Candida albicans is naturally occurring yeast that can be found in the intestinal tract. Candida is normally kept in check by the beneficial probiotic bacteria within the body. When normal levels of probiotic bacteria are diminished by poor diet, or by an over reliance on antibiotics and other drugs, candida albicans is left to grow unchecked leading to chronic fatigue, skin infections, sinus congestion, depression, loss of concentration and immune system stress. In extreme cases, candida yeast can penetrate the intestinal wall, leaking into the body and triggering the immune system into an overdrive that produces symptoms commonly associated with more serious autoimmune disorders. Many people deal with the chronic symptoms of an overabundance of candida albicans on a daily basis, never knowing what is causing their recurring health problems. Fortunately, by making a few simple changes to their diet, candida sufferers can return their bodies to a natural balance and gain relief from these chronic maladies.
Causes and Symptoms of Candida Yeast Syndrome
Candida syndrome can have many causes. The most common is an improper diet. Too much refined sugar, meats and overly processed grains can lead to a reduction in the healthy probiotic bacteria that keeps candida albicans in check. Certain drugs, such as oral contraceptives, steroids, anti-ulcer medications and antibiotics can also lead to an overabundance of the candida albicans yeast bacteria. The most common symptoms of Candida syndrome are:
- chronic fatigue
- stomach pain
- numbness and tingling in the extremities
- joint pain
- muscle weakness
- bloating, gas, and acid reflux
- constipation, diarrhea and gastritis
- anxiety and depression
Dietary Changes to Control Candida Albicans
Specific dietary choices can help to reduce the levels of candida albicans within the intestinal tract, and to help promote the growth of beneficial bacteria within the digestive system. First, certain foods need to be eliminated from the diet, or at the very least greatly restricted. Chief among these are foods with a high sugar content. This includes fresh and frozen fruits, and prepared foods that contain sucrose, fructose, glucose and sorbitol. Foods with a high yeast content, primarily baked goods and alcohol, should also be restricted. Foods containing gluten, such as wheat, barley, pasta, crackers and most sauces and gravies should also be removed from the diet.
A diet rich in organic vegetables, avocado, seeds, nuts and sprouts should be introduced in place of the foods that have been eliminated or restricted. All green vegetables including spinach and kale, garlic, summer squash and zucchini are good supplements to a Candida defeating diet.
The good news is that as the Candida symptoms disappear, patients can begin to reintegrate some of the eliminated foods back into their diet. An emphasis should be placed on balance, however, and patients should restructure their diets accordingly, and should consult a nutritionist to help them design a well-balanced nutritional plan.
Supplements for Candida Albicans
Some dietary supplements can be taken to help reinforce the Candida diet cleanse. Acidophillus, often found in probiotics, helps to control the growth of Candida by making the intestinal tract more acidic and discouraging the growth of candida bacteria. Garlic powerfully helps to control candida, and should be taken raw for maximum benefit. It can be taken in pill form as part of a regular nutritional regimen if necessary. Fiber supplements can also help to control the growth of candida, and patients may consider taking a tablespoon of soluble fiber in an 8 ounce glass of water twice daily until symptoms diminish.
Patients who are on a candida cleanse diet should also remember to drink plenty of purified water. As the body begins to shed the unwanted candida bacteria, it is vital that it be flushed out of the body before it can cause any further irritations. Between one half to one ounce of water per 50 pounds of body weight per day is necessary to flush the unwanted toxins out of the body.
It is sometimes hard to imagine something as small as a yeast being the cause of so many health disorders. Perhaps that is why so many symptoms caused by Candida albicans get attributed to more serious conditions. But with a well regulated Candida cleansing diet, and with the right choice of supplements, it is possible to return the body to its natural balance and enjoy total health once more.