So what is Candida?
Candida is a fungus, which is a form of yeast, and a very small amount of it lives in your mouth and intestines. Its main job? Helping out with digestion and nutrient absorption.
But when overproduced, it can break down the wall of the intestine and penetrate the bloodstream – releasing toxic by – products into your body and causing leaky gut and candidiasis (candida infection). This can lead to many different health problems, from digestive issues to depression.
How do you get candida overgrowth?
First of all, healthy bacteria in your gut typically keep your levels in check, however a few factors can cause the population to grow out of control:
- Eating a diet high in refined carbohydrates and sugar
- Consuming a lot of alcohol
- Taking oral contraceptives
- Eating a diet high in beneficial fermented foods, such as pickles
- Living a high-stress lifestyle
- Taking a round of antibiotics that fill too many of those friendly bacteria
What are common candida symptoms?
- Skin and nail fungal infections, such as athlete’s foot or toenail fungus
- Feeling tired and worn down, or suffering from chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia
- Digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, or diarrhea
- Autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, lupus, psoriasis, scleroderma, or multiple sclerosis
- Difficulty concentrating, poor memory, lack of focus, ADD, ADHD, and brain fog
- Skin issues like eczema, psoriasis, hives, and rashes
- Irritability, mood swings, anxiety, or depression
- Vaginal infections, urinary tract infections, rectal itching, or vaginal itching
- Severe seasonal allergies or itchy ears
- Strong sugar and refined carbohydrate cravings
How do you test for overgrowth?
this is the most accurate test out there. The lab will check for candida in your colon or lower intestines, and can usually determine the species of yeast – as well as which treatment will be most effective.
Urine Organix Dysbiosis Test
this urine test looks for a waste product of overgrowth that’s called D-arabinitol. Elevated results indicate an overgrowth, and the test can help you determine if there is candida in your gut or small intestines.
How do you treat overgrowth?
to successfully treat it, you need to do three things: stop the yeast overgrowth, build up the friendly bacteria, and heal your gut so that candida can no longer enter your bloodstream.
First step: get rid of the overgrowth, which mainly requires switching to a low-carbohydrate diet.
Sugar is what feeds yeast. So start by eliminating sugar in all of its simple forms – such as sweets, desserts, alcohol, fruits, flours, bread, pasta, potatoes, beans and grains. This will help prevent the candida from growing and will eventually cause it to die…roughly after about 1 month or so.
I would also recommend eliminating all fermented foods. That’s because, while it’s common knowledge that these help to feed the good bacteria, most people don’t realize that bad bacteria feed off of these as well.
Still, using diet alone could take three to six months before it is back under control. So you could use an anti-fungal medication, such as Diflucan or Nystatin, for at least a month.
If you as self-treating, you can also take a supplement of caprylic acid. Caprylic acid, which comes from coconut oil, basically “pokes holes” in the yeast cell wall, causing it to die.
Next, you should rebuild the good bacteria that typically keep your population under control. Take anywhere from 25 to 100 billion units of probiotics on a regular basis, should help reduce the levels and restore your levels of good bacteria.
Foods that help kill candida are, Lemon juice, Wild salmon, Cinnamon, Cloves, Ginger, Cruciferous vegetables-broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage and radishes, apple cider vinegar and garlic.
Until next time, have a great week.