- When I tried the first little jar of Batch 1, I ate it at 10pm and then I barely slept that night. Was it the miracle probiotics flooding my body? Was it worry that I might have gone overboard, making it too supercharged? Was I concerned that I poisoned myself, as is sometimes a worry with any microbial experiments? Fair to say, likely all of the above were on my mind.I also noticed that within about 5-10 minutes after eating it, I felt a little stuffy in the head. It went away within an hour. I felt the same thing for the first 3-4 days when I ate the little jars but it always went away quickly and was never an issue, just an observation. I did read that there are some histamine issues for some probiotics, but it seems that l. reuteri somehow plays both ways, initially causing a bit of a reaction, then alleviating it. (There are clinical studies on this, from the National Institutes of Health, and lots of blogs, so I won’t link to anything; look it up if it’s meaningful to you.)
- Digestion: Many of us who get into holistic healing are in search of ways to heal autoimmune diseases and other issues and more and more research confirms the gut connection. I have no doubt that my issues — which include alopecia ophiasis (and universalis and totalis and areata and others, I’ve been through all of it) and gluten problems and, in the past, joint pains and about a hundred other things, including incredible constipation — have been based in a lousy gut. (For background, start here).I worked with Doc for nearly two years and he definitely got the digestion working a thousand times better. I went from being so constipated that I only pooped a few times a month to daily and I eliminated a bunch of junk from my diet and my joint pains cleared up. So, with all that good already accomplished, was there anything more that this supercharged yogurt could offer? Indeed! I will say, even at those times when my body would normally revert to stuckness (premenstrual, stressed, too busy), this has kept me perfectly regular in ways that no other yogurt or kefir has. So, if nothing else, I think I’ll stick with this yogurt just to ensure that my digestion stays like this.
- Skin and nails: Many longtime users say that their skin and nails look fab after eating this yogurt for a while. At the worst points in my autoimmune flareups, my nails get atrociously bad: pitted, ridgy, soft. They tend to shear off in paperthin sheets. At the best points, they’re relatively normal and healthy.I’d been pretty happy with how my skin and nails had been doing anyway (thanks, in part, to the Vegan Smart, Garden of Life and collagen shake that I have just about daily). But now, my nails are especially shiny and bright and seem to be growing even faster and my skin looks pretty smooth and happy, too. So far, so good.
- Hair: For those of us with alopecia, this is the biggie. While the studies with mice and rats are, well, studies with mice and rats, I’m willing to be our human experiment and have to report that, at only four weeks in, it’s still WAY too soon to know anything. So far, though, it certainly hasn’t hurt: The bits of hair I have are hanging on and while straining to look at the back of my head using a makeup mirror because I broke my larger, handheld mirror (yep, don’t even say it!), I saw a couple of tiny, tiny white hairs where none had existed. Just a few, probably just about a 1/2″, but they were there. Time will tell.
- Mood: Many people report that this yogurt helps them feel great, not only physically but emotionally, too. I have definitely been in a more consistently cheery mood (even Scott commented on it), despite a lot of stress during this experiment.
- Vitamin D: There’s some thought that a lack of l. reuteri may be tied to Vitamin D deficiency, which is definitely something that I have dealt with for decades, no matter how much I supplement. My last Vitamin D bloodwork was done in late January and it was very low; I’m hoping to have it retested in early August at the tail-end of my health challenge and will keep you posted.
Hi friends! **As with the previous post about the ‘supercharged’ yogurt, I feel it’s necessary to emphasize that I’m not a medical professional and not telling my tales as medical advice for anyone else. Please note that the jury’s still out on probiotic supplementation: You can find just as many reports on negative impacts as you can find positive (and, often, anecdoctal) stories. SO, please use common sense: I’m willing to do these self-experiments but I don’t recommend them for anyone else, I’m just passing on my personal experiences in case there’s anything helpful or enlightening (and that you can possibly run by your healthcare provider).** I’m on the verge of finishing my third batch of supercharged yogurt, which puts me about a month into this experiment. A bit later in this post, I’ll go through what I’ve noticed in particular to things that other people who have made this yogurt have mentioned/experienced. But here’s a quick rundown, first, on how I felt with each of the three batches I’ve made so far, as each was a little different. Batch 1 (11 servings and one additional saved as starter): I used the typical Wheat Belly yogurt recipe (see this post for links) but added a store-bought, grassfed, organic yogurt, too, as a basis for this. I ate one a day (a 4oz. jar), topped with a teaspoon of dark, organic maple syrup. After an initial bit of panic that I was poisoning myself, I felt great with this batch, no negatives. Batch 2 (12 4oz servings plus one 8oz jar for the next batch’s starter): Uh oh, is it too much of a good thing? Now, I really may be poisoning myself! For this batch, I used the same recipe but added three more BioGaias (in several of the reviews/other people’s recipes, they mentioned adding a few more every 3-5 batches to keep the probiotic counts up). This was just my second batch so I’m not sure that it was necessary. I felt fine after eating the first few jars but by about Day 4 of this batch, I noticed that I felt headachey and foggy and overall, like I had a low-grade autoimmune response (like the flareups I used to have when I was ‘borderline lupus’ and my alopecia areata was at its worst). My energy got very low overall, too. Honestly, if I’d felt this way during the first batch, I wouldn’t have continued this experiment. (See the note in Batch 3 that could possibly explain this.) Batch 3 (the same recipe as Batch 1, no additional BioGaias added, although I used the saved 8oz starter plus a regular yogurt to keep a more diverse probiotic mix in there — the Wheat Belly yogurt recipes don’t usually use that): I felt better the morning I woke to the new batch (Batch 3), so I debated whether to try it, as I didn’t want to go through another day of feeling crappy. That said, in the name of pseudoscience, I decided I’d try it for five days and if I felt cruddy, the rest would go down the drain. Here’s the rundown: On the first day of this batch, I ate my little jarful, then felt a wave of nausea. Was it real? Or did I imagineer it? I’ll never know. But it passed after a few minutes and the rest of the day I felt fine. However, on what would have been Day 2 of this batch, I felt incredibly badly and the only thing I could attribute it to was the single glass of wine I had the night before. That said, I felt too crappy to try the yogurt, I didn’t want to confuse one bad feeling for another, so it’s the first day since I started that I missed it but I started up again the next day. I ate my second jar of Batch 3 shortly before bed and felt fine all around and slept like a baby. Then, whammo: The next day, my mother was hospitalized with several infections, including pneumonia and an intestinal bug. We spend a lot of time together as I’ve been helping in her recovery from a previous illness — possibly we picked up something together and that could have been the cause of my funk, rather than the yogurt? I’ll never know for certain but I believe that was at the root of it. Now, I’m on the cusp of finishing Batch 3 and I’ll definitely be making a Batch 4, same as Batch 3. As promised, here’s a rundown of some specifics, too, that relate to other people’s experiences with the Wheat Belly yogurt results: