It’s estimated that 3 out of 4 women suffer at least one Candida (or yeast) infection in their lifetime, and many suffer recurring infections. Candidiasis, or yeast infection, is an overgrowth of Candida albicans, a common fungal organism that lives in your mouth and intestines and is a natural part of the human digestive system. When there’s an imbalance of the good and bad bacteria in your digestive tract, Candida quickly multiples and can breach intestinal walls, allowing it to enter the bloodstream and spread throughout the body. As the Candida colonies proliferate, they produce toxic by-products that can damage tissues and compromise your immune system, leading to illness.
One cause of Candida overgrowth is a poor diet consisting of too many simple carbohydrates, too much sugar, and eating too many processed foods that contain chemicals and not eating enough raw, natural, whole foods. Other causes are life stress, oral contraceptives, steroids, and alcohol or drugs. One of the biggest threats to having a healthy, balanced digestive micro-flora is taking antibiotics. The reason is that while the antibiotic may be killing the bad bacteria from an infection in one part of your body, it also may be killing the good bacteria throughout the rest of your body. That’s why it’s important to only take antibiotics when absolutely necessary as prescribed by your physician.
Candidiasis is often misdiagnosed and left untreated because the symptoms mirror those of many other health problems, such as:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): stomach pain, indigestion, gas, bloating and diarrhea.
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: constant lethargy and fatigue.
- Athlete’s Foot: fungus on the feet and toenails.
- Crohn’s Disease: abdominal pain, indigestion, gas, bloating and diarrhea.
- Diaper Rash: itchy skin rash in infants.
- Arthritis: joint pain and stiffness.
- Gastroenteritis: abdominal pain, indigestion, gas, bloating and diarrhea.
Candida infection can include any combination of the above symptoms, or may include rashes in the genital area, vaginal discharge, headaches, weight gain, moodiness and depression, etc.
The key to getting the correct diagnosis is to describe your symptoms in detail to your doctor. If Candidiasis is suspected, your doctor will likely order one of the following lab tests so the proper Candida treatment can be prescribed:
Blood Test for Anti-Candida Antibodies: To measure your immune response to Candida, the levels of three antibodies are tested—IgG, IgA and IgM. High levels indicate a Candida infection.
Stool Analysis: A stool sample is analyzed to determine levels of yeast, pathogenic bacteria and friendly bacteria.
Urine Tartaric Acid Test: A urine sample is tested for tartaric acid—a waste product of yeast overgrowth. High levels indicate Candida overgrowth.
Candidiasis can be quite uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating, but fortunately, there are several things you can do to restore a healthy balance in your body’s natural flora. One way is to change your diet to include healthy, low-glycemic foods such as green vegetables, low-glycemic fruits, seeds, nuts, and high-quality organic proteins. Eliminate simple carbohydrates and sugars because Candida thrives on them. Sugar is actually the worst thing you can eat because it acts as a fertilizer for Candida growth.
Dietary changes can bring Candida relief, but sometimes a stronger Candida treatment is needed, such as taking probiotic supplements and natural antifungal supplements. Probiotic supplements fortify and replenish the body with healthy, “live” bacteria, and antifungals work to eradicate Candida cells.
If you’re looking for a powerful, natural probiotic supplement, consider Healthy Choice Naturals Advanced Candida Control. Its powerful combination of herbs, plants, and digestive enzymes can help restore and maintain healthy internal bacterial balance and treat even the most persistent yeast infections.