The Body Ecology Diet



Why The Body Ecology Diet is the best anti-candida diet. The lowdown on what candidiasis is, and how you can get rid of it for good!

What is The Body Ecology Diet?

The Body Ecology Diet or B.E.D diet is an anti-candida diet that restores gut health and the inner ecosystems of the body by replenishing friendly bacteria in the digestive tract, building alkaline blood, and strengthening the immune system.

While The Body Ecology Diet is principally geared towards eradicating candidiasis, the program is highly effective for those suffering from other immune conditions such as Chronic Fatigue or Epstein Barr syndrome. It can also help people with environmental or food allergies or sensitivities, digestive and skin problems, headaches, muscle and joint pain, lethargy, or anxiety and depression.

I highly recommend this diet for anyone looking for more energy and vitality.

Read The Body Ecology Diet book, and read more comprehensive information about the protocol on The Body Ecology website.

My body ecology story

After suffering from candida, poor digestion, and fatigue my entire life I was diagnosed with Epstein-Barr virus when I was a teenager.  

After following Macrobiotics, Chinese medicine, food combining principles, alkaline practices, and other whole foods plans I was introduced to The Body Ecology Diet during a health consultation with Steven Acuff.

The Body Ecology book made so much sense to me. I had been employing many of the principles outlined in the book. But, I had not put them together into a cohesive protocol as outlined in the program. So, I went on the diet for a few months, and I felt incredible. So, I thought I was done and I moved on, and enjoyed several years of good health.

However, in May of 2009, I was performing in the Australian production of August: Osage County with Melbourne Theatre Company, a horrible cold and flu swept through the theater and we were all instructed by the theater and the company to take a course of antibiotics.

I had not taken antibiotics in many years. That course of antibiotics coupled with stress resulted in a raging overgrowth of candida, and it took me down. I realized I had been living with a systemic infection that had literally become a “seven year itch.”

At just the right time, I received a new edition copy of The Body Ecology Diet as a birthday gift from my then sister-in-law who had severe health issues and was following the diet. I revisited The Body Ecology diet, and this time I adhered strictly to it for a year, and reintroduced fruit very slowly as instructed, and the program restored me to optimal health.

What is Candidiasis?

Candidiasis (an overgrowth of yeast) or Candida Related Complex (CRC) is an immune disorder that is not a disease as such, but rather, a condition of acute internal imbalance, which fosters the development of systemic infections and diseases.

The human body contains both friendly and unfriendly bacteria. In a strong healthy body, the beneficial bacteria effectively combat the harmful bacteria to maintain balance. With a compromised immune system, the unfriendly bacteria overpower beneficial bacteria and this imbalance of bacterial beasts releases toxins which invade our tissues, cells, organs, and blood weakening our immune system, and affecting our ability to fight infection.

When a poorly combined, highly acidic, sugary diet is eaten it provides a perfect breeding ground for yeast, fungus, and bad bacteria to multiply.

Symptoms of Candidiasis include:

  • headaches
  • food, chemical and environmental allergies
  • digestive disorders
  • skin issues
  • persistent cold and flu
  • cancer

Candidiasis can proliferate in the:

  • intestines
  • mouth
  • nose
  • blood
  • vagina


Candidiasis compromises the assimilation and absorption of nutrients which leads to disease.

Candidiasis often occurs in conjunction other conditions such as:

  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Epstein Barr virus
  • AIDS
  • Bronchitis
  • Pneumonia

and a range of other immune deficiency disorders.

American immunologist, Alan Levin estimates that 1 out of every 3 Americans has a candida overgrowth.

How The Body Ecology Diet works 

It is impossible to completely eradicate candida. But rather, the goal of The Body Ecology Diet  is to restore the strength of the immune system and alkalize the body so that a healthy bacterial balance can prevail to foster optimal bodily function.

The first step in restoring healthy body ecology is to reverse the overgrowth of candida. The only way to do this is to starve the yeast and bad bacteria, and provide a strong inner ecosystem that makes it impossible for them to thrive and take over.

By eating an alkaline, mineral-rich diet that is very low in sugar, and consuming probiotic-rich foods such as coconut kefir, fresh land and sea vegetables, and sauerkraut we provide an environment for life-affirming bacteria to recolonize and rebuild the strength of our inner body ecology.

The friendly bacteria (the most common being lactobacillus and bifidus) are vital for maintaining healthy digestion and elimination, as well as fighting disease and infection.  

The Seven Key Principles of The Body Ecology Diet 

There are seven key principles of healing in The Body Ecology Diet which Donna has brought together from what she calls, “The pillars of the holistic health”.

Principle #1: Chinese Yin (contraction) and Yang (expansion)

This ancient universal law or is complex.

But the brief lowdown is:

There are foods that cause our bodies to expand, open up and relax such as: sugar, alcohol, milk, cheese and coffee.

There are other foods that cause our bodies to tighten and close such as: salt, meats, nuts, and beans.

Just like a healthy balance of bacteria is required in the body for optimum health, so too is a balance between contractive (closed, tight, soft, dark) and expansive (released, open, relaxed, active) forces.

The ideal state is to exist between the two extremes where the body feels calm, centered and strong.

The Body Ecology Diet principally utilizes neutral foods such as green vegetables, sea vegetables, and alkaline grain-like seeds such as quinoa and millet, and employs healthy food combining strategies that work with the complementary nature of opposite forces to balance the life force energy or Ki (pronounced Chi) in the body.  

Some expansive foods (herbs, spices, kefir, ghee) and contractive foods (fish, eggs, salt) foods are allowed. Fish (halibut, salmon, tuna) is the recommended animal food in the diet as it is the most balanced contractive animal food.

Principle #2: Maintaining a Healthy pH (Acid/Alkaline) Balance 

The optimum pH for our bodily fluids is slightly alkaline at 7.365.

This alkaline state provides the perfect conditions for health-promoting bacteria to thrive. Maintaining this alkaline state is critical for optimal health.

Consuming highly acidic foods, overeating, drug abuse, and stress can all contribute to the acidification of the blood which weakens the cells, organs, and vital systems in the body leading to fatigue, disease, and an absence of mental clarity. Furthermore, yeast, fungus, bacteria, viruses and cancer cells proliferate in an acidic environment causing infection and disease.

When a highly acidic diet is consumed, the body must rely on its alkaline mineral reserves (known as alkaline buffers) in an attempt to balance this acidity.

This results in nutrient leaching within the body which contributes to disease. By eating an alkaline mineral-rich diet, you are building up your reserve of alkaline buffers to fight infection, as well as starving yeast, bacteria, and parasites.

Alkaline foods recommended on The Body Ecology Diet include:

  • sea vegetables
  • most land vegetables (see list below)
  • herbs
  • raw seeds (except sesame)
  • soaked and sprouted almonds
  • cultured vegetables
  • raw kefir
  • raw apple cider vinegar
  • filtered water

The only fruits that are allowed on stage one of the diet are:

  • lemons
  • limes
  • cranberries
  • blackcurrants


These are the only fruits that are low enough in sugar that they do not feed yeast.

Acid forming foods that are allowed include:

  • fish
  • eggs
  • beef
  • poultry
  • buckwheat
  • organic unrefined oils

Highly acidic foods are excluded on the diet:

  • processed foods
  • sugars of any kind (except stevia and monk fruit)
  • flour
  • beans
  • nuts (except raw almonds)
  • vinegars
  • alcohol

Principle #3: Bio-Individuality or “Uniqueness”

This is my favorite principle in The Body Ecology Diet: Embracing the reality that one diet will not work for every human being on the planet, and that we are all different.

The concept of flexibility resonates with me. Adopting an intuitive approach to diet and healing that adapts to your body’s changing needs is a prudent approach to health. Acknowledge the impact that seasonal changes, environmental pollutants, emotional realities and aging has on our bodies.

Listening and learning from your body is critical.

In the cooler months, you may want to eat more cooked, heating and strengthening foods. In the warmer weather, more raw foods would be balancing. Similarly, if you are feeling tight, eat more expansive strengthening foods.

Donna incorporates the best parts of James and Peter D’Adamo’s Eat Right 4 Your Type book in The Body Ecology Diet.

Principle #4: Welcome and Support the Natural Cleansing Activity of Your Body

Cleansing and removing toxins is important in order to regenerate and heal.

This process is fantastic when you are at the other end of it. But cleansing can be an unpleasant process.

Natural cleansing reactions include:

  • headaches
  • muscle aches and pains
  • fatigue
  • cold and flu flu
  • skin rashes
  • diarrhea
  • erratic mood swings

These symptoms look and feel like the symptoms that brought you to The Body Ecology Diet in the first place! Understand that symptom often get worse before they get better. But, they will.

Do not try to mask these cleansing reactions with antibiotics or other medicines. Allow the body to naturally purge these toxins or they will be driven deeper into the tissues and organs and embed themselves causing further problems down the track.

Disease occurs when our bodies become overwhelmed with deep-seated toxins and pathogens and are no longer able to cleanse effectively.

Most people have cleansing reactions for about 3 to 7 days. Persevere with the diet, and your body will reap the rewards.

Support the cleansing process by engaging in colon hydrotherapy which helps expel the toxins more quickly. I can personally testify to the health benefits of colon cleansing. I have been doing it for 20 years. However, this is a personal decision.

If you do decide to cleanse your colon, always seek out a qualified colon hydrotherapist. It is also extremely important that you replenish the friendly bacteria in the colon after the cleansing. Your colon hydrotherapist should do this for you before you finish your treatment.

Principle #5: Food Combining 

The inclusion of proper food combining is one of the most important principles that elevates The Body Ecology Diet above other anti-candida diets.

You can read about food combining principles in more detail here.

But in relation to an overgrowth of candida, when we combine incompatible foods (when we combine starches and proteins, or fruits with other things), they remain in the digestive canal longer than they need to, and ferment, rot, and putrefy. This putrefied material attaches to the lining of the digestive tract and provides a perfect breeding ground for harmful bacteria, parasites, viruses, yeast, funguses and cancer cells to proliferate.

The other major difference that sets The Body Ecology Diet apart from other anti-candida diets is the exclusion of fruit.

While fruit can be alkaline forming, much fruit is very high in natural sugar, and that sugar feeds yeast.

Only low-sugar sour fruits such as lemons, limes, cranberries and blackcurrants are allowed on stage one of the B.E.D diet. All other fruits should be avoided until healthy body ecology is restored.

Transitioning too quickly back to eating fruits is the number one mistake most people make transitioning off of Stage 1 of The Body Ecology Diet. I made this mistake the first time I followed the diet.

Here is the cranberry almond smoothie that helped me get through Stage 1 of the diet.

Principle #6: The 80 / 20 Rule 

It is important to support complete assimilation and elimination of foods by not overloading the digestive system with too much work.  

Donna advocates the “80/20 rule” that is recommended by many doctors and health-care professionals.

Refrain from overeating. This puts a strain on the body. Only eat only until you are 80% full, and leave the remaining 20% of your energy to be available for proper digestion.

In addition to this, the concept extends to reversing the conventional portion sizing of meals.

Instead of eating a huge piece of animal protein and a small serving of vegetables, pile up your plate with 80% land and/or sea vegetables with 20% protein, grains, and starchy vegetables.

The other component is to include 80% alkaline foods and 20% acidic foods.

Principle #7: Be Patient and Embrace a “Step-By-Step” Approach to Healing 

Listen to your body and be patient as it heals in it’s own time.

Every human body is different and it can take varying times to eliminate the toxins and restore your natural body ecology. The toxins built up over time, and so it is only natural that the elimination will take time. We cannot expect instant healing.

Be patient and you will reap the rewards. Also be persistent with the healing process. If you stick to the diet it will work.

Star foods that aid the healing process are:

  • raw coconut water kefir
  • raw cultured vegetables (sauerkraut no made with vinegar)
  • sea vegetables
  • lemons and limes
  • apple cider vinegar
  • raw sprouted almonds

It is also important to cleanse your colon to aid the detoxification process.

Move towards optimum health step by step.

Be gentle and patient with yourself. Reduce stress as much as possible.

Rest, and eliminate any medicines that retard the cleansing process.

Most of all, have faith that this diet can help you just as it has helped me.

I have recommended this diet to thousands of readers of this site, and the testimonials are incredible.

The Body Ecology Foods List

Here is a basic list of foods you can enjoy on The Body Ecology Diet.

Refer to The Body Ecology book and website for more detailed information and charts.

Land Vegetables

All land vegetables except for

  • Potatoes (red-skinned potatoes are allowed)
  • yams
  • sweet potatoes
  • parsnips
  • green peppers
  • beetroot
  • mung bean sprouts
  • Mushrooms (cooked shiitakes are allowed)

Non Starchy Vegetables 

  • arugula
  • asparagus
  • bamboo shoots
  • beet greens
  • bok choy
  • broccoli
  • brussels sprouts
  • burdock root
  • cabbage
  • carrots
  • cauliflower
  • celeriac
  • celery
  • celery root
  • chives
  • collard greens
  • cucumbers
  • dandelion greens
  • endive
  • escarole
  • fennel
  • garlic
  • green beans
  • jicama
  • kale
  • kohlrabi
  • lamb’s quarter
  • leeks
  • lettuces
  • mustard greens
  • okra
  • onions
  • parsley
  • radishes
  • red bell peppers
  • scallions
  • shallots
  • spinach
  • sprouts (except mung bean)
  • swiss chard
  • turnips
  • watercress
  • yellow squash
  • zucchini

Sea Vegetables

  • agar
  • arame
  • dulse
  • hijiki
  • kelp
  • kombu
  • nori
  • wakame

Fruit 

  • blackcurrant juice, cranberry juice, pomegranate juice, noni juice
  • lemons
  • limes
  • cranberries

Grains 

  • amaranth
  • buckwheat
  • millet
  • quinoa and quinoa flakes

Protein 

  • wild-caught fish
  • organic meats and poultry
  • organic eggs

Fermented Foods

  • cultured vegetables
  • coconut kefir
  • kefir cheese
  • cultured coconut pudding
  • raw miso
  • raw natto with no MSG

Fats and Oils 

  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • virgin coconut oil
  • pumpkin seed oil
  • flax seed oil

Flavorings and Seasonings 

  • Celtic sea salt
  • Himalayan salt
  • Real Salt
  • herbs, fresh and dried
  • Herbamare and Trocomare
  • Sea Seasonings – dulse with garlic, nori with ginger

Body Ecology Recipes 

Find recipes suitable for The Body Ecology diet here or on the official website.

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