exiting news for anyone who has ever had anything prepared in animal fat – you know how incredibly delicious it is (duck fat fries anyone?). not only is cooking with animal fat tasty, it is completely acne-safe and full of nutrients.
it can seem a bit strange to make your own animal cooking fat, (instructions here), especially for people on the go, or who are strangers to the kitchen. the company epic has bottled up some super high quality stuff, including:
100% beef tallow
duck fat (our personal favorite!)
i found these bad boys at my local whole foods market, and am very excited to prepare my morning eggs in duck fat.
there are some awesome nutritional benefits of cooking with animal fats.
great source of healthy fat, which our brains AND hearts need.
great source of omega fatty acids, and saturated fat which contrary to outdated nutrition ideas of the 80’s and 90’s is essential for the function of many of our organs. these fats act as a vehicle for fat-soluble vitamins, and countless natural processes inside our bodies. this is a great article about the need for saturated fats in our diet.
we have found it to be one of the safest oils to cook with, for more cooking oil information see an older blogpost here.
candida is a yeast that can negatively influence the body and skin when it overgrows. we found this awesome article about the ayurvedic approach to balancing candida within the body. check it out and enjoy!
Candida albicans yeast is a naturally-occurring intestinal inhabitant which is normally kept in check by a properly balanced intestinal medium. Candida albicans becomes a concern when the intestinal flora’s good bacteria is out-populated by this yeast, which is commonly included under the heading bad bacteria. The now-flourishing yeast can enter the bloodstream via the enteric cycle and elicit the classic yeast symptoms of low energy levels, interrupted sleep, immunity issues, ringing in the ears, and sluggish digestion.
The Western approach to candida overgrowth is to eradicate the yeast and therefore relieve the associated symptoms. Ayurvedically, it is considered most important to address the underlying cause of candida while using herbal remedies to rebalance the body towards a healthy intestinal medium.
How Does Candida Take Over?
In Ayurveda, the etiology, or cause underlying the uncontrolled proliferation of candida is considered to be agnimandya, or deficient digestion. Deficient digestion results in the production of ama, which is the by-product of undigested food. Ama is then either absorbed into the bloodstream or lymphatic system, creating a toxicity and the ground floor for many health issues. Invariably, this ama will accumulate in the seat of vata found in the lower digestive tract. The seat of vata is governed by the apana (or downward moving) energy, which regulates the growth of flora in the gastrointestinal tract. As the ama accumulates in the small and large intestines, it will putrefy and ferment, thus inhibiting the normal flora from proliferating. Under these conditions, yeast has free reign to spread throughout the intestines unchecked.
The next stage of the candida growth process is a result of the intestinal absorption of ama into the liver and blood via the portal system.
In Ayurveda it is believed that, once yeast enters the bloodstream, the step-by-step generation and regeneration process of the seven tissues of the body can be interrupted or damaged.
If the seven tissues – which include rasa (plasma), rakta (blood), mamsa (muscle), medha (fat), majja (nervous tissue), asthi (bone), and sukra (sperm and ovum) – are damaged or improperly formed, an overall lack of luster and vitality is the result. The dhatus are formed in a carefully designed succession, and if any one of the dhatus are improperly formed then the production of sukra will be inhibited. Sukra, the final culmination of the digestive process and of dhatu development, provides the body with immunity, procreation, vitality, luster, long life, and health. It is this gross lack of vitality and immunity that colors the symptoms of candida proliferation.
Reigning it Back In
From an Ayurvedic perspective, the two most important strategies in reigning candida back in are, first, to ensure the integrity of the digestive strength (also called agni, or fire) and second, to build immunity back into the body. With both of these in place, the treatment to kill off the excess yeast with medical drugs or herbs can safely and effectively be employed.
In Ayurveda, it’s understood that candida overgrowth can present differently based on body type, or prakriti, and can respond to a different support protocol depending on whether it’s a vata, pitta, or kapha form of candida overgrowth. Below, I’ll walk you through how to tell which form may match your presentation, and how to support each accordingly. After that, I’ll give you some general lifestyle suggestions that anypresentation of candida overgrowth will benefit from.
Vata Candida Issues
Vata is aggravated by the excessive intake of pungent, bitter, and astringent foods; sugar; hard-to-digest proteins; wheat, dairy, nuts and soy; too much cold food and excessive travel; the suppression of natural and normal urges; excessive intercourse, and irregular eating and sleeping habits. Signs of vata aggravation include dry skin; nervousness, moodiness and an inability to cope; constipation, gas and bloating; ups and downs in energy levels, and unbalanced sleep patterns. If these are paired with signs of yeast imbalance, this can be considered a vata presentation of candida.
1. Start with an ama decreasing diet. This involves avoiding dairy, sugar, breads, and mucous-producing foods. Cold and raw foods should also be avoided. Sip hot water every 20 minutes and drink eight to ten 8oz glasses of warm lemon water per day. Eat a large relaxing lunch and a warm cooked soup for dinner. Avoid fruit juice and eat fresh fruit in moderation and separately from all other food groups. Use hing, ginger, basil ajwan, and garlic to spice your food*.
2. Start each meal with equal parts of ginger juice and honey, and a pinch of lemon juice, salt, and cumin powder*.
Pitta Candida Issues
Aggravated pitta can put out digestive fire in the same way that a flood of boiling water will put out a flame. Pitta is aggravated by greasy and spicy foods, and sugar. Signs of pitta imbalance are acidic digestion and occasional heartburn; bloating; yellowing complexion; irritability; swelling and other issues of the joints; yellowing loose stool; raised body temperature, and excessive thirst. Remember that often times the upward flow of vayu can take a vata based candida issue and mix it with a pitta presentation. Both sets of symptoms at the same time indicates a vata and pitta combined cause. A support protocol would then have to address both vata and pitta.
1. Eat more fresh raw leafy green vegetables, avoid sugar and fruit juice. Emphasize pomegranates and bitter herbs, veggies, and spices.
Kapha Candida Issues
Kapha is aggravated by the intake of food that is too heavy, too oily, and cold, and by pasta, bread, and sugar. Overeating and sleeping after meals produces ama and puts out the digestive fire. In this case digestion becomes slow and difficult. Kapha yeast issues can present with lowered immunity, swollen glands, water retention, heavy mood, fatigue, and excessive sleep.
1. Avoid all mucus-forming, oily, and greasy foods. Avoid salt and sugar. Eat primarily grains and vegetables. Dandelion, asparagus, kale, collard greens, and spinach are foods to increase.
2. Flavor food with pungent spices like cayenne, ginger, black pepper, clove, and curry.
Lifestyle Tips to Keep Candida in Check
If you are experiencing the signs of yeast overgrowth, it can be very helpful to follow a regular daily routine in waking, eating, and sleeping habits.
Make lunch your main meal of the day – the biggest and most satisfying. Dinner should be light. Breakfast should be very light and is optional. Favor food that is freshly prepared. Avoid leftovers, frozen, canned, or processed food.
Sip hot water frequently throughout the day (every 1 or 2 hours or as often as desired). This keeps the digestive fire alive and flushes ama from the system. If you feel anxious, sipping hot water also settles the nervous system.
Get fresh air and regular exercise (preferably outdoors) through such methods as a morning or evening walk, sun salutations or other yoga asanas.
Extra Mealtime Tips
Eat in a settled environment.
Eat three meals a day and avoid snacking (except for the between lunch and dinner yogurt lassi, below).
Eat only when hungry, after the last meal has been digested. Stop eating when you feel satisfied, but not yet full (about 1/2 to 3/4 full).
Sit quietly for at least five minutes after eating to promote digestion.
If dairy tolerant, take a lassi (yogurt mixed with water, 1:1, 1:2, or 1:4) during lunch and between lunch and dinner, as needed to promote digestion. It is best to make lassi with freshly made yogurt. Although traditionally lassi can be sweet or seasoned, with yeast issues you’ll want to keep it savory, flavoring with spices such as cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom, for example, or salt, ginger, and cumin.
Avoid cold food or drinks, especially foods and drinks taken directly from the refrigerator.
Avoid heavy food at the evening meal, including heavy desserts, yogurt, cheese, oily food, and fried food.
Ayurveda is all about going downstream with the cycles. Combining the dietary and lifestyle suggestions in this article with your existing protocol for candida elimination will help support the body in regaining balance, which will help your body heal itself – the cornerstone of Ayurveda!
Sharma, P.V. Cakradatt, Chaukhambha Orientalia. New Delhi, India. 1994.
Altha Vale, V.B. Basic Principles of Ayurveda, Bombay India. 1980.
Bhishagratma, K.L. Shusshruta Samhita, Vols. 1 and 2, Varanasi, India. 1981.
Sharma, P.V. Caraka Samhita. Vols. 1 and 2. Varanasi, India.
Devaraj, T.L. The Panchakarma Treatment of Ayurveda. Dwanwantari Orientalia Publication, Bangalore, India. 1986.
Chopra, R., and De, P. The action of sympathomimetic alkaloids in Sida cordifolia. Ind. J. Med. Res. 18 (1930): 467.
maintaining a healthy balance of microorganisms within the body helps us have strong immune systems, productive digestion and clear skin. if these microorganisms are disrupted by an overgrowth of candida, it can throw everything off and can prevent you from achieving the acne free complexion that you desire. if you think that you may have candida you have a couple of options:
see a naturopathic doctor who can run a test in office
just do the diet. the most cost effective route but it takes a little will power to do a diet without knowing if you actually have a candida overgrowth. bonus* even if you don’t have candida, the diet is pretty great for your skin and body over all.
the entire skin SALVATION team has decided to do the candida diet for the month of february. kim and i have done tests and neither of us have a candida overgrowthproblem however, we are excited to eliminate sugar from our diet for the month to reset and feel great.
throughout the month of february we will be blogging weekly meal plans, how we are feeling and photos of our skin. we will be posting on instagram with #sugarfreefebruary#candidacleanse and #healthybodyclearskin. follow us @skinsalvationsf. you can also find great candida safe recipes on our pinterest board.
we invite you to join us on this journey to clear(er) skin and healthier bodies.
some of you have heard us talk about the candida cleanse before and how it can positively impact your skin if you have a candida overgrowth. we’ve written blog posts about what candida is and how to treat it. you can read those popular posts here and here.
the most important aspects of the cleanse are taking your supplement to wipe out the candida (we recommend cansol) and strictly following the candida free diet. just because there are things that you can’t eat doesn’t mean that this diet has to be boring! here’s a meal plan to get your through the first week of candida cleanse. prep all of this food on your day off and keep it in the fridge throughout the week.
THIS WEEK’S MENU
cauliflower tortillas are a super yummy candida safe alternative to corn or flour tortillas. wrap scrambled eggs in them for breakfast, meat to make tacos, or use as a “mini pizza crust.” find the recipe here.
toasted pumpkin seed guacamole to eat with raw veggies or later on tacos! we left out the serano from this recipe.
barbacoa from this chipotle copycat recipe for tacos or on top of salad.
nappa cabbage, almond & chicken salad sub soy sauce for coconut aminos in this recipe
marinated zucchini with mint sub the white wine vinegar for apple cider vinegar to keep this recipe candida free.
roasted fennel & artichoke salad find the recipe here
AN AVERAGE DAY
breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs with green onions and a cauliflower tortilla
snack: toasted pumpkin seed guacamole with celery stalks
lunch: nappa cabbage, almond & chicken salad
dinner: barbacoa and marinated zucchini with mint over arugula
HOW TO PREP IT ALL
start your roast in the crockpot and bake your chicken breasts for the salad.
make the cauliflower tortillas
cook the zucchini
roast the fennel
combine remaining salad ingredients
make nappa cabbage salad
THIS WEEK’S SHOPPING LIST
1 cups organic raw pumpkin seeds
organic cold pressed sunflower seed oil
1 cup raw almonds
2 dozen free range organic eggs
4 lb chuck roast
1/2 lb organic free range chicken breast
1 head organic cauliflower
1 napa cabbage
1 small sweet onion
3 organic zucchini
1 fennel bulb
1 can whole artichoke hearts in water
1 bag organic spinach or arugula
1 bunch organic celery
celtic sea salt
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 bunch fresh mint
1 bunch flat leaf parsley
1 head garlic
bragg’s raw apple cider vinegar with mother
organic chicken broth (best to make it yourself or purchase handmade frozen from your local butcher. packaged broth often contains sugar and lacks the essential vitamins that homemade contains)
i have officially been living the acne safe lifestyle for 6 weeks! i threw away all of my cloggy products and replaced them with ones that are sS approved, i’ve been icing 20-30 minutes every morning and night and taking zyflammend. i haven’t even had coffee, dairy or soy in almost 2 months (a serious feat for me!)
although i have noticed a HUGE improvement in my skin, i am still having some issues with inflamed acne. as a huge believer in the healing power of food i decided to put my faith in the kitchen this week and eat only low inflammatory foods.
this week’s menu doesn’t include anything that’s known to cause inflammation. it is also autoimmune protocol, paleo, gut healing and mostly candida safe.
nuts & seeds (except for chia and coconut)
alcohol & vinegar (except for apple cider vinegar)
my lovely boyfriend and i prepped all of this food in a couple of hours on monday. this makes breakfast, lunch and dinner for the two of us for an entire week.
THIS WEEK’S MENU
beef stew with rosemary & olives! adapted from this recipe using beef instead of lamb and carrot instead of rutabaga.
bacon turkey butternut squash! we turned this recipe into a casserole by layering mashed butternut squash and sweet potatoes with ground turkey instead of beef. *omit the balsamic vinegar and pepper for aip or candida cleanse.
coconut milk baked chicken! see our pesto inspired recipe below.
grated carrot & mint salad! we left out the oil and pepper and used organic raisins instead of currants in this recipe.
cucumber salad! we swapped the tomato in this recipe for avocado and used apple cider vinegar instead of white wine to keep it #aip.
beet salad! see my easy family recipe below.
blueberry chia seed pudding! see this easy egg free breakfast recipe below.
chocolate chia seed pudding! see this easy egg free breakfast recipe below.
HOW TO PREP IT
preheat your oven to 350.
cut your butternut squash in 1/2 and place on a baking sheet with whole sweet potatoes. cook until tender, about 30-45 minutes.
put your beets on to boil.
fry your bacon in a pan to desired crispiness. drain bacon and save fat in a sealing glass container.
chop all of the onions, garlic & root veggies that you need for all of the meals. sauté in 2 pans, one for the turkey casserole and one for the beef stew.
brown beef with root veggies.
cook ground turkey. in the meantime chop cooked bacon. once turkey is fully cooked toss it with bacon and sautéed onions.
remove cooked sweet potato and butternut squash from oven. peel and mash together. this will be your base layer for your casserole. top with ground turkey mixture and refrigerate.
add bone broth and remaining ingredients to beef stew. bring to a boil then cover and let simmer for at least 1 hour or until beef is tender.
make coconut chicken.
make chia seed puddings.
drain beets, slice and toss with dressing.
make cucumber salad.
make grated carrot salad.
enjoy the fruits of your labor for the next week and say goodbye to inflamed acne!
THIS WEEK’S SHOPPING LIST
2 large sweet potatoes
uncured bacon ends and pieces
2 cans organic light coconut milk
2 large california avocados
organic cold pressed extra virgin olive oil (pantry)
1 bag organic chia seeds
2 packages grass fed stewing beef
2 packages 99% lean organic turkey breast
1 bag frozen organic chicken breast
2 white onions
2 small bunches organic carrots
1 butternut squash
1 box baby cucumbers (can also use 1 large american or english cucumber)