In human health, the genus Candida tells two stories—one of healing and one of disease. Candida is part of normal microbiota but can become problematic when it overgrows. This article covers all you need to know about candida—what it is, why it happens, and what you can do about it.

What is Candida?

Candida is one of only a few groups of fungi—classification shifts to yeasts here—that humans live with (namely, on the gut, inside the mouth, and on the skin). It typically shares the environment with a complex colony of other microbes for which it is meant to be a mere speck in the wider biome. The most common species causing human Candida infections is C albicans. However, C glabrata and C tropicalis are significant for immune-compromised patients.

image of microscopic candida overgrowth

Science Behind Candida

Candida yeasts do well in damp, balmy climates; the human body is their ideal landscape. The immune system, friendly bacteria, and other healthful microbial landscaping usually keep the candida in its proper perspective. Such minor alterations can trigger disruptions that lead to overgrowth of the Candida cells. Switching between the encapsulated yeast form and its aggressive, tissue-invading fungal form allows candida to function as a pathogenic invader.

Causes of Candida Overgrowth

Several factors can prompt candida overgrowth:

Antibiotics: Although these kill invading bacteria, they can unintentionally decrease beneficial bacteria in the gut, causing candida to proliferate.

Diet: Consuming excessive amounts of sugar, refined carbohydrates, and processed foods can contribute to candida’s growth.

Immune system problems: If you lack an effective immune system – for example, HIV or chronic stress.

Hormones: both pregnancy and oral contraceptives modify hormones, which might be a factor in the growth of candida.

Symptoms of Candida Overgrowth

Candida symptoms vary depending on the affected area:

Oral Thrush: White patches inside the mouth, redness, and soreness.

Gastrointestinal Issues: Bloating, constipation, or diarrhea.

Skin and Nail Infections: Persistent fungal infections under nails or skin folds.

Systemic Symptoms: In severe cases, symptoms like fatigue, headache, and mood swings.

Effects of Chronic Candida Overgrowth

Chronic Candida overgrowth is thought by some to cause Candida Overgrowth Syndrome, a controversial condition seen as the source of a wide variety of systemic symptoms. Though not accepted by all, the theory is that it continues to persist and stimulate the immune system, eventually leading to autoimmunity.

Diagnosis of Candida Infections

Diagnosis involves a physical examination and sometimes laboratory testing, such as stool analysis, blood tests, and cultures. However, diagnosing systemic involvement is difficult and subject to medical controversy.

Natural Treatments for Candida

Managing candida often involves natural and lifestyle approaches:

Dietary adjustments: Lowering sugar and processed foods and increasing vegetables, lean protein, and healthy fats can deprive it of sustenance.

Prebiotics and Probiotics: Supplements containing beneficial bacteria can help restore the gut’s microbial balance.

Herbal Antifungals: Garlic, oregano oil, and caprylic acid are powerful natural agents that suppress candida levels.

image of the text candida

Preventative Measures and Lifestyle Changes

Prevention focuses on maintaining a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle:

Dietary Balance: A diverse diet supports a balanced microbiome.

Lifestyle: Regular exercise and sufficient sleep strengthen the immune system.

Decreased stress can lead to better overall health and increased immunity.

Case Studies and Research

In recent years, this solution has been complemented by dietary solutions and pre-and probiotics—both have been the subject of research and, like the former, need more robust support in published studies. Linked case studies and clinical observations suggest natural therapies may effectively fight candida, but more stringently designed scientific research is crucial to support these principles.

Conclusion

Understanding candida’s role in health and disease and when natural remedies can be useful to support the body’s natural immune response can help manage and guide a natural approach to health when supported by conventional medical advice to help guide individual protocols. But first, we must deal with the truth and shed the fear.

With CELLUVIVE, you can learn about your gut health and how to improve it. We have the tools and knowledge to address any gut issues you may have and get you back on a healthy track. We offer a free health assessment and consultation to learn more about you and address the root cause of any issues. Click the link above to begin your journey to an improved quality of life.

FAQs

Q: Can diet alone cure candida overgrowth?

A: Diet is indeed immensely important but usually forms part of a larger treatment program.

Q: Are there any risks to natural candida treatments?

A: When dosed appropriately, natural treatments are low in toxicity and tend to interact with other treatments less than most pharmaceuticals, so they are considered quite safe when used according to professional recommendations.