Did you know 3 out of every 4 women will experience vaginal yeast infection!
Read on to avoid being one of these 3 women.
Yeast infections or candida, is caused by the overgrowth of a fungi called candida albicans, which is a member of the yeast family. Ironically, candida albicans, when translated from Latin, means ‘sweet and white’ however, this yeast microbe is far from being delicate and friendly. Actually, it is microbe and if left to its own devices can multiple and release toxins in to your body.
Everyone of us has a certain amount of candida fungus living inside of our body’s. This is nothing to worry about, as it is absolutely natural. Yeast is controlled by our good bacteria or probiotics that live in our digestive tract.
When our digestive system is balanced and healthy yeast infections like candida can be kept in check. However, they are opportunistic by nature and when our health and immune system is weakened they can spread and thrive.
We can also help yeast infections by eating foods they thrive on. They love refined sugar, processed foods and alcohol. Taking antibiotics can kill off probiotics leaving the way clear for pathogenic microbes to multiply. Use of birth control pills and hormone treatments compromise the immune system making it less effective at fighting off bad bacteria.
Yeast infections can lead to a number of symptoms that affect different parts of the body;
- Vaginal yeast infections – this can cause an itchiness and burning sensation as well as a white discharge that looks like cottage cheese.
- Thrush – a yeast infection that can affect the mouth and throat
- Skin yeast infections can cause irritation, rashes and itchiness
- Joint and muscle pain
- Hormone dysfunctions
Before You Treat It Make Sure It Is A Yeast Infection
Many symptoms related to candida can mimic other ailments and for this reason they are often miss-diagnosed. This is often the case with a vaginal yeast infection. To ensure it is a yeast infection you need to visit your doctor for a test.
If your doctor is unable to determine the condition based on your medical history, then a ‘wet mount’ test may be required. This involves placing a sample of the discharge onto to a glass slide. The discharge is diluted with a salt mixture, then placed under a microscope for further analysis.
If your yeast infections happen regularly, your doctor may request a further blood test. This is to determine if you have diabetes, which can increase your risk of yeast infections.
Benefits of Probiotics For Yeast Infections
Probiotics are microorganisms that grow naturally in your digestive tract. A healthy person should have around 100 trillion bacteria in their digestive tract. There are over 300 different strains of these bacteria and each strain performs a different function. Some rebalance ph (acidity) levels in your stomach, others aid digestion, improve absorption of nutrients, while other strains ensure toxins are eliminated from our system.
Probiotics also play a major role in controlling the growth of yeast fungi and disease forming pathogenic bacteria. If you are living a healthy lifestyle, which includes eating a healthy diet, your digestive system will have enough of the good bacteria to keep the bad bacteria at bay.
Also, the correct balance of probiotics will ensure the functions of digestion, absorption and elimination are working properly and that your immune system remains strong.
A yeast infection is a clear sign that your digestive system has low levels of healthy bacteria. As pointed out earlier, the loss of these good bacteria is often our own fault. A lack of exercise, poor diet, a dependency on antibiotics and over the counter medication can wipe out a lot of your good bacteria and allow yeast infections to take over.
Lack Of Clinical Proof That Probiotics Pills Work
A popular way to treat yeast infections and digestive disorders is to replenish your good bacteria by taking probiotic supplements or probiotic yogurt products. Many people believe probiotics are the answer to better digestive health. The only issue I have with probiotics pills for yeast infections is that there is no clinical evidence that they actually work.
You see, the probiotics contained within acidophilus dietary supplements or man-made, they do not appear in nature. They are actually produced by a fermentation process, that is then added to supplements or diary products including yogurt or kefir.
Many of the claims made by companies that produce probiotic pills and food products, have not being substantiated or backed up by clinical proof. For example, last year the European Food Safety Agency has to reject 180 claims made by probiotic companies that could not back them up.
There is also the issue about how many probiotics you need to clear yeast infections. Unlike vitamin supplements there is no agreed recommended daily allowance (RDA). You really don’t know if you are taking too little or too much. Also, each person is different in terms of their condition and the requirements they need.
However, more nutritionists are agreeing that you need to be taking at least 250 to 500 million of beneficial microorganisms each day.
Probiotic May Work For Some But Not Everyone
Probiotic bio live yogurts are commonly advised to help boost low levels of friendly bacteria. However, this may not work for everyone with a candida yeast infection. Dairy products, whether yogurt or kefir – are certainly not the healthiest of choices.
Many of pasteurized probiotics yoghurts and kefir have added sugars and flavors to improve the taste. This is not recommended for candida yeast infections because the candida fungi love sugar! They are also pasteurized and homogenized. This means the milk is heated at high temperatures, which destroys its natural enzymes, as well as alter its structure making it difficult for our digestion to breakdown.
However, there are alternatives to the full fat varieties. Healthier options are yogurts and kefir made from goats milk. This is easier for out digestion to breakdown because the goats milk has much lower levels of lactose (milk sugars) as compared to cows milk. It is also lower in fat as well.
Natural Probiotic Foods
One of the best and most natural ways to replenish your probiotic levels and improve your digestion, is by eating fermented vegetables. These are commonly known as pickled foods and well known ones are pickled onions and gherkins. There are many other fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut which uses cabbage and kimchi – a Korean dish – that uses seasonal fermented vegetables.
You can even make your own probiotic rich fermented foods at home. One of the best vegetables that you can use to ferment is the cabbage. The cabbage is a rich source of the probiotic lactobacillus. These friendly microorganisms help to make your digestive system slightly more acidic, this helps to inhibit the growth of disease causing microbes in the intestinal tract.
You can become really creative and ferment as many vegetables as you like. You can even mix them together to create a healthy probiotic fermented salad. Other great vegetables to ferment are radishes, cucumbers and to add a heat – chillies. These fermented foods can be added as a side dish with your main meals or as a healthy starter dish.
Without This Probiotics Are Not As Beneficial
Whether you are eating fermented foods or taking probiotics supplements for yeast infections, their benefits can be limited if your digestion is unbalanced. For this reason, it is very important you obtain sufficient levels of a substance called prebiotics as they are essential for digestive health.
Prebiotics are soluble fibers found naturally in raw fruit and vegetables. Prebiotics ensure the right environment is created within your digestive tract for your beneficial bacterial flora to grow and thrive. Prebiotics achieve this by fermenting in your small intestine and the probiotics feed on their these fermented enzymes.
Probiotics, especially those fermented externally are very fragile. When swallowed they have to go through your stomach acid before they can repopulate your intestines. Also, with an unbalanced digestion – as you would have with a candida infection – your gut is going to be overrun with bad bacteria. This means a substantial number of probiotics are going to end up as casualties.
To prevent this from happening you need to be eating foods that are rich in prebiotics. Excellent sources are artichokes, asparagus, raw onions, bananas and kiwifruit.
The best way is to eat as much raw fruits and vegetables as you can. Cooking at high temperatures will destroy most of the probiotics and phenolic compounds. These compounds have antioxidant qualities that support your immune system. They also work alongside prebiotics to control the growth of bad bacteria.
I eat a lot of salads in order to obtain my prebiotics and I make my own salad dressing with raw organic apple cider vinegar as it is rich in prebiotics. I also add a little manuka honey to balance the acidity with a little sweetness. Try it – it tastes delicious.
Many of the prebiotics and phenolic compounds are actually found in either the pulp or skin of the fruit or vegetables, of which many are inedible. For this reason, I take a natural prebiotic digestive health supplement called Kiwi Klenz.
This is made from 100% kiwifruit that is high in prebiotics, phenolic compounds, dietary fibre as well as vitamins and minerals.
Kiwi Klenz also contains the skin, pulp and seeds of the kiwifruit giving it the highest concentration of digestive health benefits.
If you are serious about looking after your health, I urge you take a closer look. Simply click here for more details about how Kiwi Klenz can benefit you and your digestion.