Candida Cleanse: Week One

I have survived the first 7 days of this cleanse and I already have a lot of stuff to think about and comment on.

Have I been duped?!

I honestly had no idea that getting a live cell analysis was quite unconventional. I thought that it was so science-y (yes that’s a word). And it’s so real seeing your blood cells on screen.  I was chatting with a friend who is a lab technician who looks at blood for a living. She informed me that if you actually had yeast in your blood you would be in seriously critical condition. Then, two other alternative practitioners I see (my awesome chiropractor and my naturopath) both said that anytime they’ve heard of someone going to get a live cell analysis done, the results are generally the same: yeast and rouleaux. One opinion is that rouleaux is a normal thing that happens when your blood is drawn. Like a clotting thing I guess.

So I spent some time being quite frustrated. Who do I believe? What do I do? Is this just a total waste of my time? I reminded myself that it was recommended to me by two different people to do the Candida cleanse and take these certain pills (New Roots Candida Stop). Plus the fact that making a commitment to eat healthy for a month won’t kill me. It’s my body.

I will go back for my follow up visit and second live cell analysis to see the results and what difference a month has made. And, I’m going to ask him about the whole ‘yeast showing up in your blood is bad news’ deal. I imagine that the live cell analysis is just another alternative way of people seeing what imbalance you have going on. Just like energy work such as reiki.

My friend commented that I’m doing too much. Meaning I’ve been going with my foot hard on the gas and then hard on the brakes with cleanse and then no cleanse and my body probably isn’t too happy. I could gradually be going at a steady pace in one direction, adjusting one thing at a time. I honestly have no patience for that, but appreciate the insight and keep it in the front of my mind.
Enough with the being dizzy!!

I won’t lie. The first five or so days on the cleanse weren’t the easiest. It really wasn’t because I’m not eating sugar, but more so because I wasn’t eating enough food in general – 100% unintentionally. (Or maybe it’s because I’m not enough as many carbs? Or maybe it’s a symptom of the cleanse? Still unsure …)  But, take away so many carb options and vegetables don’t really have a lot of calories! I ate meals as per usual and did not feel hungry, but wasn’t taking enough in. I pack as much good stuff (quality calories) into my smoothies in the morning and snacks during the day, but it just seems to be SO much fat! Not that I’m afraid of fat, but I think it’s good to have a balance between fats, carbs, and proteins. There are varying opinions about what percentage of each of those is ideal, but I’m pretty sure it varies from person to person.

In general, I don’t eat a lot of meat, but have added it into my diet now as I need more high quality calories. (Yes, all you vegans and vegetarians probably won’t agree with that, but I do buy high quality meats and this is the choice I’ve made for now).

I’ve decided to start tracking my food a bit better and seeing what I eat and how that makes me feel. Even today I experienced dizziness. No fun!

I’m thinking that this cleanse might be the beginning to a new way of eating. In general I eat fairly healthy, but I believe this month will teach me a bit about my body and how it reacts to certain food. I’m wondering if I maybe function better on a higher carb diet. Or maybe an increase in protein??

I’m approaching one of my busiest weeks this month (or even this summer!) which means a lot of food prep. This quote will be my motto for the week:

If-you-fail-to-plan-you

And the quest for the perfect Candida-friendly smoothie

It’s the morning of day three and I’m still determined to create a delicious Candida-friendly green smoothie. I didn’t realize how much I relied on bananas to make my green smoothies so sweet, smooth and delicious! The next month will be an experiment with all of this for sure.

I found this great infographic from Fork&Beans that helps.
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Typically my smoothies look like this:

1 cup unsweetened carrageenan-free almond milk

2 cups greens (usually baby kale or spinach)

1/2 cup berries

1-2T ground flaxseed or chia seed

1T coconut oil or almond butter

cinnamon

3 ice cubes

I guess it will be a lot of trial and error and recording which ones taste the best. This morning I used baby kale, blueberries, almond butter, flaxseed and cinnamon. It has been the best so far. I am waiting to hear back if I can have coconut water and raw cacao, because that could jazz things up a bit.

I’m open to suggestions if you have any!

Candida Cleanse: Day One

Day one was pretty ho-hum. I decided to weigh myself (to record my weight, not my worth) and took some measurements for fun. While the goal of this cleanse isn’t to lose weight, that would be a happy side effect for sure.

Even the day before I started the cleanse I was tired and cranky, and it was still the same the first day of the cleanse (clearly not lack-of-sugar related). I’ve decided that eggs and green smoothies will be my staple breakfast of choice.

So after blending up some greens with berries, it still tasted kind of grassy and I decided to add a little sweetener. In general, I am against artificial sweeteners and would prefer to use honey, maple syrup or dates. But since those are out* that won’t work this month. I know that I’m allowed Stevia as it’s a ‘natural’ sweetener. I’ve never used it before, and after what happened next I will probably never use it again! I put in about a 1/4 teaspoon of powdered Stevia into my smoothie.  Anyone reading this right now that has ever used Stevia is probably laughing, or your jaw has hit the floor. Stevia is powerful shit!!

I nearly threw up. Besides the fact that the smoothie was now INSANELY sweet, I’m pretty sure the taste of Stevia alone activates my gag reflexes. Seriously. But, because I’m insanely stubborn and thought about the cost of all those organic ingredients sitting in my blender, I sucked it back. I 100% thought I was going to throw up and felt that way for a few hours after.

Seriously. Ew.

BUT! On a happier note: I made crackers!! I found this recipe online for seed crackers and they turned out amazing! Okay, okay, they were a little too salty, but really not that bad. I thought that they would taste really earthy and healthy (you know what I’m talking about) but they are quite tasty.

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I spent most of the afternoon laying in bed watching Netflix hoping my crankiness would pass. Eventually made it to the computer to do some work, but the day was somewhat of a write off. I didn’t make it to my 2L of water goal, but it was close.

Dinner was a nice salad with quinoa, veggies, avocado and some lemon juice and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar. Lovely 🙂

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Besides the fact that I nearly threw up due to a Stevia overload morning smoothie, day one was pretty uneventful.
*I’m technically allowed trace amounts of honey in the morning, but am going to try and stick it out without using it. We’ll see how long that lasts!

Introduction: Why I’m doing this next cleanse

The past 3 years for me have been all about moving towards a more holistic lifestyle. Mind, body, spirit.

The catalyst was a sudden end to a long term relationship. At 28 I found myself single for the first time in a long time. And, over the course of the next couple years, I realized I didn’t know who I was outside of a relationship. So I started the journey to discover my authentic self.

Without getting into the whole story too much, I’ll focus on the body aspect of the changes I made in my life. I started eating less processed foods, moved my body more, and more importantly started listening to my body. And when I really listened I noticed that some things weren’t quite right. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t think I was going to die or that I had some serious disease, but I did believe I could feel better. My MD didn’t really listen and just wanted to prescribe me antibiotics all the time. (Uhm: NO!) So I started seeing an ND (who actually listened to me!) instead.

This particular journey is all about health in my body and cells. This year I’ve already done a couple cleanses: one for my liver and one for Candida. Which essentially meant cutting out dairy, sugar, gluten and alcohol for periods of time. Shortly after the Candida cleanse, I developed a crazy itchy rash and have had it for several weeks. It’s seriously annoying and frustrating.

A few days ago I had a live cell analysis. I got to see my blood under a microscope! It was very cool. Unfortunately, it showed exactly what my Naturopath had suspected: Candida. As a life long sugar addict, this isn’t a big shocker to me. The results of the analysis also showed rouleaux, or a stacking of the red blood cells. This, I believe, is due to inflammation and can be related to energy levels. It also showed kidney and liver distress as well as a parasite (seriously gross, but common when there is an abundance of Candida).

Too often we eat for pleasure and for our mouths and not enough for nutrition and our bodies. I believe there is a balance, and am determined to find it.

As a result of the cell analysis, I am starting a more intense Candida cleanse. I will be taking specific herbal pills, but will also be on a strict diet. Most fruits are out as well as anything with sugar or yeast. Essentially I can eat vegetables, quinoa, berries and lemons. Okay, okay, there’s lots more than that, but that is the gist of it.

This is a 30 day cleanse that I have chosen to do during probably one of the busiest months of my year. I am a wedding photographer, and we’re right smack dab in the middle of wedding season. I’ve decided that if I can get through this month, I can get through anything 😉