10 Natural Ways To Help Keep Candida Infections At Bay

Candidiasis is a fungal infection caused by a yeast called Candida

Some Candida species are harmless. The human body is populated with many types of benign Candida which play a significant role in the immune system and digestive health.

The most common type of Candida yeast is Candida Albicans which is a normal constituent of the human microbiome, of the skin, and of the gastrointestinal and genitourinary tracts. But with disruption in the balance of the gut microbiome and a weakening of your natural defenses, Candida Albicans overgrowth can cause fungal infections. In fact, Candida Albicans is the most common cause of fungal infections worldwide. When there is an overgrowth of the Candida yeast, it may cause a yeast infection of the mouth, intestines, vagina, skin, and even over the entire body.

Prolonged or repeated antibiotic use increases the risk of yeast infections in both men and women. People with diabetes or impaired immune systems, such as those with HIV, are more susceptible to yeast infections. But even birth control pills, steroids, an unhealthy diet, or too much stress in your life can increase the risk of yeast infections.

The Candida yeast infection has many symptoms which may cause complications like bladder infections, loss of energy, puffy eyes, constant fatigue, food cravings, hay fever allergies, hyperactivity, inflammation, itching, migraines, thrush in mouth infections as well as rashes, recurrent sore throats, thyroid problems, itching, burning inside and around the outside of the vagina, vaginal discharge that is a different color or consistency than normal, and unusual pain during intercourse. Candida causes these symptoms due to the vast amounts of byproducts released by Candida Albicans, which include uric acid (which in excess will cause joint pain and gout), acetaldehyde (a neurotoxin causing headaches and brain fog and may even kill brain cells), ethanol, hydrolytic enzymes, and much more. Moreover, the change in the gut microbiome will also lead to digestive issues, food intolerances, and oral thrush.

Treating candida by returning your body to a healthy balance is what is required to restore health and eliminate yeast infection.

To assist the body in regaining balance there are plenty of anti-fungal medications available on the market, however, when taken alone, without making the necessary lifestyle changes, the yeast infection will recur readily.

Below are my 10 lifestyle recommendations to prevent yeast infections from recurring:

1. The Candida yeast needs certain foods in order to thrive. A diet that eliminates yeast thriving foods is best for removing the infection. Candida thrives in the presence of sugar which helps it build its cell walls, reproduce and switch from yeast form to its more virulent fungal form. Reduce sugar-rich foods to a minimum, including natural fruit juices, and avoid refined grains of all sorts during the healing period.

2. Yeast rich foods also create the perfect environment for the multiplying of the Candida yeast infection in your body. Therefore, reducing yeast rich foods from your diet is also important. Reduce white bread, beer, hard cheeses, and alcoholic drinks from your diet during the healing period.

3. Fat-rich foods should also be avoided since Candida yeast infections decrease the body’s ability to digest fats. Therefore you should remove fat-rich dairy and meat products from your diet during the healing period.

4. Processed or packaged foods are rich in sugars, yeast, and other substances that help spread the Candida infection, therefore, during the healing period they should be avoided.

5. I also recommend eating more color intense organic vegetables to supply your body with the antioxidants and phytonutrients needed to strengthen your immune system and ward off free radical damage by the Candida yeasts byproducts. Include more artichoke, asparagus, broccoli, brussels sprouts, celery, kale, spinach, and tomatoes in your diet.

6. Include vegetables with antifungal and healing properties including onions, cabbage, seaweed, pumpkin seeds, garlic, and coconut oil. These foods either help kill the fungus, help to relieve the symptoms of Candida or help the body remove Candida byproducts. Green apples with peel are also helpful.

7. I also recommend supplementing your diet with probiotics either in the form of food supplements or as fermented foods. The bacteria in probiotics competes with the Candida yeast within your gut. There are limited amounts of nutrients to support gut bacteria growth, so the more health-promoting bacteria there are, the more they will compete for the nutrition available and thereby balance any Candida overgrowth.  Probiotics also maintain the natural pH in your stomach preventing the Candida yeast from switching to its pathogenic form.  If you choose to take probiotic supplements, I recommend taking at least 100 billion bacteria from multiple strains. Fermented foods are also rich in probiotics and include sauerkraut, kimchi, and miso.

8. Candida also thrives when immune function is malfunctioning, and this happens when we have a lot of stress in our lives. Take the time to take a break. Ensure you get a good night’s sleep to help your body heal and reduce stress. I also recommend going for a walk in nature while listening to something that will make you happy. Walking reduces stress levels and is crucial for keeping Candida infections at bay, especially since you are exposed to a healthy diversity of bacteria when you walk in nature.

9. The Candida yeast thrives in warm moist areas, the more you can cut it off from it’s preferred habitat, the less likely it will be to grow out of control. For that reason, you should avoid wearing tight-fitting synthetic clothes. Remove wet bathing suits quickly after bathing, choose cotton clothes, especially cotton underwear and stay away from scented toilet paper, scented feminine pads, moist socks, and using douches. These are full of chemicals that may disturb your natural vaginal pH. For women during the monthly menstruation, have plenty of supplies with you so you can change your pads frequently throughout your day to keep yeast infection away.

10. Other moist and warm areas where yeast infections can occur include the throat, the genital areas, the rectum, the armpits, and the mouth happening mostly in babies. This affects girls just as it does boys. The best thing to do is to keep the areas where the Candida yeast is most prevalent clean and dry including changing diapers often. Naturally, the location of the fungal outbreak will determine what type of antifungal treatment required.

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