August 29, 2017

Project Healthy Jen: My Diet and Fitness Plan

Ok all you instagrammers, I told ya’ll I’d share what I’m doing to get back to myself (#projecthealthyjen) so here it is.  If you follow me on the ‘gram, you probably saw my intastory talking about my diagnosis and how I’m starting a pretty aggressive diet to try to get things balanced again.  Here’s a brief synopsis to catch everyone up.

I recently visited a Doctor of Osteopathy (Dr. Randy Lundell, Health Rejuvenation Institute) that specializes in Functional Medicine.  What’s that, you ask?  Essentially Functional Medicine focuses on the root of a symptom, rather than treating the symptom itself.  The goal is to stop the symptoms from occurring to begin with in turn improving overall health, which I’m all on board with.  Insurance doesn’t cover office visits (which is so ridiculous), but does cover your lab work.

After a long consultation, he ordered a full markup of my blood work and discovered I have high levels of Candida in my system (it’s a bacterial/yeast overgrowth in your intestine (gut) that wreaks all kinds of havoc.  I also have low levels of progesterone.  At first he thought I had an autoimmune disease so while this is annoying, it’s fixable with some hard work and for that I am so grateful.

Getting rid of Candida is no easy task.  It’s takes a very restrictive diet and a whole slew of supplements for an extended period of time.  Sometimes you have to do the diet twice in a row to get rid of it.  I know it will be worth it though!  I’ve actually been excited to get started.  Like, let’s do this and get my body feeling like it should again!  I’ve had so so many questions about what I’m doing, so I wanted to share all about the diet.

It’s called an elimination diet.  The idea is you’re clearing out all the foods that feed the infection, also any that could be causing sensitivities, allow your body to heal, then you slowly reintroduce foods one by one to see if you are still experiencing symptoms.  In a nutshell, here are the rules:

No dairy of any kind

No sugar

No grains (with the exception of occasional oats)

No red meat or pork

No corn

No potatoes

No Peanut Butter

Eat everything organically, as fresh as possible, nothing canned, and no lunchmeat

30 days strict, then slow reintroduction

I’ve worked out some yummy options I’ll share soon.  It sounds awful, but when you’re body feels like garbage, it doesn’t sound so bad:)  In addition, I’m taking a full list of supplements meant to clean out the infection.  Here is a list of those:

Everything included in the Gut Bucket


Ultra Biotic 100

Methylation Support

Raw B Complex

Vitamin D

Daily Vitamin

Also, I’m taking Progesterone (prescribed) daily.


I got this pill box organizer and it’s working great.  For workouts, I started BBG this week.  If you’re not familiar, buy the book and get started.  It makes working out so simple and gets results.

So there you go!  I’ll keep checking in with how it’s going.  Throw your questions my way!

And yesterday when I started this diet and workout plan, my sweet Ruby started kindergarten.

She confidently marched into class and made my heart swell with pride.  I’m so grateful to be her mama.

  1. Allie

    August 29th, 2017 at 11:38 am

    Hi Jen! So happy to hear you are on a path to wellness for yourself! I have had many diagnosed health symptoms that have lead me to wonder if I too could have high levels of Candida (have a doc appointment scheduled soon for testing). This post is very helpful for me and I very much appreciate you sharing your journey!!

    Just curious – when you say no sugar does that include fruit too?

    Wishing you all the best!

  2. Jen

    August 30th, 2017 at 6:29 pm

    I wouldn’t be surprised if you do! It’s so much more common than people think. I’m eating fruit, just in moderation and no citrus. Good luck to you! xx

  3. Stacie

    August 30th, 2017 at 12:29 am

    Having a body that just doesn’t feel right/healthy but not having a clear understanding of why, is terribly frustrating! I empathize! I have struggled for the past 7 years trying to resolve some health issues. I have done a number of different diets, countless supplements, too many expensive tests, etc. I had some positive changes but never enough to fully fix it all. It wasn’t until a friend introduced me to Dr Robert Morse (you can find him on YouTube) that I began to have the best results. If you are interested, look him up. I sincerely hope you find healing following your plan! I just wanted to share another viewpoint with you in case you need to head down another path. Positive thoughts to a happier, healthier body!!

  4. Jen

    August 30th, 2017 at 4:20 pm

    Thanks so much! And I’ll look him up! So glad you found something that works for you! xx

  5. Stephanie

    August 30th, 2017 at 12:30 am

    I’m sorry to hear you’re going through this, but have to thank you for sharing all the details. I’ve been struggling with various weird health things for awhile and when you mentioned some of your symptoms on your Instagram story it sounded so similar! I also have IBS and recently, arthritis-like pains in my fingers. I’ve been to so many unsuccessful doctor visits that I’ve lost hope gaining some answers. That, and so many kept pointing toward an autoimmune disease (although nothing definitive), which is scary. You’ve given me hope for a solution in a way I didn’t expect and I’m eagerly following your progress to learn more about this! ❤️

  6. Jen

    August 30th, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    You need to go get a full markup from a DO! It will give you so much insight. Best of luck!

  7. Audrey Winn

    August 30th, 2017 at 7:51 am

    Jen I’ve recently had my first visit with Dr.Lundell, I’m still waiting to go back to review lab results, it’s so nice to know I’m not alone! You are beautiful and have an adorable family!

  8. Jen

    August 30th, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    So glad to hear it! You’re so sweet, thank you!

  9. Marie

    October 9th, 2017 at 10:27 pm

    Hey I saw Dr.Lundell about a year ago after I had my 3rd baby and he has helped me feel about 70% better. I had an autoimmune disease I was able to put in remission with his help. I had a parasites and candidia and a lot of mineral imbalances. I moved to Colorado after seeing him so I have been seeing a nutritionist here after doing his programs. I still see him to check my levels. Two things we have implemented since his program that have been life changing are whole food vitamin c (not asorbic acid) like radiant life or camu powder. I never get sick like I used to and I feel happier with more energy. I mix it with water in the afternoon. Then my secret weapon to avoid getting Candida again is a pro biotic called sac b. It eats yeast and fungus. I dont feel like it’s realistic to say you won’t ever have sugar again. But I noticed I felt terrible if I had small amounts sugar once or twice a week. Then I would have intense cravings and feel depressed. Almost to the point of suffering from disordered eating. (This is why I started seeing a nutritionist). I started taking sac b every time I had sweets or that night and these symptoms went away. The program is a lot of work but so worth it. You’ll be happy you did it.

  10. Jen

    October 17th, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    Thank you so much!

  11. Stephanie Oh

    November 10th, 2017 at 4:44 am

    I hope you feel better soon! I’ve been reading your blog since before you moved into your most recent house. I don’t usually comment, but I feel compelled to today because I’ve been through the exact same diagnosis that you’re going through. Exact same to a T! I was on supplements and on and off the elimination diet for years and it did help, but the thing that really cured me (and changed my life!) was a prescription strength probiotic called VSL3 DS taken daily in addition to the supplements you’re already taking + the elimination diet. You start with 1/4 packet and work up to 1 packet a day over the first week. It took several months and at first it upset my tummy but that was from the “recolonization” process and the good bacteria killing off the bad bacteria.

    In my case insurance didn’t cover it, but there are coupons on the VSL website and if you have a FSA or HSA those will cover it. It’s so worth it to feel completely better.

    Anyway it was a huge blessing in my life and I can’t recommend it enough. As my doctor explained to me, the elimination diet helps kill off the candida but it doesn’t replace the good bacteria your gut needs to keep the bad bacteria permanently in check. The VSL does that (and it is much stronger than any store bought probiotics which are more for daily maintenance and less for treating systemic candida).

    Please feel free to email me if you’d like. I hope leaving this comment isn’t inappropriate. I just really wanted to share what finally worked for me when I was going through the same thing.

  12. Jen

    November 26th, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    Oh my goodness, I loved reading this so much! I started to see results, but I don’t think I’m cured after 30 days and I’m going to have to do it all over again. I’ll ask my doctor about this! Thank you thank you!

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She’s Jen. He’s Jon. We’re believers in the power of home, fearless DIYers, and eternal optimists who know with a can-do spirit, elbow grease and some guidance, you can create a home you love. We love a good project—or 20. Stick around and we’ll have you pulling out the paint brushes and fluffing throw pillows in no time.

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