The Candida Diet – Will It Prevent Yeast Infections?
The Candida Diet – Will It Prevent Yeast Infections?
What do you understand about Candida's diet? Most dieticians suggest that the Candida diet can help prevent yeast infections, so this article looks at what the diet entails and how it fights yeast infections. It also looks at the symptoms of two main candidiasis types; vaginal and mouth candidiasis.
Candida is a genus of yeast that comprises over 100 different species that thrive on the skin but can also inhabit the gut, vagina, throat, and mouth. An overgrowth of candida can lead to vaginal candidiasis and other fungal infections. However, normal concentrations promote gastrointestinal health and nutrient absorption. Proponents of the candida diet, which restricts the intake of sugar, gluten, and alcoholic drinks, say it can prevent candida overgrowth. That said, let’s take a closer look into the candida diet and examine how it can prevent yeast infections.
Over 70% of women suffer from at least one vaginal yeast infection at some point in their lifetime. Candidiasis is caused by a yeast-like fungus called candida albicans. This fungus can infect the mouth, urinary tract, stomach, skin, and vagina. Naturally, small amounts of candida promote health in the organs mentioned above. However, candidiasis of the mouth or vagina occurs when the candida fungus overgrows, leading to yeast infections. But supporters of the candida diet purport that it can prevent such infections. In this post, we shall look at what the candida diet entails and prevent such infections.
Causes of Candida
Candida of the mouth or the vagina is a yeast infection that results from the overgrowth of the candida albicans fungi. Normal amounts of this fungus can thrive without causing infections in the mouth, throat, stomach, vagina, or skin. And while there is no specific factor linked to these yeast infections, numerous factors are thought to promote the growth of the fungi, namely;
- Administration of specific medications, including contraceptive pills, antibiotics, and certain corticosteroids.
- Living with certain health conditions such as HIV/AIDS, psoriasis, and cancer.
- Obesity or being overweight.
- Proneness to bacterial infections.
As mentioned earlier, candida yeast affects the vagina, throat, skin, gastrointestinal tract, and mouth. However, the most common forms of candida yeast infections are vaginal and mouth candidiasis. Over 70% of women are likely to suffer from such infections, over 90% of folks living with HIV/AIDS, and those with weaker immune systems are at a higher risk of infection. Below are the symptoms associated with each;
Symptoms of Vaginal Candidiasis
- Thick vaginal discharge.
- Pain when peeing.
- Itchy or sore vagina and vulva.
- Pain during intercourse.
Symptoms of Candidiasis of The Mouth
- White patches in the mouth.
- Inflamed or sore throat.
- Persistently dry mouth.
- Pain swallowing food.
The Candida Diet and How It Works
The basic principle of the candida diet is to steer clear of foodstuffs and drinks that promote overgrowth of the candida albicans fungi. The diet requirement includes avoiding gluten- and sugar-rich foods, certain types of dairy products, and alcohol. Instead, the diet fosters more intake of foods such as;
- Healthy fats such as avocado.
- Lean proteins.
- Non-starchy vegetables.
The main focus of the candida diet is to reduce glucose concentrations in the body. Researchers established that higher concentrations of glucose in the body are a risk factor for the overgrowth of candida. Besides, non-starchy foods can help limit inflammation and promote better bacteria balance in the gastrointestinal tract. In theory, the candida diet is based on avoiding foods that promote yeast growth.
Can the Candida Diet Prevent Yeast Infections?
Preliminary studies on animal cells indicate that certain dietary substances and health conditions can contribute to the growth of candida. Regarding whether that can apply to humans, more research is needed to establish that. Extensive research should be conducted to answer, whether does candida diet prevent yeast infections in humans.
Nonetheless, researchers have pointed to factors such as weak immune systems, administration of certain medications, and living with health conditions such as HIV/AIDS and psoriasis as key contributors to the development of candida. And as a result of the numerous risk factors, it is not easy to point out how taking the candida dietary regimen could impact an individual’s risk of developing candidiasis.
The minimal research on the candida diet means it is limited in terms of dietary guidelines. But in theory, it is based on the need to reduce glucose levels in the body. That is why proponents of the candida diet recommend making the following changes to reduce the risk of developing yeast infections.
- Take a candida cleanse, which involves detoxification like taking herbs with antifungal potential, colon cleansing, or fasting.
- Steer clear of carbohydrates-rich foods. That is because theoretically, it is believed candida yeast thrives on simple sugars.
- Minimize intake of yeast-containing foods such as baked goods, beer, wine, mushrooms, and vinegar.
- Use probiotics to introduce good bacteria that will suppress candida growth in the gut.
The Candida Diet: Recommended Foods
Folks looking to embark on the candida diet are required to incorporate the following foods into their diet:
- Lean proteins such as fish and eggs.
- Healthy fats such as olive and coconut oils.
- Non-starchy vegetables such as onions and broccoli.
- Probiotics such as yogurt.
- Dairy products such as ghee and butter.
In contrast, the candida diet strictly requires individuals to avoid;
- Sugar-rich fruits such as mangoes and bananas.
- Processed fats such as margarine.
- Artificial sweeteners and simple sugars such as maple syrup, honey, and agave.
- Sugar-sweetened drinks and beverages.
- Gluten-containing grains such as wheat and barley.
The Bottom Line
The candida diet essentially requires folks to limit the intake of foods rich in sugar and gluten, alcoholic products, and certain dairy supplies. Proponents of this diet believe that avoiding such foods can help prevent the development of yeast infections. Preliminary research was based on animal cells. However, more research is needed to establish how effectively this diet prevents the growth of yeast infections in humans. Research indicates that certain risk factors such as proneness to bacterial infections, weakened immune systems, diabetes, kidney failure medications, and living with HIV/AIDS are associated with yeast infections.