According to recent studies, Candida is a systematic fungal infection that affects around 70 percent of all people. It’s an overgrowth of yeast and it can ultimately break down your intestinal walls and penetrate the bloodstream, causing toxins to be released into your body. It is very common in humans and can be found in the mouth and intestines. Candida can affect both your outer and inner regions of the body simultaneously*, affecting the skin, intestines, fingernails and reproductive organs.
Candida is highly evasive and can be difficult to diagnose. A lot of affected people are unaware that a serious fungal infection is affecting them. That’s partly because of the transformative properties of candida, as it can mimic other illnesses, causing people to be given with the wrong treatment or to seek out help for some other medical issue. Here are some of the symptoms of candida that can easily fool a person into thinking they have some other disease:
- Chronic fatigue
- Pain in muscle and joints
- Intestinal gas an stomach pain
So, as you can see, causes can easily be misunderstood with another condition that causes these fairly common symptoms. Candida is more common now than it was in recent history, and the reasons are quite simple. We are now eating much differently than our ancestors. Modern agricultural practices are great for mass production, but eliminate the precious minerals from the soil. Lack of these minerals weakens our immunes system and creates an acidic blood environment, which makes it ripe for infections like candida. Additionally, our food is filled with sugar and processed goods, which lowers our immunity and decimates our health. Sugar is a MAJOR issue when it comes to Candida. Lack of knowledge when it comes to what we put into our bodies makes it difficult to avoid conditions like candida that are so connected to food.
Signs of Candida
- Fungal infections in the skin and nails, like athlete’s foot
- Fatigue, fibromyalgia
- Digestive problems like constipation, bloating, diarrhea
- Trouble focusing
- Autoimmune diseases (lupus, multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto’s, rheumatoid arthritis)
- Anxiety, depression
- Infections in the vagina, urinary tract
If you have these signs, it’s time to talk to a doctor about your options. Some Candida infections can be very, very serious. A large part of population already has Candida, but it is only when candida overgrowth happens that we are in trouble. Your diet is crucial in preventing candida overgrowth from ever happening, as well as for sustaining and healing it when it does. What you consume affects how your inner system reacts to Candida and other similar funguses or diseases.
Let me just note as well that some people who practice alternative medicine feel that there is a direct connection between Candida and weight gain.
“Many alternative practitioners believe that the modern diet, which is high in carbohydrates, combined with overuse of antibiotics in food as well as for illnesses encourages Candida albicans, a type of yeast, to multiply out of control. When yeast concentrations reach a certain level, yeast spreads from the large intestine, its normal home, into the small intestine. From the small intestine, a more permeable area than the large intestine, yeast spreads to the bloodstream through small holes that create the leaky gut syndrome. Toxins spread through the bloodstream, affecting the immune and nervous systems and causing inflammation that contributes to heart disease and other chronic disorders, including thyroid disorders that make it difficult to lose weight.” – Source: LiveStrong
Candida and What We Eat and Drink
Food and proper diet habits are crucial for curing and avoiding candida and other similar infections. A more anti-fungal diet would contain fermented foods and drinks that can build your ecosystem, provides minerals that candida steals from your body and heal your digestion. It would also cut out gluten, sugar and casein. By switching over to anti-fungal diet you will avoid feeding the candida, which will help you start the progress of getting it out of your system. You need vitamins, fiber and minerals to make your gut lining strong and healthy and create the favorable conditions for good bacteria development in your digestive system.
To starve the candida of the sugar that feeds it and makes it stronger, go on a diet heavy in vegetables, but without starch. Buy your vegetables fresh and eat them raw, steamed, or grilled. Avoid sweet potatoes and potatoes in general, as well as corn, yams, beets, squash, beans and peas, since they contain starch. Not feeding candida is only the first step and you will have to repopulate your gut with some healthy good bacteria as well. One way to do this is to consume live yogurt cultures – probiotic yogurts and kefir. Eat only fresh and non-processed meat, avoiding bacon, ham, spam, and lunch meat. There are some medicines available to treat candida overgrowth as well, but discuss these with your doctor before going that route.
Avoid soda and other sugar heavy beverages. Alcohol should not be consumed either due to the sugar content. There is a large variety of herbal teas that have anti-fungal properties that you can drink instead. Try ginger, licorice, cinnamon, or peppermint tea. Though sugar is not allowed, you can still use alternative sweeteners. Stevia can be used to sweeten up your food or beverages, because it has a much smaller effect on blood sugar levels. Drink plenty of water to help flush your body of toxins. Try to drink 8 glasses of water each day at minimum (64 oz).
Note: This information is not meant to be a replacement for a visit to your doctor. Talk with an actual medical professional before self diagnosing and trying to treat yourself.