This month I would like to talk to you about the importance of Candida Albicans, a harmless yeast we all have in our bodies. The reason it is important is because an overgrowth of this organism, which is normally found in the digestive track, can lead to a host of varied effects and aliments that many people suffer from on a daily basis. One of these effects is the inability to lose weight.
When I mentioned to a recent client that I thought it would be worth her getting tested for Candida, her reaction was ‘wow you believe in that?’ It is not a question of belief; candida exists in all of us and can easily become overgrown as a result of our nutritional habits and lifestyle choices.
The consumption of anti-biotics, excess of sugar or alcohol, suffering prolonged stress, C-section deliveries, using contraception or having tattoos can all contribute to the overgrowth of candida. I think that pretty much covers everyone, right? The reason an overgrowth occurs is because any one or a combination of these things kill our good gut flora and compromise our immunity enough to allow this organism to take over and dominate our gut health. And once our gut health is compromised, all the rest of our system can be in trouble too, including our hormonal balance (that includes the men), our immune system and obviously our digestion.
Before I list a few of the common symptoms, it is very important to understand that just because you have any of the following, it does not automatically mean you have Candida. A number of different issues such as a parasite or an overgrowth of some other bacteria in the small intestines could also lead to the same outcome. I always tell my clients that I will not guess these things; the only positive way is to test for it.
Some of the more common indications of a Candida overgrowth can range from persistent constipation, bloating or gas (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) to mental fog, exhaustion, depression or anxiety; from sugar cravings, sinus infections and excess mucous to other yeast infections (thrush), persistent food allergies or hypothyroidism.
There are a number of different ways to test for a Candida overgrowth, but I believe the most accurate is a 3 day stool test at minimum. Book a consultation with a qualified healthcare practitioner to discuss the possibility of an overgrowth and make sure you take the correct course of action to not only eliminate any other potential parasites, but also to restore balance back to your digestive track.
If you test positive for Candida, firstly do not panic. It really is not the end of the World and there are a few different approaches you can take to restore digestive balance but these depend on whether or not there is anything else present. Numerous clients whom I have tested over recent years have also had a parasite present. Again, this is not the end of the World and there are a few simple approaches to take.
Changes in diet for a set length of time and taking a course of either natural supplementation or pharmaceutical medication will usually restore balance of the overgrowth and kill off any parasite found via the test. Dieting to restore balance is often not easy as many sugars and starch-based carbohydrates need to be eliminated but if the end result is a vastly improved quality of life, a few months is worth the work.