Updated: Nov 22, 2018
Candida is typically found in small amounts in the mouth and intestines and on the skin, at normal levels Candida is not problematic. Unfortunately when we have surgery, have breast implant or autoimmune disease our immune system has been compromised and Candida can get out of hand. We are also placed at a higher risk after taking antibiotics during surgery. Candida is a common problem I see not just in BII patients but others with chronic illness.
So, how can you identify if you have Candida overgrowth?
TIREDNESS & FATIGUE One of the most commons symptoms of candida overgrowth. Candidiasis is often accompanied by nutritional deficiencies, such as vitamin B6, essential fatty acids and magnesium contributing to a weakened state.
ORAL THRUSH -Candidiasis that develops in the mouth or throat is called “thrush.” People with oral thrush typically develop white, bumpy patches on their tongue, inner cheeks, gums, tonsils or throat.
SINUS INFECTION Although short-term sinus infections are mostly caused by bacteria, many longer-term, chronic sinus infections are believed to be fungal.
RECURRING VAGINAL OR URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS An overgrowth of it can lead to candidiasis of the vagina, also known as a yeast infection. Symptoms of vaginal candidiasis include redness, swelling, itching, painful intercourse and a thick white discharge. Symptoms of a UTI include a burning feeling when you urinate, a frequent urge to urinate, cloudy, dark or strange-smelling urine and pain or pressure in your lower abdomen.
DIGESTIVE ISSUES We all have ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria in our gut. But when the bacteria in your gut becomes imbalanced, you can experience digestive issues, including constipation, diarrhoea, nausea, gas, cramps and bloating.
JOINT PAIN Fungal arthritis can be caused by the spread of fungus through the bloodstream or by directly inserting fungus into a joint. Fungal arthritis in people with normal immune systems is rare. Symptoms of fungal arthritis include pain, heat, swelling, warmth, redness, and loss of range of motion of the affected joint.
How do you get rid of this opportunistic fungus?
Well, first I like to identify what strain of candida my patients have (there are many!) and ensure there aren’t any other opportunistic bacteria or parasites lurking around. I find its rare for a patient to experience candida by itself. I usually see Candida overgrowth alongside parasites and/or bacteria overgrowth.
There are a few tools I like to use; testing, diet, antimicrobial herbs and gut healing.
I often recommend a comprehensive stool analysis test to identify what exactly is going on and ensure we are targeting the fungus with the effective herbs.
Avoid all sugar, refined carbohydrates, limit fruit to low fructose fruit only, eliminate dairy, wheat and gluten.
Candida can be difficult to eradicate with diet alone, with a strict diet it could take up to 12-18 months which is why I always use herbal medicine to stimulate die-off.
Garlic, berberine, oregano and thyme are just a few of my go to herbs.
One can often feel pretty lousy and experience an exacerbation of symptoms during the die-off of the fungus. One way I like to avoid feeling terrible is by mopping up all the toxins that are being outgassed as the die-off occurs. I often use a form of purified Zeolite clay.
Heal your gut:
An important part of any candida protocol is healing your gut. That's where 70% of your immune system lies. Supporting your immune system is what will stop candida from taking for a second time.
To keep you on track and ensure you are intact using the right herbs and supplements for your specific strain of candida, I recommend seeing a wholistic practitioner. If you would like to know how I can best support your own healing journey, click here to book in for a chat.