Weight Loss, Gut Health and Depression

by Teré Foster

What do athlete's feet, earaches, obesity and depression have in common? Nothing right?

The symptoms of candida are tricky to spot because they seem like unrelated conditions that you might not realize are from the same cause.

Which doctor can pull all the symptoms together for an accurate diagnosis? You might go to an MD for the earache, a family counselor for the anxiety and the drug store for athlete's food creme and never get to the true source of the problem: candida.

The reality is clear that ONLY YOU can diagnose candida accurately and treat it thoroughly until it is gone. By the time you have enough symptoms to force you to research it on the internet your Candida has likely gone throughout your bodily systems. Some statistics go so far as to say that more than 80% of Americans have an overgrowth of candida, and 5-7% of newborns have candida before they are a month old.  This common fungus found in every human stomach may be the culprit for most human disease when it is allowed to out-number the good bacteria.  Candida is the cause of the most common blood infections in hospitals.  Here are some of the first signs of candida overgrowth in the body.

Candida Overgrowth Symptoms:

  • Childhood hyperactivity,
  • Food allergies, carbohydrate craving, weight gain
  • Vaginitis (thrush), yeast infections,
  • Premenstrual tension
  • Menstrual irregularities,
  • Loss of libido,
  • Anxiety, depression, mental illness
  • Earaches, headaches, and dizziness,
  • Impaired memory, poor concentration, a “foggy” brain with feelings of unreality,
  • General weakness,
  • Tiredness or malaise,
  • Insomnia,
  • Cystitis/urethritis (urinary tract infection – painful, burning or “stinging” during urination),
  • Stiff, creaking and painful joints,
  • Muscle pain
  • Indigestion
  • Diarrhoea/constipation,
  • Irritable bowel syndrome,
  • Constipation / Diarrhea,
  • Fatigue, bloating, flatulence (gas),
  • Ileocaecal valve dysfunction (pain in the gut)
  • Gallstones
  • Asthma, Inhalant allergies, multiple chemical sensitivities,
  • Mucus or catarrh, hay fever, sinusitis, persistent cough,
  • Heart arrhythmias,
  • Discoloured nails, acne and other skin eruptions
    (nail and skin issues are classic tell-tale symptoms of candida),
  • Eczema, Psoriasis,
  • Urticaria (itchy skin/hives)
  • Toenail fungus, athletes foot
  • Epilepsy
  • Schizophrenia
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Adrenal fatigue
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Hypoglycemia (low-blood sugar levels)

A few years ago I had many symptoms that were seemingly unrelated such as an ear ache, athlete’s foot and cold sores and weight gain. I found that they were all symptoms of an overgrowth of bacteria in the stomach called candida. I became so ill that I was making plans with my husband, both of us in tears, about who would take care of my children. We thought I must be dying. I couldn’t stand up. I couldn’t lift my arms. I couldn’t live my life! I finally developed such terrible neck pain that I went to see my chiropractor. He told me to stop all sugar for three weeks or more. But sugar is in everything! In order to do this I had to completely stop all store-bought processed foods; everything in a box, bag or can.

The little candida organisms crave sugar, which is their life source. Any form of sugar will do; any sweetener, any carbohydrate. So I kept craving the wrong foods because that’s what the intruders were begging for. I researched it on the internet and found that a large number of people in America have candida without recognizing it. I had been treating all the little symptoms separately without understanding the nature of candida. It is a colony of life-sapping organisms that made me tired and depressed by attacking every bodily system. The life-sapping processed foods that feed the life-sucking organisms that attack the body from the inside out begin to manifest diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes. The food companies know this and so do the pharmaceutical companies, but processed foods means big bucks for both.  They have no plans to stop producing them as long as people buy them. I cannot rely on them to solve the problem-- at least fast enough to protect my health and the health of my loved ones.

I came back to the truth that I had known all along; I had to boycott processed foods before they actually sapped me of my life! Our meals were breaking our bodies down, “killing with kindness” as the saying goes. I learned to set up my kitchen to be a place of productivity and vitality rather than a den of obesity and disease. (Sorry if that sounds blunt, but my life was in the balance!)

I have found that the best way to avoid junk food is to have none in my house. As soon as I leave the house I am surrounded with all the foods I am trying to avoid, so I make my home a “safe haven” where these foods will not bombard my loved ones with impulses that work against their health and well-being. Because I am the shopper for the family, I hold a grave responsibility to guide the family wisely in the foods that they have to choose from when they are in their own home.

I can’t allow our menu choices to be driven by our cravings for sugar or salt. Feeding our craving for sugar is actually “feeding” the living organisms of bacteria that are wreaking havoc on our health. If we all teach these concepts to our children we can end the epidemic of obesity and diet-related diseases in their lifetime!

How to Conquer Illness, Obesity and Depression

at the Same Time

 

STEP 1: REPLACE PROCESSED FOODS
If you hire one of our FOOD for WELL-BEING professionals, they will take this step very seriously as we hope you will too.  Cleaning out the kitchen will make all the difference in the world.  If you want to follow a craving in that brief moment of weak will, you can always go out.  The trick is to do your best, and get back on track if you falter.  We like planning for weekend sweets on Saturday, but only in small amounts until you feel the improvements you are looking for.  Then our professionals will fill your refrigerator with FOOD for WELL-BEING Meals for the Week  that are ready to heat - garnish - serve. The meals are made from rice and beans, or "pulses" that:

  • increase fat burning
  • reduce hunger
  • promote gut health and regularity
  • protect against
    • type II diabetes,
    • heart disease and
    • many cancers

.

STEP 2: KILL BAD BACTERIA
Picture these candida organisms like ants coming into your kitchen to invade your boxes of cereal. Step 1: Is to stop eating sugar would be equivalent to taking all your boxes of cereal to the trash and removing anything else from your kitchen that might attract the ants.  Step 2: Is to take Thorne Formula is like finding where the ants live and spraying their ant hill to end the multiplication of more ants.  You have to do both, remove the attraction and kill the reproduction, or the battle will never end.  Thorne Laboratories made Formula SF722 an oil made from the castor bean that kills candida. The oil comes in little, easy to swallow gelcaps.  I was told to take 5 gelcaps three times a day. Within two days the fog lifted on my mind, I was cleaning house and back to my usual energy!

Probiotic

STEP 3: ADD TO YOUR GOOD BACTERIA
Step 3: Is to take a probiotic that sends organisms to fight back the candida organisms.  These are called "good bacteria" because no matter how many live in your gut it will never cause illness or disease.  Quite the contrary.  They actually keep illness and disease at bay.  After "starving out" the candida organisms and reducing their numbers with Formula sf722m I then added good bacteria to the stomach increasing the strength of the immune system. When these are out-numbered by bad bacteria (candida) you have no defense against illness and disease. Scientists found a way to put these good bacteria in a pill that you can take with every meal called probiotics. This will help to restore a balance of 20% bad bacteria and 80% good bacteria. These numbers are reversed in most Americans leading to many symptoms listed above and finally resulting in obesity, illness and cancers of many kinds. We don't recommend relying on yogurt as a source of probiotics due to the sugar and dairy found in this common food.

Formula SF722

 

STEP 4: EAT NEGATIVE CALORIE FOODS
Certain foods burn more calories during digestion than what they have. These are foods high in fiber and have a low glycemic index. The only calories will be the things you might add such as melted cheese on broccoli, olive oil on sauteed zucchini or ranch dressing on carrots.

  • celery
  • berries
  • grapefruit
  • carrots
  • tomatoes
  • cucumbers
  • pickles
  • watermelon
  • apples
  • zucchini
  • broccoli
  • lettuce

 

STEP 5: GIVE YOUR DIETARY GOALS MEANING
Determine why you want to achieve a different weight.

Are you trying to:

  • feel better
  • have more energy
  • be able to play with your children or grandchildren
  • sleep better
  • decrease a medication
  • regain an activity that has been lost
  • improve a health problems (many health problems will improve that are not necessarily attached to weight loss, but instead attached to candida)

Whatever your reason, once you have identified it, you will have an easier time sticking to a program until you achieve your meaningful goal.  Other goals for superficial looks or competitive edge will soon dim.  But higher goals of serving those you love with more energy and vitality for a longer lifespan will never lose their meaning.

A FEW MORE TIPS

  1. Focus on healthy lifestyle changes, not your appearance
  2. Set realistic and achievable goals
  3. Engage in daily structured activities, including exercise
  4. Make healthy eating a daily activity
  5. Be sure you’re adopting habits you can keep
  6. Adopt new habits one at a time over days or weeks
  7. Enlist support from family and friends
  8. Set a specific start date

 

Can Fasting Help with Depression? 

This research article from HVMN says it can!

Weight Loss Tonics

 

Lemon

This citrus fruit is well known for its cleansing properties. When taken in the morning, lemon will boost your metabolism and kick start your digestive system. It has a high mineral content and multiple vitamins like Vitamin C and folate which help balance your pH and nourish your body.

Raw Honey

There’s several immune boosting benefits to raw honey, and a good immune system start in the gut. Raw honey has enzymes, vitamins, and minerals that will nourish the body as you detox.

Ginger

One of the most well-known digestive aids, it’s also anti-almost everything, which will give your body a strong health boost. Raw ginger made into a tea is the best thing to take when you have digestive trouble. In this case, powdered ginger works best to mix with your other ingredients.

Apple Cider Vinegar

This is a wonder liquid. I could write a lot about ACV and the multiple ways it can improve your life! For the benefits of your digestive system and beyond, ACV naturally balances your body’s pH and blood sugar. It is has many enzymes and acts as a probiotic improving gut health. It also aids in detoxing the liver and lymphatic system. I like to add it to tomato juice, use it in salad dressings or any other recipe that calls for vinegar.

 

Nutritional Yeast

High in B12 other B vitamins, low in fat and sodium, free of sugar and gluten, contains iron and is a “complete protein”.  I like to add it to tomato juice along with apple cider vinegar and liquid minerals for a daily tonic that replaces a meal.

Liquid Minerals

Mineral deficiencies in the system are linked to the health conditions including low immunity and resistance, osteoporosis, diabetes, hypertension, mental diseases, nervousness, depression, anxiety, learning disability, anorexia, insomnia, fatigue and exhaustion, headaches, anemia–even skin and hair problems. Certain medications are also responsible for depleting the minerals from the system including drugs for cancer, laxatives, antacids, diuretics and antibiotics. Minerals in a tablet form are slow to dissolve and may not reach the cells of the body before they are flushed down the toilet. Liquid minerals are easily absorbed and used by the body to replenish your cells when they have been depleted.  I like to squeeze an eye-dropper full of liquid minerals in my tomato juice along with a shot of apple cider vinegar and a little bit of brewers yeast.

Cayenne Pepper

Among many things, this spice is great for your stomach. It is found to be a natural fat burner, and to be anti-inflammatory. Both of those aspects are helpful in detoxing the body. It is useful as in first aid as well as flavorful in cooking. Add a little in every dish that could use a little “spice”, but be careful, this stuff is HOT!

Weight Gain or Fluid Retention?

Every since I started menopause I have had trouble with my weight.  I always feel a little "chubby".  I eat well and exercise, but the weight doesn't come off.  I started to wonder if it is really weight gain or fluid retention. This is a portion of the definition that I found for "innerstitial fluid retention":

  • Immobility. The leg muscles normally contract and compress blood vessels to promote blood flow with walking or running. When these muscles are not used, blood can collect in the veins, making it difficult for fluid to move from tissues back into the vessels.

I am trying many things to self-treat fluid retention including cutting back on salt which is very hard for me.  I am so addicted!  Also I am using wraps and support garments to see if that will help. I read that lemon water is a natural diuretic and so is cranberry juice.  I bought a bag of lemons and I am adding it to my drinking water.

Here is an article I found that gave me some good direction.

Fluid retention (oedema) occurs when fluid isn't removed from the body tissues, including the skin. Causes include the body's reaction to hot weather, a high salt intake, and the hormones associated with the menstrual cycle. Symptoms include swelling of body parts such as feet, hands and ankles, a feeling of stiffness or aching and weight fluctuations. Drinking plenty of water will actually help your kidneys to flush out excess fluid. Fluid retention may be a sign of disease.

 

Better Health Channel - betterhealth.vic.gov.au -  provides these bullet points:

Symptoms of fluid retention

Symptoms of fluid retention can include:

  • swelling of affected body parts (feet, ankles and hands are commonly affected)
  • aching of affected body parts
  • stiff joints
  • rapid weight gain over a few days or weeks
  • unexplained weight fluctuations
  • when pressed, the skin may hold the indent for a few seconds (pitting oedema)
  • in other cases, the skin may not hold an indent when pressed (non-pitting oedema).

Causes of fluid retention

Some of the many common causes of fluid retention include:

  • gravity – standing up for long periods of time allows fluid to ‘pool’ in the tissues of the lower leg
  • hot weather – the body tends to be less efficient at removing fluid from tissues during the summer months
  • burns – including sunburn. The skin retains fluid and swells in response to burn injuries
  • menstrual cycle – some women experience oedema in the two weeks prior to menstruation
  • pregnancy – hormones encourage the body to hold onto excess fluid
  • the pill – oral contraceptives that include oestrogen can trigger fluid retention
  • dietary deficiency – such as insufficient protein or vitamin B1 (thiamine) in the diet
  • medications – certain drugs, including high blood pressure medication (antihypertensives), corticosteroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are known to cause fluid retention
  • chronic venous insufficiency – weakened valves in the veins of the legs fail to efficiently return blood to the heart. The pooling of blood can result in varicose veins

Medical conditions that may cause fluid retention

Fluid retention may be a symptom of serious underlying conditions, including:

  • kidney disease – such as nephrotic syndrome and acute glomerulonephritis
  • heart failure – if the heart does not pump effectively, the body compensates in various ways. it starts to retain fluid and increase the volume of blood. This results in congestion of the veins, enlargement of the liver, and the accumulation of fluid in body cavities like the abdominal cavity (ascites) and in subcutaneous tissues, causing swelling (oedema) of the legs
  • chronic lung diseases – such as severe emphysema, which put excessive pressure on the heart’s right ventricle, leading to its failure
  • liver disease – such as severe cirrhosis that triggers liver failure
  • malignant lymphoedema – cancerous tumours that block structures of the lymphatic system, such as the lymph nodes
  • thyroid disease – such as hypothyroidism
  • arthritis – joints affected by some types of arthritis tend to swell with fluid
  • allergic reaction – in susceptible people, the body tends to swell in response to particular allergens, such as an insect bite. In some cases, the reaction is severe (anaphylaxis) and requires urgent medical attention. this swelling is short-lived rather than ongoing
  • autoimmune diseases such as lupus.

Diagnosis of fluid retention

The underlying cause of the oedema must be found before treatment can begin. Diagnostic tests may include:

  • physical examination
  • medical history
  • detailed questioning about the fluid retention, such as when it started, any factors that worsen the swelling and whether it is constant or intermittent
  • blood tests
  • urine tests
  • liver function tests
  • kidney function tests
  • chest x-ray
  • heart function tests, such as electrocardiogram (ECG).

Treatment for fluid retention

Depending on the cause, treatment may include:

  • a low-salt diet
  • diuretics (water pills)
  • treatment for the underlying medical condition: for example, hormone replacement (thyroxine) in the case of hypothyroidism
  • lifestyle changes in response to the underlying medical condition: for example, avoidance of alcohol if liver disease is the cause
  • changes to medication or dosage, if drugs are the cause
  • dietary adjustments, if malnutrition is the cause
  • ongoing medical supervision
  • aids such as support stockings.

Self-care options for fluid retention

Mild fluid retention can be helped in the following ways:

  • Reduce the amount of salt in your diet; for instance, don’t add salt during the cooking process and stop salting your meals at the table. Avoid foods like potato chips and salted peanuts. Be wary of processed foods such as manufactured meats, which tend to contain ‘hidden’ salt.
  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is thought to help in cases of mild fluid retention. Good sources of vitamin B6 include brown rice and red meat.
  • Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), calcium and vitamin D help the body to excrete excess fluids. Include fresh fruits and low-fat dairy foods in your daily diet.
  • Supplements may help in the case of fluid retention caused by the menstrual cycle: for example calcium, magnesium, manganese, evening primrose oil and chaste tree.
  • Herbal diuretics include dandelion leaf, corn silk and horsetail.
  • Make sure to discuss the use of supplements with your doctor or health care professional, particularly if you are on any type of medication.
  • Drink plenty of water. It may sound contradictory, but a well-hydrated body is less likely to retain fluid.
  • Cut back on dehydrating drinks such as tea, coffee and alcohol.
  • Cranberry juice has a mild diuretic action.
  • Lie down with your legs higher than your head, when possible.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Wear support stockings.