Holistic Health and Natural Healing Articles ~
Candida: A Serious Health Concern
Help for Urinary Tract Infections
Candida infection (or yeast infection) is a serious condition that affects about one-third of the entire population of this country. It is caused by a yeast organism known as Candida albicans, a benign organism that primarily resides in our intestinal tract but can also be found on the skin, in the mouth and vagina.
Our intestines is home to thousands of billions of microorganisms. Normally, most of the organisms, about 85-90%, are so-called "friendly bacteria" while the remainder are relatively "unfriendly" yeast and parasites. Under normal conditions, our immune system, with the help of friendly bacteria, stop Candida from proliferating uncontrollably and causing health problems. If the yeast is allowed to grow, they will multiply and change from benign to a pathogenic form.
The conditions that are favorable for yeast growth include decreased immunity, loss of beneficial bacteria from the colon, and specific nutritional factors. Your resistance to Candida can be lowered by chronic exposure to common environmental chemicals, incomplete nutrition, frequent infections and many other causes. Candida yeast itself manufactures a number of toxins, which lower your immunity even further.
Antibiotics also help the yeast grow by destroying friendly intestinal bacteria. You do not have to take antibiotics yourself, to get a yeast infection from Candida Albicans. Even if you don't take them, you are probably still getting them from eating meat and poultry with antibiotic residue. Hormones, such as birth control pills, steroids (cortisone and prednisone) as well as pregnancy also encourage the growth of yeast. Eating foods which are low in fiber and high in refined carbohydrates and simple sugars (white sugar, candy, cake, cookies, white bread, pasta) as well as foods with high yeast or mold content (bread, cheese, mushrooms) also stimulate Candida growth.
Once Candida Albicans proliferates and becomes pathogenic, it will release dozens of different toxic substances that affect all the organs and tissues of the body causing multiple health problems. The symptoms of Candida overgrowth are so diverse that it is hard to them all by one cause, unless you know about this disease.
The symptoms of Candida infection include abdominal distention, bloating, excessive gas, belly aches, cramps, chronic heartburn, constipation, diarrhea, gastritis, colitis, vaginal yeast infection, pain during urination, PMS, emotional problems, depression, agitation, anxiety, memory loss, weakness, decreased concentration, headaches, dizziness, frequent and recurrent bacterial or viral infections, increase in (sometimes the sudden appearance of) chemical sensitivities and allergic reactions, worsening of asthma, various rashes, loss of sex drive and impotence, body aches, and weight gain or loss. This is not a complete list, just an example of how numerous and unrelated the symptoms can be.
Unfortunately, most doctors are not informed about this condition and are likely to suggest that "it is all in your head." However, if you have been suffering from some of these symptoms for an extended period of time, and you have some risk factors (antibiotics, hormones, diet) there is a good chance that you, like millions of Americans, are suffering from Candida infection.
It is possible to control this condition, but it will require some work on your part. You need to exclude sugars and simple carbohydrates from your diet for a few months. You have to avoid antibiotics and hormones. While it is important to undergo a thorough internal cleansing for overall health, for continued protection against illness you must take nutritional supplements that eliminate yeast and parasites from your intestinal tract while providing helpful beneficial bacteria.
What is candida? Candida, also known as thrush, is a negative yeast infection that starts in the digestive system and then spreads to other parts of the body. Women are most likely to get yeast infections although millions of men have the condition. Yeast infections are uncomfortable, irritating and at times embarrassing for women.
Candida yeast is often started by taking antibiotics for other health conditions. Negative bacteria is killed off but it is the friendly bacteria, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, that brings about uncontrolled yeast growth, commonly known as candida yeast infection. This type of infection can be dangerous if left untreated. The yeast and bacteria associated with it can get into the blood stream from where it may find its way to other parts of the body leading to sore joints, chest pain, sinus problems and worse.
Candida covers the intestinal walls which interfers with digestion and food nutrients. This prevents the body from functioning normally and can lead to numerous health problems. Men, who may not be infected, are known to be carriers of candida. Some vaginal infections such as vaginitis are transmitted through sexual contact.