Candida Causing Your Candy Cravings?
So i thought since we are approaching Halloween that this is the perfect time to talk about our love for those tasty, sweet treats!
What is it about those colourful candies, cakes and doughnuts that just seems to pull us in with magnetic force even when we KNOW we should turn the other way?
Well, there are a number of reasons.
But today I want to talk about a very common reason that might just be the underlying cause of your unrelenting gut issues and inability to lose weight.....A CANDIDA OVERGROWTH!
What is Candida?
Candida, or Candida Albicans as it is formally known, is a normal part of the human bacteria bacteria population that lives in our digestive system and we all have some in our gut.
In a healthy situation, this is very normal. The organism is kept in balance and causes no concerning side effects.
The problem however rises when Candida is allowed to grow out of control and take over. When this happens it crowds out our good bacteria population leading to a condition called dysbiosis; an imbalance in the good and bad bacteria population in our gut.
In severe cases Candida can even cause significant damage to the lining of our gut leading to a condition known as leaky gut syndrome. And when this happens, we leave ourselves wide open to nutrient deficiencies, inflammatory conditions, food intolerances and autoimmune conditions.
An overgrowth of Candida is called Candidiasis. And this is NOT a normal or pleasant condition to have. Unfortunately it is more common than you think....especially in chronically stressed women!
What Causes a Candida Overgrowth?
An overgrowth of Candida is called Candidiasis.
One of the primary ways in which Candida is allowed to survive and thrive is simply by us feeding it!
You see, Candida LOVES sugar! Especially simple sugars found in sweets, treats and processed foods. And the more we eat the faster Candida is allowed to grow and the stronger these little critters become!
When Candidiasis has set in, it can be experienced in a number of different areas of the body. When found in the mouth this is called oral thrush and often represents itself with a white coating on the tongue. When found in the genital region, this is called vaginal thrush and symptoms include itchiness in the area and pain during sex. When found in the urinary tract, it can lead to persistent urinary tract infections.
Chances are, if you are experiencing symptoms of Candidiasis in any of these areas, you will also have an overgrowth in your gut. And unfortunately this is where the most troubling symptoms come from and where the most damage can take place if we don't get the balance back under control.
It isn't always easy to identify your gut health issues as a Candida overgrowth and sometimes may warrant a test at the doctors office. However there are quite a few telltale signs that your gut is struggling with Candidiasis. Here's what you need to look out for:
Symptoms of Candidiasis in the Gut:
Very strong cravings for sweets and treats
White coating on tongue
Persistent skin rashes (eczema, psoriasis)
Depression and anxiety
Irritability and mood swings
Pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints
Brain fog and difficulty concentrating
Gas, bloating or other digestive disturbances and bowel irregularities
Halitosis (bad breath)
Food sensitivities or intolerances (especially to fruits, fermented foods and starchy foods)
Development of or worsening of autoimmune conditions
Now the key here is that there are multiple symptoms that are persistent and stubborn to any other treatment. On their own these symptoms could be indicative of other issues however it might be in your interest to undertake a Candida Recovery Nutrition Protocol if you suspect that an overgrowth might be at the root of your health issues.
Another hint that you might be suffering from Candidiasis is if you are also experiencing one of the following conditions or scenarios:
Autoimmune conditions (IBS, psoriasis, MS, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Hashimoto's, Graves Disease)
Recent or prolonged use of antibiotics or other long-term immune-suppressants
Chronic colds and infections (the sign of a compromised immune function)
So how do we get things back on track? How do we get these pesky critters back into balance?
Well it's not easy and it WILL take time but with commitment to the following, you should start to notice significant improvement within 4-8 weeks.
All forms of sugar/sweeteners (eg; sauces, jams, ice cream, cookies, syrups, cereals, donuts, a spartame, sucralose, sorbitol, etc.)
All natural sugars/sweeteners (eg; molasses, honey, maple syrup, stevia, xylitol)
All alcohol beverages
Bread, crackers, baked goods, pastries, pita bread (all contain yeast)
All fruits (fructose)
All fruit juices and fruit flavoured herbal teas
All milk products, yoghurt and cheese (milk sugars)
Vinegar (apple cider vinegar should be ok as it has an alkalising effect rather than an acidic effect)
Fermented foods (soy sauce, ketchup, mustard, pickled vegetables and pickled beetroot, kimchi, etc.)
Now when you start to experience improvement in your symptoms, usually no less than 2-4 weeks following the above restrictions, you can then even try adding in some yeast-killing agents. These could include grapefruit seed extract, berberine, garlic capsules or capryllic acid.
The key is not to introduce yeast killing agents too soon. You must wait until you have literally starved the Candida until they are so weak they won't fight back. If they do, you will experience what is known as "yeast die-off". These symptoms can range from typical cold-like symptoms to extreme exhaustion, brain-fog for a period of approximately 7-10 days.
So What Can You Eat??
This is usually the next question I get asked by my clients. And with good reason!
The Candida Recovery Protocol is probably one of the most strict dietary protocols there is but it HAS to be this way in order to be successful. If you slip up more often than not, remember you are giving fuel to the yeast when you need them to be getting weak and eventually dying off. These are tough, resilient culprits so you have to be committed to the process and you must be as strict as possible.
Remember it's not a long-term protocol. If followed properly, you should be able to start reintroducing some foods slowly in the future. And if the Candida is back in balance, you should now be able to tolerate them without icky side effects.
So here's what you should try to focus on during the Candida Recovery Protocol:
All salad greens
Raw nuts and seeds
Gluten free oatmeal, brown rice and quinoa
Sweet potatoes /yams
Almond butter and cashew butter (no sugar added)
Gluten free /yeast free pasta (small quantities only)
Gluten free /yeast free wraps and flat-breads (small quantities
Gluten free/y east free and sugar free crackers, breads
Herbal teas (non fruit flavoured)
Anti-fungal herbs and spices such as garlic, cinnamon, sage, oregano and clove.
Want to learn more about my proven 6-step gut-healing methodology that I teach in The Gut Recovery Programme? I'm going to walking through it step by step in my free online workshop, "Get a Grip on Your Gut Health!"
Click here to register for this 90 minute workshop where you will discover:
Why your gut health is so important to your overall health and longevity
Common symptoms of poor gut health to determine if you need to make changes
The hazards and common health issues associated with a leaky gut and how to identify if you are in the 80% of people who have it
How to identify your own individual food intolerances and learn how to live with them
The 3 phase, 6 step methodology that is proven to help the gut recover and rebalance to support strong physical and mental health for the long-term
All live attendees will also receive your very own Gut Repair Starter Kit! This excellent starter kit comes complete with a 7 Day Gut Repair Meal Plan including recipes and grocery list PLUS a your “Take the Heat Out of Heartburn & Acid Reflux” Strategy Guide.
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