Before you roll your eyes at the thought of yet another diet, hear us out. This isn’t a lose 10 pounds in a week kind of diet, it’s a cleansing diet that could potentially have a positive impact on your health. The good news is that a candida diet gives you lots of choices… and those choices could give you your energy back, support healthy-looking skin, and could temporarily ease some of your digestive issues. Read more about a candida diet below!
First, What’s Candida?
First, here’s a little background on candida so you can decide whether a candida diet is even the right move for you. Candida is a yeast-like fungus that grows naturally in our bodies, but occasionally it can get out of control and overgrowth can happen. Candida overgrowth can cause issues with healthy digestion and skin irritations. Common complaints include chronic fatigue, trouble focusing or paying attention, bowel movement troubles, and itchy skin. Candida overgrowth can present itself in many different ways; you may have noticed it before – growing on the skin, nails, inside the mouth, or inside the vaginal canal.
Proper Candida Diet Advantages
One of the main causes of candida overgrowth is believed to be poor nutrition, so it makes sense that altering your diet could help avoid it. The goal here is to stunt yeast growth while preserving and supporting the good bacteria (microflora) that lives inside your gut and is crucial to proper digestion. Candida feeds off of sugar intake – all kinds of sugar – so the main component of the candida diet focuses around trying to avoid all kinds of sugar, even sugar that you might not realize is there.
Food to Avoid for a Candida Cleanse
- Sugar – This includes avoiding processed foods like cookies, candy, and desserts. Sugary fruits should also be avoided, such as bananas, raisins, mangoes, and grapes.
- Gluten – Many of the grains we eat contain gluten, which is basically sugar in a different form. The biggest offenders include barley, wheat, rye, and spelt.
- Dairy – When using a candida diet to support a healthy gut, it’s best to avoid dairy products like cheese, milk, and cream. However, “good bacteria” dairy products like kefir and yogurt are highly encouraged while on a candida diet.
- Alcohol and Caffeine – All kinds of alcoholic beverages and caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea can cause irritation in the lining of the stomach and intestines. That’s why it’s best to avoid them while on a candida diet. When your gut is a little healthier, you can add some back in moderation.
- Starchy Vegetables – Potatoes, yams, and beets are not recommended while on the candida diet.
Foods to Eat for Optimal Health
- Healthy Protein – Meats such as chicken, turkey, and grass-fed beef are encouraged on the candida diet, as well as wild-caught fish such as herring, salmon, sardines, and anchovies. Eggs, almonds, hazelnuts, and sunflower seeds are also great sources of protein.
- Non-Starchy Vegetables – Good candida fighters include artichokes, broccoli, raw garlic, kale, onions, spinach, and brussel sprouts.
- Healthy Fats – Good fats are an important component in soothing irritation in the lining of the gut. Olive, coconut, and avocado oils are encouraged during a candida diet, and even butter and ghee are allowed. You’ll also want to make sure you’re getting plenty of probiotics, which can be found in kefir, yogurt, or in a supplement.
- Grains without Gluten – Try quinoa, oat bran, buckwheat, or millet.
Also be sure to drink plenty of water while on your candida diet to help flush your system of yeast overgrowth.
Have you had success using a candida diet? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.