Howdy to all!
I appreciate all the support you've given up to this point; I know we're just getting started. However, I've recently come across a condition I was previously unaware of, Candida. Basically, it's an overgrowth of yeast in the body that offsets the inner workings. It can be responsible for a slew of seemingly-unrelated symptoms from fatigue, abdominal pain and indigestion, joint pain, weight gain (especially resistant to dieting and exercise), confusion/dizziness, brain fog, skin rashes, mood swings/depression, food allergies, and serious sugar/carb cravings, to name a few. It can even weaken your immune system, leaving you open to other nasties. It can affect different people in a variety of ways, depending on what organs are most affected.
Everyone has at least some Candida Albicans in them, practically from birth. However, the problem comes when good bacterias are killed off and the Candida can run amuck. From there it is fed by yeast and sugars which are, of course, rampant in most Americans' diets. Unfortunately, an imbalance can be caused by a lot of common factors like antibiotic use, oral contraceptives, stress, alcohol use, or just a prolonged diet with too many carbs and sugars. Sound like anyone you know?
Of course, I'm not an expert (under a week of research under my belt so far), but I encourage you all to take a moment to take a look at the overview and check out a questionnaire. Even if you don't think this applies to you, it might well apply to someone that you care about.
The Candida Diet (Information and Resources)
I also just finished The Candida Cure: Yeast, Fungus & Your Health by Ann Boroch, CNC. It was very informative and more recent than most of the books available at my library on the subject. It was a quick read and she breaks down some of the ways Candida affects the body in more detail than what I had previously found online.
The diet prescribed is really strict (cutting out sugars and a lot of carbs), but overall seems for the best as far as health is concerned, focusing on proteins, veggies and complex (non-gluten) carbohydrates. Once the fungus is under control, one can add back fruits and other foods gradually.
Now to the point of it's connection to this blog. I was surprised by the symptoms I had on this list, as some I never dreamed were related. Most of them I figured were due to too little exercise and just getting older. But now that I've found out there might be something I can do about it more proactively, and I'm motivated to give it a try. I'm hoping to get tested soon, but in the meantime I've been making the switch and trying a new way of eating. Even if I don't have it, I'm very likely at risk to develop it and let's face it, most people could use more vegetables and less sugar in their diet.
The weekend was tough; sugar is a drug and withdrawal left me with serious headaches. I've started to show some other symptoms of die-off, but I'm already starting to feel a little more energetic. Now, that might just be me feeling better from the sugar withdrawal or being happier about eating healthier, but I'm ok with that. I want to feel better, more vibrant and more focused. It's really tough sometimes (especially in the grocery store or driving past fast food), but in some ways it's a lot easier to diet when you think to yourself 'Is this what's making me feel so bad?' every time you're tempted to indulge.
So the long and short of it (mostly long, I know) is that this blog is going to have to shift away from traditional baked goods and more into exploring a new way of eating for me. Depending on what comes of tests and such, I'm unsure of what will happen with the contents of this blog, but it is still my goal to put up a recipe a week (preferably on Monday) and find out what you guys think. Thank you for you time and support!
p.s. Yes, I know it's a crappy time of year to try this out. I was going to wait, but I figured I might as well get a head-start to minimize withdrawal symptoms. Christmas is definitely going to be tough though. :/