Digestive issues, mood swings, brain fog, headaches, skin problems, immunity issues, fatigue, exhaustion, weight gain: these symptoms are all linked to a common cause – Candida. If you have experienced the above problems, it is likely that Candida overgrowth is disrupting your health and wellbeing.
This article will dive deep into the causes, effects, and treatment options for Candida so you can overcome unpleasant symptoms and live a healthier life.
What is candida?
Candida Albicans is a fungus, specifically a yeast. It normally lives in the gastrointestinal tract and other areas of the body without causing harm. Candida’s purpose is to assist digestion and nutrient absorption as well as to help the immune system by recognising and destroying harmful bacteria.
A disruption of the delicate balance of the good and bad bacteria can lead to Candida overgrowth. When overproduced in the gut, candida will break down the walls of our digestive tract and penetrate the bloodstream.
When Candida enters the bloodstream it releases toxins into your body. This can lead to many different health problems, from physiological to psychological.
But how can you get Candida into your system in the first place? Here are some of the main ways people come to have Candida:
- Unhealthy parents at the time of conception.
- An unhealthy mother; poor gut microbiome while she is pregnant with the developing foetus
- C-section delivery of the baby; not vaginal delivery
- Breastfeeding the baby for less than 6 months
- Introduction via various types of surgical interventions
- Taking antibiotics. Antibiotics kill good bacteria along with harmful bacteria which sets the stage for Candida Albicans to take over.
- Taking corticosteroids. Drugs commonly used to treat severe allergies, skin problems, asthma, or arthritis are known to cause yeast infections in humans.
- Some prescription drugs
- Alcohol intake. Most alcohol is fermented and contains sugars that will also feed the yeast, allowing it to continue to grow in your system.
- Taking the pill. The birth control pill can disrupt the bacterial balance in the microbiome, causing the effects of Candida to worsen.
- Having a bacterial infection
- Weak immune system
- Autoimmune conditions such as psoriasis; any condition of weakened immune system; when your system is run down
- Eating unhealthy, processed foods. Carbohydrates and sugar act as food for yeast and feed candida overgrowth in the gut.
- eating too much sugar
- eating too many grains
- During hormonal changes such as when a woman is on her period or going through pregnancy
- Exposure to environmental toxins which can lower the immune system’s ability to keep candida in check
- Chronic stress, which impacts your immune system.
5 signs and symptoms you may have Candida
· Digestive Problems
Many individuals experience chronic intestinal distress when battling a candida infection, as yeast overtakes the intestines. Persistent flatulence, burping, bloating, constipation or diarrhoea, and stomach cramps may be caused by a lack of healthy bacteria in your digestive tract.
· Mind and Mood Problems
Dr Axe tells us that brain fog is often overlooked as a sign of candida. One of the reasons it can be difficult to diagnose candida is that so many of the candida symptoms are common to other conditions, including mood disorders.
Candida Albicans overgrowth can also cause anxiety attacks, crying spells, memory loss, feeling spaced out, depression, manic feelings, inability to concentrate, mood swings, irritability, a lack of focus, poor physical coordination, difficulty in concentrating on tasks, and poor memory.
· Skin Problems
Continued skin infections or inflammation can be treated but may also be a sign that you have a systemic candida infection. Athlete’s foot and fungus in the toenail are common yeast infections, which stem from the same breed of candida.
Inflammation can manifest itself in uncomfortable symptoms like skin rashes and can eventually lead to autoimmune disease. Look out for skin dryness, red patches, acne, pimples, hives, rashes, itching skin, eczema, psoriasis, seborrhoea, ringworm, contact dermatitis, rosacea, etc.
· Immunity Problems
Candida does affect the sinuses and can result in a persistent cough, post-nasal drip, an increase in congestion, seasonal allergies, and general flu-like symptoms.
Recurrent infections in the urinary tract or vagina may be a sign of a systemic candida problem. Candida can be sexually transmitted between partners; for women especially, it’s important to reduce the risk by avoiding tight-fitting undergarments and hot baths during an active infection.
· Body Problems
Candida can cause weight gain, yeast infections, reproductive organs problems, chronic fatigue, low libido, and lack of appetite.
A feeling of tiredness or exhaustion that is present despite healthy sleeping patterns may be a sign of chronic fatigue syndrome, which stems from an unhealthy system fighting infection.
For a successful treatment of candida, there are four key components: diet and exercise, bacteria, chemical exposure, and emotional and psychological issues.
1. Diet and Exercise
When trying to eradicate Candida from your system you should focus on eating meats, chicken, eggs, seeds and nuts, healthy oils, and plenty of vegetables. Free range and organic foods are preferred, as these are produced without the use of harmful synthetic chemicals and pesticides.
Eating foods with natural antifungal properties also break down Candida and fight further growth. Foods like garlic, rutabaga, olive oil, and coconut oil are all natural antifungals.
Your diet should;
- Be low in carbohydrates
- Eliminate sugar in all its simple forms such as candy, desserts, alcohol, and flours
- Eliminate dairy, which has the sugar lactose that tends to promote yeast overgrowth
- Eliminate yeast-containing foods such as alcohol
In addition to a healthy diet, you should exercise regularly if you hope to eliminate Candida. Exercise helps to rebalance the brain’s neurotransmitters and triggers the production serotonin in the brain, which will boost your mood.
2. Get lots of good bacteria
Getting plenty of good bacteria will help rebalance your gut and get rid of Candida. Ingest a constant supply of probiotics, which are the good bacteria that live in the digestive tract. A good probiotic containing acidophilus will speed up recovery in your digestive tract and aid in the removal of Candida.
You can also easily get good bacteria by eating certain foods. Up your probiotic intake by eating cultured or fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, and natto. These foods naturally contain beneficial bacteria, which will help with the restore and balance of your gut flora.
It’s important to continue to avoid inflammatory foods that can harm the gastrointestinal tract. Many people with candida overgrowth also have a leaky gut and that can put them at increased risk of food sensitivities.
3. Avoid exposure to chemicals
There are many harmful chemicals we encounter in our daily lives. Household cleaners, perfume, cosmetics, perfumes, and paint cause allergic reactions and sensitivities, which will make you feel unwell and prevent the healing of Candida.
4. Target emotional and psychological issues
Addressing your mental, emotional, and psychological health is of top importance when healing yourself from Candida. During the Candida cleanse, you’ll experience Candida die-off, which is when your body expels toxins and infection-causing bacteria.
For most people, Candida die-off will most likely cause you to feel worse before you feel better, so it’s crucial to look after your emotional and psychological health during Candida treatment.
Practicing deep breathing, meditation, and journaling can all help decrease emotional hurdles and cravings during treatment.
The relationship between candida, inflammation, and gut health is extremely complex. Adopting a holistic approach instead of treating each symptom individually will give you the best chance at achieving optimal health.
Holistic Healing is a process of building people’s awareness and helping them to understand that optimal health includes spiritual, emotional, physical and mental health. Neglect in any one area may have a detrimental effect on the other aspects of optimal health and on your life as a whole.
Check out this case study of one of our clients, David Letizia, a Professional Boxer who suffered from Candida overgrowth and successfully completed our treatment plan.
At Body Genius, we understand that every client is different. We understand that everyone may experience different symptoms based on their lifestyle, genetics, diet, and a number of other factors. Because of this, we have a thorough diagnosis and treatment process, taking care to consider the unique circumstances of each patient.
Results may vary.