Candida Diet Basics

Anyone with an overgrowth of Candida yeast in their body will find totally changing their diet from the typical American diet the best course of action. The Candida diet seems drastic, but it’s unlikely anyone with a Candida problem will see improvement if they don’t follow the complete course of treatment – diet, antifungals, and lifestyle changes.

The purpose of the Candida diet is to starve the Candida yeast of anything that will feed it. Since it thrives on sugar and refined carbohydrates, any items containing them will be removed. It will be necessary to learn a new way of eating and relating to food. Fortunately, besides getting the Candida back into balance with other beneficial bacteria in the system, changing the diet may also affect your body in other positive ways, like reducing your risk of obesity, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

The main item to remove from the diet is sugar which is Candida’s favorite food. Don’t be surprised to find sugar cravings increase while changing the diet. In fact, the cravings can become increasingly intense. If anyone falls to the temptation, they’ll want to forgive themselves and move on.

Sugar is found in one form or another in most foods found in the grocery store. Learning to read the labels and looking for the following items will help anyone eliminate sugar from their diets: beet sugar, maple sugar, date sugar, organic cane syrup, dextrose, maltose, lactose, maltodextrin, fructose, high fructose corn syrup, brown sugar, powdered sugar, honey, or molasses. As far as Candida is concerned, sugar is sugar; it doesn’t care which form it gets.

The Candida diet also requires reducing or eliminating the following: sugar, alcohol, wheat, yeast, caffeine, preservatives and additives, refined and processed foods, moldy foods such as cheese, and dairy (except yogurt and butter as they don’t contain as much lactose).

Increase low carbohydrate foods, foods high in protein, vegetables, small amounts of complex carbohydrates. This may include buffalo, chicken, beef, turkey, lamb, ostrich, and fish. Vegetables to include would be kale, lettuce, cucumbers, zucchini, cauliflower, green beans, spinach, onions, garlic, green peppers, and avocados. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, corn, beans, winter squash, and carrots are high in carbs and should be eaten sparingly.

Grains other than wheat – rice, oats, barley, spelt, and rye – can be eaten but they are higher in carbohydrates. Some people, however, cannot eat them. Nuts are another source of protein, but not everyone will be able to eat them either. Each person will want to follow their body’s cues whether to eat grains and nuts or not. It is important to eliminate them at the beginning phase of the Candida diet, but may be brought back after some progress is made.

Fruits contain natural sugars, so they will be eliminated until the Candida is reduced. Low sugar fruit includes strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and pears. Fruits with higher levels of sugar will need to be avoided. Anyone faced with eating sweetened foods might want to use the following sugar alternatives: fruit juice, barley malt, rice syrup, agave, or Stevia.

No two people are affected by yeast overgrowth in exactly the same way. What may work for one person with great results may not work the same way for someone else. Treating Candida is often trial and error even though the methods of treatment are the same. Learn as much as you can not only about the Candida diet, but yeast overgrowth in general and you’ll soon be able to find what works best for you.

Cynthia Perkins, M.Ed. is a holistic health counselor who has researched Candida and it’s impact on our physical and mental health for almost two decades. Learn how Candida Albicans can affect your mental and physical health and how the Diet for Candida can help you.

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