How Fungus & Fungal Overgrowth Links to Stomach & Intestinal Disorders
7 minute read
Most of the time we associate upset stomachs or digestive issues with what we eat, and while your diet can cause the occasional gastric anomaly, chronic digestive disorders tend to have more persistent origins.
One of these digestive culprits, a fungus known as Candida, can cause digestive troubles beyond a simple upset tummy. This fungus can grow anywhere and, if allowed to flourish in your digestive tract, can even result in some serious intestinal disorders.
The Fungus Behind Digestive Problems
Candida is an opportunistic fungus (or yeast) that can grow quickly and take over, causing infections and illness. The yeast is able to take over your digestive tract as a result of an imbalance in your microbiome.
The bacteria living within your gut protect you from these opportunistic fungi and help promote optimal digestion and health. Unfortunately, certain lifestyle choices can deplete these friendly microorganisms, allowing the bad ones to run wild.
Candida is the most common cause of fungal infections in humans. Small quantities of this fungus can be found naturally in your mouth, intestines, and on your skin, but they are kept in check by the friendly bacteria you host.
Any disruption to your immune system or depletion of good bacteria allows Candida to grow uncontrollably. Once this happens, your body has a real fight on its hands because Candida multiplies quickly.
Ways You May Be Unknowingly Helping Candida
There are a number of factors that you should be aware of to keep control of the Candida living within and on you. If you can maintain healthy levels of good bacteria in your gut, then your immune system stays alert and Candida is kept in line.
Taking antibiotics is often the best course for treating infection. Sadly, antibiotics kill helpful bacterial strains along with those causing your illness. Overuse of antibiotics, therefore, can result in depleted bacterial support and Candida can take over.
This is not to say that you should avoid antibiotics, but rather look to replace any bacterial friends that may be lost. During a course of antibiotics, consider taking a probiotic supplement or increasing intake of probiotic foods to replenish any that may be killed by the medication.
Watch Your Diet
Diets high in sugar and refined carbohydrates are known to contribute to gut bacterial depletion in a few ways. This diet feeds bad bacteria and allows them to thrive. In contrast, your beneficial flora thrives on dietary fiber, which comes from hearty fruits and vegetables.
Sugars, saturated fats, and refined carbohydrates contribute to inflammation, which is known to promote bad bacterial growth and can damage your intestinal lining. Any alteration to the gut environment will allow Candida to grow, but a healthy diet keeps your gut bacteria strong enough to keep Candida in its place.
Those with diabetes are more prone to Candida overgrowth and various infections. Elevated blood glucose levels also support the growth of this fungus. If your blood sugar levels are not carefully managed, you could end up with a Candida problem as well as digestive troubles and discomfort.
Your Immune System
A weakened or compromised immune system provides the perfect opportunity for Candida to thrive. Even the common cold can occupy your immune system enough for the fungus to start growing. In addition to being sick, stress also compromises your immune system with the increased levels of cortisol (stress hormone).
To ensure that your immune system stays ready and able to prevent Candida infections, make sure you follow a healthy diet, exercise regularly, reduce stress, and take probiotics to backup your immune system’s efforts.
| Related: 7 Signs of Candida Overgrowth (And How to Get Rid of It) |
Promoting Optimal Gut Health
The key to preventing Candida from taking over is by maintaining a healthy gut environment. With a balanced microbiome, your digestive system can ward off advances from Candida and other invading pathogens.
The gut is the perfect place for pathogens to access your body as many things we eat contain toxins. Though these end up in your gut, they’re unable to cause harm while your friendly bacteria are in control.
Because antibiotics, poor diet, stress, and aging can all cause these bacteria to be killed off, there are additional measures you should take to ensure your gut community stays healthy and happy.
Focus on Prebiotics
Just as your body needs food for fuel, your gut bacteria need help to replenish their energy, as well. Prebiotics are a form of dietary fiber that helps feed these friendly florae. Dietary fiber is found in most fruits and vegetables and contains compounds your body cannot break down.
As a result, the food makes its way, intact, to the intestines, and serves as a feast for your gut microbes. As they digest and break down the fiber, they then release the essential nutrients your body needs for optimal health.
Reduce the Guilty Pleasures
Sugar-rich, high-fat, processed foods and alcohol all taste good but are terrible for your gut health. These create a sugar-rich environment that harmful bacteria thrive in. If this occurs too often, bad bacteria can multiply and outnumber the good guys.
This is the sign for Candida to grow and spread, and infections will inevitably be the outcome. Limiting the amount of these foods that you consume will give your gut bacteria the upper hand, which means less risk for infection and optimal digestion too.
Boost Your Immune System With Supplements
Making sure you’re getting the right pre- and probiotics into your diet can be challenging. We recommend adding a high-quality Candida supplement to your everyday routine to help boost your immune system and keep Candida in check.
With Complete Candida Control, you’ll always have the vital nutrients you need to regulate Candida growth and prevent digestive disorders so you can always feel your best.
The Bottom Line
An upset stomach is one thing, but digestive or intestinal disorders are a different beast altogether. Chronic discomfort and digestive troubles can interfere with your life and happiness.
If you think Candida may be to blame, then it might be time to visit your doctor because this little fungus can cause big problems. Fortunately, it can also be put back on its place very easily. With the right diet and healthy lifestyle choices, you can keep Candida under control.