Candida overgrowth is an often misdiagnosed health concern. Most doctors either don’t look for it or don’t believe it can be the underlying cause of many diseases. Typically Candida is completely harmless; however, candida overgrowth becomes a genuine health concern when we do something that changes the delicate balance between the good microorganisms and the yeast colonies that already reside in the gut. When this balance is lost or disturbed, the Candida colonies can rapidly expand, and if not addressed — disease can begin.
What Is Candida Overgrowth?
In short, Candida Albicans is a very opportunistic yeast that, when out of control, can spread quickly throughout the body, release numerous toxins, and wreak havoc with every organ and system of the body. The Standard American diet and lifestyle encourage the growth of Candida. Unfortunately, many doctors don’t feel the need to check for Candida albicans as the possible cause of illness or disease.
Candida occurs naturally in the body, and when it is kept at proper levels, it serves a beneficial purpose. Estimates indicate that each of us has about a pound of bacteria living in our bodies, and most of these species are very helpful and necessary. Many bodily functions, such as proper digestion of our food, cannot occur without beneficial bacteria. The concern is that when the bacterial balance is out of whack in the body, “good bacteria” tend to get overrun by opportunistic species, and Candida Albicans is one of the worst offenders.
Once Candida takes hold, it will also begin to build a protective biofilm within the first 24 hours. The cell wall of Candida is made up of fibrin and the plant fiber chitin or cellulose, mannoprotein-1, glucan, and mannoprotein-2, which are plant polysaccharides. There is also a plasma membrane and a protein nucleus. These are the components that Candida uses to build the biofilm. Candida eating enzymes (see recommendations below) and coconut oil can work very well for getting through this biofilm. It’s important to note that if the biofilm is not addressed, most likely diet and supplements will not do an adequate job.
Why Is Candida Overgrowth At Epidemic Levels?
There are three main reasons why candida overgrowth is at epidemic levels today. The first is that most people dine on a diet that is high in sugar and refined, processed foods. Candida thrives on sugar and foods such as simple carbohydrates; unfortunately, these are staples in the Standard American Diet (SAD). When Candida gets a steady supply of such “fuel,” it grows and multiplies rapidly.
Secondly, the overuse of antibiotics is also a massive factor in candida overgrowth. These types of drugs show no discrepancy when it comes to the kinds of bacteria they attack. So, they often kill off helpful bacteria, allowing harmful species such as Candida to proliferate.
Thirdly, preexisting immuno-suppression caused by drug or alcohol abuse, multiple blood transfusions, debilitating illness, organ transplants, or chemotherapy.
Contributing factors that are of significant concern and promote yeast overgrowth are:
- Low stomach acidity leading to poorly digested food.
- Improper bowel movements leading to prolonged retention (constipation) of fecal matter in the colon.
- Prolonged stress, which often weakens the immune system.
- Mercury toxicity (amalgam fillings, high mercury-containing seafood, etc.) which can cause suppression of the immune system. This makes it easier for the yeast to proliferate in the human body. This is especially true in the gastrointestinal tract and the vagina of susceptible women.
What Are the Symptoms of Candida Overgrowth?
One of the things that makes Candida a complex health issue is that its symptoms often vary significantly from person to person. As Candida migrates throughout the body, it shows itself in different ways. Therefore, candida overgrowth can be very challenging to diagnose and treat.
Some of Candida’s favorite places to attack are the intestinal tract, genitals, and oral cavity. However, it can be quickly dispersed throughout the body and lead to widespread systemic infections.
Some of the most common candida overgrowth symptoms include:
- Skin rashes (eczema, acne)
- Excessive mucous of the throat, nose, and lungs
- Genital infections (vaginitis, jock itch)
- Athlete’s foot
- Acid reflux
- Sore throat
- Sinus infections
- Chronic Fatigue
- Muscle weakness
- Respiratory illness
When Candida attacks the brain and nervous system, many cognitive symptoms can occur, such as:
- Brain fog
- Poor concentration
- Mood swings
- Feelings of rage
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Alzheimer’s Disease
Candida overgrowth/yeast infections tend to be very hard on the immune system of which 80% is found in the intestinal tract. Therefore, causing the health of the entire body to suffer.
What are Natural Recommendations for Candida Overgrowth?
The most powerful way to fight Candida Overgrowth is by taking good care of your digestive tract and eating a very healthy diet. The digestive tract is typically the “headquarters” of most candida invasions; thus, eliminating excess Candida from the gut is essential. Below are some useful natural recommendations for Candida overgrowth.
A healthy diet is foundational to any effective Candida Cleanse. A grain-free and sugar-free diet are necessary. Eat raw, whole foods that are organic, GMO-free, and free of toxins. Organic fruits (a few times each week: green apples, lemons, limes, grapefruit, cranberry, blackberry, blueberry, raspberry, and pomegranate. Also a peach, nectarine, and a plum every once-in-a-while) and vegetables have a high oxygen content which can help with Candida overgrowth. Eliminate junky high-sugar and prepared foods and the SAD (Standard American Diet), in general. Add lots of garlic, onions, cinnamon, extra-virgin cold-pressed olive oil, and peppermint to your diet. The following foods are encouraged (use organic, free-range, grass-fed, and non-GMO foods): cold-water fish, poultry, meat, vegetables, healthy fats, brown rice, eggs, seeds, all nuts except cashews, and peanuts, herbal teas, and goat milk. Avoid quinoa and oats for the first 15-30 days. To ease digestion, all nuts and seeds should be soaked in purified water for at least seven hours before eating. Soaking initiates the sprouting process and breaks up the enzyme inhibitors and phytates found in these foods.
Drink lots of pure, filtered water. Staying hydrated will strengthen your intestinal tract and help to flush out toxins and waste. You may also add three tablespoons of organic, raw apple cider vinegar to one gallon of purified water and then drink throughout the day. Raw apple cider vinegar supports a normal pH balance in your body by creating an alkalizing environment and encouraging beneficial bacteria to grow. It is the healthy bacteria that crowds-out Candida and aids in digestion. While it is true that fermented products like beer and wine will actually feed yeast, raw apple cider vinegar goes through a much different fermentation process, thus producing a completely different reaction in the body. I highly recommend Braggs Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar.
DIGESTIVE TRACT CLEANSE
Digestive Tract Flushing is essential. Researchers have found that Candida releases about 70 different toxins into the body, usually starting in the digestive tract. The digestive tract must be flushed out so that it can begin to operate efficiently. Cleansing can combat Candida and allow digestion to improve, restoring nutrients that Candida has highjacked. It will also help ease the possibility of experiencing a Herxheimer’s Reaction caused by yeast die-off.
HARMFUL ORGANISM CLEANSE
Candida and parasites usually go together. In fact, Candida albicans is a type of parasitic yeast-like fungus. They have a symbiotic relationship, feeding off each other and being very destructive to the body. The use of a quality harmful organism cleanse will weaken Candida and improve overall health.
Many of Jatoba bark benefits are associated with its toxicity against harmful organisms, including yeast, viruses, fungi, and bacteria. Most of its beneficial compounds are located within its bark.
Use unrefined coconut oil at 1-3 tablespoons daily. You can use coconut oil in smoothies, hot herbal teas, coffee, or for oil-pulling.
Try to eat 1-2 cloves of garlic every day. They can be consumed raw in a fresh vegetable juice or roasted with some coconut oil.
The use of a high-quality probiotic/prebiotic is critical to support gut health. Probiotics are a powerful support of any Candida protocol because they reintroduce good bacteria into your gut. These bacteria create large, healthy colonies that crowd out the Candida yeast, regulate stomach acidity, and boost your immune system. Probiotics will also help restore bacterial balance in the gut, which controls Candida’s ability to multiply and take over.
A properly designed enzyme for candida yeast will eat the materials in which the biofilm is made. When trying to combat Candida overgrowth, it’s essential to include enzymes that break down Candida’s cell wall and strip away its biofilm. Candida yeast has no resistance to these enzymes, just like they have no resistance to bacteria. They also cannot build a resistance to them as they can do with herbs and prescription medications. They have virtually no risk to your health and do not cause the Candida to mutate, which some medicines prove to do. For instance, Diflucan can cause Candida Albicans to shape, shift and turn into candida glabrata, a highly resistant strain that is very hard to eliminate. Look for an enzyme formula that contains the enzymes cellulase and hemicellulase (eats the chitin/cellulose layer of the cell wall and biofilm) as well as glucoamylase, amylase, and invertase (eats the plant polysaccharide layers), protease (eats the nucleus), and serrapeptase (eats the fibrin). I recommend Veganzyme, which is a digestive and systemic enzyme formula containing the enzymes mentioned above. An effective proteolytic enzyme is Univase Forte.
ORGANIC OREGANO OIL
Wild Mediterranean organic oregano oil acts as a potent antibacterial that will attack Candida and help to cleanse and purify your body. It also boosts the immune system, which will ultimately counteract Candida overgrowth. Make sure the oregano oil you use contains at least 80% Carvacrol. Wild Mediterranean Oregano oil is said to be 100 times more potent than caprylic acid.
Colloidal silver is a potent antifungal and antibacterial product that fights against Candida and SIBO. Before penicillin was discovered in 1934, silver was one of the main things used to fight infectious diseases. It’s interesting how antibiotics have been showing increasing resistance, but colloidal silver shows no such thing. I’ve been recommending colloidal silver for over twenty years for all manner of infections, cuts, coughs and colds, eye issues, ear, nose, and throat, and yes, for candida overgrowth. A Korean study published in the Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology demonstrated that colloidal silver is an excellent antifungal in its own right and showed potent activity against clinical isolates of various fungal strains. The research revealed that silver nanoparticles (colloidal silver) were very effective against Candida species (yeast infections, vaginal thrush) as well as Trichophyton species (athlete’s foot, jock itch, and ringworm, hair, scalp, and nail fungus). In this study, colloidal silver proves to be equally effective against fungal strains such as Amphotericin B, a very potent antifungal pharmaceutical drug. It was even more impressive that it was found to be superior to Diflucan, a widely used drug otherwise known as Fluconazole, widely prescribed to women with vaginal thrush.
Another highly recommended nutrient is the free-form amino acid l-glutamine. l-Glutamine helps maintain good muscle mass, brain function, intestinal integrity, and stable blood sugar levels (helps with cravings). 1-3 grams 30 minutes before each meal is suggested. l-Glutamine is also excellent for healing leaky gut syndrome, a widespread symptom of intestinal candidiasis. l-Glutamine also helps to stimulate the immune system.
PAU D’ARCO TEA
Pau D’Arco contains antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial properties. Pau D’Arco strengthens the immune system and is useful for killing off yeast. While there are numerous varieties of Lapacho trees in South America, only the tree’s inner lining has known medical value. It is this inner lining (or phloem) that carries nutrients made by the leaves to other parts of the tree and is, with the cambium layer (where all the new cells are produced), the “life” of the tree. It’s vital to ensure that the Pau D’Arco that you purchase is 100% from the Red or Purple Lapacho Tree’s inner lining.
CISTUS INCANUS TEA
Cistus incanus is a plant that has a long tradition in folk remedies and, in ancient times, used for numerous medicinal and therapeutic purposes. The first book of the Bible, Genesis, references the resin of Cistus plants. In fact, cistus incanus was named the European Plant of the Year in 1999, making headlines for its many health benefits. Recent scientific research confirms this herbal treatment’s credibility from studies that show Cistus leaf extract has strong antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and biofilm-breaking characteristics (Rebensburg et al., 2015). The many health benefits of Cistus leaves have made it extremely popular in some natural protocols for Lyme disease and Lyme co-infections. Cistus villosus and Cistus monspeliensis employ activity against the fungal microorganisms Candida albicans, Candida krusei, Candida glabrata, and Aspergillus fumigatus. Since Cistus can address both types of fungi, it is a good choice for those who struggle with fungal infections, including toxic mold exposure. Cistus’ antifungal properties make it an essential part of natural healing protocols for those experiencing a mold-induced illness and Candida albicans.
If you begin to feel horrible after beginning a Candida cleanse, it most likely proves that you are correct about having a Candida infestation. However, the cleanse is possibly working a bit too fast. This has been called the “Dam Buster Effect” or “Herxheimer Effect,” which can happen when your body is so full of years of toxic build-up, it begins to detoxify a little too fast. In other words, your system becomes overloaded and is unable to remove the toxins as quickly as needed. This is an excellent time to perform a colon cleanse and up your water intake.
When Candida begins to die-off, your body can create a metabolic reaction that lets go of over 70 different toxins into your body. Some symptoms that indicate a Candida cleanse and candida diet is doing a good job are:
- Impaired brain function
- Intestinal distress including bloating, gas, constipation, and nausea
- Sweating and fever
- Sinus infection
- Skin breakouts (not limited to face)
- Typical flu-like symptoms
If you start experiencing Candida die-off symptoms, don’t lose hope and quit. These symptoms usually clear up in 7 to 10 days. Within just a few weeks, you will begin to notice an increase in energy and focus, as well as relief from other symptoms you have experienced.
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