Do you have uncomfortable symptoms that are frustrating you on a daily basis? Many people don’t feel their absolute best and many have forgotten what it really feels like to feel good. Candida may be at the core of the symptoms you’re experiencing. Candida albicans is a fungus, which can grow as both filamentous cells and as yeast, and is also the frequent cause of yeast overgrowth.  Candida outgrowth can cause symptoms such as fatigue, sweet cravings, gas, bloating, intestinal cramps, rectal itching, diarrhea, constipation, vaginal yeast infections and recurrent bladder infections, menstrual irregularities, lower libido, depression, irritability, allergies and chemical sensitivities. Candida is present as part of a normal balance of intestinal micro flora. Yet, if Candida is allowed to reproduce unchecked, it can create a host of health problems including allergies, sinusitis, bronchitis, arthritis and autoimmune disease that are, in part, due to the chemical byproducts produced by Candida.

Candida overgrowth doesn’t grow without a little help from environmental factors.  It typically happens after taking antibiotics, from a diet high in sugar, or a combination of the two. Birth control pills and cortisone drugs also facilitate Candida growth, as does alcohol consumption and stress. If you’re struggling with some of these annoying symptoms, you may want to pass on the bread and wine with dinner for the time being.

Now, how to deal with Candida…. Well, the most effective way to clear the Candida overgrowth is to starve the yeast by not feeding it simple sugars, including lactose and alcohol. Start eating a well- balanced diet with lots of whole fresh foods that are in season.  A good rule to start with, when thinking about what to eat is to follow this formula:

  • 60% non-starchy vegetables such as cooked leafy greens and salad greens, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, garlic, onions, ginger….
  • 25% protein-rich foods such as chicken, fish, turkey, eggs and nuts
  • 10% complex carbohydrates such as lentils, brown rice, quinoa, peas and root vegetables
  • 5% low glycemic fruits such as berries, apples and pears

Here’s a list of supplements that can also help limit Candida overgrowth, but make sure you don’t just depend on supplements.  Changing your diet is crucial.

  • Probiotics
  • Digestive enzymes
  • Anti-fungal supplements such as black walnut, caprylic acid, grapefruit seed extract, garlic, oregano oil, pau d’arco

Treating Candida requires a comprehensive approach. You will find that making dietary changes and supplementing with digestive enzymes and probiotics can greatly improve your overall health and can be used on a regular basis. I recommend seeing your naturopathic doctor and local nutritionist to help define an anti-Candida plan that works best for you.