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The Yeast Connection and Women’s Health

Book Review From Mary Shomon


Updated August 12, 2004

Yeast Connection and the Woman
What is the yeast connection? The late Dr. Crook, aided by an update from renowned holistic physician Hyla Cass, MD, explain that yeast are single cell fungi, neither animal nor vegetable. These fungi grow on the surface of all living things. Their presence normally contributes to good health.

Candida albicans is a family of yeast that lives in the warmth of your digestive tract, vagina and skin. In healthy people, candida growth is kept in check by intestinal bacteria. However, poor diet, stress and some medications can impair this balance so that the candida grow too much. This imbalance is called dysbiosis. When toxins from this condition leach through the intestinal walls, a number of chronic health conditions may be triggered.

In The Yeast Connection and Women’s Health, Dr. Crook provides a very complete description of the interplay between yeast and bacteria, along with how and why yeast infections may cause symptoms in many parts of your body. A total of 16 separate health problems are addressed. Of particular interest may be the connections between dysbiosis and thyroid conditions, as well as other chronic health problems including:
  • endometriosis
  • depression
  • chronic fatigue syndrome
  • fibromyalgia
  • autoimmune disorders
  • weight problems
The book presents specific definitions and symptoms lists for 16 conditions. The causes of each health problem, with emphasis on the yeast connection, are carefully detailed. Expert opinions and extensive treatment options are included. Dr. Crook shares some of his case studies to further clarify diagnosis and treatment options for each condition. Multiple websites and references for further reading are provided at the end of each condition-specific section.

The Yeast Connection and Women’s Health is a practical resource for proactive readers who want intense involvement in their self-care. It thoroughly outlines the steps you can take to regain your health. With this book you can:
  • Review factors that may predispose you to yeast infections. Get answers about why you could develop yeast-related problems.
  • Complete the five-page Candida Questionnaire and Score Sheet and use it as a basis for formulating a treatment plan with your health care practitioner(s).
  • Become savvy to the various health practitioners such as osteopaths, chiropractors, etc. who can supplement your team of experts.
  • Learn how to keep a diary of your symptoms to track changes and communicate with your health care team.
  • Begin following Dr. Crook’s 10-Step Program that introduces the 10 factors you need to evaluate and improve in order to control your yeast-related symptoms.
  • Use the 4-step Sugar-Free, Anti-Yeast Diet to eliminate trigger foods, evaluate your lifestyle and maintain your diet successfully. The diet lists foods you can eat freely, foods you can eat cautiously and foods you must avoid completely. This includes incorporating fresh, organic foods and eliminating sugars, white flour, wine, vinegar and other fermented (pro-yeast) products.
  • Coordinate your personal health plan with the resources at www.yeastconnection.com. You will find grocery lists, time diaries and an email service of encouraging words to help you take control of your health and life.
Chapter 10, A Special Message to Physicians, is uniquely helpful because it is full of support from the medical community for the yeast connection. This chapter is ideal if you feel your yeast-related symptoms are misunderstood or ignored. Share chapter 10 with your doctor. It will help you encourage your doctor to listen more carefully to what you’re saying about your symptoms.

Dr. Crook’s treatment philosophy also includes prescription and non-prescription medications. To that end, you will find two helpful chapters describing the purpose, side effects, cost and contraindications of both prescription and non-prescription antifungal medications and supplements. Also included are the opinions of Dr. Crook and other practitioners about the relative safety and efficacy of these medication options.

A checklist of good nutritional habits is included near the end of the book. It’s not overly technical and it certainly will keep you focused on savvy shopping, cooking and menu-planning goals. Recipes are not included, but the shopping tips and approximately two-week’s worth of meal-planning suggestions will get you started. (For recipes, you’ll want to check out The Yeast Connection Cookbook.) Recommended multivitamins, essential fatty acids, antioxidants and other supplements are listed and briefly discussed as well.

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