Monday, January 17, 2011
Candida Diet, Weeks 1-2
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!
Posted by Jen at 11:57 PM