as you may be aware, during my first Paleo challange I had quite a lot of GI issues which were not improving with the Paleo diet and this is why I sought out some medical help to figure out what was going on. I was lucky because we quickly found from a faeces analysis that I was infected with blastocystis hominis (the tricky part is usually to find it). My symptoms were: abdominal cramps, abdominal distension, bloating, abdominal pain and discomfort, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, intense brain fog, very low energy levels, lack of concentration, lack of appetite at times but increased cravings at other times and strangely enough weight gain (about 5 lbs, probably due to the urge I had to eat more to get more energy or because I succumbed to the cravings and went back to my terrible binge eating habits for a little while… and probably combined with my total lack of physical activity).
Blastocystis hominis can do a lot of damage to the intestinal wall, leading to a leaky gut, inflammation and decreased immunity, as you can read here.
I took 2 courses of Tinidazole, 2 g about 2 weeks apart, as recommended by my gastroenterologist. Meanwhile, I started supplementing with the probiotic Saccharomyces Boulardii, sold as Florastor in America and SB Floractiv in Australia (which is a yeast and therefore unaffected by antibiotics). I also started making my own sauerkraut (I eat about 1/2 cup a day), according to Sally Fallon’s recipe in my precious book “Nourishing Traditions.” I also got some ADP oil of oregano from Biotics Research (a standardized time-release oil of oregano, which is a natural antimicrobial with anti-inflammatory compounds; slowly building up to 6 tablets a day), L-glutamine (to repair gut lining), digestive enzymes with hydrochloride betaine and continued taking my vitamin D (1000 IU/day), wild fish oil (1 g/day; 600 mg EPA & 400 mg DHA) and magnesium (Natural Calm; 400 mg/day).
Meanwhile, I have continued to eat totally gluten-free, dairy-free and legume-free since March 7, 2011 (but I have had small amounts of sugar in the form of honey, maple syrup and chocolate though and well as some organic cream and butter!) I believe eating this way, especially by restricting carbs and sugar, can certainly help in getting rid of parasites by avoiding feeding them.
I feel old with all my bottles of supplements but I am feeling a lot better! My GI tract seems to be working fine although I think I need to stay away from nuts and coconut (not the oil but dried coconut) for now because I noticed some bloating following their consumption. My brain fog is gone, I can concentrate a lot better and have the energy to work (freelance writing does require a lot of self-motivation!) and even exercise!
I am looking forward to doing another Paleo challenge to recover my health, make sure I completely eliminate this parasite, heal my leaky gut, improve my immunity, resolve the inflammation and lose a few pounds!