The most important element in the Candida treatment is the strict diet. The dietplan is quite restrictive but extremely healthy and you can expect some weight loss and numerous other health benefits to follow.
Most importantly, you will need to avoid foods with high sugar content like fruit and alcoholic drinks that can feed your Candida overgrowth. There are also foods that can weaken your immune system and disrupt the good bacteria in your gut. Although lots of foods are excluded, there are still plenty of delicious meals that you can cook for yourself. Take a look at our Recipes section for some inspiration (coming soon!!).
How fast you make progress and can move on to a less restictive diet depends on several factors - how strictly you follow the diet, the effectiveness of your digestive system, the use of antifungals, the severity of your Candida infestation and the power of your immune system.
In addition, the diet has to be varied, to make sure that you will not suffer from any nutrient deficiencies and thereby weaken your immune system. You use the dietary changes to restore balance in your gut and prevent the yeast from growing back through a nutritionally-balanced diet that is low in carbohydrates. This diet will also help you coping with the many toxins that are released when the Candidafungi dies (Die-off effects). The main ingredients in the diet are:
• Low carb diet consisting of lots of vegetables, that will starve the Candidafungi
• A varied, easy digestible and nutritious diet that will boost your immune system
• The use of Candidakilling food and products
• A diet composition that improves your bowel function
It’s important to make antifungals and probiotics part of your diet, as a change in your eating habits alone will not be enough to beat your Candida infestation. The right antifungals will kill the Candida yeast by breaking down its cell walls. A course of good probiotics will improve your digestebillity, regulate your stomach acidity and repopulate your gut with “good bacteria”.
The difficult beginning
Making the necessary dietary changes presents a challenge that requires practice and patience. Most people find that after an initial adjustment period, they feel so good that the efforts expended seem more than worthwhile. You'll discover that the comfort and pleasure you get from living in a healthier body can be tremendously satisfying. The diet is designed to boost your immune system and to deprive the yeast - not you. Once you have felt even a day or two of the reassuring comfort that comes with improving your health, it will be even easier for you to find the inspiration you need to optimize your nutritional self-care.
For some persons, change can be relatively easy. For others, the transition to new habits can be difficult and take several weeks. In the beginning you will miss your favorite dishes all the time. But never forget how much this diet improves your state of illness and general health. Be assured that once you get into the habit of focusing on wellness instead of sickness, your new habits will feel more natural to you.
No matter how good your intentions are, you can't expect to be able to follow the diet perfectly - at least not initially. You're bound to go back and forth for the first period. If you feel your ill-health starting to creep back, you'll rediscover your determination to be well again and get back to your new, self-preserving, healthy lifestyle.
The die-off effects may be too strong especially in the beginning of your treatment where a lot of Candidafungi will be dying. You may feel a massive adrenal fatigue. In this case, you'll want to return to the previous diet stage/product protocol, that you were comfortable with and stabilize yourself for another couple of weeks before you attempt to make this transition again. Die-off can continue to be an issue for you throughout the beginning and middle of your program. As you move towards recovery, your episodes of die-off related symptoms become fewer and farther between.
At the same time you start on the diet, you can start with antifungals and probiotics. The combination of these two elements kills the Candida yeast in your gut and repopulate it with ”good bacteria”.
The Candida diet itself, being low-carbohydrate, can be rather challenging. We caution against trying to follow other diet rules than on this website, because it will change your diet plans into an absolutely stressful and impossible feat. It will also make your Candida treatment less effective and may even worsen your disease.
How long will the diet last?
The Candida Diet is not a diet with a fixed duration. Some Candida sufferers have lived with their condition for years, maybe even decades, so to expect a quick and easy solution is often unrealistic. Some dieters might find permanent relief from their Candida symptoms within a few weeks or months. Others might take 6 months or more, and may even need to eliminate white carbs, sugary foods and alcohol permanently to prevent the overgrowth from returning. So its important to start your Candida treatment plan with realistic expectations - if you do so then you’ll also be much more likely to follow the plan through to the end. No one else can tell you how you’re feeling, and you will always be the best judge of when you are ready to move on to the next stage. Don’t be afraid of a little trial and error either. For example, if you think you quit the strict diet too early and some of your symptoms have returned, just go back to the foods that worked for you and stick it out a little longer. Patience is a key virtue when it comes to beating your Candida overgrowth. Listed below are some of the factors that can affect the length your overall treatment plan.
1) The severity of your Candida overgrowth
Some of us have a Candida overgrowth that has reached its advanced stages, while others have only just started to notice the symptoms. It makes perfect sense that those who have suffered longest from their Candida will also take the longest to be cured.
The longer that you have had an untreated Candida overgrowth, the more entrenched will this fast-growing yeast be within your gut. The Candida albicans cells actually begin to attach themselves to your intestinal walls, penetrating through the membrane into your bloodstream. As Candida toxins and food particles escape into your blood, they provoke an immune response and an inflammation in your intestinal membrane. Known as Leaky Gut Syndrome, this is one way in which Candida weakens your immune system and causes allergies.
So a severe, long-lasting case of Candida is likely to be accompanied by allergies and a weakened immune system. This means that in addition to the Candida Diet, antifungals and probiotics, you should also be taking supplements to boost your immune system. Good examples are Vitamin C and Echinacea. To cure your Leaky Gut Syndrome, soluble fiber like Psyllium or apple pectin fiber are very useful (netshop).
2) How seriously you take the diet
Sticking to the diet is tough, but in the long run the results are worth it as you regain your health and energy. Remember that each time you ‘cheat’ and pick up a chocolate bar or eat something deep-fried, you are actually lengthening your treatment period. Beating a Candida overgrowth is not easy, but you can reduce the time on the diet by religiously sticking to the correct food.
3) How aggressively you use antifungals and probiotics
This brings us on to antifungals and probiotics, which are two important elements in the Candida treatment plan. There are two ways to use these to reduce your treatment time. Firstly, make sure you choose the right supplements to take. We have some very effective and gentle products in our netshop. Secondly, if you use these supplements aggressively you can kill off the Candida yeast more quickly. Of course its not always that easy. Moving quickly to higher doses of probiotics and antifungals will likely cause Candida Die-off. This is when the Candida yeast cells are killed quickly and release large amounts of toxins into the bloodstream. And this is also when many Candida dieters choose to give up on the diet, as the symptoms of Die-off can be difficult to handle. So for the vast majority of Candida overgrowth sufferers, we would recommend a more gradual increase in probiotic/antifungal dosage. Take your time and find the dosage that works for your body. As mentioned earlier, patience is a key word when you are fighting a Candida overgrowth.
4) Your willpower
Willpower is perhaps the most important ingredient in your Candida treatment plan. This is true when you stick to the strict diet, when you convince yourself not to pick up that chocolate bar, when you remind yourself to take your daily probiotics, and when you stay strong during Candida Die-off. If your mental strength is wavering, remind yourself that although the diet may sometimes be difficult, its still better than the alternative of letting your Candida overgrowth become even worse. Remember to stay positive and take the diet one step at a time. Keep all your focus on getting better and it will happen before you know it!
Will I ever go back to my normal diet?
This is one of most common questions we get from Candida dieters. Many suffers find it a struggle to make the strict dietary changes that the plan requires, and its hard to imagine sticking to the diet for the long term. Many Candida sufferers quit the diet after a few days or weeks when they experience the symptoms of Candida Die-off. Sadly, this is just when the diet is actually starting to work, but often they don’t realize and they go back to their old comfort food.
As a Candidapatient there is no guarantee that you will ever be 100% cured and you will probably always need to eat a much healthier, low sugar diet than you did before. Candida overgrowth is a problem that can keep coming back, especially in those that have already show a propensity for it. In the long term you will need to avoid:
• Eating large amounts of junk food again
• Eating large amounts of sugar (even in fruit)
• Taking antibiotics unless absolutely necessary
You will need to follow the above rules consistently and for a long time. Candida is a fast-growing, opportunistic fungus that will take advantage of any opportunity that you give it.
Coping with Die-off
One of the most common things we hear is people saying they’ve had a Candida overgrowth for 5 or even 10 years, and they’ve tried the Candida diet several times but it didn’t work. Many of these people quit the diet early because of Candida Die-off. So if you can reduce the symptoms of Die-off, your chances of completing the diet and moving back to a more normal routine are greatly increased. We have a fine variety of Die-off products in our netshop.