Chapter 2

Candidiasis... The Yeast Infection

What is Candidiasis?
Candidiasis (pronounced kan-di-di'-a-sis) is a yeast infection commonly found in people subjected to factors such as a history of chronic negative stress, prolonged use of antibiotics, prednisone, sulfa drugs such as Bactrim� or Septra� , birth control pills, other estrogens such as Premarin� and other hormones and steroids. Small populations of candida yeast, (generically known as Candida albicans) normally occur in all healthy men and women. A strong immune system as well as the beneficial Lactobacillus (yogurt type) bacteria found in healthy colons help control the populations of candida. The indiscriminate use of antibiotics, steroids, birth control pills, and laxatives, allows these normally harmless organisms to multiply unchecked and take control of the body.

When yeasts multiply unchecked, they put out toxins which circulate throughout the body, weakening the immune system. The Candida (yeasts and fungus) become more abundant when your resistance has been lowered due to nutritional deficiencies, allergies, infection, or some other debilitating cause. These fungus toxins usually cause many different forms of illnesses such as depression, fatigue, loss of concentration, and aggravate PMS. In addition, they can also cause severe headaches, increased susceptibility to infection, a weakened immune system, and can aggravate food allergies and chemical sensitivities.

Once infecting the body, Candida albicans (also called "monilia" or "thrush") can cause vaginal itching, swelling, soreness, burning urination and a white, cheesy discharge.

Dr. Martin H. Zwerling, M.D., in an article published in the South Carolina Medical Association Journal told of an "incurable" patient who was being treated by several specialists:

"Her gynecologist is treating for recurrent vaginitis and irregular menstrual periods, while an otolaryngologist is trying to control her external otitis and chronic rhinitis. At the same time, her internist is unsuccessfully attempting to manage symptoms of bloating, indigestion and abdominal pain, and a dermatologist is struggling with bizarre skin rashes, hives and psoriasis. Lastly, her psychiatrist has been unable to convince the patient that her 'nerves' are the cause of her extreme irritability, inability to concentrate and depression. Some doctors would label such a patient as "psychosomatic" and since there is "nothing physically wrong", the doctors might conclude that they cannot cure her."

Incurable? Not if you THINK YEAST!

This patient and thousands like her are suffering from chronic candidiasis. Some of the sickest patients seen in private practice have a problem with Candida albicans and will respond to treatment. [8]

What can cause a yeast infection?
Aspects of our lifestyle that foster continuing yeast growth include the taking of oral contraceptives, antibiotics, sulfa drugs, synthetic steroid medications and overuse of laxatives; eating foods high in yeast and gluten content such as bread, brewer's yeast, beer, and mushrooms. In addition, eating a diet with an excess of refined or simple sugar carbohydrates such as candies, sweets, cookies, chips, pastas and ever present "junk food" can also foster yeast growth. Dietary deficiencies such as vitamins C, A and E; some B vitamins; zinc, and selenium weaken natural immune defense mechanisms which rely on these nutrients as coenzymes. Toxin accumulations in the lower bowels or colon also destroy the beneficial Lactobacillus organism which normally would help control the yeast.

These dietary patterns provide a good culture medium for the candida to grow and prosper.

Can candidiasis be treated?
Yes. Naturopathic medicines and nutrients can rid the body of Candida overgrowth while leaving natural disease-fighting "good bacteria" needed for robust health.

Unfortunately, many physicians don't recognize systemic Candida overgrowth as a medical problem unless it is found exclusively in the mouth (as thrush) or vagina (as yeast). That is why many chronic problems caused by Candida are often misdiagnosed and determined to be of mental rather than physical origin.

One must remember that the body functions as a complex, interrelated system. Since hormone imbalances, hypoglycemia, low thyroid function, candidiasis, vitamin and nutritional deficiencies, allergies (of food, chemical or environmental origin), toxin accumulations, negative stresses and other conditions are all interrelated they must all be addressed in order for a person to regain and enjoy good health. This is what naturopathic medicine strives to accomplish.

We know the use of excess natural sugars (including honey) can aggravate and continue the Candida problem. Our clinic uses natural, yeastfree medicines.

                             TABLE 3
       Partial List of Possible Common Yeast-
      Connected Signs, Symptoms and Conditions.

      (Only a trained physician should make the determination
      of diagnosis as these symptoms could be caused by other
      problems such low thyroid, toxin accumulation, environmental
      allergies, nutritional deficiencies, etc.)

    Agitation                   Earaches
    Allergies                   Fatigue
    Anxiety                     Gas
    Arthritis                   Gastritis
    Asthma                      Hayfever
    Autism                      Headaches
    Bloating                    Hyperactivity
    Body aches                  Hypoglycemia
    Bronchitis                  Impotence
    Chemical sensitivities      Irritability
    Chronic heartburn           Learning difficulties
    Chronic infections          Memory loss
    Chronic liver disease       Menstrual problems
    Colitis                     Multiple sclerosis
    Constipation                Muscle pain
    Cramping in the belly       PMS
    Depression                  Psoriasis
    Diarrhea                    Respiratory problems
    Digestive disorders         Short attention span
    Disturbed senses of taste,  Skin problems
    smell, vision or hearing    Urinary disorders
    Dizziness                   Vaginitis

We recommend that you read "The Yeast Connection " by William Crook, M.D.; and "The Missing Diagnosis" by Orian Truss, M.D. These authors clearly show that unfortunately, yeast infections often escape diagnosis as the cause of many illnesses.


Chapter 3 : ALLERGIES..Environmental & Chemical Sensitivities & Asthma