Posted 5/3/2005 5:35 AM (GMT -7)
Sorry for not answering for a while...crazy work schedule lately.
I doubt the Wellbutrin contributed much to your IBS-D (although it can cause diarrhea in a small percentage of the population). But, as I said previously, the antibiotics are definitely part of your problems now. I'm guessing that your diet probably started the problem in the first place, but the antibiotics later on left your gut unable to fend for itself by leaving a ton of pathogenic bacteria behind in you. Lactose intolerance (the gas/cramping people get after ingesting dairy) after antibiotics is a huge clue. You need to re-populate your insides, and that's not an especially easy thing to do, and it isn't done quickly; in addition to re-populating the beneficial bacteria, you have to decrease the pathogenic bateria to a low enough point so the good ones don't get killed off by them and can grow to sufficient quantities themselves.
You'll have to make a commitment to yourself to take a few types of supplements every day, and probably keep taking them daily from now on. I'm sure Leaky Gut plays a part here, too. It's a natural consequence of having a yeast overload. (It allows macromolecules -- i.e., large proteins, heavy metals, yeast -- to pass through the cell walls of the gut, not stool itself.)
As I said earlier, I don't know of many people who've had success with Acidophilus cultures, but maybe you'll be one of the few for whom they work. They have to work for somebody out there, but by the time you have chronic problems you need something stronger. My personal feeling is that Acidophilus/lactobacilli only work for people who are fairly "normal" to begin with. For example, once a female gets to the point where she gets recurrent yeast infections, just forget about Acidophilus. Lactobacilli just don't work for most people. I'd go with SBX every time in that case. (By the way, Primal Defense contains a lot of cereal grasses, which those with yeast infections do poorly on -- the cereal grasses just feed the yeast.) Picking a probiotic is difficult because different companies pick different bacterial strains to put in their products. No one agrees as to which bacterial strains are the "best" ones to have, and every company claims they have the best product.
By the way, I once spoke to a woman who graduated with a PhD (enzyme research) from Baylor who told me to stay away from probiotics containing FOS. The fructooligosaccharides (FOS) are a form of sugar which the bacteria in the probiotics use to help them grow -- but they also feed yeast, and those with yeast infections should find a probiotic without them. However, you'll find people on the internet who say this is not the case. Personally, I never had good results with probiotics containing FOS, so I believe the woman.
I've heard chewables definitely don't work. And most probiotics in capsules don't survive the acidity of the stomach to make it into the gut, which is what has to happen for them to be of any benefit.
You'll certainly never find SBOs/HSOs with a scientifically "proven" background, that's for sure. The only studies ever done that I'm aware of have been with the age-old lactobacilli strains that humans have been consuming for thousands of years (the ones in yogurt and other fermented foods) -- and which don't work for people with more acute problems in my opinion. SBOs are new on the scene, so won't have any studies behind them. I've found SBX definitely works for me, so I'll keep taking it. Yes, you'll hear all kinds of scary things on the internet against SBOs. Just like you'll hear all kinds of scary things coming from the FDA about every single thing that heals people that isn't a pharmaceutical drug. You'll also hear the American Dental Association say that silver fillings are perfectly harmless (50% of amalgam is mercury -- the most toxic heavy metal there is). I got mine all taken out and replaced by composites, and I swear I never would have gotten better if I hadn't.
And keep in mind that for every medical study that finds one thing, there will be one that contradicts those same findings. In short, you have to read tons of material on whatever you're considering, read reviews from people who have used those things, check out all the forums you can find, and then make up your own mind. I would never have gotten well without digestive enzymes, systemic enzymes, SBX, chlorophyll, Pascalite clay, and a few other things. Every time I thought I was over the problems and stopped taking those things, the problems came back with a vengeance. I'm now convinced that my supplement routine is absolutely necessary to keep me functioning, and I now know that it's necessary for me to take these things on a daily basis, probably forever!
I know you're looking for the one big miracle probiotic that will cure your problem, but you probably won't find it. What you'll find eventually is something that makes you feel a heck of a lot better when you take it. You definitely NEED a probiotic, but I think you also need a number of other things -- they all work together. Chances are, it's not one thing alone that's going to work, especially when it comes to the digestive tract. You have to look at cleaning out your system as well as strengthening it, and then you have to keep the routine going.
Regarding the undigested chunks...digestive enzymes help with that, in addition to probiotics. I'd also recommend you start taking MSM (www.msm-msm.com) daily...forever.
I also want to point out that there is absolutely no reliable test in existence that will accurately confirm a yeast infection. There are people who carry a very high Candida load in their body who have no symptoms whatsoever; and there are also people who have what would be considered a very low load who show extreme symptoms. Just for fun there's a "saliva test" you might want to try for the heck of it at http://www.compfused.com/directlink/750 and see what happens!
Also, it used to be rare for a male to have a yeast infection. But in the last 10 years in this country yeast infections have reached epidemic proportions for both sexes. Itching (groin, rectum) is usually present if the problem is Candida.
Don't go crazy and think you have to go on an "all raw" diet. I know there are lots of people who swear by it because it's worked for them, but that doesn't mean it works for everybody. I don't believe there's any one thing that will cure 100% of people, 100% of the time, I don't care who says so. People's bodies are just too unique. For example, meat eaters are always getting bashed by vegetarians, but not everyone is biologically set up to be a vegetarian. According to Dr. Sherry Rogers, there are two enzyme pathways a person's body can use to produce energy (one is the Kreb's Cycle and I don't remember the other one!). Meat eaters tend to utilize one because they have the enzymes present to be able to, and vegetarians the other because they don't. Consequently, a meat eater will feel sick and lethargic all the time if they try to be a vegetarian because they lack the enzymes to run that energy pathway; and a vegetarian who tries to eat meat will feel sick and lethargic because they lack the enzymes to run the 'meat eaters' pathway. So try to be logical about your diet. Eating ONLY meat is not the healthiest thing to do because your body needs fiber, as well as other nutrients missing in meat. But eating solely vegetables might not be in the best interest of your body, either. One thing that just about everyone does agree on seems to be refined carbohydrates (sugar, crackers, cereal, etc). Living on a diet of refined carbohydrates will make anyone sick over time. So will living off of fast food. (By the way, have you seen the movie Super Size Me? Rent it next time you're at Blockbuster if you haven't seen it -- it's outstanding!) By the way, you mentioned trying soy, so I'll mention that I've heard soy is 'notoriously hard to digest' for many people, so that might not be such a great thing for you, either. Have you heard of the book "Eat Right 4 Your Type"? I know a lot of people who swear by it (as well as some who say it did nothing for them, but you're always going to find that with anything). I keep meaning to pick up a copy, but haven't yet.
You mentioned you've started taking enzymes on an empty stomch until the clay arrives...
Would those be digestive enzymes or systemic enzymes you're taking? If they're digestive enzymes, then don't! The whole purpose is to take them before each meal, not on an empty stomach. They help break down food properly when your body doesn't. They improve digestion of food and assimilation of nutrients (so they greatly lessen gas). I recall someone saying that by digesting food, they leave less for the yeast to feed on. But the whole point is they only work when there's food in your stomach.
Systemic enzymes are a different matter -- they clear out all kinds of toxins from tissues, break down mucus, decrease swelling, even lyse the protein coat on viruses (which kills them). They're usually quite expensive, but they're great stuff, and I wouldn't be without them. They're invaluable for keeping healthy, getting over sicknesses quicker; but as I said, they're not cheap.
The Pascalite clay is healing for all kinds of things, but it's not a replacement for enzymes! It's not going to break your food down for you. You need enzymes, both digestive and systemic, if you want to heal the quickest, but at least digestive. The clay is also necessary because it will bind to toxins in the system and move them out of the bowel quicker. It also provides bulk so it'll help with diarrhea. It has other healing properties that nobody can figure out. But you need both enzymes AND the clay. One isn't a substitute for the other.
You asked how antibiotics, when stopped, can cause such a bad odor...
Hmm, that's not exactly what I meant to convey. Let's try it again...
It's not stopping them...it's going ON them. It's the "good" bacteria in your system that keep the "bad" bacteria in check. But when you take antibiotics, they kill off EVERYTHING, "good" strains as well as "bad" strains. It's easier for the "bad" bacteria in your system to overgrow rapidly, and it's harder to get enough of the "good" strains back in.
The situation gets worse in the case of Candida yeast, because the yeast form eventually morphs into a more virulent fungal form, and fungus is notoriously difficult to get rid of. Yeast give off hyphae (sort of like antennae) that work their way into the lining of the bowel and then hook into it. The only way to get rid of a persistent yeast infection is to take something that will literally pull the hyphae out of the intestinal lining. If that isn't done, you'll never get rid of the yeast. And they say that yeast is capable of causing hundreds of different medical complaints because it can mimic ANY disease (migraines, IBS, arthritis, depression...anything), which is why MDs don't think about it as being the cause of anything.
Anyway, you're constantly putting more "bad" bacteria in your body than "good". So the "bad" strains overgrow in your system and wreak havoc...you don't digest your food as well, you become lactose intolerant, you get gas after every meal or even snack, you develop a yeast infection, or diarrhea, or constipation...the list goes on and on. So think of it this way -- if your insides contain a lot of putrefactive material, then a person CAN develop a bad odor. (What happens when you dump food into your garbage can and never take it out?) Bacteria break things down and that in turn causes odors.
You asked...'If the smell is caused by built-up toxins, wouldn't the body have started eliminating these toxins even while I was still on the antibiotics?' Well, that would depend on how loaded down with toxins your body was in the first place, as well as what kind of toxins we were talking about, as well as what the body has in it to use as a defense. Are we talking about bacterial toxins, viral toxins, heavy metals, pesticides? The body is constantly bombarded with a myriad of toxins every day. There are organic toxins and there are inorganic toxins. And what if the body happens to be missing a needed nutrient or two, or three, or fifty? How can the body eliminate toxins if it doesn't have whatever it is that it needs to do that with? That's sort of like asking "If I start drinking Chlorox bleach, then why doesn't my body just start eliminating it immediately so I don't get sick?" If the body gets overwhelmed and can't heal, then it can't heal. If a vitamin, or mineral, or essential fatty acid, or some other factor it needs is missing, then if it doesn't get supplied, how will the body get it so it can heal itself?
Do you drink tap water? If so, then you're drinking chlorine, bacteria, viruses, cysts, pesticides, and probably fifty other toxins every day. The body does the best it can to rid itself of junk, but it can only go so far. If the toxin load gets overwhelming, then the body bogs down and gives out. It can't eliminate what it needs to if it's overwhelmed. In short, we take in far more toxins on a daily basis than we do "good stuff".
Regarding your 4/28 post...
It's very likely you have a yeast overgrowth by now, considering the antibiotics you've taken, especially the length of time you were on them, and the fact that your diet hasn't been the best. There's usually a lot of itching in the groin when yeast is the problem, or rectal itching. If a yeast overgrowth IS the culprit, and has been going on for that long a time, I don't think you'll solve your problem simply by taking probiotics. You'll have to go on a specific protocol for quite a while using several things on a rotational basis (Pascalite clay is one of the things involved, but in a special liquid form -- it's too long to explain here). As I said earlier, you have to pull the yeast hyphae out of the colon and move the stuff out of the bowel in order to get rid of yeast, and probiotics aren't going to do that. The yeast will just continue to overwhelm the good bacteria as soon as you put it in.
Sugar and carbohydrate cravings are classic symptoms of a yeast overgrowth, although not everybody who craves sugar or carbohydrates all the time has a yeast infection. If you take MSM daily, you'll find that after about 3 months you won't even think about sugar again. Any cravings you might have for it will just disappear. At least that's been my experience, as well as others who take MSM. I don't know if that's an across-the-board reaction, or whether it just works on some people that way, but it's inexpensive enough from the place I mentioned to try it.
You asked 'why does my body odor smell like human waste'? Because your body is unhealthy. That's the only answer I can give you without a biochemistry degree. It happens. Odors build up and the body gives them off. The odor depends on what the body's trying to get rid of at the moment, or on what's backed up in the body, or what's trapped inside and can't get out. If you were to eat a lot of seaweed, you might find that you start to give off an unmistakable aluminum odor, as well as taste aluminum in your mouth. Seaweed binds metals. Eating a lot of it can cause your body to detox and give off an aluminum odor (the substance being eliminated). If you ever do it and that happens (and I did), you'll find out just how much aluminum your body has trapped from a lifetime of using deodorants and eating food in cans.
In answer to your question 'does yeast have anything to do with body odor'...I've heard that it can. Parasites can also cause body odor. So can liver dysfunction and diabetes. (If you crave sugar, have increased thirst, and urinate constantly, please see your doctor and make sure you don't have diabetes!)
You mentioned you were taking 600 mg of Body Mint but couldn't go to a higher dosage because it was giving you a stomach ache and possibly the runs (although you said the Jarro-Dophilus could have something to do with that). I wasn't aware that chlorophyll could cause stomach aches, but I suppose anything could if someone had an especially sensitive stomach. It shouldn't happen if you take it with food. I never had a problem with chlorophyll causing the runs, either, but that doesn't mean it can't happen. The clay would help in that department. Starting a new probiotic can cause the runs for a while. Stay away from probiotics with maltodextrin (Jarro-Dophilus), FOS, or any sugars for that matter; they just encourage yeast growth. Yeast causes diarrhea in some people and constipation in others, so it's possible that any kind of sugar is a contributing factor for your diarrhea; so would be any refined carbohydrates.
You also said that 600 mg of Body Mint didn't really work. Well, I had to take a total of 800 mg of chlorophyll daily for it to work. If I dropped down to 600 mg, it didn't work. So dosage is everything, and it's different for everybody. All the symptoms you gave in your post describe Leaky Gut/yeast. I have a feeling that if you took digestive enzymes before each meal, probiotics, systemic enzymes, decent vitamin/mineral supplements, chlorophyll, MSM, and Pascalite clay daily, you'd find relief of some major sort. It's not exactly cheap to take all of those things daily, but it's the only way I know of to bolster your digestive tract enough for your body not to have those problems. If you try all those things and get no relief, then I'd suspect a pretty bad yeast overgrowth, in which case I'd suggest you go on the protocol from the folks at www.wholeapproach.com. I'm convinced it's the only program out there that both really works and is also the cheapest for getting rid of chronic yeast.
Antifungals won't solve your problem. Yeast has a tendency to become immune to them quickly. Then the yeast tends to come back worse than before. They ARE necessary, in my opinion, for very severe yeast infections, to get them under control. Once controlled, you get rid of yeast over time by using the protocol I mentioned.
I'm glad to hear that Kirkman's is helping you. I hope you can find relief for your digestive problems just by taking probiotics, but in case they're not enough, then try the supplements I mentioned in addition to them. In my case, some probiotics helped so significantly at first that I thought my problems were over. But over time that turned out not to be the case. Problems that eased up at first became worse later on. I had to go on the protocol I mentioned earlier. Yes, I changed my diet somewhat for a while, although there's no way I could live on the "Candida diet" everybody says you have to go on -- it amounts to eating nothing but meat, water, and salad greens every single day for forever. Way too severe for me. But I did have to drastically curb my intake of refined carbohydrates for quite a while. Sugar was an absolute killer, I couldn't take the smallest amount of it, including fruit. Certain vegetables I couldn't tolerate either (like carrots, they're high in sugar). Nowadays I don't have a problem, but I don't overdo it with anything either. And I take all the above-mentioned supplements daily. By the way, the Oxy-Powder is working great for me now, as long as I take 1 capsule before meals and one at bedtime. I swear the oxygen it gives off is working to clear my system -- I was able to cut down on the chlorophyll I take.
Keep taking the Kirkman's, digestive enzymes, chlorophyll, and a little clay each day and see what happens. Your bowel movements have already improved and will no doubt improve more. I'm sure that whatever smell you've got will disappear in time as you clean your system out. Your biggest advantage is that you're young, so you might bounce back fairly quickly and with a minimum of things you have to take. (It gets harder the older you get.) Keep me posted.