HOW CAN I CONTROL CANDIDA AND RE-BALANCE MY BODY?
There is no denying Candida is very difficult to control and it requires great commitment and patience. Candida thrives on sugar and refined carbohydrates, however if you stay light-hearted and focused, with time you can conquer this imbalance. Heck, you might even shed a few kilos in the process of giving up sugar, wheat other refined items. There’s your reward!
Please first see Candida Overgrowth blog post to identify symptoms involved with this imbalance to see if you think you may be experiencing this gut imbalance.
Traditional treatment is with Nystatin, which has had mixed results. Like any medication, Nystatin will only help alleviate symptoms and will not address the underlying cause for the yeast overgrowth.
Through cutting sugar and freeing your-self of sugar cravings the Candida diet helps one become more in tune with our body and enjoy the benefits of strengthening our digestive and immune systems. We stop craving blood sugar fixes and start craving foods that our body innate needs and wants. Many people report that they discover an array of new menu items all of which support a healthier lifestyle.
CANDIDA DIET IN A NUT SHELL
Here’s What To Avoid:
AVOID the 3 main offenders; the big three include Wheat, Yeast and Sugar.
Avoid all foods containing these items including pastas, cakes, jams, yeasted breads, biscuits, sweets, honey, glucose and sugar. Stevia may be used but ensure it’s a high quality brand that doesn’t have poor ingredients.
Avoid sauces and spreads that may contain yeast. Avoid oils and oil-rich products. Butter, olive oil and flaxseed oil may still be included. Avoid vinegar. Yeast and “dampness-creating” foods are those that are cold in temperature, too sweet or salty, mucus producing, stale or rancid.
Eliminate all dairy products (except butter) and replace with sheep, goat or soy products.
Eliminate all fruit for two weeks except for lemons, grapefruits and limes.
Avoid yams, sweet potatoes and potatoes.
Alcoholic beverages and other intoxicants.
During the first few weeks focus on white meats such as chicken and seafood (preferably chemical free), which are easier to digest, then after two weeks you may re-introduce red meats.
Avoid left-over foods, nuts and seeds (unless they have just been oven-roasted) dried fruits or cheeses – any foods that are likely to carry mould.
Too many raw foods.
Any food in excessive amounts.
Complicated meals of many ingredients which promote pathogenic fermentation – exactly what yeast loves. Focus on simple food combinations.
Miso, soy sauce, tempeh and tofu can be tolerated in small amounts.
HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN HAVE:
Generally in the first few days when denying the body sugar and wheat there is often an increase of cravings and symptoms so set yourself up to win by surrounding yourself with the following:
✓ Eat plain, full fat acidophilus yoghurt every day.
✓ Taking acidophilus and bifida supplements twice day. The use of probiotics is very important to re-establish intestinal flora. Preferably both gluten and casein free (Nutrition Care’s Lactobac and Metagenics Ultraflor Plus are good examples).
✓ It is very important to keep water intake high, for flushing the toxins out the body.
✓ Garlic is a fabulous natural antifungal herb which you should try to consume daily. It is recommended that eating half a clove twice a day, raw and fresh is highly beneficial. Take this just before a meal or just after taking wheat or barley concentrates.
✓ Eat plenty of cooked, brightly coloured vegetables.
✓ Grains that are wheat-free such as millet, amaranth, quinoa, oats, barley and rice are allowed. Ensure that any purchased breads made from these products are both yeast and wheat-free. Naturally leavened, whole-grain sourdough rye bread may be used.
✓ Eggs are fine.
✓ Focus on simple food combinations.
✓ Eat plenty of raw, unsalted sauerkraut mixed with garlic, seaweed and cabbage.
✓ Chlorophyll is purifying and stops the spread of bacterial. It also promotes the growth of beneficial intestinal flora. Therefore barley and wheat grass (which contain significant amounts of chlorophyll) are perhaps the most effective at treating yeasts. These work best as powders or tablets rather than juices, which are sweeter. Kelp and other seaweeds are also highly recommended. Parsley, kale, collard and dandelion greens, watercress, cabbage and spirulina are all helpful.
✓ All legumes (beans, peas and lentils) are fine, aduki beans are known to be helpful with drying damp conditions and mung beans are detoxifying.
✓ According to “Healing with Whole Foods, Oriental Traditions and Modern Nutrition”, if the tongue coating is thick, greasy or yellow, this indicates the need for cleansing of accumulated mucus in the digestive tract. Author Paul Pitchford recommends consuming one to two ounces of ‘button’ or other mushrooms, about three ounces of daikon radish or three or four red radishes.
✓ Certain herbs are also known to be very helpful in controlling candida. The herb “pau d’arco” is apparently excellent and two other bitter herbs, “chaparral” and “burbock” are also beneficial. Your naturopath, homeopath or chiropractor should be able to order these for you or help you locate another point of purchase.
✓ For longstanding relief from candida, it is imperative to ensure that your bowel is receiving efficient and correct nerve messages from your central nervous system. With the correct anti-candida diet, chiropractic adjustments support your body to regain balance and build immune strength.
✓ Homeopathy may also help with re-balancing the body. A homeopath will discuss with you your symptoms and best match a remedy. Some of these may be Calc Carb, Nettle, Rhus Tox, or Sulphur.
YEAST DIETARY PROTOCOL
FOODS TO EAT
Organic Meats: chicken, beef, lamb, fish, pork, turkey (unprocessed)
Fish: salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring and anchovies are highest in Omega 3 essential fatty acids. Other fish are fine except for tuna and shark.
Organic Vegetables: lots of green vegetables (Organic avoids pesticides and chemicals) Asparagus, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, kale, celery, cucumber, eggplant, onion, spinach, zucchini, cauliflower, tomatoes and rutabaga (best if eaten raw or steamed).
Good fats: ghee, nut butter (esp. macadamia) Almonds, sunflower seeds, coconut or flaxseed oil, olive oil
Beans: navy (white or haricot) beans or chickpeas as hummus (soak beans first.)
Grain substitutes: quinoa, buckwheat, millet, amaranth, sorghum (as tolerated)
Nuts and Seeds: raw unprocessed nut butters or nuts, sunflower or pumpkin seed flours, nut flours in moderation (as tolerated)
Dairy substitutes: nut milks, coconut milk/cream, rice milk (occasionally), coconut yoghurt (only organic very low sugar brands with minimal additives!)
Cooking oils: ghee (casein & lactose free), coconut oil, meat fats, olive oil.
Ghee and coconut oil contain small and medium chain fatty acids which are anti-fungal and provide good energy sources for the body.
Fruit: berries (may be eaten in small amounts), lemon, limes
Sweeteners: Xylitol or liquid stevia
Herbs: Black pepper, salt, cinnamon, dill, garlic, ginger, oregano, rosemary, paprika, turmericand thyme.
ELIMINATE THE FOLLOWING FOODS
All sugars & sugar containing foods including sugar, fructose, agave, glucose, coconut sugar or coconut nectar, mannitol, sorbitol, lactose, honey, maple syrup, jams, Nutella, molasses, date sugar, barley malt, rice syrup, artificial sweeteners & chocolate.
Packaged and processed foods, fast foods, artificial flavours, colours & preservatives, soft drinks, alcohol. Packaged and processed foods usually contain refined sugar products; artificial flavours, colours and sweeteners; MSG in the form of hydrolysed vegetable protein, autolyzed yeast, yeast extract, maltodextrin; and processed vegetable oils.
Bread and Baked goods containing yeast
Cheese, Milk & other dairy products
Grains and flours: cereals, rice, corn and all gluten grains including wheat, bulgar wheat, barley, spelt, rye, oats, kamut, triticale
Yeast, mould, fungi or soy containing foods including mushrooms, dried fruit, peanuts, melons, corn and rye, tofu/edamame, soy sauce
Processed and smoked meats: Pickled and smoked meats and fish, including bacon, ham, salami, sausages (except organic with no preservatives), hot dogs, corned beef, smoked salmon.
Processed vegetable oils for cooking e.g. Soybean, canola, safflower, rice bran
Fruit: best to eliminate all fruit as it’s high in sugar, especially fruit juice, dried fruit, dates, melons & tropical fruit; berries are ok in moderation as are lemons & limes.
High starch vegetables: white potatoes, parsnip, sweet potatoes, beets, lentils
Vinegar and vinegar containing foods including barbeque, chilli, Worcester and fish sauces; soy and tamari, tomato sauce (except organic without additives), pickles, horseradish, relishes, mustard, packaged mayonnaise and salad dressing; vanilla extract (except alcohol free or vanilla powder).
Freshly squeezed lemon juice may be used as a substitute for vinegar in salad dressings prepared with olive oil or unprocessed vegetable oil such as sunflower oil.
IN SUMMARY THE LIST OF FOODS TO AVOID ON THE CANDIDA DIET INCLUDE:
High-sugar fruits: Bananas, dates, raisins, grapes and mango.
Grains that contain gluten: Wheat, rye, barley and spelt.
Certain meats: Deli meats and farm-raised fish.
Refined oils and fats: Canola oil, soybean oil, sunflower oil or margarine.
Condiments: Ketchup, soy sauce, white vinegar, BBQ sauce, horseradish or mayonnaise.
Certain dairy products: Cheese, milk and cream.
Sugar and artificial sweeteners: Aspartame, agave, cane sugar, corn syrup, honey, maple syrup, molasses and table sugar.
Nuts and seeds higher in mold: Peanuts, cashews, pecans and pistachios.
Caffeine, alcohol and sugary beverages: Caffeinated teas, coffee, energy drinks, soda, fruit juice, beer, wine or spirits.
Additives: Nitrates or sulfates.
I can hear you panic screaming, BUT WHAT THE ACTUAL HECK CAN I EAT?!? Read on my pretties, read on.
YEAST DIETARY CHANGES – INITIAL FOOD SUBSTITUTIONS
Processed & fast foods
Home cooked organic meats, fresh vegetables, good fats
Starchy carbohydrates a& fruit
Protein (e.g. Meat, fish, chicken, eggs) green vegetables & good fats
Gluten grains & flours; Wheat, barley, oats, spelt breads, pastries, cakes, biscuits, etc.
Coconut flour, sunflower seed flour in moderation & may need to be eliminated-buckwheat flour or quinoa flour or besan flour
Most gluten free flours incl. rice, corn, potato
Rice, Corn & Pasta
Zucchini noodles, chickpea pasta, buckwheat noodles, quinoa.
Replace gradually e.g. Add quinoa to reduced serve of rice; make with coconut oil/cream. Then lower grains further.
ROTATE ALL GRAINS 1 in 4 days maximum
Dairy, Rice milk or Soymilk
Coconut, Almond or Hemp milk; homemade nut milks
Replace gradually as needed e.g. 1-2 ml at a time
Coconut yoghurt (no sugar)
Coconut yoghurt (no sugar)
Pea, rice or whey-based powders
Protein as meals
Starchy Carbohydrate based meals
Pasta, rice, beans
ADD protein (meat, chicken, fish) and good fats (olive oil, avocado, coconut oil, ghee) to all carbohydrate meals in increasing quantities as you reduce the carbohydrate & switch to other options as above. Navy (white) beans & chickpeas ok.
Potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, beets
Butternut pumpkin, cauliflower, green vegetables; carrots and swede turnips in moderation
Sugar, sweets, honey, maple syrup, rice malt syrup, molasses, date and coconut sugar, artificial sweeteners
Erythritol, Xylitol &/or liquid stevia in baking or smoothies
Fruit esp. high sugar fruits (e.g. bananas, grapes, mango, melons)
Blueberries, strawberries if tolerated
Seeds, coconut butter, macadamias & other nuts as tolerated, sugar free recipes, hummus.
Also avoid other quick-acting carbohydrates, including sucrose, fructose, maltose, lactose, glycogen, glucose, mannitol, sorbitol, galactose.
Vegetable oils (e.g. Canola, safflower, rice bran)
Coconut oil, ghee, olive oil, avocado oil for salad Butter (if tolerated)
Deep fried foods
Slow cooked meats/casseroles; poached chicken breast; grilled or baked fish; slow roasted meat or chicken; shallow & low heat frypan cooked meatballs etc.
Fruit juice, soft drinks, soda, sports drinks
Filtered water; option to add lemon or lime juice
Coffee & hot chocolate
Fresh ginger tea
Breakfast – include protein and healthy fats – and veggies if possible!
Eggs e.g. Boiled, scrambled, fried in coconut oil or ghee.
Frittata or omelette made with chopped or pureed vegetables
Millet toast (no soy flour) with avocado, boiled egg or cashew butter
Chicken or meat patties (can include pureed vegetables)
Chicken & butternut pumpkin pancakes
Sausages – chicken, beef or lamb (NO fillers – ask organic butcher for meat only)
French toast with millet bread
Pancakes with coconut or buckwheat flour & nut milk (add blueberries if tolerated)
Bacon occasionally (nitrate free)
Smoothie: e.g. nut milk &/or coconut yoghurt, celery, ½ carrot, pea shoots, blueberries, parsley, avocado, MCT oil, [Sweeten with small amount Erythritol, stevia &/or alcohol-free vanilla. Ingredients as tolerated & to taste!]
Broths: If having chicken or meat broth, have ¼ cup before/with protein breakfast.
Juices: vegetable juice best before protein breakfast.
Lunch/Dinner: include protein, healthy fats & vegetables
Meatballs/meatloaf/hamburger: ground beef, lamb, pork or chicken
Stews/casseroles/mild curries – any meat or chicken
Roast meat or chicken (low heat preferable)
Salmon baked, grilled or gently pan fried
Frittata or omelette made with chopped or pureed vegetables
Stir fried meat/chicken & vegetables (ghee, coconut oil)
Soups: Chicken/meat and /or vegetable soup (vegetable puree often more appealing)
Vegetable starches: cauliflower rice/mashed; butternut squash; zucchini ‘noodles’; vegetable pancakes.
Include protein, vegetables & carbohydrates from Lunch/Dinner list above.
Pack food in a stainless steel ‘bento’ box with separate compartments, & cold pack.
Options in addition to the above include:
Chicken legs/pieces & salad/vegetables
Sausage or meatballs & salad/vegetables
GF wrap with chicken/sausage/meatball &avocado & salad
GF wrap (millet, coconut); millet bread with sunflower seed butter & salad vegetables
Hummus & seed crackers (chickpeas/navy beans)
Vegetable sticks – e.g. carrot, celery
Salad vegetables (cucumber, capsicum, cherry tomatoes, greens, avocado (as tolerated)
Kale chips (preferably homemade)
Carrot or zucchini fries/chips
Coconut yoghurt (need to keep cold!)
Muffins (coconut or pepita)
Sunflower coconut biscuits
NUTRIENT DENSE SNACK FOODS
Snacks are an opportunity to increase high quality nutrition:
Chicken wings or drumsticks cold
Meatballs or cold sausage (optional – in iceberg lettuce)
Salmon (sustainable tinned or in jars) wrapped in iceberg lettuce wraps
Vegetable & fruit snacks
Organic hummus and fresh veggies (cucumber, celery, broccoli, capsicum. Carrots, etc.)
Sliced avocado eaten with sea salt & spoon
Nori veggie wraps with shredded carrot, leafy greens, hummus & ½ avocado
Kale, zucchini or carrot (homemade oven baked) with 2 tablespoons of hummus
Seed crackers with pesto
Organic blueberries or strawberries in bowl with organic coconut yoghurt
Coconut, pepita flour or besan flour muffins including pureed veggies
Butternut pumpkin or carrot ‘sliders’ with hummus, avocado or cashew/macadamia nut butter
Healthy fat snacks
Organic raw nuts: macadamias, cashews, hazelnuts (small handful x 2-3 a week)
Organic coconut chips, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
Trail mix (homemade) with raw nuts, seeds (pumpkin, sesame, sunflower) & shredded coconut
Seed and/or nut coconut balls
Sunflower &coconut biscuits
Chocolate protein smoothie -1 cup almond, coconut or cashew milk blended with 1-2 teaspoons raw cacao or carob powder, plus optional ¼ avocado
‘Seedela’ on allowable cracker
Sunflower & coconut biscuits
Coconut, cacao & seed balls
Keep the focus on what you CAN eat, rather than what you are cutting out.
Chin up, consistency is the key. You can do it!
Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani
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Want to learn more about how to live a healthy lifestyle? For more health related information, please see Well Adjusted Babies 2nd Edition.
Pitchford P. Healing with Whole Foods. Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition. California: North Atlantic Books;2002.
Salmon J. Pearce L. Autism & Attention Deficit Disorders. Bangor; Persimmon Press: 2006.
Sullivan K. Natural Healthcare for Children. London; Judy Piatkus: 2000.
Lipski E PhD. Digestive Wellness For Children. Laguna Beach; Basic Health Publications: 2006.
Mercola J Dr. Pearsall K Dr. Take Control of Your Health.Schaumburg; Mercola.com: 2007
Updated: March 27, 2015