The intestines are one of the main areas of the body that Candida normally lives, so naturally it is important we address the diet while fighting Candida. As the Candida Diet removes sugars, carbohydrates and other fun foods we all crave, it is important to remember that there is still a great variety of foods available to you. The items left of the list of foods to eat on the Candida Diet don’t just fight Candida, they can prevent overgrowth in the future.
Some of the top Candida fighting foods include garlic, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, ginger, foods containing polyphenols, salmon, pumpkin seeds, lemons, onions, seaweed, and rutabaga. Each of these foods offers something different to your body that helps it clear out and prevent yeast growth and can be consumed while on the Candida Diet. I always recommend buying organic, non-GMO produce whenever possible. Pesticides and GMOs add chemical and toxins to your body.
Aside from whole foods, essential oils can offer great benefits to the body in fighting yeast. Anti-fungal essential oils you can work into your diet include coriander, tea tree oil, thyme, dill and garlic oil. All of the above listed foods and essential oils can be used while on the Candida Diet and are easily added to smoothies, other drinks or used in cooking.
Omega-3 fatty acid rich foods – Pumpkin seeds & wild salmon
Omega 3 fatty acids are well known for their anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. But, did you know they also work against Candida as an anti-fungal? Candida overgrowth can cause a significant amount of inflammation in the gut. Products of Candida metabolism such as acetaldehyde and tartaric acid increasing inflammation. Chronic Candida overgrowth can also lead to Leaky Gut Syndrome when damage to the intestinal lining occurs. For these reasons, omega 3 rich foods such as pumpkin seeds and salmon can be very beneficial.
The American Heart Association recommends 3.5 ounces baked, steamed, or grilled or ¾ cup flaked fish twice per week. This amount of fish can been shown benefit Candida overgrowth, cholesterol, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, diabetes and cancer. Fish with the highest amount of omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines and albacore tuna. Wild caught fish will contain healthier and higher concentrations of omega-3s and other nutrients.
Pumpkins seeds offer themselves as one of the best plant-based sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Pumpkin seeds are anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory and may help with remediation of Candida overgrowth and management of die-off symptom
Polyphenols are micronutrients founds in olive oil, avocado, flax, and primrose oil to name a few sources. These foods act as antioxidants which fight free radicals produced in the body from oxidative stress and amplified during Candida die-off. These foods also provide the body with many healthy fats and antioxidants making them beneficial for your heart.
Garlic is well known for its anti-fungal and detoxifying properties. During Candida overgrowth, garlic will work to attack Candida while helping to clear toxins in the liver and colon which is beneficial during die-off. Garlic is easily added to most foods while cooking, and can also be consumed raw. 2-3 minced cloves, 600-900 mg tablets, or 0.03 – 0.12 mL of garlic oil taken daily is typically recommended during the Candida diet. Mixing crushed garlic with coconut oil reduces the risk of heartburn.
Garlic has been shown to decrease the incidence of the common cold8, lower blood pressure9, cholesterol10, and heart disease risk10, and can detoxify the body of heavy metals.
Coconut oil contains Lauric and Caprylic acids which have both been shown to strengthen the immune system and can prevent candida. Coconut oil can offer a number of other benefits as well, such as lowering bad cholesterol (LDL), raising your good cholesterol (HDL) and can improves you skin and hair health! Studies have found coconut oil to be an extremely effective treatment aspect for Candida overgrowth with Candida albicans being the most responsive. It can be consumed by the teaspoon, mixed into smoothies, or used to cook in substitute of other oils.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is another anti-fungal food with amazing health benefits all around. Unfiltered, raw apple cider vinegar acts as a prebiotic feeding the good bacteria in the gut because of the enzymes, protein and good bacteria that make up the “mother”. This can be easily taken by diluting 1-2 tablespoons in a glass of water, up to twice per day.
Apple cider vinegar can also help with weight loss, blood sugar control, and digestion. The vinegar will turn any undigested starches into food for good gut bacteria while preventing blood sugar from rising.
Ginger efficiently detoxifies the liver, soothes inflammation, and works as an anti-fungal against Candida. Ginger is very versatile with the ability to be added to a variety of foods, smoothies, or to be made as a tea. Tea can be made is 4-6 slices of fresh ginger steeped in boiling water for 30 minutes.
Ginger is also used in motion sickness, nausea and to boost in the immune system.
Studies have shown lemon essential oil, an anti-fungal, is an effective remedy of candidiasis caused by Candida albicans. Lemon also detoxifies the liver, helping to eliminate die-off toxins.
Lemons can be used for cooking, steeped for tea or added into a glass of cold water. The flavonoids in lemons (and limes) have antioxidant and anti-cancer properties as well. They also contains a great amount of vitamin C which prevent colds, flu and ear infections.
Cinnamon is an anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal spice that fights Candida. Cinnamon, like coconut oil, contains Caprylic acid which restores the acidity in the stomach to normal levels which boosts the immune system. The Candida Diet recommends waiting to take Caprylic acid containing foods or supplements until after the cleanse phase of the diet. Cinnamon also offer blood sugar control, IBS, arthritis, cognitive development, weight loss, and mood enhancement.