By Sofia Potente
Working out the root cause of your gut health issues can be confusing and frustrating. A commonly overlooked root cause is candida – a fungal infection caused by a yeast.
Symptoms of candida vary by person but typically can include:
- Chronic UTIs and thrush infections
- Bad breath
- Sugar cravings
- Brain fog
- Joint Pain
- Sinus and chronic allergies
- Digestive issues – gas and bloating
- Low mood
- White coating on tongue
Balanced levels of candida in the body are healthy and beneficial. In fact, we all have different strains of candida in our gut, mouth and vagina.
Candida helps us with nutrient absorption and digestion when in proper levels in the body.
However, excessive levels of candida can cause infections and systemic issues over time such as leaky gut and autoimmune issues.
WHAT IS CANDIDA CAUSED BY?
Candida is commonly caused by previous antibiotic use and/or a diet of processed foods or high sugar consumption. Other contributing factors can be the birth control pill which leaves us more susceptible, and drinking chlorinated tap water, which destroys beneficial bacteria allowing candida to flourish.
WHY TYPICAL TREATMENT BY DIET ALONE DOESN’T WORK
Typical candida treatment is a low sugar, higher fat diet, cutting out all starches and sugars, including certain fruits and vegetables.
While a keto style diet will help us feel better in the short term, it’s not sustainable and can cause longer term effects such as hormone imbalance, low blood sugar, nutrient deficiencies and excessive stress on the kidneys and liver.
The other issue is it’s not addressing the underlying cause – and when you reintroduce the carbohydrates, the candida symptoms will return!
SO WHAT DO WE DO INSTEAD?
The longer-term goal is not to eradicate candida but to achieve balance. Think of your gut as an ecosystem like a garden – where we clean out the weeds and add plants that flourish and live in harmony.
We can achieve this with a multipronged approach with a realistic diet and natural herbal products
STEP 1 – Diet – Use a diet that doesn’t eliminate ALL carbs as this is not necessary. I provide clients with a Sensitive Gut Guide that allows some carbohydrates but eliminates foods that feed the candida and trigger digestive symptoms (foods higher in fructans, lectins, FODMAPS, sugar alcohols and histamines).