it, research ways to use it.  It is invaluable.

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Only buy and cook grass fed meat, free range chicken, etc.  Why?  To avoid any antibiotics that have been added to them–remember the whole gut balance thing?

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I hope some of these things encourage you.  I did this with A LOT of help from the LORD.  His strength and discipline–I am not self-disciplined, but I was desperate.  If you think, “I could never,” ask Him for help.  I have dropped 20 lbs and feel so much better–and I have a long way to go to health.  This is NOT an overnight process to healing, but it is a process to healing.

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