Yeast overgrowth, or candidiasis, is caused by candida albicans, an organism that normally lives in everyone's body and that is helpful and important to the body. It is the main yeast in the human body; it lives there happily enough, kept in check by beneficial bacteria in the intestines. These bacteria make small amounts of vitamin K and B12 and help digest excess sugar that gets past the small intestine.
A healthy immune system keeps candida under control, however, when the immune system becomes weakened, candida changes its form and function into an overgrowing organism that produces large families, called colonies, which secrete toxins that are the precursor to many diseases.
Candida colonies excrete over 79 different types of toxins that circulate throughout the body weakening the immune system and causing numerous symptoms and malfunctions throughout the body. These include dizziness and fatigue, throwing your hormones off balance, causing you to gain weight and crave sugar and bread.
Some causes of a weakened immune system include:
- a lack of proper nutrition
- accumulation of toxins, poisons and wastes
- regular intake of antibiotics
Candida is one of the 400 organisms that live in our mucus membranes, i.e. mouth, throat, esophagus, eyes, ears, nose, sinuses, stomach, intestines, reproductive organs, bladder etc. and generally do not cause problems. But a weakened immune system causes the whole delicate balance to be lost.
Yeast overgrowth is a disease of modern society. The increasing use of antibiotics has its downside as an underlying cause of yeast overgrowth. The refining of sugar and wheat has its downside by creating a simple food source for yeast. The tremendous levels of stress hormones that flood our bodies also make us more susceptible to yeast.
Yeast overgrowth is associated with many symptoms and diseases including allergies and intolerances that worsen in damp, moldy places, fungal infections, digestive problems, reproductive problems in men and women, autoimmune diseases and cancer.
The toxic Effects of candida
Two toxins produced by candida that are particularly devastating are called acetaldehyde and ethanol (a type of alcohol). Both act like poisons on the various tissues of the body.
These chemicals cause all of the cells in the body to go rigid, even white and red blood cells. Flexibility is very important for the functioning of cells, which allows nutrients and hormones to go in, and waste materials to go out, as well as other important activities.
In fact every nutrient required by the body will have difficulty getting into rigid cells throughout the body, including protein (amino acids), fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Rigid cells are also not as able to get rid of their waste and regulate water.
If that isn't enough problems caused by this yeast, candida also produces very long root-like structures that penetrate intestinal walls. These root-like structures cause considerable damage to the walls of the intestines resulting in poor digestion and mal-absorption of nutrients. Weight gain is very common in yeast overgrowth. Our bodies create pounds of fluid retention in an attempt to dilute the inflammatory toxins that yeast produces. Over time, tissue toxins and fluid build up lead to cellulite and weight gain. The gas produced by yeast can cause abdominal bloating that can increase your waist size up to six inches from one meal to the next.
How to Overcome Yeast Overgrowth
A combination of diet and lifestyle can help to overcome yeast overgrowth.
- The first step is to eliminate foods and toxins that feed Candida. This includes sugar, wheat and dairy, except for butter. Candida's main food supply is sugar, so reducing sugar intake is one of the most important ways to control intestinal yeast overgrowth and diabetes.
- The next step is to build up your immune system by eating high quality nutrients and supplements. This means eating more protein foods like eggs, meat and seafood, and high quality fats and oils, like coconut oil and omega-3 essential fatty acid supplements. Replenish your intake of good bacteria by eating probiotics, found in fermented foods like sauerkraut. Eliminate unnatural fats and oils and all processed foods. Aim to eat a diet high in fresh, natural foods.
- Effective antifungal supplements include garlic (eat one or two cloves a day), oil of oregano, grapefruit seed extract and coconut oil.
- Exercise helps to boost circulation and clear toxins from the body. Aim for about 30 minutes of exercise a day, such as brisk walking.