The internet is teeming with information about the evils of candida overgrowth (candidiasis) and the incredible bodily havoc that can result if it's left unchecked. While some of these "informational pieces" are sales pitches for one pill or another that claims to "cure" you in a few days (which is a load of crap), there are a growing number of good resources that can actually help to educate you about what candida overgrowth is and how it affects your overall health. One such resource is the knowledgebase I've created which contains loads of info on candida based on my nearly 30 years of research on the subject.
It's amazing how such tiny little creatures that normally live happily and play well with the other little bugs in your gut can rise up and cause such chaos throughout your entire body if they're allowed to overpopulate. If you've ever watched a zombie apocalypse movie, that's not a bad analogy to a candida uprising.
"Knowledge is power", but it's only as powerful as your actions in implementing that knowledge. So you know what candida overgrowth is, what it can do, and what it's doing to you - great. Now what are you going to DO about it?
In my experience as a naturopathic physician, I've discovered that my patients are my best teachers. Over many years of clinical experience, I have learned a lot about what actually works and what doesn't when it comes to beating candidiasis and restoring good overall health.
The Three Steps to Crushing Candida Overgrowth
If you're sick and tired of feeling sick and tired, then let's do something about it! By following these three steps, you will not only be back on the road to good health, but will undoubtedly see the quality of your life improve in ways you hadn't even imagined. I have also done a comprehensive video on the topic which you can watch here.STEP 1: DIET
The phrase "on a diet" can, in itself, make one feel queasy and sad. Just the thought of being deprived of life's tastier guilty pleasures can be enough to dissuade many people from even trying. But the truth is this - if you're sincere about wanting to feel better and get your gut health back on track, you will have to make some changes for awhile.
However, I'm not a believer in the "cold turkey" approach prescribed by many candida cleanse diets, where you have to stop eating ALL of the naughty foods instantly. Instead, my experience shows that a "warm turkey" approach is much more effective in the long run. I suggest you make the transition from eating not-so-good foods to eating better foods over a two week period.First 14 days: The "Warm Turkey" Approach
Start really paying attention what you're eating and drinking. You might be surprised at how much "bad" food you're ingesting out of pure habit.
Cut back on your bad-sugar/bad-carb consumption. Processed foods are loaded with these candida-feeding ingredients, so the convenience of a quick packaged meal is far outweighed by the damage it's doing to your gut microflora.
Eliminate alcohol. I know, that nice glass of wine is lovely with a good meal, but you're going to have to cork the bottle for awhile. Wine, beer, liquor of all kinds contain sugars that candida craves.
Cut your caffeine consumption down to one coffee or tea per day. You can do it.
Start introducing "good foods" into your diet more each day. It's not as hard as you think.Second Phase: MEVY Diet and Low-Allergy Diet
After a couple weeks of adjusting to the changes in your diet, it's time to transition to a "Meat/Egg/Vegetable/Yogurt" diet. To avoid digestive upset, incorporate these foods gradually over one or two months to allow your gut bacteria to acclimate.
Now that your gut has begun to clean up its act, it's time to time to say goodbye for awhile to dairy, bananas, chocolate, peanuts and other foods that can cause allergies and adversely affect the digestive system. Almost all patients I see with candida also have Leaky Gut Syndrome. By removing potentially allergic foods, your digestive system will improve even more quickly.Third Phase: Reintroducing Certain Foods
By this point, your gut microflora are starting to re-balance and your digestion is improving. Foods containing prebiotics are especially helpful, as they feed the good gut bacteria. Sweet potato, asparagus, Jerusalem Artichoke and darker veggies are excellent when introduced gradually in small amounts.
Best Foods for Starving Candida and Restoring Gut Health:
There is no clearcut formula for the exact foods or combinations that will work best for you, but there are certain foods known to starve candida and promote beneficial bacteria populations. Strive for a fresh food diet rich in variety, fiber, whole grains, vegetables, legumes, fruits and nuts. Moderate fats and proteins should be included for proper nutritional balance. You can also watch my video on best foods to eat on candida diet.
Remember, your diet is modifiable at any stage. See what works best for you. Every body is different, as factors like the types of bugs in your gut at the time, your stress levels, how relaxed you are when eating, etc. all combine to determine how a diet will affect your system.
Vegetables: Broccoli, asparagus, spinach, onions, garlic and dark-colored veggies are best. However, if your candidiasis is severe, you should avoid starchier veggies like sweet potatoes, carrots and corn until you restore healthy gut balance.
Fruits: Be careful not to overindulge on fruits due to their naturally high sugar content. However, green apple, kiwi, pomegranate, avocado and dark-colored berries are good choices in moderation.
Grains: Unless you have gluten issues, most whole grains are fine in moderation.
Proteins: Eggs, chicken, fish, and grass-fed beef are excellent sources of protein that don't encourage candida. Stay with organic and antibiotic-free meats, as antibiotics destroy the good bacteria, making the re-balancing of microflora more difficult. For vegans and vegetarians, good quality legumes, nuts, and soy protein should be incorporated.
Probiotic Foods: Yogurt and fermented foods, such as kimchee, tempeh, miso, sauerkraut and the like help rebuild good bacteria you need to fight the bad guys.Foods to Avoid:
The hardest part of getting away from the bad foods you've grown to rely on for comfort, a quick hunger fix, etc. is actually more about your relationship with these dietary offenders than the amounts you eat. Many people actually form a deep bond with chocolate, for example, treating it as a cherished friend.
You already know that processed foods, sugary treats and alcohol are "bad foods for candida" for fighting candidiasis, so it's time to break those emotional bonds and move on. You WILL get through the transition just fine if you put your mind to it.
STEP 2: LIFESTYLE
Stress: Eating the healthiest diet in the world will not do much good to stop candidiasis if you're living a stressful life, whether it's work-related, financial or personal/emotional stress. Even low-level ongoing stresses of constantly being tethered to digital devices, multi-tasking, rushing around like a headless chicken, etc. will adversely affect how your gut handles things - digestively, chemically and otherwise. All health starts from the gut, and the gut is the first casualty of stress.
So two words: chill out! Stress management is truly important to your health, not just some idealistic concept.
Sleep: Like stress, lack of sleep is another major culprit in gut imbalances and poor health. If you're not sleeping properly, once again, all the other healthy steps you may be taking will be negated. Your body needs a certain amount of sleep, no matter how amazing you may be.
Attitude: If you maintain a positive state of mind and truly believe that you can fully recover your health, you will. More laughter is highly recommended, as it actually IS an excellent medicine.
Exercise: Get your body moving in a way that you enjoy and will continue to do willingly. Walking, swimming, an exercise class or biking are just a few great options that help stimulate your immune function, mood and overall health.
STEP 3: DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS
Good quality natural dietary supplements can be a great help for your candida cleanse regimen. Certain herbs, enzymes, antifungals, antimicrobials and other natural substances contain properties known to help slow and reverse candida overgrowth, strengthen the immune system and improve overall gut health. Canxida supplements are the best for candida yeast infection. Visit Canxida.com to learn more.
Some of the recommended natural additions to a candida cleanse diet include:
Bottom line: Getting rid of candidiasis is not going to happen overnight nor without a sincere effort on your part. There is no easy quick-fix solution, but if you follow the steps above and pay attention to how your body is reacting, you can beat candida successfully and for the long term. The more disciplined you are in your treatment, the faster you will return to good health. It's your call.
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