Whether you’ve got thrush or Athlete’s foot, or you’re looking to avoid an infection taking hold in the first place, it’s worth putting your diet under the microscope. The foods we eat can have massive sway in the ability of an overgrowth of Candida to take up residence in your body. Here are our top 4 foods to boost your immunity against this notorious fungal infection.
Candida is a fungus which usually exists harmoniously in our bodies – from our skin to our gut – but when our immunity’s down, we can become vulnerable to Candida overgrowth. Humidity, chronic stress, antibiotics, alcohol and poor diet are all major contributors to the development of this fungal infection. Excess sugar, carbs, refined oils and grains are especially notorious for setting off a fungal flare-up as many of these foods not only throw your gut microbiome out of whack, but also happen to provide an appetising feast for Candida, which feeds and thrives on this stuff. If you're dealing with a stubborn infection, take comfort in the fact that you're not alone. In fact, it’s the most common fungal infection among humans. Take a look at the vast array of conditions Candida overgrowth can cause – from your head to your toes. Literally.
- Oral thrush
- Fungal mouth, throat and oesophageal infections
- Fungal eye infections
- Genital yeast infections
- Athlete’s foot
- Toenail fungus
Check out our other article HERE for a comprehensive rundown on all the signs and symptoms of Candida overgrowth. If any of these irritating, uncomfortable conditions have been plaguing you, it’s worth doing a dietary overhaul. That’s why we’re sharing our top 4 foods to help boost your immunity, improve your gut health and disrupt that Candida overgrowth. While these foods might not cure your infection, they’ll certainly help restore your microbiome and immunity, leaving these fungal menaces with an inhospitable environment.
This fragrant spice is a powerful antifungal which has been found to deter the spread of Candida – specifically in the gut. One of the heroes of turmeric is the curcumin content. This stuff is anti-inflammatory, which researchers finding it may reduce the growth and spread of Candida albicans, which is one of the most common species of Candida – it’s responsible for around 85% of vaginal yeast infections. Turmeric may also prevent Candida from taking hold of the cells in the mouth, with one study finding it worked better than anti-fungal drugs, and another showing it works synergistically with one drug known as fluconazole. The research showed that the turmeric combatted drug resistance and boosted the antifungal effects of the drug.
You might have heard this dairy product recommended before, and we’re here to confirm the rumours are true! Fermented foods like yoghurt play an essential role in clearing the way for healthy bacteria to colonise in your gut. Yoghurt in particular is rich in probiotics like lactobacillus – these help to destabilise Candida’s hold and get your gut acidity levels back where they should be. Other good fermented foods rich in these good gut bacteria include:
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) makes for a good dietary addition when you’re looking to inhibit the overgrowth of Candida – in fact, research shows that it can actually prevent the growth of this fungus. To reap the benefits of this stuff, you can:
- Gargle it
- Add it to your meal
- Dilute it in water
- Put some in your morning smoothie
But it’s also a powerful antifungal and antiviral agent, so toss a bit into your next salad dressing for a health boost.
This flavoursome veggie will be easy to incorporate into your diet, after all it’s a staple addition to stir fries, pasta dishes and bakes – and trust us, you’ll want to. Garlic is known for its antifungal properties which directly target Candida growth, along with boosting the gut microbiome. This helps ensure those good bacteria take up more real estate in your gut, while limiting the foothold of unwanted fungal house guests.
Plus, garlic promotes a healthy lymphatic system, especially those of the colon and liver, which in turn clears out toxins and strengthens the body’s immune defences to infection – including Candida overgrowth.
Tip: You’ll want to eat around 2 to 5 cloves of garlic along with a healthy fat like coconut oil or olive oil. This is because it’s best to eat garlic with a source of fat so it doesn’t irritate the stomach – we recommend coconut oil as it happens to be another candida-fighting powerhouse. This is down to its Lauric and Caprylic acid content, which help put a stop to Candida overgrowth and give your immunity that much-needed boost. Lauric acid is particularly beneficial for preventing Candida infections of the mouth – also known as thrush.
Important note: If you suspect you have Candida overgrowth, it’s important to head down to your doctor to get checked out. They’ll be able to give you a diagnosis – after all, fungal infections can share similar symptoms with a number of other conditions. They may also recommend a treatment plan, so remember that these foods play a supplementary role in your health.
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