Understanding your health starts in the gut. The intestines are the largest organ in the body and are a key part of a complex system of digestion. This article’s information is for a better understanding of the internal processes and how candida (yeast-like fungus) can create blockages due to improper eating habits.
Candida albicans is a yeast-like fungus that lives in the mouth and throat, the intestinal tract and the genital tract. Normally, the population of candida is in healthy balance with other intestinal flora. However, sometimes its population explodes because of various factors such as an improper diet, bursts of intense stress or ongoing low-grade stress that isn’t managed effectively combined with poor sleep/exercise routines or antibiotics or oral contraceptives—any dietary or lifestyle imbalances that compromise natural immunity can result in the yeast bacteria getting out of control and escaping the bounds of its normal abodes to other parts of the body.
An out-of-control population of the yeast bacteria has been linked to a multitude of seemingly unrelated symptoms, including abdominal bloating and gas, coated tongue, nausea, fatigue, respiratory system imbalance, frequent UTI, genital area infections, skin problems, spaciness and inability to focus and emotional imbalance. If left uncorrected, the different systems of the body become sluggish and ama-clogged, creating an even more favorable environment for the growth of the yeast fungi and setting up a vicious cycle of poor health.
Ayurvedic healers recommend a holistic approach to restoring balance that includes diet, lifestyle recommendations and herbs and spices. It takes patience, discipline and a full commitment to one’s health to restore balance and stay in balance, but the results are well worth the effort.
If you are pregnant or lactating, or experiencing mental, emotional or physical symptoms, it is best to consult a physician who can recommend an individual program for balance after an assessment. Here are some suggestions for restoring balance:
Dietary dos and don’ts:
First, what you should stay away from:
- Avoid sweet, heavy, cold foods. Sugars create an environment that facilitates the growth of yeast bacteria. Sweet, heavy, cold foods overtax an already weakened digestive system and create mote internal toxins. Fruit juices and very sweet fruits such as grapes should also be avoided.
- Avoid leftovers. Even if refrigerated, leftovers are conducive to growth of mold and bacteria, and they are harder to digest than fresh foods, prepared fresh and eaten immediately.
- Avoid caffeine, nicotine, alcohol and carbonated beverages.
- Avoid processed and junk foods and refined flours. Reduce white rice.
- Avoid yeasted breads and pastas, aged cheeses, mushrooms and peanuts.
- Avoid fermented foods such as vinegar and products that contain fermented foods as ingredients.
An Ayurvedic diet is a good place to start your balancing
- Eat plenty of vegetables. Include small portions of bitter and pungent vegetables such as bitter greens, bitter gourd, tender fenugreek sprouts and daikon radish in combination with tridoshic vegetables such as zucchini, loki squash, asparagus, carrot, green beans and tender greens. Avoid or minimize nightshades, which tend to clog the channels of the body, except for small amounts of cayenne if you can tolerate it, used in combination with other spices and herbs. Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli and Brussels sprouts in small quantities, chopped small and cooked with digestion-enhancing spices are also helpful. Ayurvedic healers recommend briefly steam-cooking vegetables, covered, rather than eating them raw, to improve digestibility.
Always look deeper/closer into what it is you want to learn, not taking one answer over another. Learn, listen, educate and experience in body and mind.