Ninety days ago, actually 92 days ago I began a journey. One in which I had contemplated numerous times over the past 15 years. I am talking about ninety days of yeast free living. No; not the yeast as in bread; although I gave that up too. This diet is aimed at killing any candida yeast that might be growing in your body. Candida can build up following excessive use of antibiotics, which I had taken due to a bad bladder and kidney.
The diet entails giving up anything that might encourage the growth of that yeast. This undertaking is not for the weak, and yet I am weak. It is not for the bread lover, and yet I am a bread lover and baker! It is not for the sweets addict, and yet did I mention I am a baker? It is for someone to try when you have tried almost everything else to alleviate joint pain, help with brain fog and to lose some weight in the process.
I finally took the leap into this journey out of desperation and under a doctor’s recommendation. I was motivated to stick it out for a few reasons of which I will elaborate further later on. Maybe you are struggling with some of these same physical issues and do not know what else to try. Maybe you don’t even feel like trying any more. I know that feeling. I hope that I can give you a little hope today to try the next thing, whether it be a yeast free diet, or some other lifestyle change and just try it! You may discover the very thing that puts you on a journey to better living!
So basically here is what I gave up:
- All fruits (for the first two weeks)
- High glycemic fruits
- All starches, including white potatoes, white rice, corn
- All grains
- All dairy; except butter after first two weeks
- All sugars and sweeteners except xylitol and stevia extract
- Processed meats, except occasional turkey bacon
- Certain meats, including pork, which I gave up years ago due to an allergy
- All vinegars, except apple cider
For more detail on a yeast free diet check out this site:
So, I can hear you…you are asking exactly what did I eat? Whole, unprocessed foods! By the way, they are delicious. Did you know how sweet grapefruit is when you no longer consume sugar? Sure some of you give up putting sugar in your coffee or on your grapefruit, but do you give up all the added sugars in your sauces, ketchup, mayonnaise, processed meats, and most restaurant foods?
I have long been a scratch cook, not using prepared boxed foods, but it was challenging to make sure I left out so many of the things I commonly added to our foods without even thinking. Especially, commercially prepared condiments.
I will be honest that it took a good portion of my time to think through menus and recipes but that will be different for everyone. Part of my challenge centered on the fact that I have three teenage boys I cook for and a husband with his own food issues. It was compounded by the fact that I literally had such a foggy brain during this time that I often could not remember what I was even working on. If you eat out often, which we don’t, (did I mention three teenage boys?) it will be an even bigger challenge for you but it is worth it!
Here is what I have gained by going through this journey:
- A clearer mind.
- A realization of the affect of foods on my body. (Dairy seems to be tied to my joint pain issues)
- A re-focus of my need for God.
- A re-focus that gave us what we need for good health. Wholesome foods without manmade additions.
- An appreciation for fresh herbs, a variety of vegetables and the people who grow these. I have a great herb garden, but no veggies!
- A re-focus on my needs: physical, spiritual, mental and creative. It is easy for to forget these when you are a caregiver.
While I haven’t had my follow up blood work yet, I anticipate better numbers and I have lost 20 pounds!
So if you are thinking something like this sounds crazy, I want you to re-think what you are doing for yourself. Much of our society is overly focused on their own needs and wants, but the majority of moms neglect to think about all of these needs and then work to put healthy practices into place rather than destructive ones.
Finally, I want to tell you what kept me motivated:
- My husband…in two ways. First, he ate what I ate for the most part and
policed, encouraged me to stay on track. Secondly, he paid for me to see a different doctor who was finally willing to listen to me when I said the medications were not addressing my disease symptoms. I do not want our investment in my health to go to waste!
- My children…I want to be a healthy mom who can think clearly and play too! I want to be a grandma someday and I want to be able to get on the floor with my grandchildren. I have so many friends and family members who are struggling with disease and I want to do everything in my power to avoid this.
- Others…I see so much need around me but I cannot help when I am in the one in need. I want to try to move to the other side so I can give back.
Do you need to take a journey to a healthier you? Consider what you need to do to get to that place. Be sure and consult with your physician first, but be willing to think outside the box. Also, be willing to just be aware of what you are doing to your body!
I will provide some links to some thought provoking videos that have made me step back and evaluate what I am eating and how I care for my body.
In the future, I will post some of our favorite whole foods recipes. In the meantime, tell me about your journey and what challenges you are facing right now. I would love to hear from you.