Candida, what’s that?

This is a link to an in depth, scientific article that fully explains what a systemic fungal infection is and how it manifests in the body.  We all, men, women, kids, have bacteria and fungus, like Candida, living in our bodies.  When these get out of balance due to poor diet, too many antibiotics, taking birth control pills and excessive stress we can experience a whole host of symptoms.  Unfortunately our American diet of sugar, white carbohydrates, soda, alcohol, too few veggies and too much meat is one of the root causes of a systemic Candida imbalance.

Please read this article for more information and check out these helpful sites:

Candida: Are You Suffering From A Yeast Overgrowth?

If many of the symptoms and factors listed below apply to you, it is likely that you’re suffering from candidiasis:

  • Bloating and discomfort, especially after meals.
  • Griping pains in your lower abdomen.
  • Constipation or diarrhoea.
  • Fatigue or muscle weakness.
  • Muscle or joint pains, or arthritis.
  • ‘Brain fog’, feelings of unreality or memory loss.
  • Thrush, athlete’s foot, ringworm or fungal infection of your nails.
  • Urinary tract infection or vaginal discharge.
  • Depression or tearfulness.
  • ‘Low’ immune system and frequent infections.
  • Sensitivities to foods, tobacco smoke, chemical odours or perfume.
  • Antibiotics taken for more than one month or more than four times within 12 months.
  • Prednisolone or other steroid drugs taken for more than two weeks.
  • Anti-ulcer drugs (e.g. Zantac, Tagamet) taken for more than two months.
  • Birth control pill or hormone replacement therapy for more than two years.
  • Cravings for sugar, bread or alcohol.
  • Symptoms worse on damp, muggy days or in damp, mouldy places.

Read more from this article here.

25 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Amy Huebner Health Coach
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 16:23:07


    Antibiotics kill off the beneficial bacteria which normally suppress Candida. Mutant or wild type bacteria are created which are highly resistant to antibiotics.

    Nutritional Deficiencies. Poor diet, poor digestion and malabsorption from gluten intolerance all set the stage for poor resistance to Candida overgrowth.

    Antibiotic Residues in Commercial Meat: I encourage antibiotic and hormone-free meats. Honestly, if the animal products you are eating are NOT from an organic, ethical, sustainable, crulty free source, then you shouldn’t be eating them. Factory farmed animal foods are bad for you, the animals, the people working in those horrendous factories and the environment.

    Use of Recreational Drugs – Alcohol, cocaine, heroin, tobacco, etc. These drugs stress the liver, the adrenals, and the immune system. The attendant erratic nutrition further depletes well-being and resistance to Candida.

    The Pill. The hormones in birth control pills encourage yeast growth. Cortisone, Prednisone, etc. encourage yeast growth.

    Operations, Catheterization, Radiation, Anti-Cancer Drugs, Amalgam Fillings: Some holistic practitioners feel the leaching of mercury from silver/mercury amalgams puts a toxic load on the body, preventing full health and complete eradication of Candida.

    Anti-yeast Pharmaceuticals, including Oral and Topical Preparations are producing new resistant strains of these microorganisms. This can lead to recurrent infections that resist treatment and become a debilitating health problem.

    Reduced oxygen supplies: Oxygen will help kill germs, bacteria, virus and fungus; candida is a fungus. Having adequate oxygen stores reduces biochemical stresses and maximizes bodily function in the presence of parasites such as candida. Breathe deeply, often!!

    WHO CAN GET CANDIDA? Anyone. Men. women, children, the elderly, pregnant women (due to hormonal changes, stress and higher nutrient needs often not met). The yeast needs food, water, warmth and darkness. The yeast typically starts growing in the intestinal tract and spills over into the reproductive area.

    Note: Spermicide Noxynol-9 kills healthy bacteria in the female reproductive system.

    Excerpted from:


  2. Trackback: 2010 in review « The Candida Diaries
  3. primallykosher
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 15:40:23

    I never understood why fungi (like portabello and baby bellos) and wines which are a different species than candida albicans affect it. It also sounds like you will always have it but have to keep carbs under control. Under 150 carbs a day?


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Nov 03, 2011 @ 14:42:54

      Yes, I avoid foods with yeast in them, like beer, marmite and nutritional yeast. I get a reaction to those foods pretty quickly! Fungus, like mushrooms and in certain cheeses, is very different from the Candida yeast. Mushrooms are really beneficial to the immune system and some, like Reishi, have anti-Candida properties! I do stick to a low carbohydrate diet, I think I consume around 40-60 grams per day.


  4. Siobhan MacMahon
    Jan 14, 2012 @ 03:15:35

    I have read that nutritional yeast does not promote candida overgrowth. Is it problematical for everyone with yeast overgrowth ?


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Jan 14, 2012 @ 15:34:47

      You are right, I don’t think that eating nutritional yeast will cause a Candida over growth. My husband loves Marmite which is a nutritional yeast paste full of essential B vitamins and he eats it on sourdough toast all the time. Once someone has a Candida imbalance I would recommend staying away from yeasty foods like nutritional yeast, beer (especially home brew), breads, anything with yeast in it. Obviously beer and bread are a no on the Candida diet anyway. Even though the yeast you might get in a foods is a different kind from Candida, my body reacts negatively, kinda like, hey we have too much yeast, we don’t need anymore, no matter what kind it is, enough already!


  5. Deri-Anne
    Mar 23, 2012 @ 06:10:54

    Dear Amy,

    Thanks so much for your site and sharing. I am in phase 1 of an ACD and am going pretty well with it. Can I ask what about sourdough breads (obv. in small, infrequent amounts on ACD), partic. millet, amaranth, kamut or rye?
    Many thanks.


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Mar 23, 2012 @ 14:45:24

      I don’t eat bread, even sourdough made with non-wheat grains, it’s just not worth it for me. I’d wait until you feel like you are more fully recovered and start with adding in one whole food at a time, like beans, or oats, or berries and see how your body responds over the course of a week!


      • Naomi
        May 03, 2013 @ 22:43:51

        Hi Amy,
        In a recent post you have a recipe for Rye sourdough that you seem to indicate eating. Although you have mentioned here you do not eat bread at all. Have you re-introduced bread to your diet? I cannot really imagine that once someone gets their candida back in balance they can never eat bread again.

      • Amy Huebner Health Coach
        May 06, 2013 @ 15:33:18

        Hi Naomi,

        Thank you for your comment! I do eat a small piece of rye bread every once in a while as it has many health benefits, which I linked to in the post. 100% rye sourdough is the ONLY bread I ever eat and ONLY when I am feeling great. I eat a no carb no suagr Candida diet about 95% of the time because that’s what makes me feel great and once in a while I will eat something that is not on the the diet: a glass of champagne, a bit of rye bread, cheese pakoras at my favorite Indian restaurant, because sometimes the enjoyment of the food far outweighs the bit of a tummy ache I might experience later : – ) Every body is different. Some of my coaching clients with Candida, after a long period of following a strict no carb, no sugar diet are able to incorporate beans and quinoa back into their diets on a regular basis. Others have a very strong reaction to any carbs or sugars even after years on the diet. It really depend on a lot of things, how you got sick, your stress levels and how you manage stress and so on. Thank you for the opportunity to clarify this and for reading my blog!


  6. p.
    Sep 25, 2012 @ 08:57:15

    Hi Amy, I recently found out the importance of Candida infection in our health and decided to cope with it seriously.
    I found out by my self that sugar and is bad for candida (the symptoms just got worse when I ate/drank) and this is how I started looking for candida and nutrition.

    Until now no doctor had ever told me to avoid sugar ! It makes sense of course if you consider that I live in Greece where homopathy although its a greek word doesnt get much of respect. 🙂

    Anyway since the doctors dont beleive that Candida is a problem and all they do is giving me pills and tell me that I gonna have it for the rest of my life I have no other choice but to do my own research. The problem is that I have no one to turn to when I facing questions such as: can I eat chili? apple cide vinegar? how will I know that I have been cured? Is it going to affect my fertility? I think yes by doctor said its irrelevant.

    There some foods that some say that are good for candida, others that they do harm. Which is the most trustworthy internet site?

    i would really appreciate your opinion,

    Best regards



    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Sep 25, 2012 @ 15:38:27

      Hi there, I too did a lot of discovering on my own and have put some good resources on my blog as well as my health coaching website: If you eliminate sugars and most carbohydrates for your diet, support your immune system, get plenty of rest and herbals teas, you can eliminate the excess Candida and get your body back into balance. It will not affect, as far as I know, your fertility. I would however, avoid getting pregnant until your yeast symptoms have cleared up.



  7. Denise Jones
    Oct 12, 2013 @ 00:34:22

    Hi Amy, I recently found out I have a Candida allergy. I am constantly ill with several illnesses ie, uncontolled Asthma, Migraines, IBS to name a few. About a month before I learned of this allergy I was drinking apple cider vinegar and water for acid reflux. Per the website I could drink this up to three times a day. I was fine the first two time I drank it (even though it did not help the reflux very much) but the third time I drank it I immediately felt nauseous and threw up a hugh ball of yeast. I don’t mean to be crude but it looked just like the yeast that you use when making bread. After this happened I read that vinegar makes yeast form??? Have you ever heard of anyone expelling yeast??? I have asked several doctors and none have every heard of anything like this. I will say after this happened some of the side effects of a yeast over load subsided, I no longer have the body odor, and my acne has cleared up somewhat. I have started the a strict diet and have started taking probiotics and using coconut oil as well as drinking aloe vera juice, and taking garlic pills. Another questions I have is what do I do as far as my asthma. Anytime I have an attack I am given steroids which feed the yeast. Then in turn the yeast aggregates the asthma. I don’t know what to do at this point. I feel like I am on a merry go round, but I am not enjoying this ride at all.
    Thanks for any information you are able to share.


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Oct 14, 2013 @ 17:03:55

      Hi Denise,

      Thanks for your comment, yep, I have heard of what you describe and, from your comment, it sounds like the raw apple cider vinegar worked in helping your body kill and expel excess Candida!!

      You can try UNsweetened Fire Cider to help combat Candida, as well as help with lung health and inflammation. Those steroids are tough to recover from, maybe daily unsweetened Fire Cider will help you stay healthy- horseradish is a powerful medicinal food! I started making this tonic to maintain a healthy balance after years of rotating antifungal supplements and a strict candida diet. I still maintain a candida diet, as you can tell from my blog : – )

      Let me know if you have any other questions and thanks for reading and commenting!!



  8. Antti O. Vikstedt
    Feb 21, 2014 @ 23:58:08

    Hi Amy,

    I’m so glad i found your pages! I’m a guy who developed this condition about a year ago. It crept in in a subtle way, but for the last three months it’s been quite pronounced, so there is no denying it any more. I first dropped processed sugar and wheat three months ago, but that was not sufficient i’m afraid. So two days ago i bit the bullet and quit all fruit and milk products as well, except pure unsweetened yogurt. I’m weaning off of coffee as i write this. I would have a few questions for you if you don’t mind: How long should i stay on this strict diet (not even fruit)? Can I still enjoy the occasional whipped cream dessert with an orange zest and a dollop of vanilla imitation (non alcoholic variety)? And last but not least, what’s with NOT drinking coffee at all? Sounds like a death sentence to all that’s left of my little gourmet related pleasures…not even decaf? Really?


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Feb 22, 2014 @ 16:31:08

      Hi Antti,
      Great to hear you are finding my recipes useful!
      It is extremely important to stay off of all sugars and carbohydrates, including starchy veggies, alcohol, grains, beans, fruits, etc, untill you no longer have Candida symptoms. It is different for each individual. It took me over a decade to get sick to the point where I started the Candida diet. It took 2 years for my symptoms to stabilize. I have been on this diet for 7 years and would never even think about eating the way I used to, that’s what made me so sick! When you are no longer experienceing symptoms and feel very healthy, try adding in a serving of beans onve a day for a few days. If your symptoms come back, you are not ready yet. It’s trial and error but your body know exactly what it needs to be healthy. The best thing you can do is to tune into your inner wisdom and learn to listen to your body.

      I love whipped cream! I eat cheese all the time, great desserts! Full fat dairy, cultured dairy are fine on this diet. You want to avoid sugars so low fat dairy or milk, is out because it contains quite a bit of lactose aka milk sugars.

      Caffeine kills off bacteria in your digestive system, so the proboitics from your yogurt will be killed off from the caffeine in your coffee, which, unless it’s cold brewed is also very hard on the digestive system. Right now you need to be rebuilding your internal rain forest not killing it with coffee! Treat yourself once or twice a week to a decaf cold brew. Take probiotic supplements, eat organic full fat yogurt, raw sauerkraut, any lacto fermented food will be beneficial to you, at least once a day. I like to drink hot mate tea (full of vitamins and minerals and a nice gentle caffeine) with some unsweetened almond milk and a few drops of liquid stevia in the morning instead of coffee or earl grey tea (also very high in caffeine).

      Since you are just starting out on a no sugar/no carbohydrate diet, focus for now on all the new foods and recipes and on how much better you feel, week after week. There are foods you have cut out that your body will reject even once you are healthy. There are foods you will be able to add back in in moderation. Listen to your gut, it won’t steer you wrong!


  9. Antti O. Vikstedt
    Feb 23, 2014 @ 13:50:42

    Thank you so much, this is very useful!


  10. Amy Huebner Health Coach
    Feb 23, 2014 @ 18:51:14

    Antti, great to hear, keep your questions coming!


  11. Antti O. Vikstedt
    Feb 25, 2014 @ 16:13:41

    OK, since you encouraged me to ask questions… 😉 Here’s one more: I realize this is not strictly speaking what this forum is about, but here goes anyway: Long story short, I’ve been on the Diet now about a week, everything harmful excluded, besides coffee (weaning off as i write this) and i’ve noticed something unusual. I’m a fairly fit guy who exercises 4-5 times per week, but since i started this diet i find i become exhausted within 10-15 minutes. Also, i feel as though my body starts releasing large amounts of lactic acid into my muscles, which in turn stops me from exercising. Any ideas what could be causing this? I eat enough, including protein, loads of green veggies, salads with oils, as well as nuts. I drink a lot of water and herbal tea. plus take supplements.


  12. Amy Huebner Health Coach
    Feb 25, 2014 @ 18:04:58

    Hi Antti,
    It sounds like the diet is working and that you are experiencing fatigue as part of what is called ‘die off’ where you are starving and killing the excess candida and your body is working hard to eliminate the dead yeast cells and the toxins they release. Take it easy, don’t push yourself. Rest when you are tired, take walks, keep drinking plenty of water and herbals teas and getting enough healthy food to eat! You are doing great, good work on cutting out the coffee! Be gentle with your body during this healing process and keep listening to the messages it is sending you.


  13. Antti O. Vikstedt
    Feb 25, 2014 @ 20:01:54

    Thank you again for good, informative advice, much appreciated!


  14. Tasha
    Apr 23, 2014 @ 16:55:25

    I am having a difficult time trying to maintain a vegan lifestyle and eliminate candida. I just finished, “The Candida Cure”, and I see that I must remove peas from my diet for ninety days. This puts on damper on my pea protein post strength training shake. I also use beans a source of vegan protein in my dinner plans on a daily basis. Those must be eliminated due to their starchy content. I am having trouble trying to figure out how to maintain the right amount of vegan protein for the breakdown of muscle fibers while strength training, and managing a candida free first phase diet. Any advice (other than switching to hemp protein)?


    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Apr 23, 2014 @ 18:01:27

      Hi Tasha,

      You can certainly use hemp seeds and flax seeds as well as vegan protein powder made from rice (no carbs, it’s just protein extracted from the rice, I think it’s called ‘vegan rice protein powder”!). Does your pea protein have more than 3-4 grams of carbs per serving? You just have to keep carbs and sugars to a very minimum, I eat peas sometimes! Also, strength training while you recover from a serious, systemic illness might not be a good idea. You body needs to use it’s energy to balance and eliminate Candida! Rest when you need to, take walks, do yoga daily, and take it easy on yourself.

      I know you won’t like to hear this but I would strongly suggest eating high quality, certificated humane animal foods: eggs, cheese, butter, pork chops! These are all healthy foods if they are from healthy, free ranging animals raised on small organic farms. I was a vegetarian for 13 years (part of how I got sick, way too many carbs, not enough protien and fat) and since I am allergic to soy, I soon realized, on the Candida diet, after losing too much weight, that I needed a concentrated source of protein and fat, the kind that you can only get from animal foods. Eggs and full fat dairy are highly nutritious and calorie dense foods. I would strongly suggest eating them until you are healthy again. You need to eat what your body is asking for, even if that goes against what your brain says, for now.

      I hope this is helpful. -Amy


  15. Jon Paul
    Dec 23, 2014 @ 03:46:09


    I have been suffering with candida for years and finally decided to do something about it. I have read several articles and I am a bit confused about the types of carbs we should be eating. I understand that oats and brown rice is acceptable, but is there a limit? I grew up in the south and love rice, but would I be hurting myself be eating it excessively? If so are there better alternatives I should be looking into?

    Also, I am looking into proper probiotics. Is there a minimum culture count I should consider?

    Thanks for any information you can send me.


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