Alllll of my research proved that majority of my symptoms matched candida overgrowth and leaky gut.
I really don’t like to say that term “leaky gut” and I hated saying it to Griffin in fears he’d not only be grossed out by it but would think this was some kind of fake term crafted for people to address problems they don’t actually have. I’ve since come to terms that if I’m going to get better I’m going to address EVERYTHING honestly, even if I’m wrong about it. It’s the only way I’ll learn what helps and what doesn’t.
I do believe I’ve battled candida overgrowth for a really long time, causing my itchy skin, brain fog, fatigue, etc. and I also believe that eventually led to leaky gut, which has only become prevalent as of this year. The leaky gut, a fairly newly-discovered disease, can be tied to the gastrointestinal problems, sickness, intestinal inflammation, inflammation causing extreme menstrual cramps, etc. Now, I haven’t the slightest clue what came honestly came first and what ailment is causing what symptom. However, leaky gut and candida overgrowth are proven to be most commonly tied to my biggest health concerns. All signs very clearly point to gut health.
The following excerpt is from my journal, and is a collection of notes I took from a variety of credible online resources, which I didn’t document because I never thought I’d be sharing about this. I’ll go back through eventually and try to locate sources. I didn’t take notes on candida overgrowth or candidiasis because I’ve been familiar with it for years.
“Leaky gut is when the lining of the small intestine becomes damaged, allowing food particles/toxic waste/bacteria to leak into the bloodstream. It causes an autoimmune response triggering inflammatory allergic reactions like headaches, irritable bowel, eczema, fatigue, food allergies, etc. Damaged intestinal cells don’t produce enzymes needed for digestion-so the body doesn’t absorb nutrients leading to weak immune system + hormone imbalance.
Can be caused by a diet high in refined carbs saturated fats and sugars, gluten, OTC pain killers, excessive stress, genetic predisposition that causes sensitivity to digestive changes, alcohol, processed foods, GMOs, environmental toxins, antibiotics, etc.
Candida overgrowth, parasties, and SIBO have been tied to leaky gut.
Candida overgrowth left untreated can lead to leaky gut.
Raw fruits and vegetables are difficult to digest and tough fibers are hard on the weakened immune system” / ((which could explain why I had such bad luck with the raw diet)).
I won’t go through and tie each of my symptoms to this individually, but I think you get that this is an obvious potential cause. Along with that, I’ve held an intuitive belief for years that my beginning symptoms were caused by candida overgrowth, so when I learned about leaky gut after experiencing it’s first trigger at the New Year, it seemed obvious to me.
What I’m doing about it
I believe that if I believe I’m healing, I will. I’ll believe I’m healing by paying attention to my intuition and what is resulting in relief and what’s resulting in discomfort. So far, this solution has provided nothing but relief, and I’m extremely grateful.
That being said, I’ve started baby-stepping my way into a candida cleanse tailored to leaky gut healing. I’m on a diet encompassing
- avoiding sugar including natural and artificial sweeteners and fruit
- no starches including corn, flour, wheat, rice, potatoes, beans or legumes
- avoiding potentially moldy foods such as peanuts
- no caffeine
- limiting nightshades
I’m keeping it high in big salads, low-fruit smoothie bowls, cauliflower, avocado, seeds and a couple nuts, coconut chia puddings, all the fermented foods (KIMCHI <3), asparagus, broccoli, cucumber, brussels sprouts, raw garlic, green beans, steamed/blended spinach, apple cider vinegar lemon water, almond butter, herbal tea, and gut-healing vegetable broth.
I’ll occasionally throw in tempeh, non-gmo tofu, a small green apple, a small amount of chickpeas, blueberries, small amounts of quinoa, and small amounts of squash.
I’m supplementing a probiotic, digestive enzymes, and plant-based collagen (woohoo for that one!).
As I mentioned, I’m already feeling really REALLY good compared to before. I can accomplish so much in a day now. I’ll talk a lot about this in my Instagram stories in the future and will share recipes, tips, tricks, and roadblocks. Basically, I’ll be as transparent with you as I am with myself in hopes of encouraging awareness and healing to whoever needs it.
I also just want to add: THANK YOU SO MUCH to my partner who exercises the greatest patience and understanding when I’m whiny and not feeling well and needed to be up in the middle of the night or rest all day, and just listens as I tell him my self-diagnoses and all my opinions. What a freakin’ gem!