Is "systemic candida" real? If so, how do you know if you have it, and how do you get rid of it?

Commented on January 13, 2015
Created March 06, 2013 at 6:31 AM

So after a few years of poor eating, I find myself feeling very unhealthy. It's possible that it's just because my diet has been so healthy, but my symptoms also match the description of candida.

I had some antibiotics during this time, so if it is real, I assume I would be at risk.

So how do you know if you have it? Are there any tell-tale signs??

Say I think I do have it- how do I get rid of it? Whats the perfect diet and supplements to take against it?

And why do I keep reading debates on whether it's real or not? Wouldn't it be very obvious if it was a real thing or not?



on March 06, 2013
at 03:49 PM

She died suddenly without any real answers? Was there an autopsy report?

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10 Answers


on March 06, 2013
at 11:02 AM

I'm not sure if it is real or not, I have read a lot about it and I'm still uncertain. After my persistent health problems were repeatedly dismissed by different doctors, I used to think I had it, then I was convinced it was rubbish, then again that I had it, etc. It was, and still is, an utterly frustrating process.

I had lots of different symptoms, but perhaps most tellingly a complete intolerance to any kind of sugar. I would get bloated, would have flushes, headaches, sore throat, sinus problems etc. after having even the tiniest amount of sugar or fruit. Eliminating sugar, gluten, dairy and yeast helped considerably, but my health has improved most of all since going auto-immune Paleo 3 months ago, eating seaweed (iodine) daily and eating fermented vegetables twice a day (probiotics, I mostly make sauerkraut and beet kvass). I've tried different supplements and none of them really helped me in the long term, and even commercial probiotics seem less effective then home-fermented food.

So whether or not it is real, if you are suffering from bad health and medical science can't figure out what's wrong with you, I would strongly encourage adopting paleo (or even AIP for a while) and eating raw cultured foods.


on March 06, 2013
at 04:10 PM

I can't tell you how many times in the last 20 years I was put on an anti candida diet and put on supplements to rid my body of the overgrowth. The minute I stopped the symptoms came back.

UNTIL I went grain free, then, all my symptoms disappeared.

The odd thing was, once I was grain free, I could then have things that were previously unhallowed on the anti candida diet (cheese, vinegar, wine) and the old candida symptoms did not return.


on March 06, 2013
at 03:56 PM

Everyone who thinks they have candida should also consider adrenal fatigue. The symptoms are absolutely identical.

Second, adrenal fatigue may be the cause of candida. Adrenals maintain your immune system for one thing, and if it's out of whack, then your entire body is off balance.

I've discussed this with my naturopath, and tests for candida are highly unreliable.

I will also say this: when I did high fat/low carb, no fruit/yeast/vinegar/starch for months...I FELT LIKE SHIT. I was seriously depressed and always felt like crap. This is when I sought out the help of a good naturopathic doc, because I had spent mad $$$ on self-diagnosing. She did a food intolerance test, and we discovered many of the 'healthy' paleo foods I was eating, I was intolerant to! My doc also recommended a slow-release tablet form of oil of oregano, and I took this several times a day over 8 weeks. She's not a fan of high dosing on caprylic acid (coconut oil) or garlic, as she said they don't work as well.

Recently, I've ditched low carb/high fat and adjusted my macros to high carb/starch, moderate fat/protein, and I'm feeling better. I don't believe I have candida anymore, and even if I do, I'm at the point of not caring. Quality of life and such.


on March 06, 2013
at 02:49 PM

I glaze over when I read those lists of symptoms for candida. Just about anyone with a health problem is going to relate to the list. My neighbor was sure she'd found her answer in that and was looking into internet cures, but she died suddenly without any real answers.

I used to glaze over at the extent of the gluten intolerance list, for that matter. But I learned through experience that one was real.

I'm still not believing the full extent of the list of candida symptoms is real. Those sites often come with something to sell.

People have wildly different tolerances for surface yeast growth and a high-sugar diet will play into that, but I have a hard time believing this microbe can be running roughshod internally without us being able to track down hard evidence for it.



on March 06, 2013
at 03:49 PM

She died suddenly without any real answers? Was there an autopsy report?


on March 06, 2013
at 01:54 PM

Candida exists, but it is highly unlikely to cause a systemic infection unless if you're severely immunocompromised.

The diets that are meant to get rid of candida are likely to have health benefits because they remove ingredients like added sugar, but the benefits have nothing to do with candida.


on March 07, 2013
at 08:38 PM

yes and it feels like shit. go on a ketogenic diet, you can calculate your macros heres keto-calculator.ankerl.com, track your food intake at myfitnesspal.com or fitday.com. eat a whole foods based diet, high quality cuts of meat, plenty of egg yolks, raw milk if you can get it, whole organic olives, avocados, seaweed, bone broths and offal. start taking omega threes and a good multivitamin or two! if you have the $ get a panel to see if you have food allergies and what, if any, nutritional deficiencies you need to clear up. start drinking a shit ton of fatty bone broth with plenty of marrow and connective tissue, take a probiotic like garden of life brand "primal defense". stay away from fermented foods, even ones that fit into the keto diet. you can restore proper gut flora and also start to heal your intestines this way. its also a great way to clean out your liver, kidneys and blood stream.

i struggled with systemic candida for 5 years. i didnt give up carbs because i had pretty much gotten down to eating just meat and root veggies quite a while ago. i had to ditch the root veggies, which was hard for me, i am an organic farmer, its what i grow! but the adherence to them was really what was hindering my healing! my digestion is so amazing now, i no longer get rashes, hot flashes/fevers, bloating, irritability and all the other little weird symptoms of systemic candida i had before



on January 13, 2015
at 03:01 PM

Where did you get carbs from if you ditched the root vegs?

My bf has the same problem, but is eating wholegrains for the carbs.


on March 06, 2013
at 05:03 PM

low antibacterial peptides and low vitamin D's from sunshine. not vitamin D pills.



on March 06, 2013
at 03:49 PM

Yes, systemic candida is real. In fact, it often goes hand in hand with immune disorders, autoimmune disorders and other chronic conditions that result from poor intestinal health. I volunteer as a network leader for an organization that helps support women and men with chronic bladder, rectal and genital pain often in addition to chronic fatigue, muscle pain, join pain, "brain fog" and intestinal disorders. Many of these people have systemic candida and high oxalate levels in their body and need to make dietary changes that support intestinal health and reduce oxalate. In fact, candida overgrowth is often a problem in individuals with oxalate-related symptoms such as autistic children or women with vulvar pain syndrome.

Supporting your intestinal health is extremely important for overall health, not just systemic candida, so this is a good step for anyone who has or suspects they have systemic candida. It will help you no matter what and eating Paleo is a fabulous first step. I personally do not have this issue, so I don't have other specifics to give you about symptoms and treatments, but I have known many people who have had issues with candida through my long work with people who have many chronic, nagging symptoms that the medical community hasn't been able to fully treat (and unfortunately often make worse).


on March 06, 2013
at 12:05 PM

I have had fungal issues, and attempted to treat them to some success with herbal medicine, but I think long term the best thing is to eat the ancestral diet as this stops them coming back, and eating that way long term seems to treat the symptoms too if you give it time.

There are clearly yeast intolerances, and fungal infections, and a person can often have many of these at once. I think they are symptoms of bad diet more than a fundamental problem though. It perhaps doesn't help to focus on the idea that you "have" something.

I don't know how much it exists as a fundamental condition.

If you want to treat it, I would recommend coconut oil, ginger and raw garlic as the primary "medicines". They are effective and safe.

What are your symptoms?



on March 06, 2013
at 11:12 AM

To me this is one of those health phobia things and you probably should not worry about it. This sort of things reminds me of the claims that our colons are full with 10 pounds of waste so you should get a colon cleanse, some vegan and vegetarian circles think that meat isn't digested and just stays in your intestines. Etc etc. The internet has created a bunch of people who have a symptom and suddenly have some horrible thing. If you completely clean your diet (whole30 style) you'll experience the miraculous benefits of a healthy change. And, along with that healthy change comes the side effects of your body cleaning out old toxins and it can cause the feelings of unhealthiness. If you're feeling truly ill, go to a doc. From what I've seen of candida, the symptoms resemble TONS of other problems.

The short of it is, don't worry about "candida." If you are truly ill see a doctor. Otherwise, eat clean and live a healthy and fun life without worrying over the latest illness going through the health circles, you'll just drive yourself crazy thinking about it.

There are no tell-tale signs. Just a vague broad range of symptoms.

To get rid of it, if it's even real, eat paleo style.

Candida is not obvious because it's a broad set of symptoms thay could mean a lot of things. It's not something you can get tests for or has a crazy specific symptom.

I wouldn't worry about it.

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