To assist in the restoration of normal flora in the body, avoidance of certain foods for a period of time is essential. These include all sweetening (except stevia extract), juice, dried fruit, vinegar, alcohol, fermented soy products (miso, tempeh, and soy sauce), cheese and yeast.
Yeast infections are caused by an overgrowth of normally harmless bacteria, Candida Albicans. Candida thrives on sugar, so a diet high in added sugars will feed the yeast-like bacteria and allow these microbes to flourish. A Candida overgrowth can cause a vaginal yeast infection, but can also lead to jock itch, oral thrush, canker sores and athlete’s foot. Dietary changes can help treat a yeast infection and prevent future outbreaks. If you have chronic yeast infections, see your doctor. You may need an anti-fungal medication or it could be a sign of an underlying illness.
Your body contains more than a trillion living microorganisms. Some of them are friendly bacteria that aid in digestion, boost your immune system or help you absorb nutrients and produce vitamins. Others are less friendly and can cause illness if allowed to reproduce too quickly. Candida normally live in your mouth and digestive tract and are stopped from reproducing too fast by other bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, found in yogurt. But if something upsets the balance of bacteria in your body, such as taking antibiotics, illness, diabetes or a diet high in sugar, Candida can thrive.
Candida is actually a fungus so adding anti-fungal foods to your diet will help destroy the microbes.
Coconut oil contains lauric and caprylic acids, two potent anti-fungals.
Garlic, onions, olive oil and certain spices including oregano, cinnamon, sage, ginger and cloves may help prevent yeast infections, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Yogurt is a part of almost every anti-yeast diet because it contains probiotic bacteria. Bacteria that have beneficial effects on the human body are called probiotic. These bacteria can help digestion, help control pH balance and most importantly can kill off Candida cells.
Acidophilus is a type of probiotic — the beneficial bacteria that usually keep candida from repopulating too quickly. Fermented dairy foods such as yogurt and kefir are good sources of acidophilus. MayoClinic.com suggests eating 8 ounces of unsweetened yogurt daily to treat the symptoms of a candida overgrowth. Yogurt can also be applied topically — inserted directly into the vagina to help treat a yeast infection. Do not use yogurt with added sugars — the yeast feed on sugar. Maintain the natural balance of probiotic bacteria in your body by continuing to eat acidophilus or tale supplements even after the symptoms of your yeast infection disappear.
Probiotic bacteria favorably alter the intestinal microflora balance, inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria, promote good digestion, boost immune function, and increase resistance to infection. People with flourishing intestinal colonies of beneficial bacteria are better equipped to fight the growth of disease-causing bacteria. Lactobacilli and bifidobacteria, along with acidophilus (found in yogurt), maintain a healthy balance of intestinal flora by producing organic compounds (lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide, and acetic acid) that increase the acidity of the intestine and inhibit the reproduction of many harmful bacteria. Probiotic bacteria also produce substances called bacteriocins, which act as natural antibiotics to kill undesirable microorganisms.
Certain vegetables have an inhibiting effect on Candida; others are beneficial to it. Eat cabbage, garlic, spinach, broccoli, cucumber and tomatoes. Remove from your diet all vegetables containing starch (a carbohydrate), such as carrots, sweet potatoes and corn.
Vegetables (including plenty of raw garlic), protein foods (beef, chicken, eggs, fish), live yogurt cultures (both dairy and non-dairy,), whey, acidophilus, green algae (such as spirulina and chlorella), nuts, seeds and oils, and non-glutenous grains (like millet, rice, rice bran and oat bran).
Fasting, colon cleansing, wheatgrass, fresh vegetable juices, plenty of water, detox herbs, exercise, and anything else that extracts toxins.
Because Candida feed on sugar, removing both natural and added sugars will help starve the yeast and treat your symptoms. Natural sugars such as fructose, found in fruits, and lactose, found in milk, feed Candida as much as added sugars found in processed foods. Not only should sugars be limited as much as possible, but foods that quickly become sugar, such as starchy vegetables, alcoholic beverages and refined grains should also be avoided. Chronic yeast infections are often a sign of undiagnosed or poorly controlled diabetes because Candida thrives if you have high blood sugar levels.
Taking antibiotics, illness, diabetes or a diet high in sugar, Candida can thrive.
Carbohydrates (especially sugar) are your enemy in the fight against Candida. Carbohydrates are a very good source of nutrition for Candida cells, allowing them to sustain themselves and grow further. Avoid alcohol because of its high sugar content.
Some Yeast Products
Beer, cheese, some types of bread, mushrooms and vinegar all contain yeas–or yeast is used in producing them. Aged cheeses, alcohol, chocolate, dried fruits, fresh fruits, fermented foods, mushrooms, vinegar, glutenous foods (wheat, rye, barley), all sugars, honeys and syrups (that includes any ‘ose’, like lactose, sucrose etc), and foods that contain yeast or mold (breads, muffins, cakes, baked goods, cheese, dried fruits, melons, peanuts – although nutritional and brewer’s yeasts are not harmful, as they do not colonize in the intestines). Nutritional yeast is deactivated yeast, often a strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Baker’s yeast is of the species Saccharomyces cerevisiae
Some species of yeast are opportunistic pathogens that can cause infection in people with compromised immune systems. Two genera of yeasts stand out as human pathogens, one being Cryptococcus sp. and the other Candida sp.
Cryptococcus neoformans is a significant pathogen of immune-compromised people causing the disease termed cryptococcosis. This disease occurs in about 7–9% of AIDS patients in the USA, and a slightly smaller percentage (3–6%) in western Europe. The cells of the yeast are surrounded by a rigid polysaccharide capsule, which helps to prevent them from being recognized and engulfed by white blood cells in the human body.
Yeasts of the Candida genus are another group of opportunistic pathogens that causes oral and vaginal infections in humans, known as candidiasis. Candida is commonly found as a commensal yeast in the mucus membranes of humans and other warm-blooded animals. However, sometimes these same strains can become pathogenic. Here the yeast cells sprout a hyphal outgrowth, which locally penetrates the mucosal membrane, causing irritation and shedding of the tissues. The pathogenic yeasts of candidiasis in probable descending order of virulence for humans are: C. albicans, C. tropicalis, C. stellatoidea, C. glabrata, C. krusei, C. parapsilosis, C. guilliermondii, C. viswanathii, C. lusitaniae, and Rhodotorula mucilaginosa. Candida glabrata is the second most common Candida pathogen after C. albicans, causing infections of the urogenital tract, and of the bloodstream (candidemia).
According to the experts at Candidadiet.com, caffeine is a source of energy and nutrition for yeast, giving the Candida the same type of boost it does to the person suffering from the Candida. Avoid any beverage that contains caffeine, even if the amount is small.