Often mis-diagnosed and even dismissed, candida is culprit behind numerous health problems. The symptoms associated with candida include fatigue, poor memory, mood swings, chronic coughs, frequent sinus infections, reoccurring fungal infections, blurred vision, sugar cravings and abdominal pain, to name a few.
As many as 40 million people in the United States suffer from candida, most without realizing the core issue. Many people who have candida overgrowth will end up treating the symptoms instead of the root of the problem, causing an endless spiral downward, sometimes for many years.
Even those who realize their symptoms are linked to candida find conventional drugs are not a permanent or effective solution. Not to mention medical treatments are often accompanied by side effects worse than the original symptoms. It's no wonder candida patients are seeking an alternative natural treatment. And fortunately, coconut oil can provide the answer.
In countries where coconuts are regularly consumed, candida occurrences are surprisingly low, as noted by Dr. Bruce Fife, a strong believer in the healing power of coconut oil. Although many people in these regions live in conditions that typically promote candida overgrowth, they rarely suffer from candida.
This is because coconut oil is high in both lauric acid and caprylic acid, which both have antiviral, antimicrobial and antifungal properties. These components of coconut oil target harmful bacteria but leave friendly bacteria alone, which helps balances the flora in the digestive system. They also kill off excess yeast and other fungal overgrowth in the body. Studies in Iceland and Nigeria show coconut oil is an effective agent for killing off candida yeast.
If you've heard conflicting reports and are concerned about whether or not coconut oil is healthy, keep in mind the natural, unrefined fats in coconut oil are medium-chain saturated fats–the kind that are more easily converted into energy instead of being stored. Adding a moderate amount of coconut oil to your diet should be considered safe. In fact, the saturated fat content in coconut oil makes it an excellent choice for cooking, because the oil is not damaged at high temperatures like other cooking oils.
Be sure not to buy coconut oil that has been hydrogenated. This destroys the beneficial attributes of coconut oil and makes it high in dangerous trans-fatty acids. The best kind of coconut oil is organic virgin coconut oil, which is closest to its natural state and will provide the most health benefits.
Both Dr. William G. Crook and Dr. Bruce Fife suggest working up to consuming about three tablespoons of coconut oil daily. It's best to start with one teaspoon per day and then work up to the full amount. The more severe the candida, the slower you should work up to this number to prevent overwhelming die-off symptoms as excess yeast is killed off. These symptoms are flu-like and include headaches, chills and fatigue. They will normally last about 3-5 days, depending on the severity of your candida.
Adding coconut oil to your diet is not difficult to do. Depending on the brand you buy, coconut oil has a very light flavor suitable for almost any purpose. You can easily substitute coconut oil for butter on toast or cooking oil in recipes. Try adding a tablespoon to coffee, or stir some into your oatmeal.
You can use coconut oil topically if you have a breakout of athlete's foot or yeast rash. Coconut oil can also be used for localized treatment of jock itch and yeast infections. For any topical treatment, apply a small amount of coconut oil to the affected area 3-4 times each day. This treatment is most effective if you are also taking the oil internally.
How To Test Yourself For Candida
Some healthcare professionals believe that candida infects 89% of the US population. Many Americans don’t realize that candidiasis is caused by the overuse and abuse of antibiotics, steroids, NSAIDs and poor dietary habits. By simply following the standard of healthcare in our society and eating the standard American diet, you may be putting yourself at risk of recurrent candida yeast infections.
Candida overgrowth, in my professional opinion, is a result of the choices that our parents or we made regarding food and healthcare. Because of the “pop-a-pill for every symptom” approach to healthcare, fast food, processed food and high sugar diets in our culture, it has created the perfect opportunity for candida overgrowth. Unfortunately, once you’ve experienced a bout with the feisty yeast-like fungus, you are likely to continue to have many periodic infections if you continue the same habits that caused it in the first place.
Are You Bewildered by Your Symptoms?
Most people are aware of the most common manifestations of candida as yeast infection, jock itch, thrush, athlete’s foot and ringworm. But what is not commonly known are all the other seemingly unrelated symptoms that are caused by candida, like chronic fatigue, food allergies, digestive problems, sexual dysfunction, constipation, headaches and the list goes on and on.
It’s important to realize that candida albicans is an important part of the normal flora in the intestinal tract. It’s only when it becomes overabundant due to dietary indiscretions, use of prescription and non-prescription drugs or other situations that disturb the normal balance that it becomes a problem.
You may already have an idea whether you have a candida yeast infection, but to be sure you may want to be tested. Candida testing through your doctor is a complicated process. Here are two tests you can do at home yourself and get a pretty accurate idea as to whether you are experiencing a problem with candida overgrowth.
A Simple Test You Can Do at Home
First thing in the morning, before you put ANYTHING in your mouth, get a clear glass and fill with water. Work up a bit of saliva, then spit it into the glass of water. Check the water after a moment or within 2-3 minutes, then within every 15 minutes.
If you have a candida yeast infection, you will see strings, like cloudy legs, traveling down into the water from the saliva floating on the top, or "cloudy" saliva will sink to the bottom of the glass, or cloudy specks will seem to be suspended in the water. If there are no strings, the water is as clear as it was before you spit in the glass and the saliva is still floating after at least one hour, you are probably candida yeast free. The more strings and cloudiness there is and the faster it develops, the greater the overgrowth.
The Candida Questionnaire
Answer the following questions in each of the three sections listed below to determine if you are likely to have candida overgrowth in your body. (This test is designed for adults.)
SECTION 1 - HEALTH HISTORY
For each yes answer, score yourself the number of points indicated to the left of each question.
* 25 - Have you taken tetracycline or other antibiotics for acne for one month or more?
* 20 - Have you taken broad-spectrum antibiotics for any infection for two months or longer, or shorter courses in a one-year period?
* 25 - Have you ever been bothered by persistent prostatitis, vaginitis or other problems affecting your reproductive organs?
* 3 - Have you been pregnant one time only?
* 5 - Have you been pregnant two or more times?
* 15 - Have you taken birth control pills two or more years?
* 8 - Have you taken birth control pills less than two years?
* 6 - Have you taken Prednisone or other cortisone-type drug for less than two weeks?
* 15 - Have you taken Prednisone or other cortisone-type drug for more than two weeks?
* 5 - Does exposure to fragrances, mall odors or chemicals provoke mild allergic symptoms?
* 20 - Does exposure to fragrances, mall odors or chemicals provoke moderate to severe allergic symptoms?
* 20 - Are these symptoms worse on damp, muggy days or in moldy places?
* 10 - Have you had athlete’s foot, jock itch, ring worm, or chronic fungus infection of skin or nails? Mild to moderate?
* 20 - Have you had athlete’s foot, jock itch, ring worm, or chronic fungus infection of skin or nails? Severe to persistent?
* 10 - Do you crave sugar?
* 10 - Do you crave bread?
* 10 - Do you crave alcoholic beverages?
* 10 - Does tobacco smoke bother you?
Total your points for HEALTH HISTORY
Rate the following symptoms:
3 points - Occasional or mild
6 points - Frequent and/or moderately severe
9 points - Severe and/or disabling
* Fatigue or “feeling drained
* Poor memory; feeling spacey or “unreal”
* Numbness, burning or tingling
* Muscle aches, weakness or paralysis
* Pain and/or swelling joints
* Abdominal pain
* Bloating, constipation or diarrhea
* Persistent vaginal burning/itching
* Troublesome vaginal discharge
* Impotence or loss of sexual desire
* Endometriosis, PMS, menstrual irregularities, or other reproductive organ concerns
* Spots in front of the eyes; erratic vision
Total your points for SECTION 2
Rate these symptoms:
1 point - Occasional or mild
2 points - Frequent and/or moderately severe
* Frequent drowsiness
* Frequent irritability and/or jitteriness
* Frequent lack of coordination
* Frequent inability to concentrate
* Frequent mood swings (ups & downs)
* Frequent headaches
* Frequent dizziness/loss of balance
* Feeling of head swelling & tingling
* Frequent itching anywhere on body
* Frequent or persistent rashes
* Frequent heartburn and/or indigestion
* Belching, burping & intestinal gas
* Mucus in stools
* Frequent dry mouth
* Rash or blisters in/around mouth
* Bad breath
* Joint swelling or arthritis
* Nasal congestion, itching or discharge
* Postnasal drip
* Frequent sore or dry throat
* Frequent unexplained cough
* Pain or tightness in chest
* Wheezing or shortness of breath
* Urinary urgency or frequency
* Burning on urination
* Noticeably failing vision
* Recurrent infections or fluid in ears
* Ear pain or deafness
Total your points for SECTION 3
ADD YOUR SCORES FOR ALL 3 SECTIONS
Your total score can help you determine if your health concerns are yeast related.
Women above 180 – Men above 140: almost certainly yeast related.
Women 121 to 180 – Men 91 to 140: probably yeast related.
Women: 60 to 120 – Men 40 to 90: possibly yeast related.
Below 60 for women and 40 for men probably not yeast related
Do these two tests at home and you will have a good indication as to whether you have a candida yeast/fungal overgrowth problem.
Although candida is difficult to manage and eliminate there are effective alternative treatments that restore the normal flora balance and rid the body of the overgrowth of candida albicans. But beware. There are numerous products on the market and many are ineffective or marginally effective and most only work with a strict and difficult-to-follow diet. The typical candida diet consists mostly of meat and vegetables. Carbohydrates, starches and sugars feed the yeast and cause them to multiply, as well as foods that contain high content of yeast or mold, like alcoholic beverages, aged cheeses, mushrooms, vinegar and breads.
ThreeLac is Proven to Work
There is one product however, ThreeLac, that has been proven to reduce candida and bring the proper balance to the intestinal flora without following a rigid diet. In tests done in the U.S. based on a limited number of patients who ate a Western diet, everyone reported they were candida free without going on a strict candida diet. An additional field study on ThreeLac is currently in progress, conducted by a medical doctor, using a selected population and continuing over a period of several months, which may substantiate earlier findings and provide useful additional information about its efficacy.
Do you want to deprive yourself of your favorite foods forever just to be candida free? Or would you prefer to kick your candida problem and enjoy your food too with a product that is proven to reduce candidiasis without following a strict diet?
While candida still poses a very real health challenge to many women, thank goodness there are now effective solutions that can help suffers find lasting relief. Candida doesn’t have to change your life forever and rage back out of control every time you indulge a little bit.
Dr. Christine H. Farlow, D.C. is a chiropractor, nutritionist and author who has helped thousands solve their health challenges naturally. To learn how ThreeLac can reduce your candida without following a rigid diet, go to http://www.nomorecandida.com. Contact Dr. Farlow for a free candida consultation.
Do you have a lot of the symptoms of Candida
but want a Candida test to be certain? There are many tests available but I have done the research and weeded out the needless ones and the ones that are overly expensive.
Free Candida Test
The source of this test is unknown but it has been around a long time and is quite reliable in the diagnosis of Candida albicans overgrowth.
It is known as the Candida saliva test or the Candida spit test.
Fill a clear glass with water and place it by your bed at night. When you wake in the morning, work up a bit of saliva and spit into the glass of water. It is important that nothing enters your mouth or touches your lips before you do this. Do not drink any water, do not brush your teeth and do not kiss your partner. I'm sure they will understand just this one time!
Immediately make note of how the saliva looks. Check again 2 or 3 minutes later. Check the glass every 15 minutes until you leave for the day.
Saliva Candida Test
Saliva Candida Test
Healthy saliva will be clear, it will float on top and it will slowly dissolve into the water without any cloudiness and without sinking. There are normally some bubbles or foam present.
Candida saliva will have one or more characteristics that point to a Candida albicans overgrowth:
* Strings traveling down to the bottom of the glass
* Cloudy saliva that sinks to the bottom of the glass
* Cloudy specks suspended in the water
The more strings and cloudiness there are, and the faster it develops, the greater the Candida albicans overgrowth.