Candida may sound like a cute girl’s name, but it’s actually a nasty little organism that affects numerous systems in the body. If you have ever had Athlete’s Foot or a thrush infection, Candida is the culprit. In small amounts, Candida fungi don’t cause any harm, but when they are given free rein to grow out of control, they can wreak havoc. Here are five facts about Candida that you can’t afford to ignore.
Candida is Bad for Your Mental Health
Most people associate Candida with Athlete’s Foot, but did you know it can affect your mental health too? An overgrowth of Candida can cause mood swings, anxiety, depression, and panic attacks. In fact, a Candida infection is the main cause of ADHD, anxiety disorders, and depression.
Candida Causes Autoimmune Disorders
Autoimmune disorders such as Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis are often precipitated by gastrointestinal problems. The Candida fungus weakens the gut wall, which allows undigested food particles and nasty toxins to leak into the bloodstream. The immune system detects foreign particles in the blood and creates antibodies. This reaction is often the primary cause of food intolerances and high levels of inflammation. When these antibodies react with thyroid tissue, thyroid hormone is impaired, which leads to the development of autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto’s).
Candida Causes Nutritional Deficiencies
Patients with a Candida infection are often deficient in essential vitamins and minerals, specifically magnesium, vitamin A, C, and B12 and folate. A 2004 study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that patients with nutritional deficiencies were more likely to have a systemic Candida infection.
Candida is a Superbug
There are 200 different species of Candida. The best-known is Candida Albicans, which is the cause of most common fungal infections, but a new species called Candida Auris is a highly invasive, multi-drug resistant fungal ‘superbug’. It has spread into several countries in the last seven years and experts are deeply concerned that it will eventually become untreatable.
Candida Fuels a Sugar Addiction
Sugar addiction is a 21st-century problem. We are surrounded by sugary treats and faced with cakes, biscuits, and chocolate, who can resist? Candida is closely linked to a sugar addiction. Candida forms tetrahydro-isoquinolines, which feed sugar addiction and produce an opiate-like chemical ‘high’ in the brain. Candida also interferes with endocrine function, which causes cravings for sugary foods.
If you have symptoms of a Candida infection – fatigue, recurrent UTIs, intestinal problems – you should look at treatment options. Firstly, it is important that you eliminate sugar from your diet where possible, as sugar feeds Candida. Eat plenty of non-starchy vegetables, cultured dairy, and try anti-fungal essential oils such as Lavender Oil, Cinnamon Oil, and Clove Oil. Coconut Oil is also very effective at fighting a Candida infection.
You will feel very unpleasant as the Candida die off in your system, but this period only usually lasts for about a week. Once you have cleared the Candida from your system, it’s important to boost the good bacteria in your gut. You can do this by drinking kefir or eating fermented vegetables such as Kimchi or sauerkraut.