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Could Your Infertility Be Linked to Candida?

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A blog by Sarah Clark, January 30, 2015

Candida albicans is one of the many types of fungi that live in the intestinal tract. It shares the space in your bowel with a variety of other microorganisms, mostly friendly bacteria called “probiotics.” Normally, candida causes no harm. However, antibiotics, high consumption of sugar and allergies can cause the friendly bacteria to die, leaving candida free to grow in parts or all through the body.

Although many conventional doctors do not recognize candida, it is linked to endometriosis, fibroids and ovarian cysts. It also may be linked to low sperm counts and motility issues with men. It can create a hormonal imbalance in your body. A candida waste product produces a false estrogen, and the body thinks it has produced adequate estrogen levels. This signals a reduction in its own estrogen. This can lead to infertility. Candida can also be transferred to your partner during sexual intercourse.

How do you know you have Candida?
Saliva spit test This can be done at home first thing in the morning. Spit into a glass of water. If the spit has projections moving downward in the water or becomes cloudy, this is a positive sign for candida.
Blood test: This test must be ordered through your physician.

What should you eat?

  • Eat more fresh vegetables, including low-glycemic fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, Granny Smith apples and pears.

  • Eat whole grains (gluten-free).
  • Avoid dairy, and instead drink nondairy milk such as coconut milk.

  • Eat quality sources of lean protein such as beans and lentils (avoid for the first three to four weeks, and then reintroduce as tolerated), chicken, turkey and fish.
  • Use stevia as a sweetener.

  • Vegetable and green drinks will improve your resistance.

  • Drink at least eight glasses of water daily to flush out the yeast toxin.

  • Consume 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseeds daily.
  • Flaxseeds have antifungal properties.
  • Consume a daily probiotic and/or sauerkraut such as Bubbies.
  • Take 1 tablespoon of unpasteurized apple cider vinegar mixed with a glass of water. 

Foods to Avoid:

  • Sugar and alcohol (The candida fungus feeds on sugar and yeast, so these must be avoided.)
  • Yeast in products such as bread, crackers and baked goods (You can request yeast-free breads at most gluten-free bakeries.)
  • High carbohydrate foods: potatoes, corn, peas, squash, and sweet potatoes; and legumes such as chickpeas, black beans, azuki beans, lima beans, kidney beans, pinto beans and split peas (Avoid for the first three to four weeks, and then reintroduce as tolerated.)
  • Dairy
  • Foods with mold (nuts, nut butter) and mushrooms
  • Fruit juice, dried fruit and high-glycemic-load fruits
such as tropical fruits, melons, oranges and grapes (It is especially important to avoid these foods between meals.)
  • Honey and maple syrup

Many people with candidiasis may also have food allergies. It is best to eliminate top food allergens such as gluten, dairy, sugar, eggs, soy and corn for at least 10 days. When you re-challenge the food, wait three days before you introduce another food group back into your diet. For example, you could start with gluten and then try dairy. Journal how you feel and note any of the following: indigestion, rashes, congestion and changes in mood.
Watch out for die-off symptoms from the candida. Depending on the severity of your candida symptoms, you may want to consult your health practitioner to determine the best strategy to change your diet. Usually, the die-off symptoms last about one week and could include nausea, headache, chills and fever (just to name a few). Ensure you plan time for rest during this phase.