Candida naturally grows inside of our mouth and small intestines. Its primary goal is to aid with nutrient absorption. However, this yeast can become problematic if it overgrows. These issues often result in fungal infections or various gastrointestinal problems. So, what exactly is Candida, and can microbiome testing help you get control of this overgrowth? Let’s take a look!
What is Candida?
Candida is a genus of fungus. There are hundreds of Candida species, and each is a form of yeast. The most well-known of the pack is Candida albicans .
In a healthy skin or gut biome, Candida doesn’t cause any harm. It’s when this yeast expands past its intended reach when problems arise .
Candiasis and the Gut Biome
Overgrowth of Candida is the number one fungal infections humans experience . These fungal infections are also known as Candidiasis.
Overgrowth often occurs in warm moist places, such as in the mouth as thrush, or as a yeast infection in a vagina. In very rare cases, Candida can get into the bloodstream, and travel all over the body.
If you believe you may be suffering from Candida overgrowth, it is best to meet with your doctor. That way, they can prescribe the correct antifungal medication to bring relief to your stomach bacteria.
What Causes Candida Overgrowth?
Our body is designed almost flawlessly. When we don’t disrupt homeostasis in the microbiome, it takes care of itself without us noticing a thing. When we are born with healthy gut bacteria, our systems are strong.
Intestinal flora keeps opportunistic stomach bacteria at bay. Therefore, any Candida attempting to leave the small intestines and mouth gets taken care of by probiotic bacteria and immune cells in your microbiome.
However, a lifetime of poor dietary choices, long-term use of medications/antibiotics, or chronic stress can start to chip away at our strong gut biome.
Unfortunately, if your probiotic bacteria become compromised due to diet, medications, or other factors, Candida can slip through the cracks. This lack of security causes Candida overgrowth.
Microbiome Testing and Candida Overgrowth
One plausible way to get control of your Candidiasis is by figuring out which stomach bacteria you have. With microbiome testing, it’s never been easier. At Thryve, we send use an At-Home Gut Test to use in the privacy of your own bathroom.
Just take one of the two swabs we send you to collect a small sample from your toilet paper. Put the sample in the sterile vile we provide and mail back in the secure, addressed envelope we enclosed.
Based on those microbiome testing, we will formulate monthly supplies of probiotics supplements catered to your unique gut biome. That way, your body is well equipped to handle the abundance of Candida trying to overtake the system.
How Candida Affects Our Gut Biome
Candida often sits right next to various other microbes that work together to help process your foods. Without these microbes living in harmony, digestion of food and absorption of nutrients would be next to impossible.
Candida overgrowth inside the stomach is rare, as the other gut microbes often work to keep it at bay. However, there are cases in which it still happens and may cause:
• Gas in Stomach
• Sharp Ab Pains
How to Prevent Candiasis
The best thing to do would be to manage the Candida. Ensure that overgrowth does not happen in the first place.
Seeing as Candida is a living being, you need to make sure it doesn’t eat. Starve Candida so it doesn’t grow and duplicate in your gut biome.
A study in Nature showed that yeast in the gut can create a substance known as uric acid .
As the analysis states,
“Mice that were given the yeast produced more uric acid and had more gut inflammation than untreated animals did. The team found that the yeast increased the intestinal wall’s degradation of molecules called purines, leading to higher uric acid levels.”– Nature
This acid can inflame the lining of the stomach and intestines, making signs of IBS and chances of SIBO much worse.
How to Reduce Candida?
Candida is relatively hard to control, especially if it gets out of control. This is because it has a lot of ways in which it can “hide” from your body’s immune response.
So, fighting a Candida overgrowth after it has happened is going to be fairly hard. But, there are many things you can do to keep it from happening.
One way to reduce, or at least prevent Candida overgrowth in the gut, is to make sure that your gut health is as good as you can possibly make it on your own. So what exactly can you do to make sure that your gut health is good?
Fermented Foods for Gut Health
Fermented foods are a great way to boost bacterial diversity in your gut. Foods such as kombucha, yogurts, and kimchi provide your body with beneficial probiotics. Therefore, your intestinal flora can prevent Candida from overtaking the stomach in the first place. These foods can also help in various other ways, such as providing much-needed nutrients that your body can use to fight off such an infestation.
If you ALREADY have Candida overgrowth, hold off on the fermented foods. Since Candida is a yeast, it will feast on the sugars from the solid food particles you consume. These are the same sugars the probiotics in fermented foods are eating. Therefore, Candida will grow like the beneficial bacteria in the fermentation jar did.
Whole Foods in a Healthy Gut Diet Plan
Processed foods are often devoid of most nutrition, and are simply not good for our gut biome. This is why your diet should consist mainly of whole foods, and mostly plant foods. This can help you to lose weight, ease digestion of food, and even serve as prebiotics for probiotics in your gut flora.
Stay Hydrated To Avoid IBS and SIBO
When you are dehydrated, so are all of the organisms in your body. They need water to flourish as much as you do. Oftentimes, intestinal flora, yeast, and stomach bacteria that do not need as much water are more likely to overgrow and take over your gut.
As these sorts of overgrowths happen it can lead to GI problems such as SIBO and IBS, two things that you want to avoid. So whether it is water, tea, or unsweetened lemonade, make sure you drink a lot throughout the day to keep Candida at bay.
Decrease Stress for Your Wellness
Stress is not good for any part of your body. It can tire you out quickly, destroy your mental health, and wreak havoc on your system.
Find ways to reduce stress levels. Avoid things that stress you out, try yoga, find a hobby, practice meditation–do whatever you can to keep your cortisol levels down.
Consume Healthy Fats
Saturated fats are rich in LDL cholesterol and omega-6 fatty acids. These are far too hard for our intestinal flora to break down throughout an entire lifetime. Eventually, saturated fats build up and cause a snowball effect of epic proportions for the rest of the body.
You need healthy fats that are rich in Omega 3s and other beneficial amino acids. Opt for unsaturated fats such as:
• Extra Virgin Olive Oil
By consuming these foods, you will boost your body’s nutrient absorption. In turn, the fats will also help repair cells in your gut lining. This not only stops Candida from leaving the small intestines but also assists in healing a Leaky Gut.
See a Doctor About Candida Overgrowth
ALWAYS check in with your doctor to see what is right for you. A Candida overgrowth is not something you should ignore or try to take on yourself. So check in with your doctor and see if you may need antifungal medication.
Microbiome Testing and Personalized Probiotics
While you meet with your physician, talk about probiotics supplements. Join the Thryve Gut Health Program and conduct microbiome testing on yourself. That way you can share the results with your primary care.
As you and your physician assess the data, we will formulate a personalized probiotic tailored for your microbiome. That way, your Candida can stay where it belongs!
Click Here To View Resources
 “Candidiasis | Types of Diseses | Fungal Diseases | CDC.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/index.html.
 Candidiasis. (2019, April 17). Retrieved from cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/index.html.
 Richards, M J, et al. “Nosocomial Infections in Combined Medical-Surgical Intensive Care Units in the United States.” Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2000, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10968716/.
 Microbiome: Yeast worsens gut disorder. (2017, March 15). Nature. Retrieved from nature.com/articles/543291d.