Monday, January 31, 2011
Well I'm already on Week 5 here! So talk about a chocolate addict.... I feel like one when I can count the days since my last chocolate consumption! Ta daaaaa, it's been exactly one month!!! *crowd goes wild* Hahah and what a day to celebrate such a feat... you see, it's absolutely a perk to work at a health food store for the easy access to such wholesome foods... But on the flip-side of the matter, we got in 3 BOXES OF ORGANIC DARK CHOCOLATE TODAY!!! And I priced them all by hand individually. HAHA cruel and unusual... but I'm quite proud of my progress and I didn't want to cave, so I'll be keeping away from that stuff for a little while longer yet, perhaps until I feel more rebalanced.
Weeks 3 and 4 were quite good weeks, as I learned a nice way to make miso soup, and I've been on a seaweed rampage adding it to as many things as I can! (It's not a strong flavor, I use these!)
They're wonderful and they don't have a very strong flavor, so I add them to a lot of things nowadays!
I've been keeping to at least one large salad a day, with avocado, pumpkin seeds, and either flax seeds/oil, or hemp seeds, and if I roast some red peppers in the oven, I'll chop up some of those to go in too! I've also used 1-4 cloves of garlic everyday in some form or another (usually 1-2 in the salad) And I've been making hummus at least once a week or so too, trying to get the best flavor (which has been a little challenging!) But I've been making roasted red pepper hummus, and it's pretty good!
I haven't had ANY fruit for at least 3 weeks. And my weakness remains brown rice snaps and raw almond butter a couple times a day! The rice snaps ingredients: "Brown rice, sesame seeds." The end. I don't feel too guilty about them! And I figure I eat enough almond butter that would be equivalent to about a handful or so of almonds per day... except creamy and rich!
Yogurt has been a semi-regular protein/calcium source through all weeks so far as well. I either go for the Redwood Hill Farm Goat Yogurt or the FAGE Greek yogurt. The goat yogurt is delicious and comes from a really conscientious farm, but I'm kind of yearning for organic raw goat yogurt... the real deal. The Greek yogurt is a protein powerhouse, so that gets me through busy days or long between-times of meals. Sometimes I throw a small handful of cashews in with the yogurt if I really need a pick-me-up at work, but something tells me that's not the best food combining....
Before a double-job day or a long hike day, I'll start the morning off with an over-hard egg with steamed kale or chard or just raw spinach tossed in, with a little green onion to boot (and now kelp flakes!!)
And stir fry has been quite a delicious staple. I don't actually "fry" very much, except for the diced onion and sometimes zucchini or peppers. I take to steaming most things that go in the stir-fry though, like the broccoli or the kale or chard... and I've been keeping away from mushrooms for the time being too, as I read that candida/fungus would (perhaps obviously) like to feed on such things. Once everything's in the stir-fry pan, I sprinkle some dried miso from my miso soup packets on top, for a pleasant gluten-free + fermented soy flavoring. Haven't been using any carrot! And trying my whole self best to use lots of broccoli and leafy greens. I also have thrown in a small bit of fresh grated ginger too, dee-lish!
I made my first nettle infusion the other night! It turned out very brown in color though, compared to the bright green variations I've read about.... but I also read that since it isn't fresh-harvested nettle, and depending on the source of the dried nettle, it may turn out brown. Not sure what effect that has on the nutritional value of the infusion, but it does taste pretty good!
And still plugging away with a tall glass of Just Barley drink every morning.
I've somehow taken to doing some gentle nighttime yoga postures and some 'muscle toning' exercises too. Nothing very aerobic (since it's nighttime,) but it feels wonderful to stretch after the long day! I also like to stretch a bit in the morning now too... suppose I'm slowly adding the yoga element in now, too! I like elevating my feet for 5 or so minutes once or twice a day too, as I think I need to pay more attention to my legs/circulation, etc.
Really trying to build a healthy foundation that will just feel too good to stray from in the future!! So far I'd say it's working quite well!!
Thanks for reading!
Friday, January 28, 2011
Today I made my own miso soup, with Miso Master red miso paste, wakame seaweed, and a little chopped up green onion (though the recipe calls for scallion, but I do not have....)
It turned out great! I'm super excited about the more "genuine" batch than the packet type, though the packet type will do lovely for camping trips!
The deal with miso soup is that the soy used is fermented. Being fermented means it contains cultures (like yogurt or sauerkraut, etc) And they will help to replenish the gut flora.
I'm also learning more and more about minerals and sources of healthy minerals. Herbal infusions seem to offer some of the most potent amounts of minerals. Susan Weed (as I mentioned in the previous post) boasts quite a bit about the herb nettle. Also known as STINGING nettle. But, when the leaves are dried and prepared as a tea INFUSION (not just a hot tea, but set up to steep for at least 4 hours in a jar of boiled water) 8 oz. of such a concoction is said to have 500mg of calcium available for your body! So far I've only really been able to find information about that on Susan's site, which is fantastic! But I'd like to see if that's been mentioned elsewhere! I don't doubt that it is, at the very least, a terrific source of calcium. And I can't wait to get out to the co-op and pick up some dried nettle and have a go!
So I'm on Week 4, and can you believe I haven't had a pinch of chocolate, ice cream, cookies, or any kind of sweets! The closest I've had to a sweet is a small serving of rice pudding I got at India Garden with my mom the other day :-) (and it should be noted that for once I didn't even heap the pudding into 5 bowls and gulp it down like my life depended on it!!) I'm feeling pretty strong! And I feel like I have much less of a craving for sweets now, though the dark chocolate bars at my job still yell at me more often than I'd like! But I'm gonna go as long as I can, paying much attention to my body and what it says. Almond butter has been my "sweet," and all I use is raw almond butter, nothing added... just pure almonds ground into smooth amazingness :-)
Weight fluctuates through each day... usually weigh in around 121-122 in the morning and about 126 in the evening... I'm excited to see what changes when I start jogging again in the spring!
Would like to focus more on yoga. I've been doing several postures every other day or so, but I'd like to really work on a routine.
Well it's late and I should get to bed, but that's a quick update for ya! Thanks for reading!
Thursday, January 27, 2011
My latest ventures: miso soup & seaweed. There's Wakame seaweed IN the miso soup I've been making, and it got my wheels turning... check out this article from Susan Weed, a renowned herbalist (who I *WILL* someday study under!)
Excerpted from the text
“Healing Wise - A Wise Woman’s Herbal”
by Susun Weed
SEAWEED IS AN EVERYDAY MIRACLE
Seaweed is an everyday miracle. The benefits of including seaweed’s optimum nourishment into your daily diet are extensive: increased longevity, enhanced immune functioning, revitalization of the cardiovascular, endocrine, digestive, and nervous systems, and relief from minor aches and pains. No wonder seaweed has been part of the traditional diet of all coastal cultures, including the people of Japan, Korea, China, Iceland, Denmark, Wales, Scotland, Hawaii, and the South Pacific Islands, and all the people who had trading contacts with the coastal cultures.
All seaweeds are high in fiber. Those in the brown family supply large amounts of algin as well. Each seaweed contains a wide range of essential nutrients, including enzymes, nucleic acids, amino acids, minerals, trace elements, and A, B, C, D, E, and K vitamin complexes. Seaweeds offer us zest for life and the perfect medium for electrical nerve flow.
Benefits from a wise woman alliance with seaweed - glossier hair, more luminous skin, less digestive distress, renewed energy and stamina, rekindled sexual desires, and reawakened delight in life - will be noticeable in about 13 weeks.
SEAWEED IS AN ALLY WITH LOTS OF HEART
Seaweed is an ally with lots of heart. Dancing, singing seaweed strengthens circulation, balances blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, builds healthy blood, increases the veins and hearts contractile force, restores and increases cardiac efficiency, nourishes and prolongs the life of the heart muscle, and encourages rhythmical working of the heart in all its aspects: physical, emotional, and inspirational.
How can weeds with so much sodium (we all know salt raises blood pressure) be good for the heart and even hypotensive - that is, capable of lowering blood pressure~
DID YOU KNOW~
Sodium is not to blame for high blood pressure. Sodium chloride may be. Table salt may be. But table salt contains sugar, aluminum salts, and several other agents as well as sodium chloride. This is an unnatural salt solution and one that creates cardiovascular stress. The naturally occurring sodium in seaweeds (and garden weeds) bathes the inner being with rich salty nourishment, like the amniotic fluid of our original home. This sodium relieves tension in blood vessels made brittle by immersion in the wrong saline solution, table salt. (Note that commercial sea salt is usually as full of free flowing agents and other addenda as commercial table salt. Real evaporated seawater salt is pinkish in color. As usual, if it’s white, you can’t trust it.)
Seaweed is a wonderful green ally to use with other Wise Woman ways when healing those with problems of the heart and circulation including atherosclerosis, hypertension, chilly extremities, varicosities, heart infections, repressed feelings, and self blame.
SEAWEED IS A WAY TO GET YOUR JUICES FLOWING
Daily use of seaweed provides optimum nourishment for the hormonal, lymphatic, urinary, and nervous systems. The hormonal system uses minerals and trace elements so richly available from seaweed to repair tissue, build new cells, and create hormones responsible for regulating blood pressure, metabolism, fertility, sexuality, and reaction to allergens, to name but a few.
The lymphatic and immune systems are avid partakers of seaweed’s splendid feast of nutrients. Combined with this optimum nourishment, the communication enhancing effects of seaweed further enhance response time and strength in the immune system. This reduces opportunist bacterial and viral infections and helps prolong youth and vitality, not to mention joy and ease in life.
The urinary system gets a special boost from seaweed’s seeming excess of potassium and sodium. Those with cystitis, kidney weakness, gout diabetic kidney ills, and bladder weakness find health / wholeness / holiness with seaweed and Wise Woman Ways.
The nervous system relaxes in the presence of seaweed’s mineral abundance. Seaweed creates an inner environment where nerve signals flow more smoothly and where brain chemicals are produced as needed: to maintain alertness, increase memory, reduce pain, and provide a sense of buoyant bliss. (Envision the head sized floats of kelp bobbing on a gently undulating sea.)
SEAWEED IS A GUT GREASER
Seaweed provides a multitude of gifts to the digestive system: soothing, disinfecting, and nourishing distressed surfaces, helping out with the metabolism of lipids, and maintaining a healthy balance of digestive yeasts and bacteria in the intestines.
Seaweed is an exceptional ally to the wise woman healing those with gastric ulcers, duodenal ulcers, ulcerated colon, colitis, constipation, watery stools, and other intestinal ills, thanks to its bio-available nourishment, high algin content, mucilaginous fiber, and rhythmical resonation.
SEAWEED IS AN ALLY IN WOMEN’S MYSTERIES
Seaweed flows and shifts like the energy of a woman. Saline solutions of ocean and uterus rock in rhythm. Pulses of tide, menstruation, heartbeat, and fertility join seaweeds and wombs. Nourishing breast milk merges with waves of green fronds.
Seaweed eaten daily is a powerful ally to a wise woman for, prevention and healing herself or others with osteoporosis, breast cancer, mastitis, uterine cancer, irregular menstrual cycles, ovarian cancer, fibroids, ovarian cysts, infertility, fibro-cystic breast distress, and pre-menstrual / menopausal problems such as water retention, emotional freak-outs, chills and hot flashes, fatigue, lack of lubrication, loss of calcium and general irritability.
SEAWEED IS A GREAT WAY TO STAY IN SHAPE
By providing optimum nourishment to the thyroid, helping to regulate metabolism, and increasing the effectiveness of the digestive system, seaweed helps you get in shape and stay that way.
SEAWEED PROPERTIES AND USES
~ Protective - anti-radiation, anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, anti-toxic, anti-rheumatic, antibiotic, antibacterial, alterative.
~ Nutritive - trace mineral supplement, cardio-tonic, rejuvenative, aphrodisiac.
~ Mucilaginous - Emollient, demulcent, aperient, anti-constipative, diuretic.
~ Anti-stress- Analgesic, calmative, anti-pyretic.
Monday, January 17, 2011
For anyone catching up, my previous post explains candida and the candida diet. I would also like to re-plug www.thecandidadiet.com for it's exceptional library of information and protocols. It's given me the biggest shove to do this thing!
Tomorrow marks the end of Week 2!
I should say, the candida diet.... it's not 100% only for people struggling with candida. It truly is a very, very healthy regimen to follow, regardless of health issues, and may even prove beneficial to preventing major health issues in the future. It's about the most well-rounded "diet" that I've heard of, and you don't have to be vegan or vegetarian or any-which-way to use it as a general guideline for staying healthy. It mostly just eliminates excess carbs, unhealthy fats, and unhealthy food in general.
It reintroduces LIVE enzymes that do numerous positive things for your systems, and can shed dangerous toxins from your organs and bloodstream, like heavy metals (ie mercury fillings, cadmium from cigarette smoke, etc..), free radicals... and it can give you back energy you may have thought was lost for good.
So anyhow, I suppose this is my first post of my own personal experience with this beast!
First thing's first: I AM TAKING THINGS SLOWLY. One thing I have learned about many of Life's rewards is this one key ingredient. You guessed it! THYME THYME AND MORE THYME! Going slowly allows me to adjust and has TOTALLY kept me from giving in and binging on sweets and carbs like I may or may not have been known to do in past trials :-X You always read that you can't lose very much weight very quickly, as it's mostly water anyway; and (for me, at least) I'm more likely to quickly revert back to old diet habits and patterns. But with a little fitness finesse (including copious amounts of thyme!), you really really can build-your-own healthy lifestyle, minus abrupt binges, mood swings, self-criticism, and discomfort. Of course weight loss is a part of my goal too, but I know that it will happen naturally as I slowly maintain a snail's pace of not eating such huge portions, and not eating anything INXS! For now, I find contentment in the 3-5 pounds that don't show up on the scale during the times when I hop on :-) Little by little....
This isn't going to be a day-by-day potentially boring account of my experience, but I *will* begin the writings with my very first day. The first day (or two) of a serious cleanse, you really should try to have the day off from strenuous or stressful activities (ie work or other challenging activities) And things like yoga and meditation can be invaluable.
On Tuesday, Jan. 4, I started my morning with a tall glass of distilled water with a powdered raw green juice mix called Just Barley..... it's barley that's been freeze-dried (or somehow formulated) into a powder, without using any heat to do so, thereby keeping it RAW. Raw barley is EXTREMELY comparable nutritionally to wheatgrass juice, if you're familiar. Wheatgrass is usually offered at most places that make fresh smoothies (a "wheatgrass shot").
Here is the Just Barley website that gives a lovely description: http://www.pureplanet.com/ProductPage.aspx?ItemID=626
And here is a third-party semi nutritional analysis of the nutrients that Just Barley delivers. I say "semi," because it's not a full breakdown of just how much of each vitamin/mineral/enzyme is actually in a serving. But man it mentions a study of barley inhibiting cancer growth, amongst lots of other helpful info. It's not long either, just a few paragraphs... go!!!
Several hours after my morning barley beverage, I went for a salad of organic baby lettuces, some carrot, raw pumpkin seeds, avocado, slices of granny smith apple, and maybe a tablespoon of garlic olive oil. (*all ingredients organic, except the avocado, which is generally known to test negative for pesticide residues.) There is some substance in pumpkin seeds known to kill off any parasites in the intestines. And garlic kills yeast AND parasites. The granny smith apple isn't technically supposed to be in the first stage of the diet, but that's what going slow is all about! They are, however, recommended for the second stage and beyond as one of the less-sugary fruits you can reintroduce into your diet. (I"ve since weaned myself off of the granny smith apples... didn't want to waste 'em!) The pumpkin seeds, avocado, and olive oil can all be beneficial fats. I say "can be" because they're best if they are raw. Not roasted and/or salted seeds, and olive oil doesn't have the highest heat tolerance before it starts breaking down and really shouldn't be used for hot cooking. It's great for you right out of the bottle though! (not that I'd recommend chugging it!) Key point being: these are not fats to be afraid of. Your body is going to tear into them and use them to build healthy brain, heart, and other tissue. They're not hydrogenated, so they won't morph your cells into unknown shapes and sizes.
I was hoping I could get away with the barley and the salad, but come evening my stomach was rumbling, and I had indeed developed a mild headache. I absolutely have to add that this was the mildest headache I ever experienced on any type of fast I've ever done. I did one last winter and actually threw up the following morning and had a pretty rough headache the night before. The body has toxins in it... it just does.... But that was last year. It's another reason I decided to ease into it this time around. I did begin to actually have a couple dizzy spells this time, which kind of freaked me out. So for easiness sake, come suppertime this year, I made a frozen organic Cascadian Farm broccoli & carrot meal heated on the stove, which has a light spiced sauce on it. That helped settle the stomach. But I was still a tad dizzy, and I didn't want to play too rough with my blood sugar, so I opted for a half of a container of Fage greek yogurt (just plain), packing some serious protein heat, guaranteed to slow the blood sugar down if that were the issue. I also layed down to allow the bloodflow a bit more ease to my head. That did indeed resolve things. Oh and lots of water!
So that was day 1, and I had a bit of a tough time sleeping very well through the night. I've narrowed down the cause for that though, and it's mainly that I haven't yet mastered my mind and shutting it off when it's not needed. When I don't shut it off, it tends to lean toward hypochondriac mode from time to time and will get carried away with thoughts of health and concerns..... Mantra mantra mantra! I wouldn't doubt that my body was also in an un-easy state, as all of the raw foods I'd consumed through the day and the barley juice all detox the body's organs. That's one of the causes of headaches and vomiting and nausea the first day or so of a cleanse. It's kind of a catch-22, or a "necessary evil," as far as I know. So these detoxing substances go into your body and they start detaching stored-up toxins in your organs and bloodstream. These toxins are now "freed up" from their stored positions, and if they're not already in the bloodstream, they make their way into it (or into the other elimination routes...) And so you're basically just "shaking things up" a bit! Add to that action the fact that you're not eating a huge breakfast or lunch or dinner like you're used to, you're trying to stay focused on your goal for health, and you've got a recipe for a bit of a "shocked" feeling, for sure.
A huge part of this process is drinking enough water and ridding your body of these toxins. It's great that you're loosening up the bad stuff in your system, but it's equally as important to clear them out as soon as is possible so they're not free-floating around... Lots of fiber is extremely important now. And fiber will not work if you don't follow it up with sufficient amounts of water. Water allows it to do what it does, and without enough water, any fiber you take will likely just "bulk up" and not go anywhere at all! It's another reason healthy oils are important, as they help the fiber and wastes, you know, get moving. If you're having any trouble "eliminating," there are a number of inexpensive herbal laxatives on the market. I always thought flaxseed was the best fiber known to man, but it wasn't doing a thing for me this time. You would think more vegetables and water would naturally = regularity, ftw? But all I can think is that my body is used to much larger amounts of food moving through my system, so I don't think it's triggered to take action with the much lesser amount of food I've been consuming.... If you find any similar issues, I recommend Renew Life's "CleanseMore" caps, taken before bed. Or a product called "Swiss Kriss," or an Ayurvedic herbal blend called "triphala." (Might sound weird, but it's quite popular in health circles.) Still need lots of water. Ah, health food talk.....
Well, you can definitely take cleansing even slower than all that, if it's going to put you at a pace for success. Start with one huge salad a day, with the rest of your meals about the same as usual. And you can go through the process step by step... I'm going slower this time, but I still had to bite the bullet on the first day to set my pace.
I suppose I will leave off here, before I write myself a book, but these posts may be pouring out more often than weekly or bi-weekly! I will likely write more tomorrow!
Saturday, January 15, 2011
So.... what is "candida" anyway? Do you mean Canadia? The candida diet isn't all that popular (even in the world of a health food store and its vast number of visitors!) I'm going to sum its unpopularity up as having one main reason: it's a really strict diet and requires some lifestyle changes. Then there are sub-causes, like the overwhelming unavailability of proper foods to eat publicly while on it (though I'm sure learning and finding more as I go!) A second sub-cause is that people are very unaware of it. And I'll even branch out to say a third cause is people (like myself) who are fully aware of it and are well-equipped (knowledgeably) to carry it out........... but don't... because it's hard. (Sub-cause #4 is that alcohol feeds the fungus, and haulting drinking isn't at the top of most peoples' agendas....) I WOULD LIKE TO ADD: You do not have to become vegetarian to follow the candida diet. As a matter of fact, it's much easier if you aren't. That being said, I give you.......*drum roll*..... Candida Albicans Unmasked:
Candida Albicans is an opportunistic fungus (or form of yeast) that is the cause of many undesirable symptoms ranging from fatigue and weight gain, to joint pain and gas.
The Candida yeast is a part of the gut flora, a group of microorganisms that live in your mouth and intestine. When the Candida population starts getting out of control it weakens the intestinal wall, penetrating through into the bloodstream and spreading throughout the body.
As it spreads it produces toxic by-products that cause damage to your body tissues and organs, wreaking havoc on your immune system. The major waste product of yeast cell activity is Acetaldehyde, a poisonous toxin that promotes free radical activity in the body. Acetaldehyde is also converted by the liver into ethanol (drinking alcohol). Some people even report feeling a drunk or hungover feeling along with debilitating fatigue from the high amounts of ethanol is their system.
Do You Have Candida?
Everyone has Candida, and a significant proportion of us may have Candidiasis, or an overgrowth of Candida. Candida starts to cause trouble when there is some change in your body that allows it to overgrow. This change could be anything from a few courses of antibiotics, a prolonged diet rich in carbohydrates and sugar, or even something as common as a lengthy period of stress at work.
So it's a tough call. The symptoms are so wide-ranging that Candidiasis can be misdiagnosed easier than it can even be diagnosed! How do you know if you have Candidiasis? Well, there are tests you can take (at-home), or there's always monitoring your body. Here's a little list of common symptoms, though note that these aren't always caused by Candida alone. There may be underlying issues.
-recurring illness (colds, flu, stomach bugs...)
-troubled skin/hair/nails (including inexplainable rashes/spots/blotches on the skin that can be pink, red/brown, or white)
And that's the short list!!! It's common that most people might only think that females get it, as a yeast infection is the most well-known form of Candidiasis. But it can take many other forms in men, too. But to the ladies, I will say, by committing to the proper diet and treating the overgrowth, you will never have another yeast infection again! (unless you let things get out of hand in the future.....) I'm also experimenting on its effect on period regularity.
So now that we've covered a bit of what candida is, I'll explain the diet a bit.
*Disclaimer: This diet should preferably be a firmly-rooted commitment. This may become a total lifestyle change, if you find success. It is best to take your time, and that can mean you may even want to stick things out for the better part of one year.
I hope that doesn't make you stop reading. It's taken me several years to finally arrive at the point in my life when I'm ready for the "real deal." I've done 3-4 "candida cleanses" over the span of the last 5 years, and they were a month long each. I used the brand Renew Life's "Candida Cleanse" kit each time, and adjusted my diet to their guidelines. These work great, I felt wonderful, I noticed beneficial changes.... but I never committed to maintaining the routine. But each time I cleansed, I learned something new, whether it was a new recipe, a new mental approach, or a new fact as to why it was beneficial. I would strongly suggest a month-long cleanse of some sort to anyone approaching this diet. It will give you a window with which to view the basic scheme of things.
Step 1 is detoxing & killing the overgrowth. Step 1 can be a very difficult (but extremely rewarding) rite-of-passage into the success of healing your body. It's the step that will actually starve the yeast/fungus of all that it feeds on. This does not mean you have to starve your body! And there are many ways to achieve this step successfully. Want to know an easy way? Do a yeast cleanse like I mentioned above for one month, following it as strictly as you can. It gets a little grey in step 1, as there are so many approaches. Some websites & practitioners go so far as to recommend colonics (colon cleansing). My opinion? I wouldn't think someone would need to go that far unless they were a.)diagnosed with any severe disease(s), b.)severely overweight (a lot of "weight" is stored in the colon as broken-down matter from things you digest, or c.)if you are very regulary irregular (hahah sorry I love word-play) In other words, if constipation is a common issue in your life. If you already have a severe digestive disorder, colonics may not be for you. Your doctor should very likely be able to make that call, and if he/she can't, I think the colonic practitioners know enough about it to inform you.
The toughest part about Step 1 is creating new food habits. I give a link further down that offers FULLY-LOADED lists of foods to avoid and foods to consume. The second-toughest part is going through the "detox" bit. It, to me, seems to have many similarities to what people might go through when quitting smoking or actual drug detox. Thankfully, most of these symptoms seem to only hang around the first 24 hours or so. If they stick around for longer, it generally just means your body really needed the purge. Of course if you're on medications or really struggling, you'll want to be careful. Don't hurt yourself! But "hurt" is a different threshold for many, and many people are quickly defeated. I personally generally suffer a headache through the first day that subsides by the next day. More on that in my future posts of my experiences. You may get cravings for the things you are avoiding, you may be moody, you may be tired, you may become nauseous, etc. I can't stress enough that these are very common reactions. Our diets are poor. We don't eat enough fresh foods, and we drink, smoke, or eat fast foods far too often.
Step 2 is repopulating the good bacteria in your gut. You'd be staying on the strict diet here, but you can opt to reintroduce some foods that you avoided in Step 1. Another word for "good bacteria" is "probiotics." You've all likely heard of "ANTI-biotics." These save lives. They wipe out disease in ways we've never experienced before.... but they take all the "good guys" too! "Anti-Biotic" litereally means "anti-life." That's great when it means "anti-life of deathly diseases in my body," but it's horrible when it means "oops now all of my good bacteria was taken down too, and I have no immune system!!" Sad but true. So, yogurt is likely the first thing that comes to mind here. You know how some doctors tell you to eat yogurt when taking antibiotics? ....did they ever explain why? Yogurt is known to have "cultures" (probiotics) in it, naturally. And that's a good start. But the amount of probiotics in yogurt is tiny, compared to the amounts supplied in capsules that you can buy. You can take probiotics in Step 1 also, they really can't hurt you. If you're lactose-intolerant, you may want to watch that the probiotics you go to purchase are totally free of dairy. Oh and just a suggestion, you might not want to go to a GNC or Walgreens. You can get the real deal at a health food store.
Step 3 is just keeping up with the general rif-raf of the whole thing. Keep avoiding bad foods, eat lots of better-quality foods, and you can even continue taking probiotics just to keep things in check (esp. if you "cheat" a bit later on down the road and eat something really unhealthy.
For a way more in-depth description, check out this wicked site that I recently found: www.thecandidadiet.com It explains just about EVERYTHING!
You'll notice I changed the Steps 1, 2, & 3 around to my liking, because their "1" and "2" are basically the same thing.
Well! I think I've covered most of the basic explanations. It's really easy for me to "over-explain" things; I don't like to leave people guessing, and communication is important to me. If you find yourself reading this and have ANY QUESTIONS, please leave a comment that you've got a question (or more!), and I will contact you right away to help out!!
I will now be posting a weekly or bi-weekly blog charting and tracking my progress with the chosen course of following this diet! I'm excited about this and hope that it will even help my personal progress as something to keep me on track. Thanks so much for reading! I really truly hope it helps, even if only in educating people about their health.