What Candida Is, How to Know if You Have It, and How to Ditch It

Candida - What it is and How to Know if You Have It. This is CRUCIAL for good health.

{Today, please welcome Paula from Whole Intentions. She’s sharing about a topic that is unfortunately something I know up close and personal–candida. 

Candida is a part of my life that I so wish weren’t there. 

But it is. I’ve struggling a lot in my heart about it and have felt really sorry for myself for a long time, but recently I have taken joy in the fact that from my struggling can come help for others. 

This is one of those helping times. I so hope that this post is a blessing to you all and that it helps you get control of your health. And now–here’s Paula, with occasional interjections by moi :).}

So–have you ever wondered if you were totally crazy. Not like, “I feel a little crazy today”, but more like, “Am I totally going off the deep end?!”

It’s easy to feel like that when you’ve gone to doctors over and over for health symptoms that don’t seem to make any sense. Every prescription, cream, and over the counter med they give you just takes more money from your pocket without giving you more than a short-term fix (if it even gives you that!).

They begin to suggest it’s all in your head–and you begin to wonder if it really might be–if you just might be crazy….

Well, I’m here to tell you that you aren’t crazy.

As far as I know anyway ;.)

Are you wondering if you have candida or not? Find out What Candida is and How to Find Out if You Have It.

Do you suffer from one or more of these symptoms:

  • acne
  • anxiety
  • arthritis
  • asthma
  • athletes’ foot
  • brain fog
  • cold hands or feet
  • colds
  • colic
  • constipation
  • cradle cap
  • cravings for sweets
  • cysts
  • diabetes
  • diaper rash
  • diarrhea
  • dizziness
  • eczema
  • fatigue
  • food sensitivities or reactions
  • hay fever
  • headaches
  • heart burn
  • heart palpitations
  • hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
  • hypothyroidism
  • insomnia
  • irritability
  • joint pain
  • lack of appetite
  • migraines
  • mood swings
  • muscle aches and pain
  • panic attacks
  • poor memory and concentration
  • pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS)
  • psoriasis
  • rashes and dry red or white patches
  • respiratory problems
  • sinus congestion
  • thrush (white coating in mouth or vagina)

{From Adrienne–I had a friend who said she felt manic-depressive and almost quit homeschooling–all because of candida. Yes, it’s true. It can do things that bad to you!}

I’m not a doctor, and I don’t play one on T.V. . .but if you’ve answered yes to more than one of these, I’d ask if you might have candida.

Candida - Good Bacteria vs Bad Candida. You need them in balance to have good gut health.What is Candida

Candida is a toxic, yeast-like organism that 90% of people have in their digestive system. Most of the time it’s not an issue because it’s generally kept in check by good bacteria. The trouble starts when candida begins to grow out of control and can quickly start a myriad of problems. Kinda sounds like a fuzzy little green creature in a bad sci-fi movie from the 70′s, doesn’t it?

Now,I don’t want you to think candida is the cause of every illness known to man. It’s not. But, it’s enough of a menace to deserve a substantial amount of consideration–much more than it gets in mainstream medicine.

How Do You Know if You Have Candida?

Some of the common causes for candida overgrowth are:

  • antacids
  • antibiotics
  • anti-inflammatory drugs
  • anti-ulcer medications
  • carbohydrates
  • environmental toxins
  • foods with starch
  • foods with yeast
  • hormone replacement therapy
  • oral contraceptives
  • over-the-counter medicines
  • prescription drugs
  • radiation
  • smoking
  • steroids
  • sugar in all forms

And you can check out my (Adrienne’s) posts on:

[Please note, following are some links to other sites. Some of them are affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on them I (Adrienne) or Paula might make a commission - thanks for your support in advance!)

An easy way to check for candida is by taking the Candida Symptom Assessment Questionnaire. (From Adrienne: This is the questionnaire that I first used when trying to figure out if I had candida. Believe me, my score was SKY HIGH!  (Yikes!!)

The Candida Cycle - check out how candida gets out of control in your body!

How to Ditch Candida

If your tests are positive, youe next step is to take your health back and run up and down the street yelling, "I'm not crazy after all!"

Um. Scratch that idea.

1.  Instead, start by treating your candida with natural remedies and quality probiotics rather than creams, drugs, and prescriptions. In fact, those only encourage candida to grow. {From Adrienne: I am not sure about them causing it to grow, but I do think that candida is mutating when it can and becoming stronger as a result of the overuse of some of these meds.  My story on that later.}

2.  The next step, and even more important, is to change your diet. Yeah. I said the word diet. What you eat is one of THE most important changes you can make.

Candida thrives off unhealthy foods like sugar and starchy carbohydrates. Those foods make it grow like crazy and create chaos in its wake. Chaos from the inside out that ends up almost destroying some lives.

From Adrienne here again, and it will be my voice through the end of the post:

Enter the need for many new recipes.

To get rid of candida, you need to change what you eat. From loads of sugars and refined starches, to foods that won't feed candida and will let your body heal.

But that doesn't mean you need to never eat a sweet treat again.

I have young boys and they already are struggling with candida and have from when they were born. And I have a sweet tooth.

Now, I try to keep it under control, but I still do like to have treats now and then.

If you're like me, then this book, The Sweeter Side of Candida, is for you. Great info about candida, and 70 Yummiscrumpious Desserts that you can safely eat while fighting Candida--the Awful Gut Foe.

There's a Facebook Party to celebrate the launch of this book that is going on today at 9pm EST.  You can check out the info about that below--there will be chances to win great prizes like this book (if you purchase one now and then win, you will get your money refunded.)

But if you can't make it tonight, make sure you Enter to Win in the Great Giveaway of $1300+ in Prizes with 15 winners!  Don't miss this one folks. It's a GREAT giveaway with GREAT prizes and you have GREAT odds of winning!

The Sweeter Side of Candida

Here's the book. I so hope to have a cookbook of my own soon that will offer you even more options, but you can get started with these recipes, like:

  • The Feet in the Sand Coconut Ice Cream I mentioned yesterday.  My boys pulled it out of the freezer today to have some more just now.
  • "Best" Almond Butter Buckeyes - Sooo good I had them for breakfast and
  • Mmmm... Shortbread Caramel Cookies.  I will be making these soon.  Think Twix :)!
Homemade Shortbread Caramel Bars - like Twix®! Gluten and Sugar Free!!!

Shortbread Caramel Bars–Need I say more?

These, and 67 more finger-licking treats can be found in here:

Candida Dessert Book - 70 Great Recipes that don't feed candida. Plus info on what candida is and how to fight it.

Buy Now Button - Candida

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Need recipes that will help you stay healthy, lose weight, and fight candida?

We’d like to invite you to our Facebook Party

November 1st, 2013 at 9pm EST

Why Join the Party?  

You can win:

Plus over $1,300+ in prizes!

(and there are 15 winners, folks–so that means your chances of winning are 15 times greater than in other “one winner” contests!)

Candida Prizes

Join us on Nov. 1st at 9pm EST (that’s today!!!) and bring a friend!

Not Sugar-Free?

This cookbook is *not* only for those who suffer from candida. It’s for anyone who wants to lose weight and/or stay healthy too!

**********************************

Note:  This post if for educational purposes only. I am not a medical professional nor do I pretend to be one (though I–Adrienne–was pre med in college.  But that doesn’t mean much, righteo?) So talk with your medical professional prior to making any changes in your diet or supplement program.

What do you think? Do you think you might have candida?

What are you doing / going to do to get healthy?

Shared at The Prairie Homestead, The Better Mom, Real Food Forager, Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free, Time Warp Wife, Chef in Training, Intentionally DomesticNot Just a HousewifeNap – Time CreationsRaising HomemakersWe Are that FamilyFrugally SustainableMy Humble KitchenThe Nourishing GourmetFood RenegadeRattlebridge FarmThe Shabby NestSix Sisters’ Stuff, and Skip to My Lou.

Comments

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  1. Ruth Stark says:

    Thanks for the information. It makes me wonder.

  2. So I just took the quiz… and I am in shock. OMG. I think I need to dig into this a lot deeper!

  3. I scored ridiculously high on the assessment, and want to start some natural treatments, but I’m nursing – is it safe to use the herbs mentioned while breastfeeding?

    • I would check them out 1 by 1 if I were you. I can’t medically advise. Are you on a candida diet?

      • No, not yet.

        • Well, again, I am not a doc but I would do that first. If you follow my blog you will get only stuff that is candida friendly. I have some grains but if you watch them typically you can do OK and that way you don’t need to worry about the nursing. I might be able to help if need be. Look up a few herbs you’d like and let me know. I think the diet on Whole Approach is quite good – they have stages listed out for you. I should get something like that on my blog.

  4. Sigh. I scored a 334. I know it. I have struggled with a candida diagnosis for 20+ years. No diet has helped long term and my pregnancies made it worse. Much worse. I know I gave candida to both of my children and I am working hard to help them not have to suffer like I have. I pray my husband finally gets it soon for them as he doesn’t take my food restrictions seriously.

    Unfortunately, probiotics and fermented food cause an extremely violent reaction in my body and my list of foods I can eat is getting slim. I am now allergic to chicken, turkey, and pork and very likely sensitive to beef and maybe all meat. Not a fan of that.

    I am going to look into some homeopathic remedies to add in gut healing and am looking for an extremely knowledgeable dietary consultant to help me identify all the foods I can’t tolerate (as the list has grown since last tested) and create a customized gut healing diet similar to GAPS. While I have used many diets to control candida I haven’t used them to heal the lining of my leaky gut and rid my body of the huge candida imbalance I have.

    I tell people constantly that they have candida and people just give me the deer in headlights look. Hopefully this article helps many, many people. Best wishes.

    • OH My Lauren. Did you see the Heal Your Gut course on my site? It’s in progress right now but I wonder if that would be helpful for you. Did you see my series on Fermented Foods? Take a look at it and get back to me. I would be interested to hear what you think. Take care.

  5. I have had a white coating on my tongue that started with a sore throat, after antibiotic and almost all of the liquid nystatin it went away, I then used my travel toothbrush again while out of town and it came back on my tongue again and this time I have been so run down and chest pain in the bronchial area even after finishing the nystatin liquid again nothing impoved… I now need a inhaler and finally going to the dr monday. So scared that it is something more than just candida. I tried gargling and drinking apple cider vinegar with water a couple times a day… No improvement and visited the bathroom in result.
    I don’t eat a lot period, so my diet is not consist of a lot of sweets.. Not anymore than ever in the past.
    Hope I find out what this is….

    • Hi April. I am not a doctor and can’t medically advise, but if the nystatin took it away that makes sense that it is candida. I read about getting rid of or sanitizing toothbrushes if you have it bad. Sometimes people needed to go to great lengths to get rid of it. I can’t speak to the bronchial pain so that sounds different. However, now that I am thinking and reading a little on the web, it sounds like you might have an underlying condition that is allowing the yeast to proliferate in your mouth. Whatever your definition is of “a lot of sweets”, if it were me I would personally get off of them totally and limit starchy foods but not eliminate them. Again, it’s not medical advice – just what I would do if it were me right now.

  6. Hi Adrienne, great post… I’m reposting on my FB site hopefully, it will get you some more hits. I was wondering, in your experience, how effective is that questionnaire with men? It seemed a bit grated towards women though I did see a couple male specific. I’ve done a little reach on candida also… scored 214 on the quiz. So, pretty sure I’m guilty… Though I’ve been eating paleo/WAPF for over a year. Beginning to see that candida is a #$%&* to eradicate.

    • Hmmm.. I don’t have experience with it but I will say that I think the folks at Whole Approach are really sharp. I don’t follow their protocol anymore and have thoughts about other things like heavy metals and more (like I don’t think their probiotics are the best) but I overall think they are good folks.

      Have you read my heavy metals post? I have soooo much more to share. I am working on so much — sorry I can’t get it out as fast as I would like.

  7. Our bodies naturally have yeast, in small amounts it’s not harmful. It’s overgrowth that leads to problems. Dr. LeAnne Deardeuff in her book “Inner Transformation Using Essential Oils” talks about yeast and offers a simple “saliva test” for candida. “First thing in the morning before you eat or drink anything, fill a glass with clean water, work up some sliva and spit into the glass on top the water. Check it every 15 min. for an hour. If it remains a blob on top the water, it is a good indication you don’t have candida. If the spittle spreads out, develops long trendils hanging down, sinks to the bottom of the glass or creates specks in the middle of the water, there is a good chance you have a yeast overgrowth.” Her book is about cleansing for better health, and includes a whole chapter on getting rid of yeast.

  8. BaseballMomOf3 says:

    OUCH! I just scored a 340!!! YIKES! I guess I need to look into this more!

  9. Lori Newton says:

    I LOVE this post! You are exactly right about candida. If our gut is not healthy, we can not be healthy.
    Below is a link to my facebook page where I share health information also. I also found fantastic products that have helped thousands of people get rid of candida and get their health back. You can read about it on my page. We have probiotics that are the best in the world. My friend had terrible psoriasis all over her body and our probiotics got rid of her psoriasis.
    https://www.facebook.com/restoredhealthnaturally

  10. This is great information, Adrienne! How could I have missed it the first time round?? I had SO many of those symptoms (not to mention almost ALL of the causes). I’m going to share this post on my “Living Well with Candida” Google+ board! Thank you! :)

  11. I scored 53 on the test but for about a year now I’ve had a lot of problems with nausea and gas build up, which can vary in strength day to day. I recently took some antibiotics for a week for an unrelated illness, but for that week I felt pretty good. Do you think the antibiotics killed some of the bacteria? I still have no idea what is causing my symptoms, despite multiple blood tests etc.

  12. been wondering what has been up with me for a while, but all my symtoms were for different things so i thought it was all in my head. this is the first thing i’ve found where all my symtoms match and after scoring 369 on that test i think i do need to look into it a whole lot more. thanks for the help!