(NaturalNews) Candida albicans is a form of yeast that lives in the colon. While Candida is not normal, it is common. Some studies say that Candida is present in 90% of the population. Some believe this number to be 100%. And for most people with a small amount of Candida, infection is not a problem. However, after treatment with antibiotics or as a by-product of digestion, Candida can multiply, disrupt normal digestive flora and cause severe mental and physical health problems. Enzymes and diet have been shown to reduce and eliminate Candida in the gut, leading to better digestion, reduced inflammation, and overall health. Raw foods have been shown to be particularly useful in reducing Candida infection.
Candida is a member of the fungi family of yeast. It grows on the mucus membranes of the gastrointestinal and genitourinary tracts. It is responsible for thrush in infants, and can cause many disruptions of the GI tract, including heartburn, colitis, bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, and gastritis. It can also trigger depression, lethargy, memory loss, hyperactivity and headaches. Allergy symptoms can also be increased by Candida, such as hives, asthma, food allergies, and hay fever. In the reproductive system, Candida can trigger yeast vaginitis, menstrual irregularities, endometriosis, cystitis, urethritis as well as kidney and bladder infections. General, unexplained fatigue can also be a symptom, as well as increased body hair, cold hands and feet, food cravings, joint pains, and loss of libido.
There are specific triggers that cause the overgrowth of Candida. One of the primary causes is the use of antibiotics. Antibiotics kill the healthy flora of the gut. After treatment with antibiotics, it`s important to rebuild this healthy flora, or Candida will run rampant. Oral contraceptives can also cause a Candida overgrowth, as can excessive use of sugar or alcohol.
The best way to treat Candida infection is to change the diet. Raw foods help the growth of the "good" bacteria. Probiotics and yogurt should be added to the diet. Consumption of sugar should be halted completely, while healing is taking places, as sugar is a food that will stimulate growth of the Candida. Even fruit juices are too sweet. Fermented foods or those containing yeast should also be avoided, such as beer or cheese. Even vinegar can cause a spike in yeast growth and mushrooms should not be consumed because it is a member of the fungus family as well.
Adding fiber to the diet is encouraged. Fiber purges the lining of the colon and helps reduce inflammation and yeast. A good source of fiber can be found in oatmeal mixed with flax seeds or chia seeds. Enzyme therapy is frequently used to help balance the gut. Nutritional supplemental enzymes should be taken with every meal, as well as in between meals, so that the buildup of yeast will be reduced, as well as aiding digestion of the current meals. Coconut oil has been shown to solve yeast problems as well. This is because coconut oil contains ingredients that have antimicrobial and antifungal properties.
With proper diet and enzyme therapy, Candida infections can be controlled. A healthy, balanced gut will return, enabling the proper digestion and assimilation of important nutrients to return.
Melanie Grimes is a writer, award-winning screenwriter, medical journal editor, and adjunct faculty member at Bastyr University. She also teaches homeopathy at the Seattle School of Homeopathy and the American Homeopathic Medical College. A trained homeopath, she is the editor of the homeopathic journal, Simillimum, and has edited alternative and integrative medical journals for 15 years. She has taught creative writing, founded the first Birkenstock store in the USA and authored medical textbooks. Her ebook on Natural Remedies for the Flu is available at: http://melanie-grimes.blogspot.com/2009/04/b... Follow her blog at http://melanie-grimes.blogspot.com/ www.melaniegrimes.com