Candida Symptoms And 3 Steps To Treat Them
- Chronic sinus and allergy issues
- Digestive problems
- Weak immune system
If so, these are just some of the signs that you may have a fungal infection known as candida. In this article you will learn other candida symptoms along with what causes candida and the diet to naturally treat candida.
How Do I Treat Candida
With the identification of flatline SIBO and sugar malabsorption tests, some doctors decide to go ahead with a course of antifungals because they are relatively safe, in this case, a reduction in symptoms would suggest SIFO was the preliminary cause. There is no specific drug, but oesophageal candidiasis may be treated with fluconazole or nystatin, which could also work in the gut.
Many functional practitioners recommend herbs to treat candida such as oil of oregano and apple cider vinegar. Whilst most herbs are beneficial to everyone , some should be used carefully. For example, garlic is high FODMAP, whilst this may combat Candida it would exacerbate SIBO if also present .
The best way to prevent yeast overgrowth is to enhance their competition the good bacteria in the gut. One noteworthy probiotic is Lactobacillus acidophilus, they produce hydrogen peroxide which inhibits the growth Candida albicans, the most predominant Candida species in humans and leading perpetrator of fungal dysbiosis .
Research into Candida and SIFO as the cause of GI symptoms is somewhat sparse, but gastroenterologists are starting to realise it is as a true condition. Although there is no easily examinable diagnosis test, it is firstly important to rule out the more recognisable conditions like SIBO and malabsorption of sugars with a breath test. Only thereafter your doctor can suggest treatment or further testing.
Abstain From All Alcohol For 30 Days And Say Goodbye To Beer Forever
Your gut is not a huge fan of alcohol. And that shouldnt be a surprise given alcohol itself is the natural result of yeast overgrowth and sugar37!
I go through a detailed explanation here in my article on alcohol and leaky gut syndrome, where I explain how alcohol messes with your digestion , reduces your ability to control inflammation39 , and it makes the openings in your gut lining larger .
Oh yeah, and alcohol is fantastic at depleting your levels of mucosal-supporting zinc too42!
These effects are magnified if you drink alcohol on an empty stomach, which is so often the case when people go for after work or pre-dinner drinks.
So heres my guide to alcohol and leaky gut
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How To Get Rid Of Candida: 5 Dietary Changes To Consider
Candida overgrowth can result in many different symptoms that look different from the more commonly known vaginal yeast infection. Fatigue, gastrointestinal distress, and even chronic sinus infections can be signs of this sometimes stubborn condition. Still, there are many treatment options, and relief from candida is completely possible.
Debunking The Myth Of Leaky Gut Syndrome
A proposed gastrointestinal disorder dubbed leaky gut syndrome is currently the topic of numerous debates throughout the medical and natural health communities. Some alternative medicine practitioners claim that leaky gut syndrome is a prevalent problem responsible for ill health in many people. However, most physicians maintain that there is not enough research to prove that it is a legitimate issue. In this article, we will answer some questions you may have about leaky gut syndrome and reveal some of the dangers of diagnosing and treating a condition for which there is no medical evidence.
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Leaky Gut Syndrome And Autoimmune Disease
Candida is not inherently bad, but when left unchecked, when it takes over the gut and is allowed to flourish, it will damage the intestinal wall. Then Candida, along with other microbes, will migrate outside of the intestinal tract and into the body, flourishing everywhere, fed by all the sugars and damaged cells that are also entering the bloodstream. The immune system will react to the Candida as it should, fighting invading pathogens that do not belong in the blood.
Large molecules that werent able to permeate the gut before, like bacteria, undigested proteins, undigested sugars, can now leak out of the gut. These antigens leak into the bloodstream and are labeled by the immune system as alien. Antibodies are made for these antigens, and when later exposures occur, the immune system mounts an inflammatory response, which targets tissues and organs.
Leaky gut has been found in association with asthma, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, irritable bowel , lupus, hypothyroidism, kidney disease, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, eczema, depression, chronic fatigue syndrome, heart failure, and celiac disease.
An autoimmune disease is defined as an irregular response of the bodys immune system against substances and tissues normally present in the body .
What Causes Candida To Overgrow
Our body is a ecosystem where different organisms live happily together. But sometimes we can interfere with this balance and that causes overgrowth of one organism more than the other.
So typically what happens is we destroy some of our good bacteria in our body by either ingesting antibiotics, or through stress in our life, or through poor diet choices.
This good bacteria was keeping the candida in check, but with the good bacteria compromised, the candida starts overgrowing because it has free space and no good bacteria to fight candida.
Candidal overgrowth causes inflammation and infection which in turns starts hurting our body.
So the typical reasons for candida to overgrow are :
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What Causes Candida Infections
There are many possible causes of candida, including a diet high in sugar, refined carbohydrates and alcohol that help feed candida. To add to that, Ive described six other potential causes below.
1. Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics
Sometimes, antibiotics are needed to fight a stubborn infection to kill the offending bacteria in your system. The problem with antibiotics and with overusing them is that they dont just kill the bad bacteria they kill the good ones, too.
The good bacteria in your system are responsible for digestion and keeping candida under control. After a long course , antibiotics can make your body a literal breeding ground for candida.
2. Birth Control Pills
Unlike antibiotics, birth control pills in and of themselves do not directly cause a yeast infection or candida overgrowth syndrome. However, when a woman consumes a diet high in refined sugars and has had a course of antibiotics, birth control pills can adversely affect her body, leading to a candida infection.
Some women find that birth control pills seem to instigate yeast infections and even long after the initial infection is gone, once they start taking the birth control pills again, candida can take root.
3. Oral Corticosteroids
4. Cancer Treatments
6. Weakened Immune System
What If You Dont Like The Taste Of Bone Broth
Then try some flavorless collagen protein powder.
You see, heres the cool thing for those of us that dont want to be sipping on bone broth all the time
it turns out you can actually enjoy the secret ingredient in bone broth in powder form. And most interestingly of all, recent studies are showing it can be much more effective than food due to higher absorption rates of the amino acids in collagen6.
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The Leaky Gut Connection
Your small and large intestines are separated from the bloodstream via a thin layer of cells, called your epithelial cells. These cells are held together by tight junctions to form a strong barrier between the content of your intestines and your bloodstream.
Your epithelial cells make sure that only safe substances from the gut can enter the body, such as nutrients from food. They keep out potentially harmful substances like harmful bacteria, viruses and chemical food additives.
When Candida overgrows in your gut, the immune system detects these high levels of Candida and triggers an immune response in the form of inflammation in the gut. When the gut is inflamed, your tight junctions become weak and break open.
As a result, your thin layer of cells in the gut is now like a bucket with holes. Potentially harmful substances can now enter the bloodstream through the broken tight junctions. This is also called leaky gut.
Avoid Eating Any Foods That Are Processed Or Filled With Preservatives Or Flavoring
I think we all know that saying goodbye to foods high in refined flours and sugars, low in nutrients and filled with chemicals, will help our gut health improve.
But I also understand that saying adios to these and hello to a diet focused on real whole foods is not a cheap exercise. But to be honest, it all comes down to what value you put on your health.
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Repair The Gut Lining With Research
One of the most important nutrients for healing leaky gut is L-glutamine. L-glutamine is an amino acid and one of the preferred energy sources used by cells lining the gut. When L-glutamine is absorbed by these cells, production of Immunoglobulin Type A is increased, boosting the defense system of the cells. L-glutamine also helps in the repair and integrity of the tight junctions in the gut lining, reducing permeability.
L-glutamine can be highly beneficial to not only those with leaky gut but with IBS or inflammatory gastrointestinal conditions. A study published in the journal of Clinical Immunology showed that L-glutamine can help to modulate the effects of the specific immune cells that stimulate inflammatory cytokines. This in turn can reduce intestinal inflammation and reduce the reaction caused by food sensitivities.
Many nutritionists now recommend L-glutamine as an essential part of the daily diet. Good sources include bone broth and supplements.
How Can Someone Tell They Have Candida
Candida can be tested via a blood test, a swab of the potentially infected area, and via a stool test. The swab test works especially well for Candida infections in the mouth, on the skin and in the vagina. A stool test or a blood test are best used if Candida overgrowth is suspected in the gut.
If you suspect that you have Candida overgrowth in the gut, there is a simple at-home test that you can do. This test is by no means an accurate diagnosis, but it can give you a better sense for whether Candida is affecting your health. This test is called the Candida Saliva Test.
Candida migrates from the gut to the mouth overnight when youre sleeping and not swallowing as frequently. This means that in the morning, Candida has collected in your mouth. You may see this in the form of a very thick, white coating on your tongue and thick, white saliva.
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Which Oils To Use For Leaky Gut Instead
Best of all, you can easily replace the bad fats with quality fats, including fats that are just as suited to cooking.
For example, coconut oil, ghee and lard hold a very high smoke point .
Whilst you can use the other healthy fats listed in the graphic to the right, eg extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil etc, for cold dishes or to finish on top of heated dishes.
In many ways, your lovely plate of veggies and meat/fish, is really just a delivery vehicle for these healthy fats. So apply your EVOO liberally to a finished dish!
In Terms Of Taking Digestive Enzymes Heres What I Recommend
- Take 1-2 with each meal. I do this just before my meal.
- If you are still having digestion issues, consider upping the dose to 2-3. You most likely will be fine with 1-2.
- During the early stages of leaky gut recovery make sure you take them before any meal or snack, even a simple protein shake for example. The idea is to really give the digestive system a helping hand at every turn.
Most importantly, look for a digestive enzyme supplement that contains the best enzymes for supporting digestion of all food groups. Heres the list:
Since there are 100s of different digestive enzymes on the market I often get asked, which one is worth taking.
Well, as you might have read in my article on digestive enzymes it is really important to choose a digestive enzyme complex that ticks 3 boxes.
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How Candida Can Impact Leaky Gut
And eventually they may even end up finding their way into our organs and tissue , which can lead to chronic conditions developing over time.
Plus, under this kind of constant attack the gut lining is never going to be able to heal. Instead it will remain hyper-permeable, i.e. leaky.
So for us leaky gutters, chronic candida overgrowth is thus something to take seriously and to watch out for.
Why Collagen Protein May Be Even Better Than Bone Broth
The most absorbable & tasteless form of collagen is hydrolyzed collagen protein powder like this one .
It has no beefy taste, is really easy to take any time of day, and best of all, since it is pure collagen, you can get a huge serving of helpful amino acids for intestinal support. Super convenient!
So try collagen peptides today and get ready to send your body all the collagen goodness of bone broth, but in a much easier and more absorbable way.
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Leaky Gut And Autoimmune Disorders
Several disease states have been associated with gut microbiota dysbiosis, intestinal barrier dysfunction, and microbial translocation. These include Alzheimers disease, ALD, cancer, and multiple autoimmune disorders. Autoimmune disorders are characterized by the generation of autoantibodies against self-antigens that attack the bodys own tissues, resulting in damage. Genetic and environmental triggers have been long known as the major contributors to the development of autoimmunity. Increasing evidence in recent years suggests that microbial translocation and intestinal barrier dysfunction, which may be affected by gut microbiota, are another important causative element for autoimmune disorders . T1D and SLE are examples discussed below that reveal advancements in the understanding of the mechanisms behind the interaction between the leaky gut and autoimmune disorders.
How To Get Your Kraut In
- You can ferment your own vegetables. But this is going to take some work. Ive tried to make the simplest possible recipe for you, which you can see in the graphic just below.
- Alternatively you can buy it ready made. The key is to avoid the canned stuff in the supermarket dry aisles, as it is pasteurized and thus devoid of live probiotics. To buy the good stuff youll need to hit your local health store and look for glass jars sitting in fridges. Youll know youve found high quality products when you see the price tag! But trust me, its worth it. One large jar should easily last a week for 1 person, ie 3-6 servings.
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Candida Adapts To Stress
Studies also show that Candida thrives under stress.
For example, researchers have exposed Candida to:
- High temperatures that mimic the bodys response to an infection.
- Oxidative stressa byproduct of inflammation.
- Antifungal stress in the form of a common antifungal drug called fluconazole.
The greater the stress, the more Candida adapts to stressors and to its environment. It turns out that these genetic adaptations are specifically tailored to each stressor.
Candida also shape-shifts. When necessary, it can be a rounded yeast cell or an elongated hyphal cellwhich form like long, finger-like threads. Candida hyphae are particularly invasive to the gut wall. In hyphal form, Candida can change the pH of the body. With this change in pH, Candida hyphae can bore through tissue and make its way into the bloodstream, where it can then colonize other regions of the body.
How Do I Know The Cause Of My Gas And Bloating
There are a couple of tests we can do to determine if you have Candida overgrowth:
*A simple IgG blood test can tell if you are reacting to yeast if the body is irritated by yeast it will show up as a positive reaction on the test results.
*Stool testing can also be done to look for the species of yeast that is causing your problems and the quantity of overgrowth.
However in my experience, the best way to determine if Candida overgrowth is causing your symptoms is to do a Candida cleanse.
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What Causes A Yeast Overgrowth Aka Candida Overgrowth
Lots of things!
Antibiotics can cause candida. Because they dont just kill the bad bacteria of a skin rash or an ear infection, they literally kill all bacteria in your body even the good stuff that your gut needs to function properly. And by killing off the good stuff, it allows the bad to grow in its place.
The birth control pill can cause it, too! Really any form of hormonal treatment. With a yeast overgrowth, the candida actually attaches itself to estrogen, so any time youre adding estrogen to your body , youre increasing your risk for overgrowth. A recent study says youre doubling it.
Even just stress can cause it. Stress weakens the immune system and disrupts hormone levels, both lowering your bodys natural ability to maintain a healthy bacterial balance.
But probably the biggest culprit for most of us: a high sugar / high processed starch diet. The candida feeds off of sugar . By consuming a lot of the foods that fuel it, youre promoting its growth and it can easily start to overpopulate and throw off your microbiome flora balance.