(This review contains my own personal opinions and I am not affiliated with The Myers Way, Dr. Amy Myers, or her Candida Guide.)
Do you have any of the following symptoms?
- Autoimmune Disease
- Brain fog
- Hormone imbalance
- Joint pain
- Cravings for sweets
- Sinus problems
- Allergy issues/Including Asthma
- Digestive Problems
- Fungal Infections
- Itchy ears
- Frequent Headaches
- Frequent Illness
If you have any of the above, you will want to read this article!
After the holidays I needed to do some detox and cleansing. During the holidays I didn’t go crazy with food the way most American do (and I used to) but for my body, the amount of Paleo baked goods and starches that I consumed were clearly causing some unwanted symptoms like eczema patches, itchiness, achiness, brain fog, and fatigue. I know what it’s like to have those symptoms be so debilitating and now whenever I feel them coming on even slightly I know I need a reset and thankfully, now I know what to do to reset.
It had also been brought up to me at a recent appointment (during the end of the year), by my Functional Doctor, that I had several of the symptoms of Candida. I did not get tested, as I have been there done that and figure now if I know I have the symptoms and know what to do about it then why get tested? Instead, I know how to remedy it so I will just do what I know. However, I knew I did not want to do any sort of Candida diet that I had previously read about online on various websites. The ones I saw were all SO overwhelming and confusing, had no meal plans or shopping lists and seemed quite impossible. There probably are good ones out there but I didn’t find any that fit for me.
That being said, back in October, I got an email newsletter from Dr. Amy Myers talking about her new 30-Day Candida Control Program. I bought it and knew that after the holidays I would start her program for the month of January. I purposed NOT to do it doing the holidays because I have done a very restricted diet through multiple holidays in the past and it was horrible. Talk about feeling deprived. If at all possible, unless I am so sick, I will always choose to do a new diet, cleanse, sugar detox, candida program, etc., after the holidays or time I know it won’t be extremely hard to be different.
At the point I am writing this, I have just finished 30 days on Dr. Amy Myers Candida Control Program and wanted to share with you my personal thoughts, my well-being, and recommendations about her Candida Control Program.
Dr. Amy Myers, MD
Dr. Myers is an amazing source of knowledge of functional health and she is able to share clearly and understandably with the public (and her patients) helping them get educated and helping them implement new, truly healthy lifestyles. She has made this Candida program doable! With a complete guide that answers questions and troubleshoots possible issues that may arise, complete meals plans, shopping lists and recipes, completing thirty days following her plan is definitely achievable and actually enjoyable.
Let’s get into the nuts and bolts of her program
During this 30 days, you’ll be killing the yeast, starving the yeast, and re-inoculating and building up your gut to further prevent the yeast taking over again.
Through her e-book guide, you will have all the necessary information to get you from start to finish, hopefully feeling fabulous by the end! I like paper and being able to flip through paper rather than clicking screens so I chose to print her e-book at my local copy store. It cost about $12 in black and white and I put it in a little .29 three hole punch folder from Target and divided the sections with dividers. I also put the recipes in sheet protectors since they could most definitely get messed up when I used them in the kitchen. I continually referenced this document during the day so I really recommend printing it so you can keep it at hand.
Part 1 – Killing the Yeast
First, when you do any kind of Candida elimination diet you don’t just want to abstain from certain foods, you want to take extra steps to actually kill the bad yeast. Dr. Myers provides (in her Candida Kit) the two supplements necessary for this. They are Candisol and Caprylic Acid in enough capsules to last through the thirty days (and more.) These natural plant enzymes are meant to poke holes in the yeast walls and break down the bio films so that the yeast will die. At the same time you are properly taking these supplements (with her guidance) you are also starving the yeast through following her meal plans.
Shopping List and Meal Plans
This protocol eliminates all foods that can be inflammatory to our bodies. They are: gluten, grains, legumes, corn, dairy, nightshades, processed foods, junk oils and bad fats, eggs, soy and refined sugar.
The Candida Control Program shopping lists are very straightforward and divided into four sections: meat, spices, produce and pantry items. For me, a lot of the items were stuff I either already buy weekly or had. Some of the produce was new to me, which I love because it helps me to try new things and learn to cook them. I was able to find the needed produce locally. One thing that is helpful is that you can leave out certain ingredients on some of the recipes and it will not alter the recipe that much. This is great if you just can’t locate an ingredient. Tip* I highly recommend buying 1-2 cases of this filler free canned coconut milk as you will go through it by the end of the thirty days and it’s cheaper to buy online than per can at the store.
Can I just tell you, her meal plans were amazing! With the help of her RD and RDN, she has developed some extremely flavorful, full of nutrition, simple recipes for breakfasts, snacks, lunches and dinners. Dr. Myers has laid out her plan in weekly increments. There are four weeks total and during weeks one and three you will be eating the same things and during weeks two and four you will be eating the same thing. This is part what makes it easy! For example, once you have finished the first week you now know what to expect the third week and if there are any tweaks you want to make. You’ll also have more of a comfort when shopping since you’ll already know basically what you need. I absolutely loved 95% of the meals that were in her plan. Some of the meals were not generally something I would choose out of a cookbook to make but obviously because I was following this plan I made them, and the surprising thing was that I really liked them a lot! Now I have many new recipes that will become family staples that are full of great vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. I would never have thought that would happen!
Except for a time dealing with my female hormones, I didn’t have sugar cravings and was generally not hungry in between meals.
Through this thirty days, something I was reminded of is that if I have food prepared and ready to eat I will choose it instead of something higher in sugar like dried fruit that’s quick but may not make me feel good if I always choose that kind of option. Planning ahead was key for me and with Dr. Myers menu and shopping lists, pre-planning and prepping was a cinch. Be warned though there is a good amount of prepping and time spent in the kitchen. It’s a good thing. We need to get back to preparing wholesome meals at home and taking the time to prepare our food. Getting your kids involved and teaching them how to cut and chop are vital. Give it a try! I did love having leftovers some days too. It helped to give me a break from prepping and since I liked the food it was a win-win.
Another part of her menu and recipes that were really helpful is I was able to feed my family 75% of the meals I made. This was great because it allowed me to not have to make two meals every time we sat down to eat. Take note – my family has eaten Paleo now for years and my kids eat vegetables (many kinds) for every meal (even breakfast) most of the time so giving them these foods in the protocol was not a huge transition for them. For a family with picky children or unwilling children, I would recommend planning to eat your own meals following this plan and make your family something separate. Maybe you could do batch freezer meals for your family before you start your 30 days?
My Critique for the meals and shopping lists
I have three suggestions I would make to Dr. Amy Myers and her team:
- Include a prep list in the shopping list area that way the person following the plan knows the day and night before what they need to thaw and prep for the next day. This will help if some people can’t get all prepped on the weekends. I wrote mine out ahead of time weekly but it would be a nice addition to have it already done for me.
- Next, I wished there were servings and/or portions in the heading of the recipes. This will help the person know if this dish will feed their family or not as well as how much of the prepared meal they should eat. For instance, I don’t generally sit down and eat two chicken breasts, two avocados and salad with multiple vegetables in one sitting. To know the expectations in how much to eat would be helpful.
- Lastly, there were a few breakfasts that were purely carbohydrates with no protein and I would put in options for a protein to include. For some people to not have protein in the morning works, but for me personally, it doesn’t. I feel horrible if I just eat carbs first thing. This was an easy fix for me though. I either just added some leftovers with protein into my meal or, if it was a smoothie, I added an avocado and/or 1-2 scoops of this or this collagen. It made all the difference for me with how I felt the rest of the day. It’s all about blood sugar!
For now, since her guide doesn’t have these parts, I did prepare some on the weekend and then each day I would look at the next day to know what I needed to thaw and prep. Sometimes I would even look a couple days out. The other thing is that I was able to tell by the quantities of ingredients used whether it would be enough to feed my family or just me.
Reinoculating the Gut
Another very important part of healing is boosting a number of good bacteria in your gut so that it is properly guarded against the bad invading again. For Dr. Myers Candida Control Program she has a probiotic (by Xymogen but labeled with her name) that she recommends taking. It is also available together with her Candida kit with the Candisol and Caprylic Acid. She specifies when to take the yeast killers and when to take the reinoculating probiotics each day. You should only take a clean, free of fillers, probiotic and she recommends at least 25-100 billion units per day. Taking good probiotics are a vital part of healing from Candida. I have taken her probiotics before but had some of my own really good probiotics and so I wanted to use that.
How I felt and the benefits of doing this
I have been on some extremely limiting elimination diets before (ALCAT, Stage 1 GAPS for months, etc.) and so I was fully prepared to go through the same emotions with this one that I did with the others. However, to my surprise, I loved the food so much and was able to have certain kinds of fruit once in a while that it made me enjoy the process. I didn’t have a huge amount of sugar cravings at all. The only thing I really craved was something crunchy. I missed my plantain chips! By the end of it, I was also wanting to have some sort of paleo muffin, pancake or waffle. Not too bad for this sugar-loving, carb craving mamma!
In Dr. Myers” guide she also talks about die-off reactions that can happen. I have had those before and they are no fun. I was also well prepared to have these and that life may have to stop for a while until I got it under control. She mentions several ways that you can reduce die-off symptoms and forego the worst reactions. That was encouraging because I felt like if I had any of these symptoms come back I would know what to do. It was as if she was sitting there holding my hand! Thankfully, I did not have any of the bad symptoms that I expected to have. All that happened for me was a bit of irritability and extreme fatigue for one day around my cycle. Hormones generally don’t balance out and resolve in one month anyway.
The benefits for me have been numerous!
- I wake up clear headed with energy.
- Brain fog is gone
- I do not get afternoon fatigue
- My skin is so smooth and silky, no blemishes and NO ECZEMA!
- I have no itchiness
- I have no achy joints or headaches
- I have learned new recipes full of herbs and vegetables
- Digestion Improved
- No PMS hormone headache
- Learned I have a slight sensitivity to butternut squash and sweet potato. Awwwhh!
(Please note – these are my personal issues that resolved and results are not the same with everyone. You may have more, you may have less, you may have completely different resolutions. You also may experience die-off that I didn’t. I’ll say it is worth it to feel better though!)
Following this plan for 30 days was wonderful. In fact, I think this, along with my own 24 day no sugar challenge, will be something I do every year. With all the lemon juice, garlic, ginger, and greens in this protocol there is ample opportunity for the body to detox and when we are not feeding it inflammatory foods the relief of health issues can be astounding!
I highly recommend Dr. Myers, M.D. 30 Day- Candida Control Program if you feel like you need a reset or want to try and get rid of any of the aforementioned symptoms. You don’t have to have Candida to do it and even if you have one symptom on her Candida Questionnaire it will be well worth it to try this for 30 days. This plan can help with any autoimmunity and what is wonderful is that after the 30 days, when you start introducing foods back in, you will be able to properly pinpoint if there are certain foods that cause your body, in particular, to fire up and get inflamed.
Cheers to healing and feeling better!