Hi Cynthia, I just wondered what would be your suggestions for a suitable diet, specifically carb intake when the adrenals, liver and colon are compromised?
This is coming from the angle of someone who really needs some carbs in the diet due to adrenal weakness and being severely underweight, yet chronically constipated with a congested liver and candida
Some conflictions I’ve noticed….
– Fruits – will swing blood sugars and possibly feed Candida, however eaten on there own appear to be good for digestion
– Grains – Low GI and gluten free good for balancing blood sugar however difficult to digest with Candida. Potentially feeds them.
– Starchy veg – Will swing sugars if sensitive and potentially feed Candida.
– Beans – good source of low GI carbs/protein and fiber although again difficult to digest and problematic for those with Candida.
– Juicing veg – again the majority of options are too potent for those with AF to handle, especially those who don’t have the energy to tolerate detoxification.
In summary, what are we supposed to eat?!!
Many thanks, Matt.
Great question Matt. Yes, there are so many different opinions out there on diet that it can make your head spin and actually result in immobilizing you instead of motivating you take action.
So to add to the confusion, or shed a little light on the situation, depending on how you look at it, here is my opinion.
My advice is based on what I have found to be true and effective in my own personal experience and the people I work with. I have dealt personally with each of the conditions you mention.
The good news is that there is one diet that addresses each of your conditions and concerns. Each of these conditions demands a high protein, low carbohydrate diet. The diet I recommend to everyone, and the one that I follow, is a slightly modified version of the Paleolithic diet, also known as the caveman diet or hunter-gatherer diet. The Paleolithic diet is the healthiest diet for your liver, adrenals, colon, digestive system, metabolic system, heart, immune system, nervous system and whatever condition you’re addressing because it is the diet that nature intended you to eat.
To summarize briefly, the Paleolithic diet is the diet that we are genetically designed to eat through the process of evolution. It consists of nothing but lean meats, fish, eggs, non-starchy vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds and healthy oils. It does not allow grains, dairy, legumes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, corn, peas, peanuts, alcohol, caffeine, sugar, additives, preservatives and pesticides. The human body was not genetically designed to process these foods, and therefore they result in the vast number of chronic health conditions we see in society today like Candida, hypoglycemia and adrenal fatigue.
The Paleolithic diet is the diet that human beings have eaten for more than 2 million years and what we are coded genetically to eat at this time as well. The Agriculture Revolution introduced grains, beans, potatoes and legumes to the diet and ever since then our health has taken a drastic decline and continues to do so. Astute health experts like Dr. Al Sears, Dr. Mercola and Professor Loren Cordain are a few of the professionals who support this line of thinking that I have found to be true in my own life.
However, for people with Candida, hypoglycemia and weak adrenals, the Paleolithic diet must be modified slightly. Fruits must be kept to a bare minimum because they will exacerbate each of these conditions. Stick to the low sugar fruits like berries and reserve sweeter fruits for special occasions. Nuts usually have to be restricted as well for people with Candida and colon health problems, as they tend to make yeast flare and may aggravate the colon of sensitive people.
Additionally, most fish is contaminated with mercury and other pollutants, which should be avoided by people with Candida, unless you can find some clean sources. Eggs are a common food that people have an undiagnosed food sensitivity to, so sometimes they must be avoided. Tomatoes are high in acid and tend to aggravate yeast, so usually have to be avoided or restricted.
To address some of your points specifically — as mentioned above, beans and grains should be avoided completely or eaten only on an occasional basis, because they are harmful to our bodies in many ways. They disrupt our metabolic system, nervous system, gastrointestinal system and immune system. Fruits should never be eaten on an empty stomach, this makes instant food for Candida, spikes blood sugar and cortisol levels which contributes to or exacerbates hypoglycemia and adrenal fatigue. Fruit should be eaten with meat and vegetables, because this slows down its processing into sugar in the body.
Starchy vegetables should be avoided as they too are too high in sugar, are not processed well by the body and fall under the not allowed list in the Paleolithic diet. Although occasional juices may be okay, for the most part, fruits and vegetables should be eaten in their whole and natural state.
All your carbohydrate and fiber intake should be supplied through your vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds — not grains, beans or potatoes. However, with Candida, hypoglycemia, and adrenal fatigue, then most of it should be supplied through vegetables.
As for being underweight, I recommend you read this post on weight loss on the Candida diet. But to summarize, if you tolerate nuts and seeds then increase your intake of those foods. Although I encourage the avoidance of all grains including alternative grains, you could add a serving or two a week of one of the alternate grains. Eat avocados frequently – they are high in fat. Add walnut oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, or olive oil to your veggies. Drink a protein drink. Again, although I don’t advocate the use of dairy products on a regular basis, you could add a serving of yogurt or butter to your menu for a while until you gain some weight. Add a few fatty cuts of meat to your menu, only until you put on a few pounds.
I recommend sticking to the modified Paleolithic diet as close as possible, but sometimes when many health conditions are involved we can have conflicting needs that will require some compromising.
So basically, to sum up the answer to your question, what should you eat?
On the ideal diet to address Candida, hypoglycemia and adrenal fatigue, lean meat should make-up a little more than half of your meal, accompanied by an abundance of non-starchy vegetables and a small amount of a healthy oil like walnut oil, avocado oil, or olive oil. Topped with a small serving of low sugar fruit and/or nuts, if tolerated. That’s it. Nothing more.
It’s also important to keep in mind that healing is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Maintaining optimal health requires a life-long commitment to healthy eating choices as I’ve outlined above.
On a side note, supplementing the diet with a high dose of magnesium citrate will help the bowels to function again and alpha-lipoic-acid is exceptional for the liver, not cure-alls, but very beneficial.
All the best,