What you probably never knew about candida
Do you suffer from:
- Itching, soreness and/or burning discomfort genitalia?
- A rash in your loins?
- Heavy white curd-like vaginal discharge?
- Sores in your mouth?
- White thrush on your tongue?
- Do you crave sugar? Beer? Pickles? Cheese? Sugary drinks?
What is Candida?
Candida (technically called Candida albicans) is a micro-organism in yeast, fungi and mould. Normally it lives in small amounts in the digestive system and other body surfaces. Candida Albicans is an opportunistic fungus that is the cause of many undesirable symptoms ranging from fatigue and weight gain to joint pain and gas.
The term “Candida” refers to the general overgrowth of various fungi and yeasts in the body, which flourish under certain circumstances to the point of causing illness. Candida albicans appears to be the most prominent of these microbes.
A healthy person has natural protection against Candida overgrowth. The two main parts of that protection are bacterial flora and white blood cells called neutrophils. Candida has become a prevalent and often serious disease in our modern world due to current practices that suppress these immune functions and a fermenting diet.
Bacterial flora is the bacteria that naturally populate all the non-sterile areas of your body, starting at birth. These include the mouth, nose, ears, throat, oesophagus, large airways, intestines, the skin, and the genital areas. It means they are meant to be there and have a purpose. For example, certain intestinal bacteria help form Vit K2, which enhances blood clot formation.
There is more than one way that your body fights disease. For example, bacterial flora is essential to prevent disease-causing bacteria, fungi, and viruses — from infecting you. They live mostly in mucus membranes in the body.
Then there are white blood cells called neutrophils that offer primary protection against invading germs in your bloodstream. They function like little soldiers that attack and kill any invading microbe (germ). For example, they will kill a fungal spore or virus that you inhale through your nose. Neutrophils prevent thrush (an oral yeast infection) in healthy people.
In a person with a suppressed immune system (like HIV), neutrophils are not active or plentiful, and bacterial overgrowth (Candida) occurs. A person’s diet can also foster bacterial overgrowth, for example, lots of sugar (look out for malt, barley malt, malted barley or maltodextrin), white bread and aged products.
Candida thrives on sugar.
How does Candida as disease progress in the body?
1. Exposure to antibiotics, chlorine, alcohol or any other thing that will kill your normal intestinal flora will cause bacterial overgrowth – like Candida.
2. Important: Candida invades the organs. The liver is usually the most affected organ because blood from the intestines where Candida flourish flows directly to the liver.
3. More importantly: Candida causes changes in the liver with the purpose to feed the candida. One ‘s appetite is a primary function of the liver. Suddenly you start craving foods like more fermented foods, beer, cheeses and sugars. Some people even crave vinegar-like salad dressings and pickles. Often younger kids have cravings for milk, cheese, yoghurt, macaroni and cheese, or peanut butter.
4. If left untreated, Candida continues growing in the body and entrenches itself deep in all organs’ tissue. Even if a person changes their diet, candida will stay entrenched in the body until it is treated medically.
5. Candida influence the systems in the body that it invades causing many unpleasant symptoms. The main sites are the digestive, immune and nervous systems. Candida, like other fungi, grows slowly and symptoms appear gradually. It is the cause of many diseases – from obesity to heavy drinking – and is often missed by doctors. To have even mild Candida overgrowth is not typical, although it is prevalent in the modern world.
Symptoms of candida overgrowth can be:
Vaginal discharge, burning, itching, headaches, depression, ADHD, sleep problems, poor memory, fatigue, irritability, dizziness, cramps, night sweats, PMS, allergies, beer belly, rectal itching, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, constipation, diarrhoea, skin and nail fungal infections.
The treatment of candida rests on three pillars –
1. Candida can be treated by following a candida-reducing eating plan. This is a low GI diet that includes cutting out sugar and refined foods – like white bread.
2. It is also important to take probiotics, to replace the good bacterial flora in your body. Along with a low-sugar diet and probiotics, antifungals are one of the three crucial elements of any successful Candida treatment plan.
3. Popular antifungal treatments include caprylic acid, grapefruit seed extract, garlic and oil of oregano. You can add antifungals into your diet too. For example, coconut oil is a potent source of caprylic acid, and it also makes an excellent oil for cooking.
4. See your medical doctor for a prescription for anti-fungal drugs.