My order arrived!! Hooray!! I couldn’t be more excited. It’s like Christmas every time a box comes from dōTERRA.
In my box, as I explained in my post the other day about monthly specials, is a bottle of PB Assist+ and one of GX Assist. I will be taking these capsules over the next couple of weeks in an effort to support my body as I attempt to eradicate a potential overgrowth of candida.
Let’s revisit what candida is:
Candida is a bacteria that lives in your gut.
It’s OK to have candida – it should be there. However, it shouldn’t be allowed to grow willy-nilly and wreak havoc on your digestive system. Some things that can cause candida to grow wild are:
- Eating a diet high in refined carbohydrates and sugar (which feed the yeast)
- Consuming a lot of alcohol
- Taking oral contraceptives
- Eating a diet high in beneficial fermented foods like Kombucha, sauerkraut and pickles
- Living a high-stress lifestyle
- Taking a round of antibiotics that killed too many of those friendly bacteria
So now you’re probably thinking, but Hayley, you’re paleo! You don’t eat refined sugar and carbs or drink alcohol! Ohhhh, but I do, sometimes… I’m not perfect (who is?) and I happen to “cheat” every once and a while. Do I regret it? Sure. But, the mind is a funny thing, and it ends up telling me that I’ll be fine the next time I’m craving a “cheat” day. It’s a tough cycle to break; I’m sure I don’t have to explain that!
PLUS – this school year has been extra stressful thus far.
Combining all of these factors, and considering that these things have happened repeatedly over multiple years…it’s no wonder my digestive system might be a little out-of-whack right now. Which brings me to my next point:
Why do I think I might have candida overgrowth?
- How you feel: depressed, tired, worn-out, inability to focus, mental fog, poor memory, irritability, anger, low libido, crying spells, hyperactivity, cravings for sweets and alcohol, insomnia
- Your digestive system: bloated, acid reflux, gas, nausea, diarrhea, constipation, stomach cramps, indigestion, hemorrhoids, mucus in stool
- Your skin: acne, cysts, hives, night sweets, psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, fungal infections of the nails & skin, athlete’s foot, body odor
- Your mouth: thrush (white coating on tongue), swollen lower lip, halitosis, metallic taste in mouth, bad breath, canker sores, bleeding gums, cracked tongue
- Your respiratory system: persistent cough, mucus in throat, sore throat, sinus congestion, chronic post-nasal drip, flu-like symptoms, hay fever symptoms, sinusitis, asthma
- Your eyes and ears: eye pain, itchy eyes, sensitivity to light, blurred vision, bags under eyes, ringing in the ears, ear infection
- Your Genito-Urinary System: recurring yeast infections, recurring UTI’s (urinary tract infections), cystitis (inflammation of the bladder), PMS & menstrual irregularities, fungal rash, infertility
- Your immune system: frequent colds and flu, allergies, sensitivities to food, fragrances and chemicals
- Your weight: inability to lose weight, water retention, weight loss
- Other symptoms: heart palpitations, headaches, chronic body and joint pain, muscle aches and stiffness
Do I have all of these symptoms, all the time? No. And some of them I have never had. But, I know my body and I know that I deal with things that I don’t think the average person does. I am very happy to be paleo and I think it is truly the best diet for ME. I feel my best when I follow a paleo lifestyle the best way that I can in this modern world. But, my digestive system is still not what I think it should be. I often find myself in a fog, I am often tired and worn down, I’ve dealt with skin issues for FOREVER, I have emotional concerns, and my allergies have been positively TERRIBLE over the past couple of years. I thought it was because I moved to a new city, but ever since I started looking into candida I am now thinking that that could be part of the cause.
Of course, I’m not sure this is exactly what’s wrong. But, you know what? I’ve tried fixing my diet, exercise, cutting out chemicals, and making everything I possibly can homemade. And it still hasn’t solved even some of my (minor) issues. I may be a perfectionist, but I’m looking for optimal performance here, people.
So now that you know what candida overgrowth can come from and what it might look like in you, I hope that you will join me in my journey to try to fix it! You’ll be able to see my trials and tribulations as I try to shape up my diet and take some brand new supplements that I am super excited about!
PB Assist+ and GX Assist
This duo is a cleanse developed by dōTERRA to help regulate and maintain a healthy digestive system. You do not need to take them together if you are looking to just take a probiotic (PB Assist+). GX Assist is best used before taking PB Assist+ though, as it helps to clear your digestive tract of unwanted and unhealthy pathogens.
The plan is to take 1-3 GX Assist capsules every day for 10 days, followed by 1-3 PB Assist+ capsules every day for 5 days, and then to take a week off to check your body and symptoms. After that, you can repeat the cycle to continue the cleansing process if you need to.
Because I have never done this before and I want to make sure I treat my body right, I plan on starting slow and taking 1 capsule per day, and only increasing it if things are going well. As the candida is cleared out of your body, you may experience some “die-off” symptoms which is what happens when the candida is killed and the toxins are consequently released into your body. These symptoms vary from person to person, but here are some examples of “die-off” symptoms:
- Headache, fatigue, dizziness
- Swollen glands
- Bloating, gas, constipation or diarrhea
- Increased joint or muscle pain
- Elevated heart rate
- Chills, cold feeling in your extremities
- Body itchiness, hives or rashes
- Skin breakouts
- Recurring vaginal, prostate and sinus infections
So, I will be starting slow. If you start noticing symptoms like these during your cleanse, slow down and decrease the amount of capsules you are taking in.
I will also be drinking A LOT of water with Lemon and DigestZen essential oils every day, to help support the cleansing process and soothe occasional stomach upset. (If you notice “die-off” symptoms, make sure that you are drinking enough water!)
You should also slow down and de-stress as much as possible. Just like stress can cause candida overgrowth, it can exacerbate the situation during a cleanse. Take a load off and enjoy relaxing with oils like Lavender and Serenity.
Some other suggestions include: skin brushing (a process that helps to increase your circulatory and lymphatic systems), taking vitamin C, or taking another supplement like Zendrocrine from dōTERRA that helps support healthy cleansing and filtering functions of your body.
Candida Cleanse Diet
I will also be cleaning up my diet – hence my lack of recipes lately. I have been working on compiling recipes that do not support candida growth. As I mentioned above, excess refined sugars and carbohydrates and alcohol can cause candida overgrowth, so those are out. I will also be taking a break from my fermented foods as I will be getting probiotics from the capsules.
Things to avoid:
- gluten and grain
- certain vegetables: potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, carrots, beets, peas, parsnips
- pork products, processed meats, cured meats, smoked meats
- all fish (except for wild-caught salmon and sardines) and all shellfish
- dairy products
- additives and preservatives
- beverages like coffee, tea, soda, fruit juices
- cashews, peanuts, pistachios
- beans, legumes, soy products, chick peas, tofu
- mushrooms, truffles
- STORE-BOUGHT condiments like ketchup, mustard, horseradish, soy sauce, mayonnaise (they contain hidden sugars)
- all vinegars (except unfiltered apple cider vinegar)
- peanut, corn, canola, soy oil
This seems like A LOT, I know. But if you’ve done a whole30 or a sugar detox, this is not that different! I already cut out most of these on a daily basis because after completing whole30’s it’s hard to go back to this stuff! For more information on why to cut these out, visit this site.
if you’re looking to do a whole30, a sugar detox, or even kick candida with me….be on the lookout for upcoming recipes as they will be cleanse-friendly!
Remember that these products have not been tested or approved by the FDA. Any essential oil product, recipe or protocol suggested here is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.