Hello again! I had originally planned to get this posted on Monday, but I have been learning so much about Candida lately that I wanted to postpone until I had integrated everything new I had learned.
If you haven’t read part one of this series, click here. In that post I talked about my personal struggles with recurrent vaginal yeast infections, UTIs, and digestive problems. Today I’d like to share more about how I’ve gone from experiencing chronic upset stomach and multiple UTIs and yeast infections per year to having regular bowel movements and much fewer occurrences of UTIs and yeast infections.
I want to warn you that these posts are LONG. Because of that, there will be a part 3 that is a continuation of this post. Happy Reading! 🙂
First Things First
I want everyone reading this to understand that healing is a process. When you have chronic pain, chronic sickness, or anything else that has moved past the acute phase and was not properly dealt with in the beginning, it takes time. Sometimes way more time than we think it should. The best thing we can all do for ourselves in this instance is to stop thinking it should go a certain way and accept where you are on your journey. As long as you keep moving forward and stay positive you will see results. There are often setbacks along the way, but this is normal and happens to pretty much everyone. Don’t get discouraged. Keep working with the info you have and always seek out more info and be willing to hear different opinions. Something that worked well for me might not work for you and vice versa because everyone has a different bio-makeup that they must work with and figure out. I’m sharing what worked for me in hopes that it will help some of you.
2 (of 5) Steps to Get Started
1 – Eat Organic Whole Foods & Avoid GMOs – Stop eating processed foods. Immediately. Go into your pantry and throw that s**t out. I’m serious. Right now. You should stop reading this, go into your pantry and throw away the garbage that food companies are calling “food”. This may seem extreme to some of you, but this is serious. The GMOs, preservatives, fillers, artificial colors and flavors they put into processed food is, I believe, killing us. Briefly: some of the most common preservatives are BHT and BHA. Click here or here to learn more about them. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want that crap in my body. Endocrine disruptors? Possible Carcinogen? No thanks!
If you look down a label of boxed or bagged food stuffs and you can’t pronounce what is there, just imagine that your body won’t be able to make any sense of it either. I can tell you from personal experience that when I stopped eating frozen dinners and quit using “cream of” soups in my cooking, my digestion improved. I used to make lasagna with chicken, cream of mushroom soup, spinach, and mushrooms. At the time it was one of my favorite dishes to eat, but I didn’t make it very often because it always gave me terrible stomach pain and upset stomach. There were times when I just thought this was normal because I always suffered with pain, but when I stopped eating these fake foods I felt better. I had more energy, I felt lighter, I had less pain and felt “cleaner” if that makes sense.
→What does this have to do with healing your gut? Pesticides are toxins. Yes, it’s true, bugs are much smaller than humans and the dosage that they receive from eating the crops is lethal to them and not to you in those same doses, BUT check out this article on Bt toxin (an insecticide that has been spliced into corn). The GMO variety of corn that uses Bt literally GROWS the pesticide inside the corn. It does not wash off or degrade during the growth cycle. If you are thinking, “Oh, that’s cool. I don’t eat corn.” If you eat processed or packaged food you are eating corn (in 2012 88% of corn and 94% of soybeans grown in the U.S. are genetically modified). Corn and sugar beets (90% are GMO) make up the majority of the added sugars to processed foods and they go by MANY names.
I have to stop here. GMOs are so prevalent in our society they are extremely difficult to avoid. It has taken years of research on my part to learn what I consider to be just a bit more than the tip of the iceberg. Just one more thought I wanted to leave you with regarding GMOs. Even if you switch to organic produce and stop eating processed foods, our food animals are fed GMO grains every day. Unless you are buying organic meats, you are eating GMOs in the meats you eat as well. As the saying goes, “You are what you eat and what you eat eats.”
2 – Stop Overuse of Antibiotics – I am not a doctor as I have already stated, but I will tell you, antibiotics are overused. Click here or here to read more about them and the problems with overuse/misuse. Antibiotics are not just overused in humans, but livestock as well. Again, if your food animal is being fed antibiotics, you are being fed antibiotics.
Antibiotics kill bacteria, that is why they are used. When you get a UTI, most likely it is because of an infecting bacterium like E.Coli. Most Western doctors prescribe some type of antibiotic to get rid of the UTI because that is what they have at their disposal, that is what they have been trained to do, and that is what most patients want. BUT antibiotics don’t just kill the bad bacteria, but ALL bacteria. We NEED bacteria in our gut to be healthy. The different bacteria help digest our food and protect against foreign invaders.
It’s not just the overgrowth of bad bacteria that is a problem, but the overgrowth of candida. “Prolonged antibiotic use is believed to be the most important triggering factor in the development of chronic candidiasis in many cases(1)”.
This brings me to what I believe to be my problem – candida overgrowth. I have been reading this phenomenal book called “Chronic Candidiasis” by Michael T. Murray. He has written at least 9 other books and is regarded as one of the world’s leading authorities on natural medicine, and graduated from Bastyr University in Seattle.
On page 3 of the book he has a table with symptoms/complaints from the “Typical Chronic Candidiasis Patient Profile”.
General Symptoms Include:
-bloating, gas -intestinal cramps -rectal itching -altered bowel function
-Vaginal Yeast Infection -Frequent bladder infections
He also lists endocrine system complaints, nervous system complaints, and immune system complaints. Lastly he includes…
-chronic vaginal yeast infections -chronic antibiotic use for infections (or acne)
-oral birth control use -oral steroid hormone use
I’m reading all this thinking “YIKES!! This is me!” Every single one of the bullet points he lists for past history matches my past history (AND those other complaints listed? Yep, ALL of those too). While I’ve never used antibiotics for acne, I have used them repeatedly for UTIs and Upper Respiratory Infections and I have used prednisone (an oral steroid) on multiple occasions. Not only have I used these drugs repeatedly, but my mom has as well. If you recall from my first post my mom was prescribed a low dose of antibiotics by her doctor to treat her recurrent UTIs. She took a low dose of antibiotic after sex. I believe this has put her immune system at a disadvantage and mine as well. And my sister is allergic to almost every antibiotic out there.
Part Three is finished and posted. Go HERE.