Last week, we talked about antibiotics.
Specifically, how to prevent damage to your gut & health if you find yourself in a situation where you have to take them.
In other words, flood your body with probiotics and fermented foods during and after your course of antibiotics in order to prevent bad bacteria from proliferating and causing an imbalance.
But what about if you’ve already taken many rounds of antibiotics in your life, and never took these preventative measures?
I’m willing to bet this is most of us. And it used to be me as well.
The thing is, not having the proper bacterial balance in your gut can lead to all sorts of issues… including digestive problems, yeast infections, full body inflammation, allergies, and it all can trickle down into a lot of skin problems… including acne, as well as eczema and rashes.
So is all lost if you’ve taken lots of antibiotics?
Will your gut, digestion, and subsequently skin be doomed to forever sub-parness?
No, there are definitely things you can do to heal your gut and get your bacterial balance back in line, which is one big factor in leading to skin that is vibrant and acne free.
However, the more antibiotics you’ve been on, and the longer you’ve been on them, the more you may need to work on this.
So here’s my list of things to do to heal that gut:
- Take Probiotics & Eat Fermented Foods
- Take a Short Course of Antifungals Along with Your Probiotics
- Keep Sugar Intake Low
- Take L-Glutamine & other Gut Soothing Foods
- Avoid Foods You’re Sensitive To
- Put It All Together with A Candida Cleanse
1. Take Probiotics & Eat Fermented Foods
Probiotics are good bacteria. In order to be in good overall health, you need to have more good bacteria in your gut than bad bacteria.
This is what antibiotics do: they kill all bacteria, including the good guys, then leaving an opportunity for the bad guys to overgrow.
So you need to add the good guys back in.
This is the cornerstone of any gut healing program. If your gut isn’t too damaged, taking probiotics may be the only step you need to take.
Probiotics can be taken in supplement form (click here for recommendations & what to look for), or they can be found in certain foods that have been cultured with beneficial bacteria, called ‘fermented foods’.
The thing is though, is that the food has to be “live”, meaning it wasn’t heated afterwards to kill the bacteria. So the average sauerkraut or pickles that you get at the grocery story isn’t going to cut it.
Make your own, unless you have a health food store nearby that sells live fermented foods.
2. Take a Short Course of Antifungals Along with Your Probiotics
Okay so antifungals are natural foods and supplements that kill bad bacteria and bad yeast (often referred to as candida).
So it’s not a bad idea to take a round of antifungals along with your probiotics, in order to kill some of the baddies and make a little room for the good guys you’re adding in.
You don’t want to take antifungals forever though. Take them for three or four weeks and then continue with your probiotics for many months after you’re done them. Also, don’t take them at the same time of day as your probiotics or fermented foods.
Examples of antifungals are caprylic acid (found in virgin coconut oil), raw garlic, pau d’arco, black walnut, oil of oregano, or grapefruit seed extract.
It’s not a bad idea to take several of these at once, in order to hit the bad guys from every angle.
To make it easy on yourself, you can also just buy a formulated anti-fungal product such as Candigone, which contains many different antifungals.
3. Keep Sugar Intake Low
Next thing you want to do is keep sugar intake low. Bad bacteria and yeast love to eat sugar, so if you lower or eliminate their food source, they will die more easily.
In most cases, it’s only the refined or added sugar that is hugely problematic to your health and skin – like, for example, the sugar that’s added to cookies.
But in the case of trying to re-balance your gut, you may also want to reduce natural sugars as well, such as those that are in fruit. Just for a short while.
4. Take L-Glutamine & Other Gut Soothing Foods
Okay, so one thing that happens when bad bacteria gets out of control in your gut is that it irritates your gut lining.
Then, due to this irritation the gut lining starts opening up and creating little holes, in which certain undigested foods can then sneak into your blood stream. This is called leaky gut.
You body sees these food particles as foreign invaders, creates an immune response, and you end up with all sorts of weird symptoms and inflammation throughout your body.
This is essentially what leads to acne, rashes, headaches, and all the other things that don’t seem connected to your gut, but actually are.
So anyway, you want to close up those holes and sooth your gut lining. One thing you can do is take a supplement called L-Glutamine. This is an amino acid which is super powerful at healing leaky gut.
5. Avoid Foods You’re Sensitive To
Foods you’re sensitive to are the foods that get into your blood stream via your leaky gut and cause your body to give you an unpleasant reaction.
Your body doesn’t necessarily react to all foods. It’s more likely to react to ones that are hard to digest, although you can be sensitive to any food.
For example, you might find that when you eat dairy, you get acne or feel really lethargic. But, you know, eating an apple is no biggie.
In order to help your gut heal, it is beneficial to avoid foods you’re sensitive to for at least 6 weeks.
This reduces the irritation in your gut, and it also takes your immune system off high alert, meaning your body has more energy to heal. Once your gut is healed, you should be able to eat many of the foods you were sensitive to without much issue.
But how do you know what foods you’re sensitive to? I am not going to lie. It’s not easy, because the connection between symptoms and what foods you ate is not always immediate or obvious.
A good place to start is simply avoiding the foods that are the most common sensitivities. This includes dairy, foods containing gluten, and soy.
If after a couple months, you’re not seeing much progress, you can embark on an elimination diet, or by visiting a naturopath and getting a food sensitivity test.
6. Put It All Together With A Candida Cleanse
Not only is it highly effective for re-balancing your gut and setting you up for lifelong good health, it’s extremely effective for getting rid of acne quickly. It’s one of the most beloved acne-fighting tools by the members of my Naturally Clear Skin Academy.
Basically, a candida cleanse puts all of the above steps together into one concentrated program.
You take probiotics, you take antifungals, you soothe your gut, you eliminate all sugar, and you avoid all the common food sensitivities.
I have found it to be such an effective strategy that I put together a whole candida cleanse program to make it all really simple for you.
I lay out super comprehensive step by step details, created a one week sugar free meal plan for you as well a whole book of additional recipes, tell you how to take all the supplements at the right time, and give you 10 motivational videos to keep you going.
It’s the easiest way to make sure you are getting the most benefit from your efforts!