Candida alternative therapy, natural cure, herbal remedy and cleanse treatment, vitamins, diet, supplements, by Ray Sahelian, M.D.
March 16, 2014

The advent of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and the increasing prevalence of compromised individuals in the community due to modern therapeutic advances have resulted in a resurgence of opportunistic infections, including candida infection. However, many people with various vague symptoms falsely believe they are infected with candida whereas their symptoms may be due to an different reason.
   Candida infections rank as the fourth most common cause of nosocomial (infections that are a result of treatment in a hospital) bloodstream infections. Although Candida albicans remains the most common pathogen, emerging trends in invasive candidiasis are notable for a dramatic increase in infections due to non-albicans candida species. Potentially fatal infections are commonplace in seriously ill hospitalized patients.

Overdiagnosis? Do you really have it?
All sorts of symptoms have been attributed to candida infection, including allergies, fatigue, anxiety, depression, headaches, mood swings, frequent colds and flu, constipation, diarrhea, etc. In almost all cases, a careful medical history, examination, and laboratory tests reveal that the symptoms suffered by the patient are not due to candida but another cause. Therefore, one has to avoid the impulse of a natural candida cleanse as recommended by many books and some health care practitioners but instead search for the real cause of the symptoms.

Candida yeast vaginal Infection
Vulvovaginal candidiasis is a common problem for women, yet there are many gaps in knowledge about candida's pathogenesis, immunity, and its reputed association with antibiotic use. Candida albicans is, by far, the predominant yeast isolate. Non-albicans isolates cause significantly more frequent soreness, dyspareunia and recurrences than Candida albicans.

Oral thrush
This is a yeast infection that causes white patches in the mouth and on the tongue. Thrush is most common in babies and older adults, but it can occur at any age. You get thrush when Candida, normally found on the body, grows out of control. Medications that upset the balance of microorganisms in the mouth and may cause thrush include corticosteroids, antibiotics, and birth control pills. To reduce the risk or as a form of treatment:

Floss and brush your teeth at least twice a day
Avoid mouthwashes or sprays since they may destroy the normal balance of microorganisms in your mouth.
Limit the amount of sugar and simple carbohydrates
Avoid smoking.
Take probiotic pills such as acidophilus pills.
Eat as much fresh garlic as you can tolerate.

Efficacy of garlic paste in oral candidiasis.
Trop Doct. 2005.
In a randomized trial of 56 patients, topical application of garlic paste for 14 days was found to be as effective as that of clotrimazole solution in suppressing clinical signs of oral candidiasis. The results of this preliminary study explore the possible role of garlic paste in the treatment of oral candidiasis.

Anti candida diet, cleanse?
Various books have recommended a cleanse using a candida diet. You can find as many variations of a candida cleanse diet as their are authors of books on the topic or website writers. In my opinion, a healthy diet is all that is needed for most people to assure a healthy immune system. No specific candida diet is required. Getting a deep sleep at night is crucial for fighting off any germs that invade our body. You may also consider taking some probiotic supplements, and consuming more herbs including garlic and onion.

Supplements and herbs as treatment
This yeast infection that can affect both men and women. A candida infection can appear in any part of the body such as the underarms, the nails, the mouth, the genitals and between the toes. Treatment depends on the part of the body that is infected. Systemic candida infection is usually seen in patients with cell-mediated immune deficiency, and those receiving aggressive cancer treatment, immunosuppression, or transplantation therapy.

Cinnamon could be of benefit

The in vitro activity of vaginal Lactobacillus with probiotic properties against Candida.
Infect Dis Obstet Gynecol 2005.
Lactobacilli, the predominant vaginal microorganisms in healthy premenopausal women, control other members of the vaginal microflora and thus protect against bacterial vaginosis and urinary tract infections. It has been claimed that some lactobacilli are also protective against Candida vaginitis. Little is known, however, about the mechanisms by which these lactobacilli can control vaginal populations of Candida and prevent vaginitis. To address this question, vaginal Lactobacillus strains with known antagonistic properties against bacteria were tested for their cell surface properties, adhesion to vaginal cell lines in vitro and antagonistic activities against Candida. A small proportion of the lactobacilli tested adhered strongly to cultured vaginal epithelial cells and inhibited growth of Candida albicans but not of C. pseudotropicalis. This anticandidal activity was in some Lactobacillus strains related to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) production, but catalase treatment did not suppress this activity in other Lactobacillus strains, suggesting alternative mechanism(s). Moreover, tested vaginal Candida strains were resistant to relatively high concentrations of H2O2 that markedly exceeded those produced by even the most active Lactobacillus strains.

Propolis solution for the treatment of chronic vaginitis.
Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2005.
To evaluate the efficacy of 5% propolis solution in recurrent vaginitis. Fifty-four patients with recurrent vaginal infections having undergone at least one cycle of antibiotic treatment were instructed to apply a 5% aqueous propolis solution as a vaginal douche for seven days. Vaginal smears and specific symptoms were evaluated at baseline and 14 days after treatment. Long-term well-being was assessed by telephone interview six months after follow-up. At the follow-up, the vaginal smears of 41 patients (75%) had improved. Forty-seven patients (87%) reported reliefs concerning at least one complaint. Associated improvement of smear and well-being was observed in 36 women (66%). After 6 months, 33 patients (61%) were satisfied with their condition without having undergone further treatment. Propolis may have a role as an alternative treatment for chronic vaginal infection.

Candida cleansing
Many people mistakenly believe that some of their vague symptoms of fatigue or low mood are due to candida infection, and hence try various over the counter products marketed for " candida cleansing. " I have not seen any research that validates the use of these products.

Candida yeast infection symptom
Some of the vaginal candida yeast infection symptoms include: Abnormal vaginal discharge which can range from a slightly watery, white discharge to a thick, white, chunky discharge (like cottage cheese); Vaginal and labial itching and burning; Redness of the vulvar skin; Pain with intercourse; and sometimes discomfort on urination.

Research
Antifungal activities and action mechanisms of compounds from Tribulus terrestris
J Ethnopharmacol. 2005.
Saponins are known to be antifungal and antibacterial. The in vitro antifungal activities of the eight saponins against five yeasts, Candida albicans, glabrata, parapsilosis, tropicalis and Cryptococcus neoformans were studied using microbroth dilution assay. In vivo activity of tribulus terrestris in a Candida albicans vaginal infection model was studied in particular. The results showed that tribulus terrestris was very effective against several pathogenic candidal species and Cryptococcus neoformans in vitro. It is noteworthy that tribulus terrestris saponins were very active against Candida albicans and Cryptococcus neoformans. Phase contrast microscopy showed that tribulus terrestris inhibited hyphal formation, an important virulence factor of Candida albicans, and transmission electron microscopy showed that tribulus terrestris destroyed the cell membrane of Candida albicans. In conclusion, tribulus terrestris has significant in vitro and in vivo antifungal activity, weakening the virulence of Candida albicans and killing fungi through destroying the cell membrane.

Biochimie. 2013. Antifungal property of hibicuslide C and its membrane-active mechanism in Candida albicans. In this study, the antifungal activity and mode of action(s) of hibicuslide C derived from Abutilon theophrasti were investigated.

Candida yeast infection, cleanse diet  and cure questions
Q. What is your opinion regarding taking oral progesterone for individual with candida over growth, infection, food allergy? Which is better between "Oral progesterone / progesterone cream" in the situation of candida infection? I saw some articles states that it is better to treat candida before taking progesterone supplement. Is it true? Could I have both treated at the same time? I mean taking grape seed extract and oral progesterone at the same time?
   A. Firstly, I am skeptical of a candida diagnosis since too many people think they have it when there is another reason for the symptoms. Second, I have not seen studies regarding the use of progesterone in relation to candida overgrowth. I am also not aware of research with dhea or pregnenolone in terms of candida infection.

Q. Is AHCC helpful for a candida infection?
   A. I have not seen such research.

Q. Would the fermented red rice yeast extract contribute to Candida overgrowth in the GI tract? With Candida one tries to stay away from fermented foods and beverages--pickles, vinegar, wine, beer, etc.
   A. We are not aware of any research that red yeast rice extracts contributes to candida overgrowth.

Q. I am writing to ask if you would consider writing about candida or yeast overgrowth. I researched 'yeast overgrowth' last April and immediately started an anti-yeast diet and taking natural supplements. Since May 1st 2006, my first day, and after 20+ years of trying I have rid myself of 50lbs!! I also have significant health improvements (a list of 32!) to be eternally grateful for.

Q. Do you know anything about Threelac Powder? Do you know if it really takes care of Internal Yeast?
   A. We are not familiar with Threelac powder supplement so we don't know if it is effective or not.

Q. Does nutritional yeast make candida worse?
   A. Eating nutritional yeast does not make it worse. They are different types of yeast and nutritional yeast is not a food source for candida.

Q. Thank you very much for your information on nutritional yeast not contributing to Candida. It was very enlightening and encouraging for me since I am fighting Candida. I understand there is a difference between Baker's yeast and nutritional yeast. Normally avoiding yeast isn't a big deal to me but in the health food stores there are a couple of healthy types I would like to eat - Rice and millet - but they contain yeast. Does consuming rice or millet nutritional yeast contribute to candida infection?
   A. I don't see how it would.

Q. Just want to let you know that I entirely disagree with Dr. Sahelian's opinion that candida infections / problem(s) are not widespread, and it is really sad that people coming to his web site will be getting that erroneous information, but hopefully most people will look further and consider other information available on this topic.
   A. I have no problems with people disagreeing with my opinion. I don't claim to know everything. But, it is helpful to present some research studies (not someone's opinion written in a book) that back up the claim that systemic candida infections are prevalent and are a common cause of disease.

I am driving myself nuts trying to figure out if taking inositol supplement will increase candida infection?
   I am not aware of any connection between inositol supplement use and candida.

I'm a 35 year old who has had systemic candida for 10 years now and of course doctors have called me a nut and denied everything yet my liver is disease not cirrhosis yet but enzymes have been up and down for years and now they are up for 3 months 2 times normal. they have never remained up like this always went back down quite quickly. i take milk thistle, phosphatidyl choline, cordyceps, 200 mg coq10, zinc 100 mg a day, and a beta blocker for high blood pressure, multivitamin, fish oil, betaine hydrochloride cause i have low stomach acid as i cant burp with baking soda in the morning for like 10 minutes and have serious malabsorption etc, all from candida which has causes chronic inflammation in my liver and intestines and even heart for 9 years. i have never been able to get well as everytime i treat the candida i just get worse, anyways i know u dont diagnose or treat anyone on here im just asking ur opinon as to if u think taking too many supplements like this that are supposedly good for the liver can actually be bad for it? everywhere on the net it seems ppl recommand all of them to take at once for liver disease. i have never gotten better taking these and i wonder if they can be bad taking this many at a time. I also have on hair analysis excess silicon and 24 hr urine silicon also shows excess slightly elevated silicon. could all the silicon from supplements containing silicon dioxide be bad or toxic to the body as i have been taking this much for 9 years now and most of them have silicon dioxide. i read alot on your website when researching health and u seem to know what ur talking about. hopefully u can give me ur opinion as im not asking u to tell me what to do just ur opinion. i also have had gastritis for like years from the candida and its recently gotten worse form doing a candida cleanse, what do u think is best for intestinal and stomach inflammation?
    Taking too many supplements may harm the body and cause fatigue and problems with sleep. I do not find hair analysis useful for most people as a way to diagnose or to find a cause of a health problem that leads to an effective treatment.

I recently came across a website about candida and I was wanting to know more about how it can affect the nervous system. I've read that a common by-product of candida is acetaldehyde, a known neurotoxin. Apparently, it disturbs acetylcholine production. I am curious if someone with leaky gut syndrome could have enough acetaldehyde in their system to deplete the acetylcholine to where they could become paralyzed? Are you aware of any biomarkers linking candida overgrowth and nervous system?
    I have not studied this topic in detail so I don't know for sure, but I doubt paralysis would occur from excess candida growth. The diagnosis of candida infection is often made without adequate proof.