Exercise: one secret to success over Candida and Food Intolerances.

Candida and food intolerances can be a very difficult condition to over come in your personal health.  Making it even more complicated is determining what is the best modality for exercise to aid in the elimination and recovery from these conditions.

Many symptoms of Candida and Food Intolerances include:
Intestinal discomfort
A feeling of a foggy brain and inability to concentrate
General muscle aches and pains
Stiff and sore joints
Poor sleep patterns
Decreased Immune function

I discussed this in length within my blog Candida: byproduct of a lowered immune.

I also discussed Food Intolerance in my blog The Burn and the Bloat: Part 2

A nutritional approach I feel is the best and most sustainable approach to begin lowering and managing the condition.

Once you have the nutritional approach down it is essential to find a professional to begin teaching and training you in sustainable fitness.  Notice I say sustainable in both nutrition and fitness.  Finding a sustainable approach to both will lead to lifestyle changes and also to years of success in managing several areas of your life, not just Candida.

  1. able to be maintained at a certain rate or level.
    “sustainable fusion reactions”
  2. able to be upheld or defended.
    “sustainable definitions of good educational practice”

A sustainable exercise approach to overcoming Candida and food intolerances begins with an assessment of your movement patterns and level of fitness.  Having a professional assess your fitness and movement will allow you to begin at a level particular to your goals.  Performance based goals will almost always lead to success in fitness.  Just like performance based goals lead to success in your candida nutrition and elimination.

If you have battled for years with an over growth of candida and food intolerances you have to recognize that jumping right into an intense exercise program will not maximize your success.  Many times when I work with clients recovering from this condition we begin with a gentle approach to training and moving.  The reason I take this approach and see success with this is the physiological nature of what is happening in your body.  As you begin to work in a new nutrition plan for candida elimination and food intolerances; the body is working hard on recovering and repairing the inside.  This may be in your GI or your joints or even in your muscles.  The body is working to heal the deep inner organs and control IgG inflammation so you can live life to the fullest.  This is why we must introduce exercise and movement in a gentle, sustainable, and systematic method.  We do not want to cause damage to tissue; we want to use exercise as a modality to aid the body in this process of healing and restoration.

This begins with breathing.  Breath is the function that gives us life!  I always begin with breathing techniques to focus on belly breath and working away from chest breath.  This helps to restore the diaphragm and its function.

Then moving into a gentle and movement based warm up.  I tend to use a warm up that begins on the ground and works people up to standing.  I see lots of success from using a developmental kinesiology approach to warm up and training.  Developmental kinesiology looks to use the patterns we explored and developed in the first year of our life.  Yes….this involves programming in many movement patterns we see in children!  Some of these patterns include rolling, rocking on hands and knees, and crawling.  I do not stay and train these patterns for a whole hour, but I use them to restore and rebuild!

Start on your back (supine) and work in some belly breathing.  Get the diaphragm communicating with the pelvic floor and helping you to gain back some reflexive core stability.

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Belly Breathing: Five Breaths then into Head Nods lift up and down; roll head left and right.

Move into some light head nods.  Head nods are taught in the Original Strength System and are a nice way to safely and effectively introduce head control in each new position.   Head nods have been and continue to be a very effective way to stimulate the body of positional awareness.  Teaching your body it is ok to be in a certain position and decreasing the “fight or flight” and be more in a  “rest and digest” mode.  Head nods are worked in the forward and back movement and also in the side to side movement (Look up, Look down; Look right, Look left).  Working in head nods and the amount of movement are case by case.  You should only work in a comfortable and controlled range of motion.

After working in head nods on your back we then move into a supported position on the belly (prone).  Work in some belly breathing and then some head nods.  Then move into a supported prone elbow position.  Similar to the position many of us grew up laying on the floor watching television.


Prone position with elbow support. Good for t-spine extension and and building upper body stability and strength.


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Prone support Arms out in front.

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Prone with elbow support.

From here I move into some Egg Rolls.  Rolling front and back and then side to side.  Egg rolls again stimulate the reflexive core and also help to teach the hip flexors to contract in a short length.

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Hold knees and Roll Back and then Roll to seated. Repeat for 5 then rolls side to side. As a side note this can feel really nice on the back with some soft tissue work.

From the Egg roll we move to a hands and knees position.  Many times in the rehabilitation world called a quadruped position.  Hands and knees supporting the body.  In this position our core is on as well as every other muscle in the body.  This is a gentle and nice position to build any strength and conditioning.  I will use this in the beginning of the training process as well as continue to use it as a warm up and prep movement.  The body responds really well to this position and will help in many tasks in life not only training.  Because it is my mission to deliver training methods that will help to enhance your life and be wonderfully resilient with every activity!

On Hands and knees work in some head nods; front and back/ side to side and then move into some rocking.  Rocking is a nice gentle way to introduce hip movement and knee movement while supporting the body.  The shoulders are also working.  This Rocking position is outlined again in Original Strength.  Rocking helps to tie in the upper body and the lower body while building great core stability.  While you rock your mid-section should be still with a comfortable neutral spine.  Understanding and working with a neutral spine is a must before I will do any weighted movements with a new client.  Many times when we are recovering from an injury or candida, the ability to feel and understand where your spine is and sense its position maybe lost.  In this hands and knees position we gain re-gain a spinal position sense and progress to other movements.

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Hand and Knees: Neutral Spine. Teach the hips and shoulders to move with a still mid-section.

From a  rocking position I will work in Bird Dog and Dead Bug Series.  I call them a series because I have developed a nice flow to working the arms, legs, and combined arms and legs in both positions.  This helps to build strength and even more importantly it helps to build mind to muscle coordination.  This reflexive coordination (Mind to Muscle) is very important to recovering from and continuing to progress from a Candida overgrowth.

Working through the process from breathing, to hand and knees supported position is important to recovering from candida and food intolerances, especially if you have not been able to exercise due to the signs and symptoms the candida.  Many times when we have not exercised in quite some time we need these gentle strength training techniques to get us started in a path to full movement health.

I always see great success with working in this approach with clients.  This exercise approach will get you moving and headed toward a path of strong recovery.  Once the body tolerates this and the client becomes comfortable with the flow, it is time to process the movements.  One thing to remember is that everyone is different.  I see some clients progress quickly while others may take a few extra weeks.  Generally though the more successful clients find time in the day to perform this routine once to twice a day.  Many times when people are recovering from Candida a supplement must be taking in the morning on an empty stomach.  After taking the supplement you must wait 20-30 minutes before eating any food or drinking.  This is a perfect time to add in the exercise routine.  Take advantage of the time to move and get your body in the right state to embrace and conquer the day!

I hope this blog helps you to learn about and recover from candida and food intolerances.  It can be tough to find the right path to recovery.  Adding in exercise will help the body to recover and maybe more importantly build sustainable fitness for a health and active life.  Try this exercise approach and I look forward to hearing any feedback on your recovery process.

Below is an example of the approach I take and an actual distance coaching video I recorded and edited for my father to begin training and regaining his strength.



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