Download a free chapter of my book
Beyond Gluten a Healing Transition
Download a free chapter of my book Beyond Gluten a Healing Transition
Candidiasis or Candida is a fungal infection caused by an overgrowth of fungus belonging to the Candida species. Candida yeasts are normally present in the mouth, gastrointestinal tract, and vagina without causing symptoms. Sometimes, however, the balance between Candida and normally present bacteria becomes disrupted.
Candida is such a difficult condition to diagnose because it can affect each sufferer in a different way. For this reason, Candida is often misdiagnosed and the symptom is treated instead of the underlying cause such as a yeast infection in woman where antibiotics are prescribed.
The consensus is that many more people are suffering from Candida than those few who are diagnosed correctly. You may find yourself suffering from any or all of the following symptoms if you have Candida:
Your Digestive System
Your Respiratory System
Your Ears And Eyes
Your Genital-Urinary System
Your Immune System
Your doctor might confuse any of the following conditions with Candida. The reason is that the symptoms are often exactly the same, and Candida may manifest itself in any combination of those symptoms. We have listed here some of the possible misdiagnoses, together with the symptom that your doctor has focused on. Remember, your doctor is relying on you for an accurate description of your symptoms, so make sure you tell them everything!
IBS – abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, indigestion
Arthritis – joint pain
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – constant fatigue
Diaper Rash – rashes and itching in infants
Athlete’s Foot – Fungus on toenails
Crohn’s Disease – abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, indigestion
Gastroenteritis – abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, indigestion
A Candida misdiagnosis may actually worsen your Candida overgrowth. If your doctor believes that you have IBS, Crohn’s Disease or Gastroenteritis, he may prescribe the anti-inflammatory Cortisone. This introduces steroids to the gut, which can increase the growth of Candida colonies.
Testing For Candida
Candida is something of a controversial illness, and many medical professionals have not yet recognized it. Regretfully, this means that many patients are turned away and do not get the help that they need. There are tests available to help rule out candida. If you are tested positive we can work with you on a customized protocol to help eradicate the candida infection. Here are a few tests available.
Here’s a simple test that some Candida sufferers claim will diagnose your systemic Candidiasis. As we’ll mention below, the science behind this is a little suspect. Feel free to try the test, but don’t rely on this test alone.
1. When you get up in the morning, and before you brush your teeth, eat or drink anything, fill a glass with bottled water at room temperature.
2. Spit some saliva gently into the glass.
3. Come back every 20 minutes for the next hour and check for some of these tell-tale signs of Candida:
– ‘Strings’ coming down through the water from the saliva at the top
– Butty saliva sitting at the bottom of the glass
– Opaque specks of saliva suspended in the water
Candidiasis diagnosis is no easy task, but your best bet is to go with how your feel, and ask for some blood tests. Read below to find out which tests you should get to confirm candida:
An Anti-Candida Antibodies, or Candida Immune Complexes test. There are 3 antibodies that should be tested to measure your immune system’s response to Candida – IgG, IgA, and IgM. High levels of these antibodies indicate that an overgrowth of Candida is present. This is the most reliable test for Candidiasis that you can find.
* IgG Panel for Food Sensitivity blood spot test from Great Plains Lab includes candida on their panel. We use this test frequently at Karmic Health with patients.
Your stool is directly analyzed for levels of yeast, pathogenic bacteria and friendly bacteria. However Candida often does not show up in this test, so the blood test is more reliable.
Urine Tartaric Acid Test
This test detects tartaric acid – a waste product of Candida yeast overgrowth. An elevated test means an overgrowth of Candida. Again, this test can be unreliable compared to a blood test.
Here is an abbreviated version of a questionnaire, created by Dr. William Crook and designed to test for Candida. The main difficulty with testing for Candida is that everyone has it! It is not the presence of Candida that is a problem, rather it is the overgrowth of Candida that gives you all those nasty symptoms.
Interpreting the Results
A score of 10 or greater indicates that your health problems may be connected to a yeast overgrowth.
A score of 13 or higher suggests that they are almost certainly yeast connected.
A score of 8 or greater indicates that your health problems may be connected to a yeast overgrowth.
A score of 11 or higher suggests that they are almost certainly yeast connected.
|1. Have you taken repeated or prolonged courses of antibacterial drugs?||4||0|
|2. Have you been bothered by recurrent vaginal, prostate or urinary infections?||3||0|
|3. Do you feel “sick all over,” yet the cause hasn’t been found?||2||0|
|4. Are you bothered by hormone disturbances, including PMS, menstrual irregularities, sexual dysfunction, sugar craving, low body temperature or fatigue?||2||0|
|5. Are you unusually sensitive to tobacco smoke, perfumes, colognes and other chemical odors?||2||0|
|6. Are you bothered by memory or concentration problems? Do you sometimes feel “spaced out”?||2||0|
|7. Have you taken prolonged courses of prednisone or other steroids; or have you taken “the pill” for more than 3 years?||2||0|
|8. Do some foods disagree with you or trigger your symptoms?||1||0|
|9. Do you suffer with constipation, diarrhea, bloating or abdominal pain?||1||0|
|10. Does your skin itch, tingle or burn; or is it unusually dry; or are you bothered by rashes?||1||0|
|11. When you wake up, do you have a white coating on your tongue?||1||0|
* Sandi’s complete protocol will give you a detailed list of foods to eat and foods to avoid along with a nutraceutical regime to help eradicate candida. We work closely with you along the way to guide and monitor your progress. Our goal is to reach optimal health by alleviating symptoms related to candida.
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that can occur in genetically predisposed people where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage in the small intestine. It is estimated to affect 1 in 100 people worldwide. 2.5 million Americans are undiagnosed and are at risk for long-term health complications.
When people with celiac disease eat gluten (a protein found in wheat, rye and barley), their body mounts an immune response that attacks the small intestine. These attacks lead to damage on the villi, small fingerlike projections that line the small intestine, that promote nutrient absorption. When the villi get damaged, nutrients cannot be absorbed properly into the body.
Celiac disease is hereditary, meaning that it runs in families. People with a first-degree relative with celiac disease (parent, child, sibling) have a 1 in 10 risk of developing celiac disease.
Long Term Health Effects
Celiac disease can develop at any age after people start eating foods or medicines that contain gluten. Left untreated, celiac disease can lead to additional serious health problems. These include the development of other autoimmune disorders like Type I diabetes and multiple sclerosis (MS), dermatitis herpetiformis (an itchy skin rash), anemia, osteoporosis, infertility and miscarriage, neurological conditions like epilepsy and migraines, short stature, and intestinal cancers.
Currently, the only treatment for celiac disease is lifelong adherence to a strict gluten-free diet. People living gluten-free must avoid foods with wheat, rye and barley, such as bread and beer. Ingesting small amounts of gluten, like crumbs from a cutting board or toaster, can trigger small intestine damage.
Celiac disease is also known as coeliac disease, celiac sprue, non-tropical sprue, and gluten sensitive enteropathy.
Undiagnosed or untreated celiac disease can lead to:
Long-Term Health Conditions
Other Autoimmune Disorders
In a 1999 study, Ventura, et al. found that for people with celiac disease, the later the age of diagnosis, the greater the chance of developing another autoimmune disorder.
|Age of Diagnosis||Chance of Developing Another Autoimmune Condition|
|4 – 12||16.7%|
|12 – 20||27%|
Autoimmune Conditions Associated with Celiac Disease
|Autoimmune Condition||Prevalence in CD Population|
|Autoimmune Thyroid Disease (Graves/Hashimoto’s)||2-7%|
|Idiopathic Dilated Cardiomyopathy||5.7%|
|Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis||2.5-7%|
|Primary Bilary Cirrhosis||3-7%|
|Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis||3%|
|Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus||4%|
Biomed Res Int. 2013; 2013: 127589, Expert Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2010;4(6):767-780, Rheumatology (Oxford).2013 May;52(5):939-43.
CELIAC DISEASE SYMPTOMS
CELIAC DISEASE CAN BE DIFFICULT TO DIAGNOSE BECAUSE IT AFFECTS PEOPLE DIFFERENTLY. THERE ARE ABOUT 300 KNOWN SYMPTOMS WHICH MAY OCCUR IN THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM OR OTHER PARTS OF THE BODY. SOME PEOPLE WITH CELIAC DISEASE HAVE NO SYMPTOMS AT ALL. HOWEVER, ALL PEOPLE WITH CELIAC DISEASE ARE STILL AT RISK FOR LONG-TERM COMPLICATIONS, WHETHER OR NOT THEY DISPLAY ANY SYMPTOMS.
DIGESTIVE SYMPTOMS ARE MORE COMMON IN INFANTS AND CHILDREN. HERE ARE THE MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS FOUND IN CHILDREN:
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Do You Have Celiac Disease?
Adults are less likely to have digestive symptoms, with only one-third experiencing diarrhea. Adults are more likely to have:
For a complete list of symptoms, see the Celiac Disease Symptoms List PDF.
Most people with celiac disease are undiagnosed. This checklist helps you document if you or your child have any of the common symptoms or conditions. Share your checklist responses with your physician to determine if you or your child should have the celiac disease panel blood test.
This checklist is NOT a self-diagnosis tool. Diagnosis of celiac disease requires a celiac disease panel blood test and an endoscopic biopsy of your small intestine.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common disorder that affects the large intestine (colon). Irritable bowel syndrome commonly causes cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea and constipation. IBS is a chronic condition that you will need to manage long term.
Even though signs and symptoms are uncomfortable, IBS — unlike ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, which are forms of inflammatory bowel disease — doesn’t cause changes in bowel tissue or increase your risk of colorectal cancer.
Only a small number of people with irritable bowel syndrome have severe signs and symptoms. Some people can control their symptoms by managing diet, lifestyle and stress. Others will need medication and counseling. It’s always best to look deeper into the cause of IBS as it ties into other disorders such as SIBO.
The signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome can vary widely from person to person and often resemble those of other diseases. Among the most common are:
For most people, IBS is a chronic condition, although there will likely be times when the signs and symptoms are worse and times when they improve or even disappear completely.
When to see a doctor
Although as many as 1 in 5 American adults has signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, fewer than 1 in 5 who have symptoms seek medical help. Yet it’s important to see your doctor if you have a persistent change in bowel habits or if you have any other signs or symptoms of IBS to rule out a more serious condition, such as colon cancer.
Symptoms that may indicate a more serious condition include:
It’s not known exactly what causes irritable bowel syndrome, but a variety of factors play a role. The walls of the intestines are lined with layers of muscle that contract and relax in a coordinated rhythm as they move food from your stomach through your intestinal tract to your rectum. If you have irritable bowel syndrome, the contractions may be stronger and last longer than normal, causing gas, bloating and diarrhea. Or the opposite may occur, with weak intestinal contractions slowing food passage and leading to hard, dry stools.
Abnormalities in your gastrointestinal nervous system also may play a role, causing you to experience greater than normal discomfort when your abdomen stretches from gas or stool. Poorly coordinated signals between the brain and the intestines can make your body overreact to the changes that normally occur in the digestive process. This overreaction can cause pain, diarrhea or constipation.
Triggers vary from person to person
Stimuli that don’t seem to bother other people can trigger symptoms in people with IBS — but not all people with the condition react to the same stimuli. Common triggers include:
Many people have occasional signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, but you’re more likely to have IBS if you:
The influence of family history on IBS risk may be related to genes, shared factors in a family’s environment or both.
Diarrhea and constipation, both signs of irritable bowel syndrome, can aggravate hemorrhoids. In addition, dehydration can cause a loss of electrolytes and you may not get enough of the nutrients you need, leading to malnourishment.
But the condition’s impact on your overall quality of life may be the most significant complication. These effects of IBS may cause you to feel you’re not living life to the fullest, leading to discouragement or depression.
Preparing for your appointment
Make an appointment with your doctor if you have symptoms of IBS. After an initial evaluation, your doctor may refer you to a specialist in digestive disorders (gastroenterologist) for more extensive testing. Consider seeking a second opinion with a holistic practitioner before starting any drug therapy as there are holistic alternatives in treatments. Western Medical doctors have little education in nutrition if any. Keep in mind nutrition plays a key role in all GI disorders.
Here’s some information to help you prepare for your appointment and what to expect from your doctor.
What you can do
For IBS, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
In addition to the questions that you’ve prepared to ask your doctor, don’t hesitate to ask questions during your appointment.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions. Being ready to answer them may reserve time to go over any points you want to spend more time on. You may be asked:
What you can do in the meantime
While you wait for your appointment, check with your family members to find out if any relatives have been diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease or colon cancer. In addition, start jotting down notes about how often your symptoms occur and any factors that seem to trigger their occurrence.
Tests and diagnosis
A diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome depends largely on a complete medical history and physical exam.
Criteria for making a diagnosis
Because there are usually no physical signs to definitively diagnose IBS, diagnosis is often a process of ruling out other conditions. To help this process, researchers have developed two sets of diagnostic criteria for IBS and other functional gastrointestinal disorders — conditions in which the bowel appears normal but doesn’t work (function) normally. Both criteria are based on symptoms after other conditions have been ruled out.
Your doctor will likely assess how you fit these criteria, as well as whether you have any other signs or symptoms that might suggest another, more serious, condition. Some red flag signs and symptoms that suggest a need for additional testing include:
If you fit the IBS criteria and don’t have any red flag signs or symptoms, your doctor may suggest a course of treatment without doing additional testing. But if you don’t respond to that treatment, you’ll likely require more tests.
Your doctor may recommend several tests, including stool studies to check for infection or problems with your intestine’s ability to take in the nutrients from food (malabsorption). You may undergo a number of tests to rule out other causes for your symptoms.
Treatments and drugs
Because it’s not clear what causes irritable bowel syndrome, treatment focuses on the relief of symptoms so that you can live as normally as possible.
In most cases, you can successfully control mild signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome by learning to manage stress and making changes in your diet and lifestyle. Try to avoid foods that trigger your symptoms. Also try to get enough exercise, drink plenty of fluids and get enough sleep.
If your problems are moderate or severe, you may need more than lifestyle changes. Your doctor may suggest medications. Remember medications always have side effects and only mask symptoms. It’s important to find the cause of IBS so you can address it.
If you have diarrhea and abdominal pain without depression, your doctor may suggest a lower than normal dose of tricyclic antidepressants, such as imipramine (Tofranil) or nortriptyline (Pamelor). Side effects of these drugs include drowsiness and constipation. SSRIs, such as fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem) or paroxetine (Paxil), may be helpful if you’re depressed and have pain and constipation.
Medication specifically for IBS
Two medications are currently approved for specific cases of IBS:
However, alosetron can be prescribed only by doctors enrolled in a special program and is intended for severe cases of diarrhea-predominant IBS in women who haven’t responded to other treatments. Alosetron is not approved for use by men. It has been linked to rare but important side effects, so it should only be considered when other treatments are not successful.
Lifestyle and home remedies
In many cases, simple changes in your diet and lifestyle can provide relief from irritable bowel syndrome. Although your body may not respond immediately to these changes, your goal is to find long-term, not temporary, solutions:
Some people do better limiting dietary fiber and instead take a fiber supplement that causes less gas and bloating. If you take a fiber supplement, such as Metamucil or Citrucel, be sure to introduce it slowly and drink plenty of water every day to reduce gas, bloating and constipation. If you find that taking fiber helps your IBS, use it on a regular basis for best results.
If gas is a problem for you, foods that might make symptoms worse include beans, cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli. Fatty foods also may be a problem for some people. Chewing gum or drinking through a straw can lead to swallowing air, causing more gas.
In the long run, these medications can cause problems if you don’t use them correctly. The same is true of laxatives. If you have any questions about them, check with your doctor or pharmacist.
Alternative medicine – The best place to start
The following nontraditional therapies may help relieve symptoms of IBS and are the best place to start before using traditional pharmaceuticals:
A blend of herbs called STW 5 (Iberogast) has been shown to help some people.
Recent studies suggest that certain probiotics may relieve symptoms of IBS, such as abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea and quality of life, although additional investigation is needed.
Coping and support
Living with irritable bowel syndrome presents daily challenges. It may be painful or embarrassing and can seriously affect the quality of your life. These suggestions may help you cope more easily:
Source: Mayo Clinic
Inflammation – Common link to Disease
Did you know that inflammation is the common link between such debilitating conditions as Alzheimer’s, heart disease, cancer and arthritis?
80% of disease is from inflammation!
Inflammation is thought to be the culprit behind the visible signs of aging as well. I’m sure I have your attention now!
If you reduce inflammation in your body, you’ll not only look and feel younger, but you’ll significantly lower your risk for chronic disease!
What is inflammation?
Inflammation is your body’s response to stress ~ whether from your diet, lifestyle or environment. Think of what happens when you catch the common cold. You may experience inflammation in the form of a fever as your body heats up to eradicate the effects of the invading virus which is good but when it becomes chronic, low grade inflammation destroys the balance of your body. When your body’s systems experience a constant inflammatory response, you become more susceptible to aging and disease.
What Causes Inflammation?
One of the main causes of inflammation is low-grade bacterial, viral, and fungal infections in the bloodstream and organs like the stomach and gastro-intestinal tract.
Other causes of inflammation include:
Chronic low-grade food allergies and sensitivities that may cause few symptoms which is why most people don’t think to check for allergies and sensitivities to the foods they are eating on a regular basis.
An imbalance of bacteria and fungi in your gastrointestinal tract causes your immune system to overreact to bacteria in your gut and can take a while before you see the symptoms.
Stress! Constant psychological, emotional or physical stress raises the level of cortisol (hormone), creating inflammation.
Environmental toxicity from air, water, food pollutants and toxic metals like mercury and lead all contribute to inflammation and have been linked to diseases as varied as endometriosis and cancer.
The great old American Diet! Diet and lifestyle with too many bad fats, sugars and bad proteins in your diet, constant dehydration, consumption of sodas, processed foods, caffeine, inactivity, lack of exercise and sleep can all increase inflammation in your body.
The Lasting Effects of Inflammation (long term damage) causing system reactions.
Visible signs of aging like wrinkles
Susceptibility to Bacterial, Fungal and Viral Infection
Skin conditions like Psoriasis and Acne
High Blood Pressure
Urinary Tract Infections
How to Reduce Inflammation
To restore your body’s balance, focus on going back to the basics with both diet and lifestyle. Keep it close to nature with whole organic food and stay active. Just 30 minutes of walking a day has amazing value! It’s a good place to start.
We specialize in GI disorders which includes inflammation. Let us help get your life back.
Call us for a free 15 minute consultation 760.685.3154, firstname.lastname@example.org
Leaky Gut Syndrome – A Very Common GI disorder
The official definition of Leaky Gut Syndrome is an increase in permeability of the intestinal mucosa to luminal macromolecules, antigens, and toxins associated with inflammatory degenerative and/ or atrophic mucosa or lining.
Put more simply, large spaces develop between the cells of the gut wall allowing bacteria, toxins and food to leak into the bloodstream. Leaky Gut Syndrome has also been linked with many conditions, such as: Celiac Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Fibromyalgia, Autism, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Eczema, Dermatitis, Ulcerative Colitis.
What causes Leaky Gut?
Severe emotional stress or trauma, drug use especially anti-biotic and anti-inflammatory drugs, alcohol abuse, GI tract parasites, intestinal bacterial infections or overgrowth, ingestion of junk foods – especially deep fried foods made with hydrogenated vegetable oils, excessive consumption of starchy or sugary foods and food allergies. One major junk foods binge or a single course of anti-biotic can create a condition of leaky gut within hours. If the diet doesn’t contain enough nutrients to repair the leaky gut it can become a persistent problem. Leaky Gut Syndrome may also cause a flood of wrong messages to be communicated from the digestive system to the body.
Three Important Steps to Take
1. Heal the Leaky Gut
2. Re-establish healthy gut bacteria
3. Take care of the nutritional inadequacies
Symptoms of Leaky Gut
Abdominal pain (chronic)
Shortness of breath
Fevers of unknown origin
Gluten intolerance (celiac disease)
Multiple chemical sensitivities
Poor exercise tolerance
Recurrent bladder infections
Recurrent vaginal infections
Recurrent skin rashes
Swollen lymph glands
Constant hunger pains
Conditions related to Leaky Gut Syndrome
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Candidiasis – Yeast overgrowth
Multiple Chemical Sensitivities
Endotoxemia – The presence of endotoxins in the blood
Giardia – parasite infection
Anyklosing spondylitis – joint pain
Inflammatory bowel disease
Karmic Health Wellness Coaching can help with a personalized nutrition plan. It’s important to take control before any of the related diseases kick in. If you’re already experiencing related disease don’t worry. Although some cannot be cured, they can certainly be controlled.
Contact us today for an appointment: email@example.com or call 760.685.3154
DISCLAIMER: Any medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please consult your healthcare provider, or contact Karmic Health for an appointment, before making any healthcare decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition. Karmic Health expressly disclaims responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury, or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of your reliance on the information contained in this site or through our programs. Karmic Health does not endorse specifically any test, treatment, or procedure mentioned on the site. By visiting this site, you agree to the foregoing terms and conditions, which may from time to time be changed or supplemented by Karmic Health. If you do not agree to the foregoing terms and conditions, you should not enter this site.