Crohn's Disease Forum » Your Story » IBD, Crohn's and Candida

02-13-2017, 12:32 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Maine
IBD, Crohn's and Candida

This is a big story. But I need to get this out as I am very scared, confused and desperate for support!

So for my whole life I have been dealing with digestive issues. I am a few months shy of 32. As a kid I suffered from a fungal rash on my left heal, constipation, and stomach ulcers. Doctors just dismissed them as growing pains.

They eventually went away (except the heal which was worse in the summer) and I spent most of my teens without any problems, except very high anxiety and depression. I was placed on SSRI's for a year, but took myself off after experiencing horrible withdrawal when I missed a dose.
When I was about 19 years old, I was driving home from work and had a terrible cramp in my lower abdomen that was so uncomfortable, that the second day I drove myself to the E.R. After various tests they ruled out that it was just a fluke. However to this day I can remember times where I would experience that cramping, freak out thinking it was my appendix, and eventually it would go away after a few days. I never thought twice about it once it was gone. I ended up getting a colonoscopy where they informed me that there was light scarring on my lower intestine, but that that was normal and that everything seemed fine.

The next few years seemed fine, but I started to experience a lot of diarrhea and symptoms of IBS in my early 20's. Also that my immune system was very weak. For instance, if I had an alcoholic beverage and was even around second hand smoke, I would start to shake. This still occurs today.

About the time I was 25 I was able to obtain health insurance for a few months, and my dentist recommended getting my wisdom teeth pulled. I ended up having an allergic reaction to the Amoxicillin and developed a horrible case of C-Dif. I was placed on 3 rounds of severe antibiotics ($14k worth without insurance) and finally beat it. I was taking probiotics and eating lots of yogurt and kombucha at the time.

Ever since then though, I have been very sensitive to certain foods. I noticed that when I drank beer, or had grains or sugars, I would break out in eczema, a rash on my hairline (started losing my hair), get dandruff for days on end, and always have diarrhea the next day. But usually my stomach would be cool by 24 hours (not the eczema or dandruff). And in the summer I would become prone to fungal infections on my left big toenail (always the same nail) that would go away with tea tree after a week or so. In retrospect it seems as though I was always dancing around fungal outbreaks and infections. Also, whenever I ate a lot of high fiber foods I would get the worst disgusting nauseating fermented smelling gas. It would smell as if it were trapped and rotting inside of me. Even still with diarrhea.

But the symptoms were never so severe that I felt it was at an emergency level. I do suffer from high anxiety, depression, and mood swings which never went away.

This has been my life to present day.

2 years ago in the winter, I randomly developed an anal fissure and had the doctor look at it who said it was caused from my diarrhea. He then decided that I most likely have IBS. And gave me some info on it. That was about March, by June I had a second fissure and major cramping that was the worst pain I have ever experienced, but eventually went back down to one fissure. I started using hydro-cortisone suppositories and baby wipes which would help almost eliminate the fissure, and got to a point where I could just wipe with normal tissue paper and a drop of witch hazel (with alcohol).

I have always noticed that in the summer my symptoms are dramatically less severe. I don't know if it's bc I am drinking more water, sweating more, exercising more, or all of the above. But in the winter time ( I live in New England) my symptoms, especially dry skin, are much MUCH more severe and that's when all the trouble starts. I have lost a lot of my hairline. Whenever there is a red rash on my hairline my hair seems to just fall out. Every time I sit to poop I pee about 4 or 5 times in 20 minutes.

And about 3 years ago, I found some old kombucha in my cupboard that had been way past it's fermentation, I drank a swig to check it out, and it was so yeasty that I spit it up. The next day my throat was killing me, and the doctor told me I had strep. This is when I started to make the connection with my body and yeasts.

Thank you for reading this so far... here is what has brought me to posting:
In July, I developed a fungal infection again on my left nail. After much persistence with tea tree, it got worse and spread throughout my foot as athletes foot.

This past fall I started fasting for 24 hours straight once per week. This seemed to improve my health and focus. In November, I began doing 40 hour fasts per week. I was told by my paleo friend that intermittent fasting was beneficial, and I did notice losing all of my stubborn fat. However, I was not informed on how to break fasts properly and would usually jump right into a heavy meal. I also started eating very little carbs and sugar, and lots of fiber and protein. I also was putting vinegar and antifungals on my athletes foot which went away, except for my nail.

Towards the middle of December, I started to get weird cramps in my lower rectum that would scare me into thinking I was going to poop my pants. And I would immediately run home to diarrhea. Then came the fermented smelling farts that indicated something was stuck and not passing through (perfect setup for candida growth). I began to drink 3 or 4 cups of Kombucha since it usually helped, although not taking into consideration that the Kombucha I was buying was high in sugar. Without knowing, this made things worse.

I was eating lots of broccoli, beans, bean chips, eggs, kombucha, almond kind bars, coconut oil popcorn, and raw apples and veggies. I thought I was doing a good thing, but I think I was actually clogging my lower intestines, causing inflammation, and giving the already present (prob for many years) over abundance of candida a chance to grow and get to the point I am at now.

Towards Christmas, I could barely hold anything in. Whatever I ate would immediately give me terrible cramping and gas that was always accompanied by diarrhea. Simultaneously I started having problems with my prostate and peeing. Frequent urgent urination, not being able to empty in one go, broken stream, and lots and lots of dribbling afterwards. It is as if my entire system is damaged.

My nail is still infected and will not go away, my dandruff is now full blown, and here mid February I have not had a day in 2 months without horrible gas and bloating followed by diarrhea. I am developing rashes throughout my body. And very dry skin. And it always seems as if I am not completely eliminating my bowels. I am still peeing half a dozen times in one sitting on the toilet.

I thought this was all IBD, and Crohn's which has been discussed with me a while back with my Dr, but was never officially diagnosed. So for the past two months I have just been eating rice, bananas, oatmeal, vegan protein powder, and tea and organic gluten free cereal. That's it.

Things got a little better. My diarrhea turned to harder poops, and then to reddish poops that were messy and didn't seem to completely come out, which left me with terrible cleanup. I started taking a probiotics in January, and made my way from 7 billion to 14, then after a couple weeks I doubled it. About 4 days ago, I took 35billion and that's when the trouble really began.

At this point (a week ago) is when I started to really pay attention to candida and research it. It had always been on my mind that I may have a reaction to yeasts, but I never really thought about it as IBD came first in my mind.

My dandruff came back that next day full force, I broke out in a rash on my forehead, and my stomach was in total agony. I did my normal bathroom routine (which at this point is 2 hours compared to 15 minutes this past summer), got out of the shower, had to pee so I sat down and a ton of mucous came out. That night I sweat horribly in my sleep. So badly that I woke up and it was dripping off of me. You could have wrung out my boxers. I realized that this was die off due to too much too soon.

Now I am looking at candida and I have all the symptoms. It makes sense. I am currently on day 3 of a bone broth cleanse, with ACV supplementation in water 3 times a day, garlic in the soups, ginger and peppermint tea, yerba mate' for energy, coconut oil, L Glutamine, Vitamin D, 28 Billion probiotic a day, saw palmetto, and today I started vitamin c supplements.

The distress this has put me through has made me basically stuck in my room for 2 months. I don't have a job (my job is seasonal) and I haven't had the strength to pick up a winter job. My irritability and depression is so out of control from this that I lost my girlfriend and my family doesn't want me around them. And I feel as if I have no support.

I don't have insurance, and haven't for 7 years, but I just purchased it and it comes into effect March 1st. I am desperately waiting for this day. However, all of my research indicates that regular physicians don't acknowledge candida overgrowth, and tend to make matters worse.

I haven't had a real poop (solid or diarrhea) since I started the bone broth cleanse, although little pieces fall out daily, and today again with mucous, although I did use a bunch of coconut oil today and garlic. As well as Yogi detox tea.

I just want to know, is this candida? What else should I be doing? Is it really going to take a year or more to fix? Can doctors help or should I not waste my time? My nail fungus, face eczema, messed up prostate, forehead rash, dry skin, night sweats (and bad sweating right out of the shower everyday), as well as severe stomach cramping (especially when trying to sit up in a car or lying on my sides in bed) all point to candida overgrowth.

Thank you so much for reading this. I needed to get this out. I am just desperate for support. It scares me that just a few months ago I was eating pizza and popcorn with a hard cider, and now I can't even eat a banana without a horrible reaction.
02-13-2017, 01:14 AM   #2
Hypocrohniac's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2017
Jaj - that all sounds awful! I don't know much about candida, so I can't speculate as to whether or not you may have it, but I can relate to pain, food sadness & profuse sweating. Very early on in my diagnostic journey I was advised that garlic & onion were some of the worst foods I could eat. I've read that many people on the forum cannot tolerate popcorn, so I've avoided that too. My dietician told me that broccoli causes heaps of gas - that's been avoided ever since.
I would go to the doctor when your insurance kicks in (I am self-funded too) and be armed with a very comprehensive list of questions and symptoms - or just print out this post and hand it over!
Many people suggest food diaries to try and track trigger foods.
I hope writing your story down was cathartic. There is a ton of support here. We can all relate to some aspects of each person's situation. Come here often!
02-13-2017, 11:03 AM   #3
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ronroush7's Avatar
I agree
02-13-2017, 12:50 PM   #4
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cmack's Avatar
I agree as well.
02-13-2017, 06:11 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2011

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Good luck in finding out what is causing you a great deal of distress. Reading your story, in my opinion there are any number of potential causes. It could be a yeast overgrowth, some other infection, IBD condition, or something else could be going on. It's an area that someone examining you might be able to finger point better what is happening.

Your mention on sunshine or summer months helping your condition caught my attention. I've recently been using light therapy myself. I'm in south Florida and so being out in the sun this time of year isn't a problem. I also have a vitamin D light I use on colder cloudy days. I've found sunshine and light therapy helpful for my condition. I know from my readings there are many potential reasons why the sun can help a person. As one idea, sun therapy was successfully used to fight all kinds of infections. The nurse Florence Nightingale was famous for her use of sunlight to help patients fighting infections. There is a correlation with sun exposure and IBD conditions also. The further away form the equator, the greater the chance for having an IBD condition. Why that is, or if there even is a connection is hard to say.

Here is an article on Crohns being more common in northern climates where the sun shines less.

"How Climate Affects Crohn's Disease
Living in sunnier, southern climes may decrease the risk for Crohn's disease or make it easier to live with. But you'll want to take some precautions, even in this better Crohn's climate."
02-13-2017, 07:40 PM   #6
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cmack's Avatar

I can tell you have really been struggling. My goodness. I have had skin problems like eczema that suddenly appears. It went away with Betamethasone Valerate .1% cream.

Hope this helps,

02-13-2017, 08:05 PM   #7
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Maine
Thank you for reading all of that! I really appreciate it.
I think I drink a ton more water in the summer, and I sweat a lot which helps keep things in better control since it's detoxing.
However, I live in Maine, and for the winters here which are typically Mid November until April, there is next to no sunlight. I have been supplementing with vitamin d lately but with all the things I am taking who knows what is helping and hurting at this point.
02-13-2017, 08:16 PM   #8
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cmack's Avatar

I read every word. You have got a bad deal going on for sure. Vitamin D3 and Vitamin C have been proven to help you from being depressed during the winter months. I think you are trying your best and I wish you success in every aspect of life. I feel for you. No I don't have all the answers, nobody does. I may have a few though as some of our struggles are quite similar. You do seem to have it worse than I do. If you want me to help with the stuff I personally have done to fight some of these symptoms, just reach out to me, I will do my best. Maybe you can teach me a few things too.

your teammate,


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