An Introduction To CandidaCandida: Is This Often MisdiagnosedCondition Making You Ill?So many people go through life sufferingfrom symptoms like fatigue, recurrent yeastinfections, headaches, irritable bowelsyndrome, itching and headaches. But asdiverse as those symptoms sound, they oftenall have the same cause – an opportunisticfungus named Candida Albicans.Sadly Candida is often misdiagnosed, buttoday I’m going to explain exactly what it is,how it develops and how to treat it. I’ll listthe three most common causes of Candidaovergrowth, and then I’ll share the three keyelements that you must include in asuccessful Candida treatment plan.What is Candida?Candida Albicans is a pathogen that takesadvantage of a disruption in the balance ofmicroorganisms in your gut. This balance of‘gut flora’ is a crucial part of your immunesystem and digestive health , but it caneasily be lost during periods of stress or aftera course of antibiotics. When this balance islost, the colonies of Candida Albicans areable to expand rapidly until they control alarge portion of your gut.If you’re wondering why a few extrapathogens in your gut are such a bigproblem, let me explain. Candida Albicansreleases up to 79 different byproducts,including uric acid and a powerful neurotoxinnamed acetaldehyde. Acetaldehyde causeschronic headaches and brain fog, and wasrecently classified as a potential carcinogenby the International Agency for Research onCancer . Uric acid can cause joint pain andlead to gout if an excess builds up.Meanwhile, the change in your gut flora canlead to digestive problems, food intolerances,61LikeTweetTweet5
yeast infections and oral thrush.A study by Rice University found that around70% of us have Candida Albicans in our guts.That sounds like a lot! However, the fact isthat most of the time Candida is completelyharmless. It exists in small colonies and iskept under control by the othermicroorganisms in your gut. Candida onlybecomes a problem when we do somethingto change that balance.Three Common CausesOf Candida OvergrowthA course of antibioticsThis is undoubtedly the most common causeof Candida overgrowth. Antibiotics arelifesavers, but they also come with seriousside effects that should not be ignored. In factbroad spectrum antibiotics are oftenprescribed for illnesses that would quicklyclear up with a little rest. Unfortunately, thishas some major consequences for ourdigestive and immune systems.Broad spectrum antibiotics do exactly whatthey are designed to do – kill bacteria. Butthe problem is that not all the bacteria inyour body are harmful. In fact, a typicalhealthy adult carries around 500 strains ofbacteria and as many as 100 trillionindividual bacteria . Many of these bacteriaplay important roles in digesting your foodand maintaining a healthy immune system.When antibiotics kill so many of thesebeneficial bacteria, there is one opportunisticfungus that is ready to take advantage.Because the colonies of Candida Albicans nolonger face competition for the space andnutrients in your gut, they can quicklymultiply and expand. And as they grow, theamount of toxic byproducts they releasegrows too. This is how those Candidasymptoms like chronic headaches and fatiguebegin to develop.Eating a high-sugar dietCan diet alone lead to a Candida overgrowth?Yes it can, especially if an unhealthy high-sugar diet is eaten for a long period of time.The modern Western diet is full of sugar andhigh fructose corn syrup, particularly sincethe increase in corn subsidies in the 1970s.Take a walk through the supermarket andsugar is everywhere you look. It appears in
the most unlikely places too. Processedmeats, tortillas, pasta sauce, salad dressingsand cereals are all surprising sources ofadded sugar. And the sugary diet that most ofus eat is exactly what Candida Albicans needsto thrive.Of course it’s important to note that it takesa long term, high-sugar diet to cause aCandida overgrowth. If you have a healthydiet already, eating one chocolate bar a weekwon’t lead to a Candida overgrowth.A long period of stressAnyone who has suffered from stress willagree that it can make physical changes toyour body. In fact stress may be one of themajor causes of disease in today’s society.And there are a couple of different ways inwhich stress can contribute to a Candidaoutbreak.First, stress raises your blood sugar . This isthe typical ‘fight or flight’ response – yourbody senses the stress and makes lots ofenergy available for whatever happens next.Of course stress rarely comes from physicaldanger these days (it’s more likely to be yourboss shouting at you!), but effect of theelevated blood sugar is the same.Secondly, your immune system is weakenedby stress, undermining your natural defensesagainst a Candida overgrowth. There hasbeen lots of debate over exactly exactly howthis occurs, but there is now little doubt thatit does happen.The Three Elements YouNeed In Your CandidaTreatmentThere are three key elements to any goodCandida treatment plan. First, you mustchange your diet to exclude as many sugarsas you can. Second, you should take anantifungal to kill off as much of the Candidaas possible. And third, you should choose agood probiotic to replenish your gut floraand prevent the Candida from coming back.Should you be doing all three of theseelements at the same time? Absolutely!Candida is a difficult condition to beat andthis plan allows you to attack it from allangles. Here is some more detail on each ofthose three elements and why theycomplement each other so well.
1. A Low Sugar DietCandida Albicans is dependent on organic,carbon-based compounds to build its cellwalls, reproduce and switch from yeast formto its more virulent fungal form. In practicethis means it needs sugars, so that’s exactlywhat you should cut out of your diet .There is a misconception that you only needto cut out added sugars from your diet tobeat your Candida. Unfortunately this is notthe case! Candida Albicans is just as happyfeasting on the natural sugars in fruit as theadded sugars in your soda. A proper Candidadiet involves cutting out as many sources ofsugar as possible, whether they are naturalor added.There are a few obvious foods that youshould avoid – chocolate, soda, sugarysnacks etc. But if you’re serious aboutfighting your Candida overgrowth you shouldalso steer clear of fruit as well as starchyvegetables like potatoes and yams. Readingyour food labels is key because so manyfoods have added sugars these days.So what does that leave? Lots of deliciousfoods actually! Although you’ll have to dowithout your fries and chocolate, you willfind yourself moving towards a muchhealthier, more nutritious diet. By using non-starchy vegetables, meats, fish and healthygrains you can create all kinds of tastydishes. One simple tip? Use lots of herbs andseasoning to spice up your food.2. ProbioticsNext up are probiotics . If you don’t alreadyknow about these ‘good bacteria’ that live inyour gut, they are just great for fighting off aCandida overgrowth. In fact, they can be auseful addition to anyone’s daily routine,whether you are suffering from Candida ornot.So why have I included probiotics as thesecond element in this plan? There areactually three ways in which probiotics helpto control or reverse your condition.First, they compete with the Candida yeastwithin your gut. There’s only so much spaceand nutrients to go around, so the more thatis used by the ‘good bacteria’ the better.Second, they maintain the natural acidity inyour stomach. This acidity prevents Candidafrom switching to its pathogenic, fungal
form. And third, they boost your immunesystem.Probiotics usually come in supplement formbut, as with antifungals, there are somenatural alternatives too. Fermented foods likekefir, sauerkraut and kimchi all contains lotsof ‘good bacteria’. Be careful what you buythough – make sure you get one that says‘live cultures’ on the label. Alternatively, youcan make your own probiotic foods at home.3. AntifungalsMost antifungals , both natural and doctor-prescribed, work against Candida bydisrupting its cell walls. While antifungals areunlikely to reverse a Candida overgrowth bythemselves, using them in combination witha low sugar diet and some good probioticswill do just that.Many people ask if they should be usingnatural antifungals or asking their doctor fora prescription antifungal like Nystatin. Theanswer is that both can be effective. Onbalance, natural antifungals tend to be milderand have fewer side effects. You may find thattaking two or three natural antifungals at thesame time is more effective, but you shoulddefinitely not rotate them as this simplyallows the Candida to adapt.If you choose a natural antifungal, here are afew options for you to try. Caprylic acid is anantifungal found naturally in coconut oil, andhas been the subject of numerous studiesinto its antifungal properties. Oregano oil isanother option (a 2001 study found thatoregano oil “is both fungistatic andfungicidal to Candida Albicans, the humanpathogenic yeast”). And a study by theJournal of Complementary and AlternativeMedicine showed that Grapefruit Seed Extractis effective against “over 800 bacterial andviral strains, 100 strains of fungus, and alarge number of single and multi-celledparasites”.There are some effective antifungals sittingon the supermarket shelves too! Foods likegarlic, rutabaga, coconut oil and olive oil allhave antifungal properties. Integrating theminto your diet can make a Candida treatmentplan even more effective.One key misconceptionabout CandidaYou will hear some medical practitioners
claim that Candida overgrowth can onlyaffect those will severely compromisedimmune systems. For example, it can be alife-threatening condition among thosesuffering from AIDS or cancer.Although it is certainly true that systemicCandida can be found among these patients,it is also true that a Candida overgrowth canoccur in individuals who aren’t as severelyimmune-compromised. Risk factors like ahigh sugar diet and antibiotics can disturbthe balance of your gut flora and allowCandida Albicans to flourish. In fact,diagnostic tools such as the Candidaantibodies test can actually tell us if yourbody is fighting a Candida infection.When the medical community refers tosystemic Candida, it generally means the typeof life-threatening Candida that is seenamong patients suffering from severe illness.On the other hand, when we refer to Candidaovergrowth, we mean the kind of Candidainfestation that mostly affects your gut andcauses a wide range of symptoms likedigestive problems, headaches and recurrentyeast infections.If you’d like to learn more about Candidaovergrowth, my Ultimate Candida Dietprogram contains a simple 5-step programfor beating Candida and eliminating thoseCandida symptoms for good.A 5 STEPPROGRAM TOBEAT CANDIDALisa Richards, Candida expert and thecreator of TheCandidaDiet.com, revealsthe treatment that permanently curedher yeast infections, eliminatedCandida and restored her energylevels!If you regularlyexperiencesymptoms likeheadaches,brain fog,drowsinessor weightgain, clickhere to readmore about the Ultimate Candida Dietprogram...A simple 60 day timeline to permanently
Lisa RichardsLisa Richards is an expert onCandida and the creator of theUltimate Candida Diet. Follow heron Pinterest , Twitter or GooglePlus .cure CandidaThe only Candida treatment program basedon the latest researchGet relief from yeast infections,headaches, fatigue, joint pain and morePrintable shopping listsyou can take toyour local storeLearn everything about the causes,symptoms and treatment of CandidaThe Ultimate Candida Diet program iswritten by Lisa Richards, Candida expertand the creator of TheCandidaDiet.com.Start tackling your Candida today. ClickHere to to find out more!Search.Recent Comments TagsAbout The Candida DietLisa Richards is a Candida expert and the author ofthe Ultimate Candida Diet program. She writesregular posts on the causes, symptoms andtreatment of Candida, and has helped thousands ofCan Probiotics Help To Reduce StressLevels?How Does Chlorine Affect Your ImmuneSystem?Can Mold In Your Home Make CandidaWorse?Why Does It Matter What’s In Your Gut?Should You Take Antibiotics For YourIllness?