Candida, Fungal & Yeast Infections
Candida, Fungal and Yeast Infections
Candida, fungal and yeast infections are running rampant. Most people are familiar with the not so “fun guy”, candida. (pun intended) Just like other not so fun guys you find in public, these infections can plague women frequently. (joke #2) Okay, jokes over, but recurrent candida infections are very common but not only women suffer from fungal overgrowth or candida problems. Men also have common fungal infections that can be just as bad if not worse.
The body’s natural levels of candida, fungal and yeast levels are kept in control by the balance that exists between all the varying microbes, aka bugs, that inhabit the digestive tract. Fungal overgrowth then is a very common variety of what is term dysbiosis. Dysbiosis can be viewed as an imbalance of either pro-health flora or an invasion of external anti-health flora. In the case of candida, everyone should have some candida in their system, it is just the intricate balance that creates problems. This balance that must be maintained can be easily disrupted from a variety of things, but it grows rapidly and aggressively whenever it has the chance.
One of the major causes of dysbiosis that leads to fungal overgrowth is the use of antibiotics. A single round or dose of antibiotics is adequate to create problems. Antibiotics kill a large portion of bacteria in the digestive tract leading to an imbalance of these microbes. Often times once the other healthy bacteria have been eliminated, candida and other fungal organisms take this opportunity to occupy more territory and take more control of the internal environment. Many antibiotic treatments last 10 days or more which gives plenty of time for fungus to proliferate. (Think how fast a loaf of bread molds after it starts.)
Another common cause of fungal infection is living in a wet or damp climate. It can happen quickly and being exposed to low levels of fungi throughout a house, your work environment or even a hotel you stay at overnight gives fungi the adequate opportunity to grow, especially if your immune defenses are down.
What’s the big deal?
I always say that if someone shows up for a fungal infection during the course of treatment that it is both good and bad news. The bad news is that fungi release toxins throughout the whole body and into the blood stream and can lead to numerous symptoms including brain fog, anxiety, depression, headaches, weight gain and hormonal imbalances. The good news is that by eradicating the fungal infection you stand to see some of the largest and fastest improvements of any patient.
Candida and other fungi are commonly known to produce biofilms. Most biofilms when active present with symptoms similar to other stealth infections such as fatigue, digestive complaints and generalized aches and pains, but when inactive, biofilms are hard to detect. While I don’t find most people have biofilms, in difficult cases patients should be checked for biofilms that could be harboring other infections as well as heavy metals.
One of the dangerous byproducts from fungi is a substance called oxalic acid. A low-oxalate diet has been used in many people with stubborn candida infections but that isn’t really an answer for eradicating the fungus. As long as it is understood that the fungus needs to be eliminated, on a short-term basis, calcium citrate can be used to inhibit the small intestine from absorbing oxalate, N-acetyl-glucosamine can be used to stimulate hyaluronic acid and decrease pain, chondroitin sulfate can be used to prevent formation of calcium oxalate crystals and B6 can be used to degrade oxalic acid into a more benign substance.
One danger of not eradicating oxalates is that you have a high chance of developing kidney stones. L. Acidophilus and Bifidobacterium lactis can both help to break down oxalates and omega-3s reduces oxalates also. In most cases though if you see significant benefit from a low oxalate diet then there may still be a fungal infection even if a comprehensive stool analysis is negative.
Other chemicals released from fungal infections include benzenes and aldehydes. Much of adverse effect of fungi come from the aldehydes either directly or indirectly. You can read more about aldehydes here. The indirect effect of aldehydes include overburdening the liver and kidneys so that they are unable to detoxify other chemicals that are normally easily processed. This leads to a buildup of other chemicals and together health spirals downward. As long as there is still an infection in the system it is unlikely that you will reach your maximal health. Stealth infections are a leading cause for chronic disease and a commonly overlooked and undertreated condition.
Many patients suffer from chronic candida, fungal and yeast infections that are unresponsive or minimally responsive to traditional medications. What I have found clinically is that even difficult cases of candida or fungal overgrowth, healing time can be dramatically reduced by addressing the person as a whole rather than multiple unrelated parts. Even gastroenterologists often overlook fungi as a leading cause of symptomatology and disease.
My Most Common Supplements
I included a few of my most common supplements below to raise awareness as to what I feel works effectively to treat fungal infections. This is important as I find that they differ from what many other practitioners are using. This isn’t based upon any research or lab test, but rather what patients respond well to.
Most Effective (for my patients)
Morinda Supreme, Melia Supreme, Golden Thread Supreme, BFB-1, BFB-2, Biotin, Molybdenum
Somewhat Effective (for my patients)
Caprylic acid, undecylenic acids, berberine, oregano oil, goldenseal, garlic, colloidal silver, black walnut
Note: Biotin is greatly useful as an adjunct to antimicrobials by helping the fungi detach from the surfaces they cling to. Molybdenum does not appear to directly affect the fungi, but rather aids in the detoxification of the byproducts and can greatly help with symptoms while antimicrobials are given time to work and they can also help with die-off reactions.
The anti-fungal diet is a low sugar diet that can be combined with natural herbs to maximize results in the shortest time possible. Those who are strict on the anti-fungal diet see the best results. Most patients only require 1 week of stringent caution on this diet while others require 2 or more weeks. By using a specialized form of Applied Kinesiology it seems we are able to maximize treatment protocols and find supplements that will support the patient. For a sample anti-fungal diet, click here.
Hopefully I have conveyed how common candida and fungal infections are and that they are slightly more complicated than just taking oregano oil for a few days. Fungal infections should be considered in any chronic conditions, in all neurological and brain related symptoms and in most female hormonal related symptoms. By eliminating the fungi you allow your other organ systems to get back to working properly and release the burden these fun guys place on your entire system!