are carbs the key? (candida, emotional health and more?)
Carbs. Carbohydrates. Givers-of-energy. Love ‘em? Scared of them?
Carbohydrates have had so much “bad press” in the food (well, diet) realm. Carbs make you fat! The Atkin’s fad (high protein, low carb = weight loss) the “low-carb lifestyle,” good carbs vs bad carbs. Where do you stand on this whole debacle?
A lot of people don’t think of fruits/vegetables as a form of carbohydrate…. when someone says “carbs,” you sort of instantly think of bread, rice, pasta, am I right? At the moment I am experimenting with the 80/10/10 lifestyle which maintains that the way to optimum health is to get 80% of your daily calories from carbohydrates (sweet fruits/vegetables in particular) 10% protein (from dark leafy greens) and 10% fat (nuts/seeds/avocado/oil etc). Fruit as your main fuel? Yip, that’s it in a nutshell – but does it work?
I have been eating this way for about 3 weeks, and I must say it has been effortless apart from the multiple trips to the greengrocer/market to replenish our produce supply. I’m feeling really good, so I don’t want to stop – I have more energy, no stomach issues after meals (usually bloating/pain) and my digestive system is working a treat (in the bathroom sense). If I feel a little lacking of motivation/energy I simply eat some fruit, and I’m on my way again – it’s the quickest way to pick yourself up, believe me. I’m sleeping much more soundly, which apparently is a sign of being appropriately “carbed up” before bed – puts that whole “NO CARBS at night!” premise to shame.
Interestingly, after my trials and tribulations with the Anti-Candida diet, I still had an on going issue with thrush. (Sorry if you’re squeamish, but I like to take the honest approach here, and feel it is an issue a lot of women suffer from and could use the advice). Following a few (unavoidable) heavy courses of antibiotics during my pregnancy, I have suffered from this on and off constantly – never quite being able to kick the nasty stuff. After cutting sugar totally (including all fruit) for months, and upping my healthy fat intake, I managed to get rid of all of the candida systems EXCEPT the thrush. I was under the impression that the fruit from sugar would feed the yeast imbalance in my system, but after eating SO much fruit these past few weeks- and limiting my fat- the thrush has gone completely(!) If you are interested in this topic, then this video explains the theory that FAT aggravates candida really simply and clearly.
My emotional health has also taken an upward turn…. I’m feeling a lot more balanced, and feel like I have the ability to focus better. I think it all boils down to having the energy to keep going throughout the day. Sweet fruits give you almost instant energy, which in turns makes you WANT to do things like exercise or tick things of the “To-Do List.” These kind of things (exercise, being productive) produce feelings of satisfaction, pride and achievement, am I right?
I’m not really into all the science-y descriptions or anything (I’m not the smartest in the “book-smarts” sense) but what I take from my research on the topic is that the body uses the energy from sweet fruits really easily (and quickly) plus (carbs) are optimum brain food. So a diet high in fruit & vegetable based carbohydrates promotes healthy digestion, sound sleep, and feeds the brain with it’s favourite fuel consistently? Could this be a ticket to stable emotional health too? Is this way of eating sustainable? I’ll keep you posted…..