After over 10 years dealing with toenail fungus, I stumbled upon an unorthodox treatment for my condition.
What Is Onychomycosis?
Onychomycosis is a fungal condition that affects nails—most commonly, the toe nails. It is very common, and it accounts for around 50% of all nail abnormalities. Nail abnormalities affect about 7% of the adult population. It seems there about four different types of onychomycosis affecting different parts of the nail, nail bed and nail fold.
Onychomycosis is thought to be caused by a compromised immune system that leaves the nail beds unable to fight off fungal infections. Treatments with anti-fungals can be challenging because the fungi are hard to reach and because nail regrowth is slow.
How I Got Rid of My Toenail Fungus
The idea was to restore proper immune system function by retraining the central metabolic control system to maintain an optimal body temperature. My temperature never cycled around a normal temperature of 37 ºC; it chose to cycle at a lower temperature.
It took me about two weeks to reset my temperature set point and about two years to maintain it. After this time, my temperature started to cycle around 37 ºC naturally—and it still does. I also noticed that I began to feel a lot healthier overall. At the same time, I was also increasing my daily vitamin C intake in an effort to boost my immune system.
It took several months to see any difference in my toes, but the fungus did begin to disappear. After about 18 months, I only had one toe that still had a stubborn patch of fungus on it.
My toenails are now pink and healthy, and my skin is smooth and soft. My fingernails also look pink and healthy, with well-attached cuticles. I have not had a recurrence of toe fungus.
I Lived With Onychomytosis for Over 10 Years
In my late teens and early 20s, I used to wear nail varnish on my toes. However, in my 30s, I noticed my nails were no longer smooth and shiny. They seemed to be softening and felt spongy. Any varnish I applied looked ridged and sometimes didn't dry properly. This was a bit concerning, but I had a busy life—with a job and a young family—so I simply ignored it.
After a few years, I noticed white patches appearing on some of my toenails that I later learned were fungal growths. I could scrape most of it off, but it extended so deep into the nail that I could never remove it all. My quick fix was to cover it up with more varnish.
One summer, I tried going without shoes, opting to wear sandals instead. I stopped the nail varnish. I carefully dried my feet after showering, made sure my toes got as much air as possible, and threw away old shoes that I thought might be contaminated with the fungus. I also used talc powder and anti-fungals. These preventative measures were time-consuming and didn't really fix the problem.
In the winter, I was back in brand new, closed-toe shoes, and my toenail fungus became worse. My condition became worse and worse over the next 10 years—spreading to all of my toenails.
At age 51—after a few other minor ailments were beginning to accumulate—I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I couldn't put it off any longer. I had to find out what was wrong with my health.
How I Found the Cure That Worked for Me
Could It Be Thyroid Dysfunction?
The first thing I did was search online for conditions that could result in all of my symptoms. Amazingly, I quickly found that I could have a low thyroid connection. I spent a great deal of time—about a year, in fact—researching this condition. I also spent a great deal of money visiting various thyroid doctors.
The idea that the thyroid was operating sub-optimally made sense to me. After all, the thyroid regulates the body's energy usage and blood flow, so it seemed logical to fix it and get my body functioning properly again. However, medical tests showed that I had normal levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), indicating that my thyroid was functioning normally. Regardless, I tried to boost my T3 production by taking glandular supplements. However, it didn't seem to make a big impact.
Could It Be Low Body Temperature?
The more I read about the thyroid, the more I became confused. On almost every thyroid dysfunction forum, I found people talking about a holy grail: maintaining normal body temperature. However, this seemed like an elusive goal since no one had managed to achieve it. I felt like maybe I was looking in the wrong place.
I started to search again—this time to see if anyone had fixed a low body temperature by any other means. I found a lone voice in Steve Richfield on an obscure website. He described the brain as the master control organ—capable of orchestrating and maintaining an optimal immune system. He talked about what happens when the immune system goes awry—even providing some reasons why it might go wrong. He also claimed that he fixed his idiopathic illnesses by optimising his own immune system.
I contacted Steve to see if he would be able to help me since I wished to fix my low body temperature. To my surprise, he came back to me immediately and supported me through my journey to reset my body temperature back to normal.
How My Toes Are Now
After nearly four years with a body temperature of 37 ºC and several months of increased daily vitamin C intake, I still have no problems with toenail fungus.
I now have a very different perspective on the immune system. I believe that the brain is in charge of my health and that unless it goes wrong, the brain can enable the body to operate a very efficient immune system. Various factors, such as genetics or stresses to the body, can cause the brain—more accurately, the central metabolic control system—to select incorrect set points. If you are going through something similar to what I went through, talk to your doctor about the possibility of an abnormal body temperature set point. I was skeptical at first, but I am delighted I considered this as an option because after more than a decade of onychomycosis, I no longer have any toenail fungus.
This article is not meant to treat or diagnose. I am only sharing my experience with this unorthodox strategy. Consult a licensed healthcare professional for a proper diagnosis and a discussion of treatment options for your specific situation.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2013 Janey Hood
Lori on December 20, 2018:
How did you fix your metaboism and your thyroid and how much vitamuc C did you take. Also how did you raise your body temp.?
Hellolo on August 06, 2018:
How did you raise your body temperature? I dont understand. You did not explain. How?
Im lying here in a mid summer night and it is 27 C in the room and i am feeling cold. For the sake of god could ypu please explain that?
Richard on January 14, 2017:
You did not explain how you reset your body temperature.
How did you force it?
Why have you glossed over the most important point of the whole discussion?
Janey Hood (author) from UK on May 05, 2014:
Hello Suzie Q
Daytime temperatures cycle around a set point of 98.6F or 37C. Sometimes they go above this and sometimes below depending on internal or external influences, but always returning to the set point.
My reset was achieved by forcing my temperature to 98.6F everyday for two weeks, then I baby sat it for pretty much three years to maintain it. Now it is pretty solid at 37 of 98.6F.
There is a warning that comes with resetting however. Not everybody can used the same method, indeed the wrong method could even be dangerous. it is advisable to reset supported by a Central Metabolic Control System Therapist who can look at your history and work out which method might work. Resetting is a very difficult process.
Best wishes to you.
Suzie Q on May 05, 2014:
How do you reset your body temperature? My hovers around 97, where exactly should it be?
Janey Hood (author) from UK on March 30, 2014:
Thank you Sheikh, well said, indeed I agree. Experiments have to be repeatable. I do know of a few other people in the world who have reset their temperatures for a variety of reasons and with varying success.
It is, however, doing the same thing over and over again whilst expecting a different that is just pure insanity.
SHEIKH on March 30, 2014:
Thank you sharing I agree with your experience, if repeated same experiments gives the same result it is called knowledge
Janey Hood (author) from UK on January 06, 2014:
Thank you for livening the comments up a little. There are always sceptics in this world, sadly sometimes this can prevent further research into alternate or unorthodox and sometimes progressive thinking.
Around a hundred years ago Dr Ignaz Semmelweis was rejected by the medical community for trying to introduce hand washing when he observed that it reduced puerperal fever mortality from around 35% to less than 1%. It was only after his death that his method was accepted.
If the Central Metabolic Control System selects incorrectly operating set points then there is a good chance the immune system can be compromised. At my school, in chemistry, we were taught to ensure the constants and variables were known when conducting experiments to in order to have a specific outcome.
I often use this analogy with body temperature. If an optimally operating immune system is a required outcome, with all the millions of chemical reactions taking place at any one time, in my opinion one of the underpinning constants is body temperature set point selection.
My body temperature , for around 50 year of my life was cycling around 35.8C or 96.4F, I had an increasing number of little annoying subset illnesses, and contrary to your comment about them fixing themselves anyway over a period of time, they were actually getting progressively worse.
I wanted to understand and work out what was different about my immune system, compared to my healthier contemporaries, why was I getting these subset idiopathic illnesses and they weren't?
I began to observe body temperature as a possibility.
When I did my research I discovered that someone in the world had also fixed their low set point in order to help optimise their immune system, and the rest, as they say, is history. I am still observing subtle improvements in my health since optimising my immune system. I now cycle at 37C from about 10am in the morning to 10pm in the evening.
Of course resetting my low temperature in order to optimise my immune system clearly isn't going to fix everything, but it enables my immune system at least to have a go.
I am not a doctor, I am not qualified in any way to offer advice or make recommendations, this is simply my own experience and observations based on something I have achieved. I am not writing here to convince you differently. It is for people, like yourself to make your own minds up.
Papa on January 05, 2014:
I believe in the power of the mind but this is stupid.
I think you would have got better in the time it took without any of this resetting your body temperature crap
Janey Hood (author) from UK on July 05, 2013:
To answer your last question first, yes, I did fix my low body temperature due to having had cancer. I understand that people with normal body temperatures don't seem to get cancer, however fixing a low temperature may not be a cure for cancer.
It is easy to check temperatures by using a simple, accurate digital thermometer, just leave it in the mouth around 40 seconds longer than the instructions.
Thank you for your information about the poll, I might re think the questions.
Marsha Musselman from Michigan, USA on July 05, 2013:
I agree, great hub, Janey. I found it by looking you up from the forum introducing newbies.
I would have answered your poll, but I don't know about my body temperature. How is this determined? By taking your temperature?
I would have answered yes to the first part but unknown to the second part. I think you can add however many questions to the poll you can think of. This is the first time I've ever heard about body temperature being related to certain illnesses.
By the way, did getting your body regulated help you fight off the cancer better?
Susan W from The British Isles, Europe on July 05, 2013:
Thank you for following my suggestions and now this hub looks fab! You were right to add pictures, that was an excellent idea. Thanks for following me, if you have any further questions just send me an e-mail through my profile page.
Janey Hood (author) from UK on July 05, 2013:
Thank you susi10.
I have made some changes at your suggestion.
It was easier than I thought and I am very grateful to you for your ideas!
Susan W from The British Isles, Europe on July 04, 2013:
Wow, this hub is amazing, I learned a lot from it! You describe the condition very well and is very well explained. To improve your hub, I would suggest adding a poll such as; Have you suffered from Onychomycosis before?
Try adding a picture or two to engage the readers interest. You need to legally attribute images but try finding some from Wikipedia/Wikimedia Commons or freedigitalphotos.net.
This hub is fantastic, I will be reading plenty more of your hubs Janey!