Candida yeast is kind of fungus that is present in your body and also on your skin. When your gut flora is balanced, candida does not pose a threat to your wellbeing. But certain factors can lead to candida overgrowth—that is, excess of candida in your digestive tract, which can give rise to a number of health problems.
More and more medical professionals around the world are acknowledging that yeast overgrowth is a real problem that lies at the root of many acute and chronic conditions. Here are five frequently asked questions that will help you determine if you’re at risk of yeast overgrowth and what you can do about it.
What is Candida Albicans?
Candida albicans is the species of yeast present in your body. It aids digestion and supports immunity, but when it overgrows, it can quickly can turn into a harmful pathogen, colonize the gut and weaken your immune system.
How Does Yeast Overgrowth Occur?
Excess candida can be caused by a number of factors. Some of the most common causes are taking a diet high in sugar and processed foods, taking antibiotics (even a single course can increase your candida levels), excessive alcohol intake, drug use, chronic stress, radiation, using steroids and exposure to radiation.
Poor, sugar-laden diet is the main culprit behind candida infections in seemingly healthy people, as candida feeds on sugar. Once an imbalance in created by any of the above factors, the yeast keeps multiplying and puts you at risk of disease.
What are the Symptoms of Candida Overgrowth?
Common symptoms include persistent fatigue, bloating, intestinal gas, constipation, acid reflux, heartburn, sinus infections, carb cravings, frequent allergies and infections, low mood, joint pains, reduced libido, thrush, rectal itching, menstrual pain, poor and loss of mental clarity (i.e., brain fog).
Take a look at these early signs to know if you could be suffering from yeast overgrowth.
How is Candida Overgrowth Diagnosed?
It is not easy to diagnose candida. Meet with a candida specialist physician, who will take your lifestyle and medical history through a candida questionnaire and order lab tests if needed.
Remember that if your doctor is not aware of (or does not believe in) the concept of candida overgrowth or the health effects of gastrointestinal imbalances, they may have difficulty diagnosing the problem and may attribute your symptoms to something else.
How is the Condition Treated?
Making conscious lifestyle changes can help you get rid of excess candida albicans in your body and repair your gut ecosystem. Start on a candida diet as soon as you learn of the problem. This essentially means eliminating all processed, sugary and fatty foods from your diet, eating fiber-rich meals, banishing alcohol and recreational drugs, and taking probiotics. The goal is to starve the yeast by eliminating sugar and starch from your diet.
In addition, you can start on a nature-based supplement with ingredients that will restore the friendly bacteria in your gut. Stress management is another important aspect of treating candida overgrowth.