Yeast are a type of fungus that exist everywhere. Candida is one form of yeast that can infect humans. It is estimated that between 75% and 90% of people get a Candida infection at some time in their lives, such as thrush, toenail infections or vaginitis.
Some of these are easy to spot because they are on the outside and cause symptoms such as burning, itching or white plaques.
Many people, however, also get Candida in their blood called “systemic candidiasis.” This infection generally comes from the intestines, where most people have some yeast growing all the time. The systemic infection can cause a multitude of symptoms.
How do I know if I have Candida?
Because Candida causes inflammation AND produces toxins, it can create a wide range of symptoms. One clinic that specializes in treating Candida lists the following symptoms:
- Digestive troubles
- Behavioral problems
- Skin and joint problems
- Female problems
- Mental problems
- Emotional issues
- Immune problems
- Chronic fatigue
Essentially, every disturbance known to man has been attributed to Candidiasis, making it impossible to know if this is the real cause of the problem. Fortunately, there are tools available that can help you determine the likelihood of a Candida yeast overgrowth being the cause of your health issue.
Some advocate a test for Candida called the “spit test.” This consists of spitting saliva into a glass of water in the morning before eating or drinking. We are told that if you have yeast you will see strings or a cloud of spit in the water. The problem with this test is that it has never been clinically validated. It is likely that many people who have Candida will be negative on the spit test, or those who show positive results do not have an infection. Nobody knows if the test actually works.
Because the presence of Candida in the gut is common, it is hard to determine if there is a true infection. Many will test positive when they only have colonization, which is not as evasive as a candida infection. Also, many who have infections will test negative because the Candida infection is in a different fungal form.
Candida albicans is an organism that has two forms: yeast and fungus. The yeast-like form in a non-invasive, sugar-fermenting organism. Actually, these little budding yeast are not the problematic issue.
An antigenic is a substance that when introduced into the body stimulates the production of an antibody. Antigens include toxins, bacteria and foreign blood cells.
It is the “hyphae” fungus form that creates the internal crisis. Hyphae is close to the same composition that causes vegetables to stand up and grow reaching for the sunlight. Or, consider them like very long root-like structures, which can penetrate the gastrointestinal mucosa, breaking down the boundary between the intestinal tract and the rest of the circulation. This allows substances to be introduced into the blood stream, many of which are antigenic. When the candida pathogen has broken through the mucosal barrier and has entered the blood, you now have the most serious form of candida infection.
So, if I can’t go by symptoms, I can’t rely on the “spit test” and can’t even use a stool test, how can I know if I have systemic Candida?
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