Are you tired all the time? Feel like you have a hang over every morning even if you did not have any alcohol? Bloated, overweight, constipated and itchy? Have you been to your doctor for these issues and only to receive a blanket diagnosis such as stress induced, psychosomatic or irritable bowel syndrome? You leave the doctor’s office without a definitive answer and back to the same place you started from- tired and miserable. This is a common scenario that is presented to me during some of my new patient’s medical history intake. I can honestly say that at least 30-40% of my patients who have these chronic symptoms have some form of fungal infection, whether it is in their sinuses, lungs, or digestive system. It may not be their primary diagnosis, but definitely a contributing factor to their illness.

Within the Fungi Kingdom, there are yeasts and molds. The most common fungus that can cause a yeast infection in humans is from the Candida species. There are many strains including Candida albicans, C. pseudotropicalis, C. tropicalis, C. monilia, C. rugosa etc. Candida albicans is a very common type of yeast that naturally occurs in the human intestinal tract, but proliferates when there is bacterial imbalance. This can happen when you take antibiotics, which usually wipe out both good and bad bacteria, allowing yeast to multiply freely. A  high carbohydrate, sugar and alcohol diet can create an overgrowth of Candida.  Excess estrogen or birth control pills, steroids, anti-acids can also promote Candida overgrowth.

Often times the symptoms behind Candida infections are diagnosed as more popular diseases like Hyperthyroidism, Leaky Gut Syndrome, Crohn’s Disease, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Celiac Disease, Lupus, or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. If you take a look at the symptoms below, it is easy to see why this happens—these more popular diseases have very similar symptoms to Candida.

They include:

  • abdominal gas and bloating
  • headaches
  • migraines
  • excessive fatigue
  • cravings for alcohol
  • anxiety
  • inability to think clearly or concentrate
  • hyperactivity
  • mood swings
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • hyperactivity
  • itching
  • acne
  • eczema
  • depression
  • sinus inflammation
  • pre-menstrual syndrome
  • dizziness
  • poor memory
  • persistent cough
  • earaches
  • low sex drive
  • muscle weakness
  • irritability
  • learning difficulties
  • sensitivity to fragrances and/or other chemicals
  • cognitive impairment
  • thrush
  • athlete’s foot

There are also many more Candida symptoms not listed here. If you are unsure whether or not you could be suffering from Candida, there is a helpful questionnaire online at Dr. William Crook’s website that is easy to fill out. Dr. Crook was one of the first to write a book on Candida called The Yeast Connection and it contains detailed information related to fungal infections. I highly suggest filling out his questionnaire if you feel any of the symptoms above pertain to you.

References:

http://altmedicine.about.com/od/popularhealthdiets/a/candidadiet.htm

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