Last week I answered a question for a person who kept going to the doctor and being told that nothing was wrong with her. She did some reading and learned that her symptoms were tied to a fungus and started to self-treat. This is part 2 in the series I promised you regarding her story of Candida albicans. My first article is now posted on my website (suzycohen.com) and I’ve also posted a link to teach you how to do a saliva test at home to see if you have Candida. Up to 85 percent of people do. There are also stool tests available from Genova and Metametrix Labs.
Candida albicans is one of many yeast organisms that is natural to the human gut flora. For many people, especially those who take medications routinely, or eat processed foods and sugar, the gut flora loses its camp of healthy micro-organisms, and the Candida (or other pathogens) take over. Most often people get thrush, jock itch, vaginal yeast infections and chronic fatigue to go with a lot of GI distress (you name it). Once the yeast leaves your digestive tract, you get sicker and may develop cystitis, headaches, itchy skin, PMS, and anxiety or depression. The other ‘diseases’ that Candida (it’s toxic break down products) cause are numerous, and were outlined in last week’s column.
To regain health, you must first destroy the offender. The absolute best way to kill Candida is to stop ingesting fast food, or anything processed or containing sugar. Eat more raw food (think salads, juicing, fresh veggies) and lean proteins. If you don’t eat meat, supplement with hemp or rice protein shakes. Ease up on carbs, and no refined white bread, white rice, or white sugar. No more white!
Doctors can prescribe nystatin, an anti-fungal drug that stays in the gut and kills Candida. Diflucan (fluconazole) is a medication that works systemically (in your blood). There are OTC formulas available for all of you. With any anti-Candida protocol, there could be a “die-off” reaction (you get worse before getting better) so give these products a chance.
Phytofuge- This contains a fabulous blend of botanical herbs that work synergistically to improve the health of your digestive tract. The product contains Pau D’Arco, wormwood, black walnut, and undecylenic acid, all of which have anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal effects. Buy it online, or ask your health food store or physician to acquire it for you.
CandidaClear by NSI- Another blend of incredible anti-Candida herbs and vitamins including grapefruit seed, garlic, caprylic acid and biotin. I found this one at vitacost.com.
Probiotics- These replenish gut flora with healthy strains of bacteria. The following have a nice blend of strains and are sold nationwide: Pro-Bio, Kyo-Dophilus, Culturelle, Pearls IC, Probiotic All-Flora, Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics 12.
Pancreatic enzymes- An overlooked, but absolutely crucial step in improving gut function by helping you digest food. You may also need betaine hydrochloride, a natural digestive acid.