How to get rid of candida?
I had Candida for a very long time (and might still – I haven’t tested in almost a year, although I feel pretty good right now). Because I dealt with it for a very long time, I read almost everything that’s been written on treating Candida.
And what I pretty much found out is that there’s no perfect approach.
However, in the long run, what actually keeps Candida or other yeast overgrowth from recurring is a healthy gut biome. Yeast only overgrows in our gut when our gut biome is less than ideal, because other bacteria and micro-organisms will otherwise keep yeast from overgrowing.
And that’s a bit of the reason why there’s no perfect approach, because it varies a little bit from individual to individual in terms of what they need in order to repair their gut.
In general, here’s where I think most people should start…
1. Go low carb for a little while (4-6 weeks). The more severe an overgrowth is, the more I think this is necessary, probably for 4-6 weeks. Cutting out all fruit, all starches, etc. Even cutting out veggies that feed yeast, like carrots, brussels sprouts, artichokes, etc.
2. Do Everything to Rebuild Good Gut Bacteria. Part of this is supplementing with probiotics. I (and many people smarter than me) LOVE Prescript-Assist. I’ve yet to find a probiotic that compares. Also, eat fermented foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, etc., but not Kombucha, which feeds yeast). Get tons of sleep.
Also, supplement with potato starch and psyllium. Potato starch has a lot of resistant starch, and psyllium has a lot fiber. Both are great for gut health overall. I do about 2 Tbsp of potato starch per day and about 1 Tbsp of psyllium.
3. Anti-Fungals. There are tons to choose from, and I know you said your naturopath has you on some. Dr. Kalish (who you may know) has had tons of success with Raintree Forumula’s Amazon A-F, along with Oregano Oil. That’s what both I and Louise used.
4. Support Adrenals. I highly recommend getting a Adrenal Stress Profile from BioHealth to make sure your Cortisol and DHEA are where they need to be. If not, then it’s useful to get those fixed first, because otherwise your body is an excellent host for Candida overgrowth. If you do have adrenal issues, then I’d first do other testing (#5 below), and probably also supplement as necessary. (This depends greatly on the test results, but it could include Adaptogens or even very small amounts of DHEA and Pregnenolone).
5. Other Testing. If you haven’t done a Comprehensive Stool Analysis (preferably the Biohealth 401H) and a Urine Organic Acids test, then those are also great. They tell you a ton about what’s going on in your gut and with various other processes in your body. The reason these are so important in connection with Candida/yeast overgrowth is because if your body is fighting off other pathogens, or if your body is dealing with micronutrient deficiencies or processes that just aren’t working, then it won’t be able to also deal with the yeast.
6. Don’t Stay Low Carb Forever. There’s a lot of varying opinion on this. I think it’s possible to stay low-carb long-term, but it’s hard. You kind of need to do it just right, and your body also needs to be in very good condition, or else it becomes a stressor on your body, can mess up your thyroid, and all sorts of other stuff. So I generally don’t recommend it long-term. Also, for Candida, you need to support a healthy gut biome, and fruits and starches are helpful for that (although not strictly necessary).
So that’s where I’d normally start, but as I mentioned, I think it all requires a little bit of tweaking for each person. The general idea is to get the overgrowth a little bit under control while also starting to really rebuild a good gut biome. Unfortunately, rebuilding a good gut biome is not always easy, and it usually takes time and some trial and error.
I think in 20-30 years, we’ll have the technology to get all of this done in a week, but until then it takes a little bit longer.
Images: Copyright (c) T. L. Furrer from Fotolia