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Importance of Your Immune System in Beating Candida

If you are suffering from candida overgrowth / yeast infection then its highly likely that your immune system is compromised.  It is believed that up to 80% of our immune system is based in the gut.  

So first step towards recovery is to start to look after yourself and do everything you can to boost your immune system.  I personally believe that the reason I kept getting candida was because my immune system was compromised.  I was always feeling run down. There were specific reasons for this including taking the contraceptive pill, an imbalance of the gut flora due to food poisoning and most importantly of all STRESS.

So please take a good look at your life, habits and diet and see what you can do to be kinder on yourself.  Sometimes it’s easier to start with little steps towards new habits.  I also kept a personal diary (not my blog) to record my progress as there were times when I didn't think I was actually making any! After a few weeks I could read my diary and I began to notice subtle but significant improvements which kept me going.

I'm going to go through some of my own tips for improving your immune system and I hope you find some ideas to help you.

Important of Rest & Sleep

You need to make sure that you are not doing too much if possible.  I know with modern busy lifestyles that this can seem impossible but its vital to your recovery if you can build in time to rest.  I know plenty of people who tell themselves off or feel bad if they feel too tired to carry out tasks that they feel they ‘ought’ to be able to do.  So they basically tell themselves just to get on with it.  But they are ignoring their body’s plea for rest.   This is dangerous. 

Personally I only started to get better once I started to listen to what my body was trying to tell me and to rest whenever I could.  I decided that it didn’t matter how big the pile of ironing became or what state the house was in.  If I was worn out then I went for lie down whenever I could.   If I kept fretting about I ‘should’ be doing instead then I would listen to some relaxing chill out music. 

Sleep is especially important and research suggests that its vital to go to sleep before midnight.  This was one of my mistakes.  I was not sleeping properly – tossing and turning all night long.  Worries would wake me up regularly.  In fact it got to the point where I used to think, “there’s no point going to bed early as I never sleep properly anyway”.  Big mistake! 

I've learnt that poor sleep not only wreaks your immune system, it also upsets your endocrine (hormone) system.  Now I make it a priority to have early nights and I have a routine which helps me to de-stress and sleep well.  It took a while to achieve this as my body seemed stuck in bad sleep habits but I persevered and it been one of the best things I've done for my health.   The body can recharge and start to heal itself while you are sleeping and resting so its very important not to underestimate the importance of sleep when fighting candida. It is vital to understand that sleep patterns are habits which take time to change.  If you are having trouble going to sleep or having a good night’s sleep then it is worth trying a new approach for a few weeks to see if it makes a difference.   Here are things that I tried to help me to sleep better.

Insomnia Hypnosis - DIY
If you have problems falling asleep then you can try an insomnia CD.   A friend of mine actually made her own simply by finding a free insomnia hypnotherapy script on the internet.  She recorded herself reading out the script with some nice relaxing music on in the background.   (Obviously if you do this then you cannot sell the CD as the music and script will be copyrighted)  

There are lots of different insomnia scripts available so you may need to experiment to find one which works best for you.   Once you are happy with your recording save it to a CD or MP3 player.  Then play the recording back to yourself when you lie in bed at night time. 

Alternatively you can buy one.  If you can't find one in your local stores please visit my Products page.

My Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep

  • Switch off the tv or computer at least 1 hour before bed time and try to switch off all electronic equipment in your room.  There's something about looking at a bright screen which makes it harder for your brain to switch off straight away.
     

  • Try to develop a pre-bed routine to let your body know that sleep time is coming.  If you can gradually dim the lights before you go to bed too.  Its all about training your brain into new sleep habits.
     

  • Have a relaxing bath before bed.  I light candles in the bathroom and turn off the main light to create a relaxing atmosphere.  I'm a big believer in the power of essential oils.  Lavender can promote a good night’s sleep so try adding a couple of drops of lavender oil to your evening bath.  If you have sensitive skin mix the drops with a small quantity of milk or base oil (sweet almond oil is my favourite) and then pour it into the bath and mix it around.  I also add a few drops of tea tree oil as this is anti-fungal and can help to fight the candida which is a type of fungus.
     

  • Avoid caffeine late at night.  This means no coffee or tea and also if you are taking medication check it does not contain caffeine.
     

  • Try some gentle stretches to remove muscle stress before you go to bed.  You may like to try some gentle yoga. 
     

  • Relaxation meditations can be stored on an mp3 player and played after you get into bed.  They are great for helping you to forget about worries.
     

  • Try reading a relaxing, positive book before bed.  I love Louise Hay's You Can Heal Your Life.  I end by repeating a few positive affirmations from her book and I always sleep well afterwards.  I have no idea how it works but it does for me!   Check out my affirmations page for more ideas.
     

  • Once the lights are off you can try mental relaxation techniques to help yourself to wind down and drift off. I will be adding info about my own mental relaxation tricks soon as they may help you.
     

  • Try taking 5HTP (5-hydroxy tryptophan) just before bed.  It is a natural amino-acid.  5 HTP has a reputation for working as a natural anti-depression as it helps to boost levels of serotonin.  This is a feel-good chemical which has been linked to killing off candida!  You can boost your serotonin levels by sitting in the sun with no sunglasses for 15 mins each day.  If you take 5HTP it can take several weeks to see a benefit so you need to stick with it for a while before deciding if it helps you.  But if you are already taking an anti-depressant please check with your Doctor before taking 5HTP.  You should also check to see if your prescribed anti-depressant has a negative effect on your immune system.  
     (For more information about 5HTP and Anti-depressants please read ’10 Antidepressants Proven To Work’ by Dr Mercola.  Make sure you read right to the bottom to see what Dr Mercola has to say.)

> Go to Page 2 Boosting Your Immune System

 

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