Also called Systemic Candidiasis, Candida Albicans, and Monilla.
Free Candida test at the end of this article.
WHAT IS CANDIDA?
It will steal your breath, your energy, your life. It is a yeast found in minute quantities along with millions of beneficial B vitamin producing bacteria (Lactobacilli)in a healthy body.
Candida is a dimorphic organism, having the chameleon-like ability to change from a yeast to the mycelial fungal form. The yeast-like form is a noninvasive, sugar-fermenting organism. The fungal form produces rhitzoids, long root-like structures which are invasive and can penetrate the intestinal mucosa like in "leaky gut" syndrome, releasing metabolic toxins, and incompletely digested proteins into the blood stream. This initiates a series of adverse reactions that may cause tissue damage, and a wide range of problems, including food sensitivities and allergies.
HOW DOES CANDIDA MULTIPLY AND TAKE OVER?
Antibiotics kill off the beneficial bacteria which normally suppress Candida. Mutant or wild type bacteria are created which are highly resistant to antibiotics.
Nutritional Deficiencies. Poor diet, poor digestion and malabsorption from gluten intolerance all set the stage for poor resistance to Candida overgrowth.
Antibiotic Residues in Commercial Meat: We encourage antibiotic and hormone-free meats.
Use of Recreational Drugs - Alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, heroin, tobacco, etc. These drugs stress the liver, the adrenals, and the immune system. The attendant erratic nutrition further depletes well-being and resistance to Candida.
The Pill. The hormones in birth control pills encourage yeast growth. Cortisone, Prednisone, etc. encourage yeast growth.
Operations, Catheterization, Radiation, Anti-Cancer Drugs, Amalgam Fillings: Some holistic practitioners feel the leaching of mercury from silver/mercury amalgams puts a toxic load on the body, preventing full health and complete eradication of systemic Candida.
Anti-yeast Pharmaceuticals, including Oral and Topical Preparations are producing new resistant strains of these microorganisms. This can lead to recurrent infections that resist treatment and become a debilitating health problem.
Reduced oxygen supplies: Oxygen will help kill germs, bacteria, virus and fungus; candida is a fungus. Having adequate oxygen stores reduces biochemical stresses and maximizes bodily function in the presence of parasites such as candida.
WHO CAN GET CANDIDA? Anyone. Men. women, children, the elderly. pregnant women (due to hormonal changes, stress and higher nutrient needs often not met). Women have special problem. The yeast needs food, water, warmth and darkness. The yeast typically starts growing in the intestinal tract and spills over into the reproductive area.
Note: Spermicide Noxynol-9 kills healthy bacteria in the female reproductive system.
Candida often first spreads in the Gl tract. Many symptoms can develop, such as gas, bloating, indigestion, heartburn, nausea, constipation and/or diarrhea, and major cravings for sugar, starches and alcohol, which are the foods the candida increasingly demands. The more of these candida foods that are consumed, the worse you begin to feel as candida proliferates, releasing toxins and interfering with digestion. Eventually, the yeast can enter the blood stream and spread through the body. At this point, the immune system begins to be overwhelmed and to falter. As the systemic candida spreads, symptoms grow more diffuse and convoluted: Depression, lethargy, mental confusion/fog, mood swings, PMS, confused thyroid function, susceptibility to infections (sinus, respiratory, bladder, gums, etc.), sensitivity to pollutants, fumes (which can become full-blown "environmental illness"), achy muscles and/or joints, skin fungus...
WHAT IS RECOMMENDED
Extensive research shows that a successful program for controlling candida and fungal overgrowth must achieve three goals. First, the candida and fungal population of the body must be gradually, yet significantly reduced. Second, the immune system must be strengthened, and activated to further deplete candida or fungal overgrowth. Third, the health of the intestinal tract must be rebuilt. This may be accomplished through re-seeding the colon with friendly flora, and by normalizing the pH of the gastrointestinal tract.
Proper breathing: The way we breathe dictates oxygen quantity and nervous system balance. Unbalanced breathing will negate any attempts to maintain proper pH balance without which every biochemical reaction in the body becomes at risk.
Nutritional support including booster foods and specific supplements for reducing candida overgrowth, healing the intestinal tract and increasing energy such as with liquid potassium.
Eating plan eliminating sugars, starches and alcohol strictly for two weeks, two months or forever.
Immune System Boosters'. Massive immune system rebuilding; especially with chronic food/sugar/alcohol, etc. addictions.
Nutritional Yeast: An inactive yeast rich in nutrients which also increases vitality and mental clarity.
Avoid exposure to toxins sprays, solvents, chemicalized foods.
Digestive enzymes and possibly hydrochloric acid
Fiber speeds up transit time in gut to reduce putrefaction and bacteria breeding environment.
Prevent constipation even if you just know you don't have it. You probably do in a way you can't possibly tell, yet.
Exercise: The lymph doesn't move much unless you do; the legs, arms and chest expansion and contraction are the pump.
Natural Antifungals. Restoring healthy intestinal ecology with high potency Lactobacilus powders and liquids, probiotics such as garlic, ginger, and oregano oil.
Acupuncture helps restore balance to the immune system, the adrenals, digestion and elimination. Eases detox considerably.
Keep dry. Remember food, darkness, warmth, moisture? Use white or rose clay powders in undergarments and between toes. Green clay powders might not wash out of clothes.
Clothing. Many synthetics trap moisture on the skin: many female undergarments, etc. Use natural fibers, cotton and silk are best.
Water. To hydrate cells and flush waste. Drink a minimum of one quart per day. Only water counts as water; not juice, coffee, etc.
Relaxation & meditation.
"Cofactors in oxygen utilization decrease Candida yeast and all strengthening yeast substances." Dr. Crook The Yeast Connection.
Yoga, warm water soaking, biofeedback, massage or therapeutic touch. Love - both the giving and receiving. This can begin with caring for a plant or a pet. As one embarks upon the journey of recovery. Independence can soften into acceptance of self and others, and also into receiving that staunch, sustaining love. Then the heart is like a warm hearth, and the immune system can rest and replenish and do its business.
Medical support. Many drugs impair digestion, proper assimilation of nutrients and growth of healthy bacteria.
WHAT IS DIE-OFF?
No fun! As the antifungals kill off and neutralize the systemic Candida, you may need to rest more and alert family, friends and coworkers that you may be lethargic and grumpy. There may be flu-like symptoms, headaches, and diarrhea. Cravings for sugar, starches and/or alcohol may suddenly surge. It usually doesn't last long. If you do slip, STAY WITH THE PROGRAM. You haven't blown it. The supplements will still be working. Dieoff can begin in a day or two or in two weeks. Its course is hard to predict. The worst is usually over within 3 weeks. Lemon water helps through dieoff. The nutritionist may have additional recommendations.
IS THERE LIFE AFTER DIE-OFF?
Yes! Life and zest and mental clarity and a non-bloated middle and good digestion and normal bowel function. Eventually, sweets put into the mouth taste too sweet. Depending on how long the Candida has been out of hand, how run down the immune system, adrenals, digestion, etc. are, it can take 16 months, but usually 23 months, to turn Candida around, and restore good health maybe for the first time in one's life!
ANTI-CANDIDA PLAN, WHAT TO AVOID
This list is indicative, not comprehensive. The books all give conflicting food recommendations. Choose the consistencies. Check with a health professional who has had extensive nutrition experience.
Sweets, Candy of all lands, sugar: white, brown, raw. Maple syrup. Rice syrup, Sweeteners, Honey, Malt, Corn sweetener. High fructose corn syrup. Fructose, Corn syrup, Miso, Nutrasweet, Aspartame, Saccharine. Mushrooms. Dairy Products: Milk, Cheese. Yeast containing foods, Alcohol containing foods. Herb tea (except Pau D'Arco), Soy Sauce, Vinegars, Fruit*: Fruit juices, especially sweetened. Canned fruit. Oranges, bananas, grapes and dried fruit (raisins, dates, figs, etc.), Fruit juice concentrate. Starches: grains in general, with the exception of quinoa, millet and rice. Potato chips, french fries. Left over food in general, lard, margarine, hydrogenated vegetable oils.
* In some cases fruit will not be recommended at all.
ANTI-CANDIDA EATING PLAN
What is okay to eat?
Daily for the first three months take two times three caps of FructoOligoSachyrides (creates unfriendly blood environment for yeast growth), Probiotics , Oil of Oregano. For the first 2 weeks the diet will consist simply of: vegetables particularly steamed or lightly sautéed in the beginning, animal protein (ocean fish, antibiotic-free poultry, beef, lamb, pork). Fertile ranch eggs (cooked at low temperature), Spirulina, E3live, organic nuts and seeds prescribed amounts. Legumes I serving/day. Quinoa (pronounced like keen-wa), or millet.
Those not dairy intolerant can eat yogurt (encouraged) and buttermilk. Freshly prepared soups (non-cream or milk base). Flavoring: Liberal amounts of fresh lemon (helps with detox). Fresh herbs rather than dried (due to mold content in dried). Garlic, onion, curry, pepper (in moderation) Oils: Flax, Olive, grape seed (not rape seed), safflower, sesame, Udo's Choice.
Vegetable juices, other liquids: Fresh carrot, celery and/or parsley juice. Lemon water before meals.
Water: preferably spring or filtered 6 to 8 glasses a day, 1/2 hour before meals, or I hour after Pau D 'Arco or spearmint tea After the first 2 weeks: The diet expands gradually under the supervision of the nutritionist. Alcohol, sugar and some other substances are never reintroduced. Emphasis on foods known to have anti-fungal properties such as garlic, onions, broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, brussels sprouts, olive and flax oils, cinnamon and cloves.
Ask your health professional for the stool test from Great Smokies Laboratory and or the urine or stool test from Metametrix. There is a parasite test as well that I have included in my Secrets of Optimal Natural Breathing. Parasite removal programs include die off as well and can cost as much as $800. I'll bet the Prescript-assist and Proflora in combination will make a huge difference
Recommended intestinal cleanser product:
Free test to assess possible or probable candida: