Natural Health

Understanding Healing Crisis

 

 What is a healing crisis?

 

 

When Changing Your Diet or Doing A Cleanse You May Have What’s Called A Healing Crisis or Herx Reaction

When a person begins using herbs and begins to make healthier food choices they may have a healing crisis indicating they are starting the detoxification process. Most people stop using the herbs as they think the herbs were making things worse. It’s really the exact opposite and they would be wise to return to those herbs, usually starting at a lower dosage and then increasing back to the suggested amount, to ride out the cleansing and healing process.

Many people are caught off guard and fail to understand and interpret the symptoms and changes which follow a change to a healthier lifestyle. Many of these symptoms and changes are unpleasant but they are short in duration and are sporadic and are a necessary part of the healing process.

Here are 8 reasons why this may happen:

  1. The body and mind begin to show changes because the quality of nutrients coming into the body is of higher, quality than the tissue of which the body is made. The body begins to discard the lower grade materials to make room for the superior materials. The discarding of the material can come through the bowel causing diarrhea, through the kidney causing back ache, through the respiratory system causing a cold or through the skin causing boils, acne, rashes, psoriasis, etc.
  2. Indigestion, heartburn, flatulence, bloating and burping usually starts soon after you start herbs. This happens because your body is not used to digesting these nutrients which often indicates that you have been deficient of these nutrients for a long time. The body’s digestion usually improves in a week or two. Taking the herbs with meals or with papaya mints will often help.
  3. Suppressed body functions will be stimulated to detoxify the body, sometimes inducing colds, diarrhea, fevers, swelling, acne, boils and vomiting. This is temporary and is part of the healing process. The body will return to at least the same level of health as before if not superior health UNLESS you do something to suppress this progress.
  4. Nervousness, headaches, fatigue, irritability and depression often happen when you cut out any artificial stimulants such as sugar, chocolate, coffee, tea, soda, tobacco, caffeine or recreational drugs. You will not get the desired result if you substitute one artificial stimulant for another. It is important at this time to rest and sleep more. Once the artificial stimulants are eliminated the body is ready for the building process. The energy of a healthy, well-nourished body is superior to any artificial stimulant.
  5. Moderate weight fluctuations often occurs (either weight loss or weight gain). If you continue the healthier lifestyle the weight will stabilize.
  6. Skin eruptions, warts, boils or acne. The skin is the largest eliminating organ, so the concept of toxins coming out through the skin is easily understood, even if it is hard to face.
  7. Aches, pains and arthritis will often get stirred up, even if you haven’t been suffering with it for years. This happens because uric acid and toxins aggravate these conditions as they are cleansed from the body.
  8. Fevers are not uncommon when dormant bacteria and virus are being cleaned out.

This sounds discouraging, but the healing crisis doesn’t last very long and the benefits of cleaning the body of these toxins and disease elements are vitally important. These bacteria, virus or toxins are going to show up sooner or later. You can either have a healthy body handle them on your terms or it will come out when it overpowers your weakened body. It is better to go through small healing crises than a full blown health crisis.

Be sure and read my post,5 Tips To Support Your Lymphatic System & Ease Your Candida Cleanse for things you can do to improve the detoxification process.

If you are in doubt about whether what you are experiencing is a normal part of healing seek professional guidance.

 

What Causes Candida Overgrowth?

What causes Candida overgrowth? Fill out this Candida questionnaire to find out of Candida may be an issue in your health challenges.

 

Many things can cause Candida overgrowth leading to an imbalance.

Some of them include:

  •  Over use of antibiotics without replacing the lost beneficial bacteria (probiotics)
  •   Nutrient Poor Diet:  that is rich in refined sugars and refined carbohydrates (bread, potatoes, rice pasta, ice cream, sodas, processed foods, etc.)
  •   Constipation: this common problem can be caused by Candida. However constipation can also lead to Candida. A digestive tract which is constipated is slow moving and becomes very alkaline. The more alkaline the digestive tract the more Candida growth.
  •   Parasites and Intestinal Worms: Some researches have estimated that over 85% of all people living in North America and Canada have parasites. These unwelcome guests destroy friendly bacteria in the intestines making yeast overgrowth possible.
  •  Excessive Stress: Stress can cause yeast growth for several reasons. It raises cortisol, a stress hormone, which depresses the immune system, raises blood sugar which feeds yeast cells allowing them to grow quickly. Another thing to be aware of is that cortisol can be addicting to the body. It raises sugar and relieves inflammation. There are several simple nutrients that help lower cortisol levels back to normal by telling the nervous system to relax.
  • Hormonal Imbalance: It has long been recognized that an imbalance between estrogen and progesterone can be a cause in yeast overgrowth.
  •  Birth Control Pills or Device: Oral birth control pills are mostly the hormone estrogen. Supplemental estrogen in the synthetic form has been found to promote the growth of yeast. A common complaint of women on birth control pills is yeast infection. The copper IUD is another possible promoter of yeast.
  •  Hypothyroid: The thyroid gland has an important effect on the immune system and digestive system.
  • Heavy Metals: Toxic metals show up consistently in people experiencing Candida. They are Mercury, Copper and Arsenic. These metals disable the exact part of the immune system that seeks to control Candida! They are often found in dental fillings and in tap water. As they pass through the intestinal tract they can stimulate the growth of more Candida. It’s important to get rid of the yeast before removing heavy metals since clearing them first will spread the yeast!
  • Other things that may contribute to Candida overgrowth include drugs and alcohol, antacid use, diabetes, hypothyroidism, excessive bowel cleansing, an imbalance of minerals such as copper dysregulation.

Wondering if your health could be affected by Candida overgrowth?

Here are some questions that can help determine if you may have Candida overgrowth:

1. Do you have skin issues like acne, eczema, psoriasis, rashes?
2. Do you have mood swings, irritability, anxiety, depression?
3. Are you typically bloated, especially after meals?
4. Do you have trouble losing weight?
5. Do you have constant cravings?
6. Do you have thrush (a white coating of the tongue)?
7. Do you suffer from frequent colds or flu?
8. Do you have night sweats?
9. Have you used antibiotics or birth control pill in the last 2 years?
10. Do you have gas or bloating?
11. Do you have sugar cravings?
12. Do you have low blood sugar?
13. Do you have history of yeast infections, vaginal, oral, athlete’s foot, or
jock itch?
14. Does your partner have a history of yeast infections, vaginal, oral,
athlete’s foot, or jock itch?
15. Are you sensitive to smells?
16. Are you sensitive to alcohol?
17. Do you suffer from symptoms that your doctor cannot explain like;
headaches, migraines, depression, diarrhea, dizziness, IBS (Irritable Bowel
syndrome), itching, menstrual or sinus problems?
18. Do you feel fatigued all the time?
19. Do you have a hard time concentrating?
20. Do you just not feel right?

If you said “yes” to any of these questions it would be in your best interest to make sure Candida isn’t part of the problem.

Fill out the full Candida Questionnaire.

If you scored high on the questionnaire and need help with getting it under control you are welcome to schedule a free 30-minute Health Discovery phone session with me to see how I can help you get things balanced with a program designed just for you.

Read the first part of this post “Is Candida Sabotaging Your Health?” to learn more about Candida and it’s symptoms.

 

My Favorite Immune Boosting Foods

 

Salmon, herbs, olive oil - Immunity boosting foods.
Salmon, herbs, olive oil – immunity boosting foods.

Eating Well for Super Immunity

 A healthy immune system is vital for helping your body deal with infections caused by viruses, bacteria, candida, and environmental toxins. As the winter months approach, it becomes even more important to support your immune system by consistently eating a balanced diet, exercising, and making healthy lifestyle choices. But the real fuel for a strong immune system is using food as medicine.

Super Soup

An immunity-boosting diet includes light, easily digestible meals throughout the day, especially soup. A myriad of health benefits and flavors are derived from the herbs, vegetables, and broth. Soups also can help curtail the onset or ease the symptoms of colds and flu. Look for soups that include immunity-enhancing ingredients such as ginger, onion, garlic, mushrooms, and a variety of veggies and herbs in a broth-base. As always, food made from scratch is best!

Super-Immunity Diet Guidelines

  • Include healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil.
  • When it comes to seasoning your foods, incorporate a variety of herbs and spices for flavor.
  • For veggies, choose steamed broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, leafy greens, and sweet potatoes.
  • Fermented foods such as miso, sauerkraut, kim chi (click for recipe) and yogurt help promote healthy intestinal flora and combat harmful bacteria in the GI tract.
  • Limit red meat; instead, eat moderate amounts of fish and poultry.
  • It’s also smart to limit sugar in your diet. Studies have shown excessive sugar intake can interfere with optimal immune system function.
  • As far as beverages, the constituents in green tea have been shown to be both anti-inflammatory and immune enhancing.

More Immune Boosting Foods

  • Cabbage (Vitamin U), cooked or raw. (Use cooked if you have hypo-thyroid issues).
  • Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs), especially as found in cold water, deep ocean fish such as herring, salmon, mackerel, sardines. Other sources of EFAs include fish oils; organic, clarified butter (Ghee), extra-virgin olive oil and organic virgin coconut oil.
  • Garlic, raw or in supplement form.
  • Fiber from fresh, organically grown vegetables and fruits. As you increase fiber in your diet, you need to increase your daily intake of pure water.
  • Seaweeds such as kelp, Nori, Dulse, Kombu, Hijiki, etc.
  • Sprouts from seeds, beans, peas, and grasses
  • Freshly made Juices from organically grown vegetables, fruits, and grasses
  • Mushrooms (Shiitake, Maitake, Rei-Shi, Ling-Zhi, etc.

Be sure and check out my “Better than Chicken Soup” immunity boosting soup recipe.

 

Cheers to your good health this winter!

 

What’s your favorite immunity-boosting food or soup? Share in the comments below!

 

References

Image: klenova/bigstockphoto.com

 

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Natural Health Answers only joins affiliate programs for products that Paige believes in and sincerely endorses for quality and efficacy.

 

Is Candida Sabotaging Your Health?

Candida Sabotaging Health? Bloating, gas, rashes, brain fog plus a whole host of other nagging health issues are signs your body needs attention.

 What Is Candida albicans?

First, before I get into the details about Candida, I would like to share with you why this is a topic that I know a lot about. I found out a while back that I was actually born with Candida overgrowth and have had multiple health challenges in my life where Candida was the culprit.

I had to figure out on my own how to get rid of it and it was a daunting process.

It has come back a few times in the past twenty years when I’m under quite a lot of stress or I eat a bit off my usually sugar-free, clean diet.

Unfortunately, once you’ve had it you’re more prone to having another bout with it.  I will go right back on the diet, deal with my stress and take a natural anti-fungal if needed.

I can honestly say that I’m blessed to have had the experience (I’m done now though!) of having Candida overgrowth because now I can share the information that helped me with my clients.

After working with clients for 15 years I noticed that up to 80% of people that walked through my door had some level of  Candida overgrowth.

This is why I decided to specialize in helping women with this issue. Candida overgrowth is very common and my goal is to educate people on how to get back into balance and feel better!

So what exactly is Candida albicans?

It is a type of yeast that is present in the gut flora of a healthy human body.

You may be shocked to learn that we each house two to five pounds of live bacteria inside our bodies!

The balance of these bacteria is what’s important as they fend off foreign invaders plus a lot more. The balance of Candida is normally controlled by bacteria in the intestines. But when something destroys helpful bacteria, the yeast begins to invade and colonize the body tissues which can lead to what is termed “leaky gut”.

This is where the tissues become porous allowing these yeast colonies to release powerful chemicals called mycotoxins into the bloodstream, causing a variety of symptoms that I’ve listed below.

 

Is Candida sabotaging your health? Pain, gas, itch and brain fog are signs your body needs attention.Microscope slide of esophageal candidiasis via wikipedia

 

Signs and Symptoms of Candida Overgrowth

Both men and women can have candidiasis, however, women do experience it more frequently and usually more severely. 

Candida symptoms fall into these main four areas:

Gastrointestinal and Genitourinary Symptoms

These include gas and bloating – Candida produces carbon dioxide in the intestine, the result is persistent gas and bloating, thrush, coated tongue,  constipation, chronic diarrhea, rectal itching, indigestion, heartburn, bladder infections,  recurrent yeast vaginitis, vaginal burning and itching, vaginal discharge, “jock itch”, loss of sexual feelings and inflammation of the prostate.

Allergic Symptoms and Skin Symptoms

(These symptoms occur with the passing of toxins into the bloodstream.) These symptoms include hay fever, earaches, hives, headaches, sore throats, coughing, recurrent bronchitis, acne, nasal stuffiness, congestion, runny nose, chemical sensitivities to tobacco smoke, perfume and foods, “sick all over feeling”, athlete’s foot, nail fungus, rashes, dry scaly skin, frequent colds.

Glandular and Organ Symptoms

These include infertility, menstrual problems, PMS, ovarian failure and ACTH deficiency, inability to lose weight,  hypothyroidism, chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, diabetes mellitus, impotence, and endometriosis.

Emotional and Mental Symptoms

These occur because of central nervous system involvement. These include brain fog — poor memory, fatigue, drowsiness, feelings of unreality, coordination problems, numbness and tingling, muscle and joint pain, muscle weakness, irritability, inability to concentrate, confusion, anxiety and severe depression.

Other imbalances in the body can cause similar symptoms as well.

I feel it is important to rule out other issues like gluten or dairy sensitivity, adrenal burn out, blood sugar imbalance issues, emotional issues, and even general fatigue before diagnosing yourself with Candida overgrowth. There are always “layers” to our healing process.

If you have several of the symptoms for a Candida imbalance, following some simple steps for re-balancing your body should help move you in a healing direction whether or not the root issue is a Candida imbalance, or if the Candida imbalance is a symptom of another issue.

If you are experiencing many of the symptoms mentioned above and need some help getting it under control I offer VIP health coaching programs that will help you ditch Candida for good. Contact me today to schedule your free 30-minute Health Discovery Session to see how I can help you get rid of Candida overgrowth for good.

It can be overwhelming when there are so many things going on with our health and I know if I would have had someone to help me way back when I was going through all of my Candida symptoms I would have felt less overwhelmed, confused and felt better much faster!

There are so many factors to be aware of and it’s always smart to be sure that there is not a deeper imbalance going on that needs professional attention. No need to suffer if you don’t have to, it’s a positive step to seek help.

 

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