Thursday, February 3, 2011


Over the past two days, I realized that my anti-yeast diet has been flawed.

That is not to say the diet wasn't working. It was working. I was getting benefits from it. But was I implementing the diet the maximum extent possible? I was not.

The culprits were kabocha squash, sweet potatoes and lemon juice. I thought these things were ok because my naturopath Nesreen told me I could eat no fruit, but any vegetable was fine, and I could have lemon.

I understood this to mean lemon juice was good, anti-yeast-wise. I was having a lot of lemon juice, filling an eight ounce glass with half lemon juice, half water, and drinking that twice a day. I would drink it at the end of lunch and dinner, when despite all that I'd eaten I still felt hungry. I thought the lemon juice must have been doing something kill off the yeast.

But what Nesreen really meant was I could get away with a little lemon here and there, in salad dressing, etc. Downing four ounces of lemon juice at one sitting was, I've now concluded, actually feeding the yeast.

Since Tuesday night, I've cut out lemon and also sweet potatoes and squash. I went to bed hungry, despite having eaten a good dinner plus popcorn after, which usually fills me up. I woke at 4 a.m. starving, ate yogurt with brown rice and beans and went back to sleep still feeling starving.

All yesterday morning I was so hungry I could barely concentrate on my work. I had snacks and then lunch, and when I was still hungry after that, I decided it must be the yeast screaming out for lemon juice, a carrot, anything the least bit sweet.

I was way too tense to sleep, started crying while I listened to a BBC report of the events in Egypt, and decided I should go for a walk. It was a sunny day, and path along our corner of Lake Union, underneath the soaring Aurora Bridge, was as gorgeous as ever. As I walked, I told my body to calm down, I took long slow breaths whenever I remembered, and I thought about my feet, which always, for some strange reason, eases tension. By the time I got home I wasn't feeling hungry anymore. I took my Vitamin C and slept for an hour, woke up feeling like I'd crossed a bridge into the land of calmness.

By the evening, I had the tell-tale die-off headache. I'd starved out a stubborn hoard of yeast.

No more lemon for me. I will see if I can make it a few more days without squash or sweet potatoes either. I know these things are low on the glycemic index, so I was telling myself they were ok. But I looked on line yesterday for more information on this diet. As usual, the internet is full of conflicting opions, but one website definitely said no sweet potatoes, no carrots, no corn.

Does this sound easy? It does not. Do I really, really want to eat some squash? Yes, I do.

I'm telling myself I can do anything for a few days, anything if it helps me get over Lyme.

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