A Candid Look at Candida
Women make up the majority of those who have questions about health, beauty and diet. Women, in western culture, tend to lead the way in changing their diets and lifestyles. Though men arguably have stronger constitutions, women, statistically, live longer. The downside: Women also tend to suffer more from the lingering effects of their prior choices. This shows up powerfully in what we commonly refer to as ‘yeast.’
Yeast is a living thing. A species: Candida albicans. You’ve undoubtedly heard of it. Yeast infection is one of the most common and misdiagnosed health issues today, and it plagues most women—and some men. Yeast infection can be a challenge to eradicate from one’s life. But that eradication is entirely possible with the help of a raw foods diet and some useful information to get you on the right track.
It's Natural But ...
Yeast, Candida, is naturally present in the body—in everyone’s body. Our bodies contain both good and bad forms of yeast and various bacteria, living and working together in a symbiotic relationships, “designed” to bring about certain results. Thanks to conditions our modern diets and lifestyles create, it is easy for Candida to get a foothold and proliferate. Indeed, in many of us, Candida completely overtakes our inner terrain—mainly the intestinal tract and mucous membranes—and wreaks havoc in our bodies.
What Causes Candida Overgrowth?
What causes this overgrowth? It is easier to ask what doesn’t, the list of causes is so long. Cells clogged with waste matter and sugars work together to create a haven for yeast. A too-acidic body pH level, as well as medications such as antibiotics and birth control pills, also have dramatic impact.
Antibiotics, helpful as they may be, are indiscriminate killers. Antibiotics are notorious for killing off not only harmful pathogens, but also the beneficial ones that your body needs to keep yeast in check. An estrogen-rich environment is another favorite for Candida, so you can easily see why women have more problems with it than men. One reader pointed out to me that, according to one naturopath, Candida yeast proliferates as much as 7 times faster in adrenaline than in sugar. So we can see how caffeine and stress play their roles, too. Diabetics are especially susceptible, too. And the list goes on!
Once rampant yeast moves beyond the intestinal tract, it is now in the bloodstream. This, then, is a ‘systemic’ infection, with a plethora of symptoms from skin rashes to food cravings, depression to bloating. This pattern can lead, as well, to a malady known as leaky gut syndrome.
A Tailored Raw Food Diet to the Rescue
Many people have moved to a raw foods diet and rid themselves of yeast conditions once and for all. It’s not easy for everyone, however. There are some people who will have to work a little harder to bring the body back into balance.
The traditional approach is to keep all sweet fruits and sugars completely out of your diet for a time. This generally will ensure that the yeast, who feast on sugar and sugar byproducts, have nothing to feed on—in essence, that they’ll be starved and die off. This ban would also include mushrooms and anything else that tends to contribute to fungus.
Others believe it is not sugar in fruits that causes yeast, but that high fat intake stands at the root of the problem. The idea behind this theory: Fat prevents glucose from being absorbed by the body’s cells, so that glucose accumulates in the blood, becoming a feeding ground for yeast bacteria. The solution offered is to reduce fat intake and increase greens consumption.
A low glycemic and fungus prevention protocol is the premise behind some popular and successful methods—for example, those used at the Hippocrates Institute and Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center. A yeast-fighting regimen might include supplementing temporarily with a yeast-cleansing protocol to kill the stubborn invaders, with a probiotic supplement to reestablish beneficial bacteria in the intestines. Keeping the colon clean during this time is essential, ensuring that any excess waste leaves in a timely manner and doesn’t loiter about, contributing to a clogged system.
My own personal experience, however, was different. I acquired a yeast infection on leaving the hospital after a hip surgery. I didn’t have to resort to any supplements, but cured the problem with juice and water fasting. And not a lick of trouble since!
The best method for you will depend on your biological situation, on where you are starting from, and on any lifestyle practices you have. (For instance, are on the raw food diet? Are you taking birth control pills? Are you diabetic?)
Fermented Foods and Quantum Eating May be Your Answer
Some people have great success with including in their diets raw fermented products such as sauerkraut in their diets. This supplies the body with an abundance of natural probiotics, eliminates the need for supplementation.
Moreover, it’s a dry fasting of a short duration that provides a powerful assault on all pathological bacteria and it may be the easiest way to free your body from yeast infection. Read more in my Quantum Eating.
If you have not yet experienced freedom from Candida albicans on the raw food diet alone, don’t blame your diet. Quite possibly you simply haven’t yet attained a completely cleansed and balanced internal environment. This may require a little extra effort on your part for a certain time. That effort, and that time, will be unique to your circumstances. But as the old adage goes, “You get out of it what you put in.” Onward!