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My war against candida

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Yesterday was a real shit show. I woke up feeling flu like and lethargic, and by mid morning, I had a throbbing headache, couldn’t think straight, was completely bloated (AGAIN), felt like I was getting a yeast infection, and had the personality of a cranky wildebeest. I would also claw someone’s eyes out for a “hit” of carbs or sweets. No matter what I ate, my mind wandered to cookies, candy, and soda.This continued all. freaking. day.

Things really hit the fan when I got home from work and spent an hour attempting to make some sort of modified eggless/flourless/dairyless morning muffin that basically turned into oily turds in a muffin pan when I finished. I completely lost my shit when Hubs said he would prefer to eat soup from a can instead of the salmon I had also made, and then I spent a half an hour crying in the bathtub about the futility of “it all”–whatever “it all” is. Fertility? Diet? Job? The noxious fumes leaving my ass at 20 minute intervals?

The final straw was this morning (at 2AM) when I woke up drenched in sweat, and desperately craving sugar of any kind.

I got out of bed and Dr. Googled “night sweats and elimination diet”, but what I came up with wasn’t really about my “gluten free” elimination diet specifically. It was about my dear friend, candida, and the “candida elimination diet”. This diet is very similar to my elimination diet, only it is done to rid the body of candida. It basically eliminates all sugars, all alcohol, and all carbs in an attempt to “starve out” the yeast producing bacteria from your system. The only problem is, when the candida is being starved out, it releases toxins into your system when it dies, causing what is known as the “Herxheimer Reaction”. It’s basically candida’s final “fuck you” for trying to kill it.

Common symptoms of the Herxheimer Effect include:

1. Night Sweats

2. Headaches

3. Gas and Bloating

4. Depression and moodiness

5. Yeast infection symptoms/ hives

6. Cravings for Carbs and Sweets

Basically, every single one of my symptoms. The die off usually occurs about a week after the diet starts, which may explain why I went from feeling pretty decent on Day 4, to complete and utter doo doo on Day 6 and 7.

Here’s a picture of candida albicans. Does everything have to look like a sperm and an egg to me?

I have been a sufferer of yeast infections for as long as I can remember. I’ll get about 3 of them per year, some worse than others. In college, it was very bad, and I once had one for about six months. It’s weird to think that in my quest to help straighten out my system, I’ve stumbled on a diet that may actually be clearing up a systemic problem that was always sort of lurking in the background. The more I look into symptoms of systemic candida overgrowth, the more I realize that the problem I have with yeast could have been far worse than I imagined.

SO wish me luck. If my symptoms today are anything like they were yesterday, I’m going to need it. I am not giving up this fight that easily.




About Sunny

I'm a happily married, 31 year old gal who is just starting her journey to conceive. I also have ovaries that may need a jump start. This blog is an attempt to channel my obsessive research on my Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome into something a pregnancy test. That would be awesome. I also hope that other women with this condition will find support in this blog. There are a lot of us out here! Happy reading, whatever your journey may be.

13 responses »

  1. That sounds awful! I wish you lots of luck to make it through the next few days. Eliminating any one of eggs, flour and dairy would be difficult, but eliminating all 3 takes a very brave person.

    Have you thought about making soups? They might fill your cravings for comfort food. Occassionally I get rid of all our vegetables by dumping them all into a veggie soup. You could add chicken or something for protein. (The trick is not to go too light on the olive oil, if you’re using a vegetable broth, and to use leeks instead of onions if you can.) Take care!

    • I am DEFINITELY going to attempt soup making at some point. Probably this weekend. If I can’t do carbs, loading up on veggies and proteins seems like my only hope.

  2. Blueargh, I am sorry you are feeling so crappy. I have come to sympathize with you, I am not on any scary elimination diet, but I am suffering from narky PMT and feeling sorry for myself. Plus I have had gut issues for years and the gas issue is an old friend of mine (one Kitt has been putting up with ever since he met me!)

    • Ugh! I feel your pain! Also, what part of Scotland are you from? A close colleague of mine at work is from Glasgow, and she has the lovliest accent 🙂

      • It is actually my dad that is Scottish, his family is from up at the very very top, kind of near John O’Groats. It is a softer accent than Glasgow but Kitt’s mum is from near Glasgow. We all live in England though and Kitt and I were both born and raised here.

  3. I’m not going to lie, your post was a little scary. (hugs) Hoping that today is a MUCH better day!

  4. Alright I promise to send you recipes today! I have some very very yummy soups and stews that are easy to make in a crop pot and then you can freeze the leftovers for lunches or whatever.

    Also, I had the same intense cravings when I first went paleo, it lasted only about a week and after that first dreadful week it was much much easier.

    An email coming your way sometime today I promise!!!

  5. This is super interesting. Thanks for sharing. I googled candida and PCOS and it seems as if a TON of women report similar experiences. I then tried to see if any medical journals looked at the relationship between the two and nothing. Sigh. Seems like women with PCOS have more yeast infections and IBS, two symptoms that don’t usually pop up onto the list we usually see…

  6. UgH. Very interesting find though. Atleast, every time you are feeling one of these awful symptoms, you now know it means you are kicking an obnoxious little something’s butt.

    Stay strong, and hope you get some good recipes!

  7. My friend did this exact same thing (candida elimination) for the yeast infection reason and had great success. For her, sugar was the root of a bunch of evils. Every now and then she falls off the wagon, but overall feels much better. I know it SUCKS (have I mentioned you are my hero?) but the worst part will end. You have already gotten so far! Go you!


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