Me n’ my achy guts.

Hey friends,

So I’ve made digestion my specialty for a reason…

I was pursuing a life of fine art when I got really sick and ended up getting diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 2007. My path got mightily diverted from where I thought it was headed, and I ended becoming a holistic nutritionist. I still create and show art, but have found an equally strong passion in holistic health.

Crohn’s Disease has been a brutal and powerful teacher of mine. I have learned much, and this illness has sure put a fire under my ass to learn more and MORE. And that fire is burning hot these days, friends. I’ve been in a flair up for some time now, despite my holistic-as-heck ways, and this teacher insists that I’m not done being its student yet. So here I am.

It’s been about a month since I recorded the above video – which I clearly recorded or a “good” day – and in the time that has passed, my health has worsened. It’s been hard to keep down my food, I’ve had a lot of intestinal pain, have spent a little too much time on the porcelain throne, and have felt just plain exhausted.

So what to do?

I’ve had a poor relationship with sleep all my life, which is common amongst those with Crohn’s Disease. Your body makes melatonin (the hormone that makes you feel sleepy) out of serotonin (feel-good neurotransmitter), most of which is made in your gut. In fact, 90% of your serotonin is made by the gut! If your gut is not in great shape and struggling to perform, things like serotonin production might not happen as much as it should, which means melatonin might not get made as much as it should, which means sleep might not happen as much as it should. Makes sense, right?

I’ve been making a better effort to not only sleep more, but basically as much as I can. I go to bed earlier. I sleep in. And I often nap in the afternoon. The body cannot repair itself if it doesn’t get enough sleep.

I’ve also cut my diet way back. I’m eating what sort of looks like an elimination diet right now, sticking to anti-inflammatory, hypoallergenic foods, and avoiding specific types of carbohydrates. There’s been lots of broth, lots of steamed greens, and lots of ginger tea going on.

I’m also taking supplements, of course. Probiotics have always been a staple of mine, and, well, let’s just say I’ve got enough supplements in my cupboards that I could open a store in my kitchen.

The other article I referred to in the video is this one I wrote in the spring.

And of course, it’s important to check your thoughts. What’s going on in your head? Are you always just hanging out up there? What about the rest of you? I spend a lot of time in my head and it is so important and healing for me to come back down to Earth when I catch myself getting too caught up in the clouds, and get grounded in nature and relax and enjoy the moment. Ahhh.

That’s the update on me and my health. The best we can all do it just keep showing up to do our best each day, and remember as we go along that as we are different every day, so will our best be different every day.

Stay healthy, friends. Really, it’s so much easier to work to prevent this stuff than it is to work to fix it. STAY HEALTHY, FRIENDS!!!


Love Candace

About Candace Bell

Holistic as heck and herbaciously bodacious, Candace Bell (BA, CNP) is a Toronto-based certified holistic nutritionist and visual artist with a focus on self-empowering re-education, digestive support, and encouraging creativity to become fully alive. Trust your gut and create total health!

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