Candida Diet Not Working For You? Try the Naturopathy Way
All people have yeast (candida) or fungus in their bodies. Over thirty different strains of fungus can be found in most people. The yeast type fungus is mostly located in the mouth to aid sugar and starch digestion. Those people with overgrowths of a fungus type called Candida Albicans which grows throughout the body can suffer from fatigue, listlessness, itching, skin irritation, infections, and possible weight gain.
Candida can live in your gut and intestinal tract when your pH (balance of good and bad bacteria is disrupted). The gut flora is always affected when one eats unhealthy, processed foods, takes prescription drugs, or too many antibiotics. Candida thrives in warm, moist areas including armpits, groin and vagina (the folds of the vulva). A large percentage of women suffer from these yeast infections experiencing intense itching, painful urination and thick white discharge.
It is always important to seek a healthcare practitioner before changing your diet or making other decisions to clear an infection. Although the internet can offer some good advice, everyone is different and it is best to be cautious as there is also a lot of controversy with the diets you may see.
I would like to address one of these controversial issues now before suggesting what to do and what to avoid.
Candida creates a craving for sugars and starches, and patients are typically told not to eat fruits because of the sugars. I disagree with this and here is why. Fructose and glucose are two of the principal energies or fuels for a cell. These sugars are simple sugars (easy to digest) and are essential to the body as its main source of fuel. Fruits are vital in helping the body eliminate Candida because they are high in antioxidant and astringent properties. These properties clean the lymphatic congestion out of the tissues, which is essential since congestion is the home for the infection. Complex sugars (breads, pasta, cereals, cookies, etc. are a different story. These are the bad guys. They are super fuel for Candida (yeast love these sugars), but are unusable as fuel by the body until they are broken down into simple sugars.
Treating Candida with an over the counter prescription drug does nothing to create a healthier flora. They may alleviate symptoms of discomfort for a while, but these drugs do not address the CAUSE. The cause is always bad bacteria coming from an unhealthy diet of too much sugar, grains and processed foods.
The Candida cleansing diet should be void of all refined sugars, alcohol, bread, nuts, dairy, pasta, fruit juices and soda. Candida thrives on these types of foods.
Strict dietary modifications can be very successful in ridding the body of infection in as little as two weeks. The cleaner and more alkaline you eat, the healthier your gut flora will be.
A diet consisting mainly of raw fruits and vegetables is the way to go. Grains that are not refined, such as quinoa and wild rice are easily digested so they are fine. Potatoes and white or brown rice, on the other hand are not recommended. They are more complex sugars. If you would like to eat meat, please choose organic, grass fed and lean. Healthy oils (free range and organic) are important. Try adding a few garlic cloves a day to your food and one tablespoon of coconut oil. Garlic has natural anti-fungal properties. Spirulina is a good supplement that can give a good boost to the immune system and is also known to encourage the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. Adding some cultured and fermented foods, such as kimchi, would be a big help in aiding digestion. I would also recommend taking a good quality pro biotic at this time.
A solid holistic approach including exercise, avoiding chemical exposures, and dietary changes can be very effective in clearing Candida. I strongly recommend making these changes with the support of a holistic healthcare practitioner. It is always safer to get the proper guidance that is needed when the body is out of balance.
By Frances Michaelson
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