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Your Ultimate Guide for Healthy Living

Candida Overgrowth - The Underlying Cause You Need to Know

Do you suspect you are suffering from candida overgrowth? Candida typically lives harmlessly in the body and there are several types of this fungus. Most common one is the Candid albicans residing and overgrowing into the gastrointestinal system (gut). But sometimes, an overgrowth can be triggered and cause significant health concerns.

Let’s have a look at the common causes and relationships that are involved with candida overgrowth.

What is Candida?

Candida is a species of yeast (fungus) that often lives happily in the body alongside your other microbes.

However, in some situations, candida is given the opportunity to become mycelium and produce hyphae or long spores. These spores can penetrate into the tissues, grow, and even form a biofilm layer that protects the candida.

So instead of living alongside others, it begins to push many of the beneficial species of microbes out and overtake the area. This can occur in areas including the gut, mouth, vagina, skin or throat and lungs.

What Causes Candida Overgrowth?

So what can cause an overgrowth in the first place? It typically requires long-term environmental triggers to create the type of environment where candida can overgrow. Some examples of candida overgrowth causes include:

  • Antibiotic therapy (usually multiple courses)

  • Hormonal triggers such as the contraceptive pill (OCP) or hormone replacement therapy (HRT)

  • Low stomach acid,

  • Immune dysfunction/disruption,

  • Detoxification issues such as MTHFR or COMT

  • Chronic stress,

  • Dietary factors such as high carbs, sugar intake or a diet high in hydrogenated fats (margarine, processed oils, store bough biscuits, baking, bread)

  • Low immunity due to drugs, treatments e.g. chemotherapy or health conditions e.g. HIV infection

  • Insulin resistance and diabetes

What are the Common Symptoms of Candida Overgrowth?

Some of the signs and symptoms you might experience include:

  • Brain fog

  • Fatigue

  • Feeling fuzzy

  • Low metabolic rate and hypothyroidism

  • Depression

  • Sugar cravings

  • Elevated cortisol levels

  • Joint pain and inflammation

  • Low iron levels

  • Low zinc levels

  • Smelly flatulence

  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs)

  • Sensitivity to alcohol

  • Painful sex

  • Low libido

  • Low fertility or infertility

  • Mouth issues such as bleeding gums, halitosis and cavities

  • Sore, swollen glands

However, it’s important to remember that other health concerns can cause these symptoms. Your best bet is to get tested and diagnosed.

Candida & Oestrogen

One of the most important relationships to candida is oestrogen. This is a two-way street, as they both feed into one another.

High oestrogen can lead to further overgrowth of candida. It’s also believed to play a role in candida being drug-resistant.

On the other hand, candida can convert estrone into estradiol. This creates an oestrogen-dominant environment. It can also mimic the symptoms including endometriosis, heavy painful periods and acne.

Estradiol can also alter the immune system’s function. It turns off Th1, causing lower levels of T helper cells. As a result, you are more vulnerable to infections including overgrowth.

Candida & Insulin Resistance

Are you stressed out all the time? If so, stress might be feeding into your issues.

Candida can feed on cortisol metabolites and prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are inflammatory compounds that can be triggered by stress. If this is an issue for you, you might want to consider a fish oil supplement.

When we get stressed, the body also releases more glucose. This feeds into the candida growth.

Looking to Bring Your Body Back Into Balance?

The Nourished Gut Programme might be for you! Whether you want to boost your energy, release excess weight or re-balance your hormones, this programme has something to suit.

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