Symptoms of Candida overgrowth
Everyone has small amounts of Candida growing in their digestive tract, on their skin, in the mouth and women have some growing in their vagina. In low levels, this yeast does not cause any health problems. Overgrowth of Candida in the gastrointestinal tract is very common, especially after a course of broad spectrum antibiotics. Steroid medication and the oral contraceptive pill also encourage Candida growth.
Symptoms of excess Candida in the digestive tract include digestive discomfort (gas, bloating, diarrhoea), fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, blocked sinuses, sugar cravings, recurrent vaginal yeast infections, recurrent urinary tract infections, depression, foggy head and poor concentration, food and chemical sensitivities and sleep problems. These can also be symptoms of other health conditions, so it is important to see your doctor who can give your health a thorough check.
The worst consequence of the development of Candida infection is leaky gut syndrome. If there are high levels of Candida growing in your digestive tract, they compromise the structural integrity of your gut lining. This means your gut becomes more permeable than it should be; allowing high levels of toxins naturally present in the bowel to gain access to your bloodstream. Leaky gut syndrome is a forerunner to allergies, food intolerance, multiple chemical sensitivity, chronic fatigue syndrome and autoimmune disease. Not everyone with a leaky gut will develop one of these problems; some people just feel sick and tired their entire life but never develop one of these illnesses. Your genes play a big role here in determining which health problems you may develop.
If you have high levels of Candida growing in your digestive tract, you are prone to developing Candida infections elsewhere in your body. The most common spots include the skin, particularly the feet (tinea or athlete’s foot), fungal nail infections, vaginal yeast infections (thrush), yeast diaper rash in infants or oral thrush. Treating the yeast overgrowth in the bowel is the key to overcoming each of these infections.