a child, I was sick all the time. It seemed I went
to the doctor every month and got another round of
antibiotics. Of course, at the time they didn’t
know the long-term effects of antibiotics.
I had my first yeast infection at the age of 11. They
put me in the hospital because they didn’t know
what was wrong with me. It was only when a gynecologist
came into the picture that they finally figured out
it was yeast.
That set a pattern: I had yeast infections in my teens.
I also developed allergies, for which I was given
shots. I was especially allergic to mold.
It was at that time I became addicted to sugar. I
always had sweets with me. I have something sweet
after lunch and dinner and ate sugary breakfast cereals.
As I entered my adult years, I began to binge on sugar.
I could eat half a gallon if ice cream at a sitting
with no problem at all. Well, it was actually a problem.
I’d feel sick and nauseated afterward, but I’d
still do it.
I became very lethargic. I was sleeping all the time
Before long, I was diagnosed with high blood pressure
and high cholesterol and I was overweight.
I think the low point followed my divorce two years
ago. I developed a great affection for my couch. I
ate most of my meals there. I napped away the weekend
there. I watched endless television programs.
When I went to my doctor for a routine physical earlier
this year, she told me I had a yeast infection. I
didn’t even know it! I was surprised, because,
despite all the other symptoms, I hadn’t had
a yeast infection since the birth of my son 14 years
I have to give credit to my doctor, Marian Owen, who
is absolutely wonderful. She suggested I buy The
Yeast Connection and Women’s Health,
so I did.
I was shocked when I figured my score on the yeast
questionnaire: It was 257!
The light came on! I thought: “You’re
a single parent, 44 years old and you’ve got
to do something. Now.”
I went with the diet and ran with it. Something inside
me said this was the right thing to do.
Suddenly, my cravings for sugar disappeared. I can’t
tell you why, perhaps it was just the realization
how serious my situation was.
I take a good multi vitamin, probiotics and I’m
now doing a liver cleanse at the recommendation of
I’ve had no sugar at all for five months.
My doctor has taken me off my blood pressure medication.
She says tests show that my yeast levels are near
I’ve lost 35 pounds and I work out in a women’s
gym (which I consider my social time) four or five
times a week.
I learned I had intolerances to milk, sugars and yeast,
so I avoid them completely.
I feel good, sleep a reasonable amount of time and
rarely take naps anymore – so it’s clear
my energy levels have dramatically increased.
I feel absolutely great!
Was it easy? No, not really. I had been on diets like
Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers before with little
success. The Yeast Connection eating program is far
stricter than either one of those, but the more structured
plan is better for me. I need to be strict because
I’ve seen the results.
I shop the outside perimeter of the grocery store,
but I can walk right past the ice cream without a
twinge. Sure, my grocery bills have gone up, but I’m
saving more than that amount on the medications I
don’t have to buy.
But I have stayed firmly with the eating plan. I don’t
think of it as a diet anymore. It’s a lifestyle
Where we once ate at fast food restaurants several
times a week, I’ve found there are few places
that will accommodate me, so we eat out rarely now.
My kids have been supportive, but they’re kids
and I can’t be as strict with them as I am with
myself. I let them have pasta and even cookies sometimes,
but it doesn’t bother me to know they’re
in the house.
I’ve bought every cookbook I can get my hands
on, but I’m still hungry for more new ideas
and new recipes. Please do another cookbook!
The next bump in the road, I foresee, is fruit. The
only fruit I’ve eaten in five months is Granny
Smith apples. Dr. Owen wants me to add berries, and
I know they’re good for me, but I’m afraid
their sweetness with trigger sugar cravings again.
Wish me luck!
While you're here, read
an excerpt from The Yeast Connection and Women's
Professional Books, Inc.