Here is a good question, should I avoid eating in restaurants while I’m recovering from a candida problem? You could also say, should I avoid restaurants if I’m recovering from SIBO, small intestinal bowel issues? Should I avoid restaurants if I’m trying to recover from irritable bowel syndrome or inflammatory bowel disease or any type of gut problem?
So let’s talk about that. The interesting thing with eating in restaurants is there’s such a wide selection. When you go out with friends, when you go out with family, because I take it, you’re not the kind of person who dines alone. I dined a lot, alone, when I was in the States. When I could go to the States, traveling there and visiting a lot of my friends and going to conferences, going to raw material shows, expos and things like that, I would often dine alone. I’ll tell you about that another time, because those experiences are hilarious. Some of the stuff that I encountered that was supposed to be healthy, it was like pet food. Some of the places I went to it was crazy. But anyway, should you go to a restaurant and eat if you’re trying to get better? You can, okay? But it’s dangerous, it’s dangerous to do that.
Now, the reason why I’m saying it’s dangerous, because it depends really, I suppose, how bad the problem is that you’ve got and also how far in your recovery cycle you are. But there’s always that danger, that hidden danger, that you may want to order a dessert, you may want to get some sweets after. You may want to have a glass of wine or a beer with that meal, you may want to have something that could really cause a problem the following day. I could also entitle this video for example, I could easily entitle this video, should I go to my best friend’s wedding if I’m recovering from candida? Should I go on my nice vacation to The Bahamas with my wife or my husband or whatever, my boyfriend or girlfriend, if I’m recovering?
When you’re recovering, it generally means that you’re starting to feel better. You’re improving, your gut’s improving, all right? I don’t like people eating out, to be honest, if they’re recovering from a problem, because it’s so tempting to make the wrong call. It’s so tempting for a friend to say, “Ah, come on, you’re looking really good, to hell with it, have this nice glass of red wine or have this nice cold beer.” And you may think, “Oh, well, I’ll throw caution to the wind, I’ll have that.” And then the following day, kaboom, you have a reaction. You have an aggravation, your skin flares up, your bowel flares up, and you feel annoyed. You feel annoyed with yourself. You feel you’ve let yourself down. You kick yourself up to the butt, all right?
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What I don’t like about it, not so much the physical aspects of the aggravation, it’s the emotional aspects of the aggravation. Many people who are recovering, starting to feel good about their life, they’re starting to feel happy, they’re enjoying life again. Then all of a sudden, boom, there’s a bit of headwind, okay? Now, for some people that could have been the second or third time that happened. For some people it could be the first, but the point I’m making is it stresses you out. It can cause you emotional stress and that can make you really worry about recovery, if it’s actually going to be a real event or a non-event.
The more caution you have in the first few months of recovery, the more likelihood that you recover faster, and also you’ll be continually in a more upbeat mood, which means your stress will be down. Your internal stresses will be down, which will accelerate your recovery. On the flip side, if you went out once or twice or regularly in recovery phase, and started to get these headwinds, particularly emotional headwinds, exacerbated by physical problems, it can set you back. And in some cases it could set you right back, right back.
So to answer the question, it depends on you. It depends how bad the tummy is, it depends on what part of the recovery cycle you are. But more importantly, it depends how strong you are as a person in terms of saying, “Look, no thank you, I don’t want that,” without offending other people. Now me being the guy I am, I don’t usually offend people, I just annoy the hell out of them at the dinner table and say, “Nah, I don’t want that stuff.” If I go out eating with my four brothers it’s usually mayhem. There can be bits of food thrown around the table, and if we get those lazy susans, we’ll spin them around quick and there’d be source bottles flying off, and we have a lot of fun when we go out eating.
To me, life should be about fun, it shouldn’t be about stress, but it should also not be about embarrassment. It shouldn’t be about feeling bad and that you’ve let your friend down because you wouldn’t have that piece of pizza, or you let your best buddy down because you said, “No, I don’t want that cold beer.” Don’t feel bad about saying no to people, okay? Don’t feel bad. Feel bad about saying yes to yourself all the time, because that’s how you’re going to cause yourself a problem. Discipline is the tough thing in recovery phase. I’ve written so much about this in Candida Crusher.
In fact, some people told me, “The book’s too wordy,” and I’ve put too many stories in there about recovery with people and about positive thinking. But you know what? Recovery is about positive thinking. It’s about feeling good about yourself, empowering yourself to believe that one day you’re going to be a hundred percent. Because remember, I was extremely sick in my twenties. Now I’m way better than I’ve ever been. You can fully, fully recover in most cases. What holds most people back is their ability to say, “Sorry, I don’t really feel like that today.” So you need to be tough on yourself in the recovery phase, very tough. And as you recover more and more and more, it’ll become easier and easier for you to say, “Look,” and you know what? Eventually, like me, it could become a lifelong thing where you will say to yourself mentally, “I don’t really want to eat out like that.”
In fact, we had friends turn up last night, they just turned up, it happens sometimes. I was in the middle of cooking a nice big vegetable curry, and my friend said, “Look, let’s just go out and get some deep fried potato chips and some fish.” I was tempted but I said, “Nah, I’ve got way better stuff here to eat at home than that.” So it’s all about enjoying your meals, enjoying or hopefully preparing nice meals for yourself in a good environment. It doesn’t have to be expensive meal. But as you recover more, you’ll find it’ll be easier and easier to say no. And then when you’re really healthy again, you can dip back into those restaurants, no problem. And then you’ll quickly work out, what’s going to feel good and what’s not going to feel good. So my advice is to take it very, very easy in those first several months and maybe relax things a bit more, but don’t be afraid to put up your hand and say, “No thank you.”
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