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Why supporting the liver is critical to overcoming candida overgrowth

12

MARCH, 2016

The liver is an often overlooked organ in the body. This three-pound organ resides just to the right of the stomach. While the heart pumps blood and the lungs breathe air, the liver enjoys the major responsibility of clearing toxins from the body.

It works 24 hours a day to transform food into nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, proteins, and enzymes the body relies on for essential things such as hormonal balance, immune support, and bile production (which is key in breaking down food in the digestive tract). Because of these functions, supporting the liver is crucial; a weak liver can result in a host of health issues, including an overgrowth of candida. If you have experienced recurring issues with candida, a weakened liver may be a contributing factor.

So what’s the big deal about candida? Isn’t it a natural part of the human body? Both good questions! Candida is a yeast-like fungus regularly present in several areas of the body including the mouth, intestinal tract, and female reproductive tract. In a healthy body, these tiny organisms are kept in check by a variety of systems, including the liver.  

However, when the body becomes unbalanced, candidiasis can occur, which is the technical name for a major overgrowth of candida. Such overgrowth can result in a variety of symptoms including general discomfort and major itchiness and/or burning sensations. Other symptoms can include digestive issues, unrelenting fatigue, food allergies and sensitivities, and vaginal yeast infections.

Several issues can encourage candida growth, including sugar consumption, antibiotic medication, high alcohol consumption, hormone replacement, and oral contraceptives.

Antibiotics are prescribed to kill off bad bacteria; however they are so effective in their job that they kill off all present bacteria—even the good guys.

Since the good guys often work to keep candida in check, this bad bacteria can rapidly multiply and result in a yeast infection. Poor diet can also contribute to yeast overgrowth, especially if such diets are high in yeast products including breads and other baked goods.  

Traditional Chinese medicine bases itself on achieving balance within the body.

This approach to health believes that the forces of Yin and Yang exist within the body and an individual needs to constantly work to maintain an equilibrium between these two powerful universal forces. In the specific case of candida, the body becomes out of balance, allowing these potentially harmful bacteria to grow unchecked because the helpful bacteria and organs, such as the liver, that work to keep it in check are overtaxed or weakened to the point of inefficiency. Therefore, directly taking steps to the support the liver can positively impact the balance of candida throughout the body.

In Chinese medicine, a traditional approach to dealing with this issue begins with cleansing the body.

By removing as many toxins as possible from the body, the body itself can reboot. Such toxins cause great stress on the body, further contributing to yeast growth. While changes in one’s diet are highly recommended, certain herbs have been used for centuries with great success in cleansing the body specifically to combat candida overgrowth. Common herbal supplements recommended by traditional Chinese medicine practitioners include agastachis, cardamon, coptis, gentiana, melia, phellodendra, and skullcap. These herbs are often mixed and taken as a supplement, and some may be enjoyed as a tea. Herbs often work synergistically with each other, so it’s important to take herbs as recommended by your natural health expert.

The second step in assisting the liver and dealing with candida is called tonifying.

After cleansing the body of toxins, this process helps to restore balance by repairing the systems to their best function. Certain herbs can including astragalus, atractylodes, codonopsis, and dioscorea, ginseng, and licorice are recommended for this stage among others. The tonifying process is important and won’t happen overnight; it’s important to stick with it to ensure the body can properly maintain its balance. Once balance is achieved, you can begin to simply maintain it through diet, exercise, and supplementation.

But is there a way to avoid a major herbal regime to cleanse and tonify the body? Absolutely. By supporting liver health daily, the liver can achieve its optimum function and remove harmful bacteria before it becomes an issue in the body, maintaining a healthy balance. Many different avenues exist to bolster the liver; most should be combined for best results.

Here are four key ways to support the liver and keep candida growth in check:

1. Through Food

Several key foods can help the liver. Fresh garlic can trigger enzymes that eradicate toxins from the liver which can accumulate overtime. Garlic also contains the compounds allicin and selenium which naturally work to cleanse the liver. Leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, and beet tops are also an excellent food choice, as are the beets themselves. Leafy greens offer high counts of plant flavonoids, and also help to generally cleanse this organ. Lemons, rich in vitamin C, which not only supports the immune system but additionally acts as an antioxidant removing free radicals, helps the liver remove toxins from the body.

2. Through Proper Hydration

Both water and green tea are excellent hydration sources that support the liver. A healthy body needs at least eight glasses of water daily to meet its requirements, including removing toxins from the body. The liver may be doing an excellent job trapping toxins, but if you’re not drinking enough water, the toxins can languish in your body. Additional water intake may be recommended for a body in need of balance.

Green tea offers a high amount of catechins, a very potent type of antioxidants that directly support the liver. Not only does green tea help the body to flush toxins, but it additionally offers very effective antioxidants that combat harmful free radicals—a specific toxin type. Over time, free radicals can accumulate and create havoc in the body including a variety of chronic diseases. One or two glasses of green tea daily is ideal.

3. Through Exercise

Sweat is another avenue that toxins leave the body. Daily exercise can help the liver remove toxins from the body. Thirty minutes of moderate, sweat-inducing exercise such as brisk walking or cardio workouts is ideal. Pairing exercise with hydration is an excellent way to support the liver in removing toxins from the body.

4. Through Probiotics

A number of recent studies show probiotics’ ability to support the liver. In fact, a study conducted by the Imperial College of London shared that NAFLD, or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease can be directly linked to gut imbalance. Regularly taking a probiotic supplement can work to naturally reduce liver disease. Another study, published in the World Journal of Gastroenterology found that probiotics could reduce low-grade inflammation in the body. Untreated inflammation not only results in general pain, but it can also trigger a variety of more serious conditions. Many kinds of probiotics are available on the market; a quality product should contain several different strains of these awesome organisms as each strain helps to strengthen the body in a different way.

5. Through Herbs

Many herbal supplements can directly support the liver. Milk Thistle is an excellent herb that actually works to repair damaged cells in the liver. Cells harmed by alcohol or certain medications can rebound quickly with the help of milk thistle. A recent study analyzing a variety of clinical studies found clear evidence exists to support milk thistle as a hepatoprotective substance that directly supports the liver in a number of different ways. Several roots additionally help the liver to function at its optimum level: chicory and dandelion root are highly recommended for this purpose. Dandelion root specifically increases bile flow which reduces stress on the liver. Finally, turmeric not only protects liver cells, but can also help regenerate them. This beautifully-hued spice exists as a staple in curry sauces and is delicious on meat and plant dishes alike.

So now you know how to support the liver.

Now, why is it so important to support this vital organ in regards to combating candida?

Holistic approaches to medicine, including both traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic practitioners have directly treated the liver to deal with recurring yeast infections wherever they present in the body. For over 1,000 years, some of the oldest medicinal texts in the world recommend treating the liver in order to combat this uncomfortable condition. The candida organism produces a toxic byproduct which can weaken the liver over time; the worse the infection, the higher amount of toxicity that builds up and harms the liver. A weakened liver struggles to remove all toxins from the body and produce enough bile; therefore, treating the liver is a crucial step in addressing a candida issue.

If you’ve been diagnosed with candida overgrowth, it’s important to realize that killing off the candida will result in what the natural health community calls candida die-off, or the Herxheimer reaction. During this process, an individual often feels ill due to the toxins released by the candida organisms. Studies show that during this die-off process, these yeast cells can release nearly 80 different kinds of toxins. Among these by-products of yeast death are ethanol and acetaldehyde; while yeast organisms are small, a large amount of them can contribute to several symptoms varying in levels of seriousness. The Herxhiemer reaction may include everything from nausea, fatigue, dizziness, intestinal discomfort, joint pain, itchiness, fevers, and skin rashes, among other symptoms. Die-off symptoms can intensity if the liver cannot work quickly to remove these toxins from the body; the more support the liver has, the less intense the Herxhiemer reaction will unfold in the body.

In order to combat candida, it’s imperative to support the liver.

Holistic approaches to medicine, including both traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic practitioners have directly treated the liver to deal with recurring yeast infections wherever they present in the body. For over 1,000 years, some of the oldest medicinal texts in the world recommend treating the liver in order to combat this uncomfortable condition. The candida organism produces a toxic byproduct which can weaken the liver over time; the worse the infection, the higher amount of toxicity that builds up and harms the liver. A weakened liver struggles to remove all toxins from the body and produce enough bile; therefore, treating the liver is a crucial step in addressing a candida issue.

If you’ve been diagnosed with candida overgrowth, it’s important to realize that killing off the candida will result in what the natural health community calls candida die-off, or the Herxheimer reaction. During this process, an individual often feels ill due to the toxins released by the candida organisms. Studies show that during this die-off process, these yeast cells can release nearly 80 different kinds of toxins. Among these by-products of yeast death are ethanol and acetaldehyde; while yeast organisms are small, a large amount of them can contribute to several symptoms varying in levels of seriousness. The Herxhiemer reaction may include everything from nausea, fatigue, dizziness, intestinal discomfort, joint pain, itchiness, fevers, and skin rashes, among other symptoms. Die-off symptoms can intensity if the liver cannot work quickly to remove these toxins from the body; the more support the liver has, the less intense the Herxhiemer reaction will unfold in the body.

While undergoing treatment for candida, double or triple your normal liver strengthening activities. And remember: it’s normal to experience side effects during yeast die-off due to toxins these tiny organisms release in their final protest. Once you’ve reclaimed your inner balance, and all the body’s systems are all functioning in concert, it’s extremely important to continue supporting the liver through a variety of ways in order to ensure optimal function.

To avoid candida issues in the future, support the liver daily through trusted supplements and positive activity. We at OmniBiotics take digestive health very seriously and for this reason we have created a liver support milk thistle silymarin 4x extract supplement. We also have created Flora Renew®, our now best-selling probiotic featuring bile-resistant probiotic strain acidophilus DDS-1® among its 14 unique strains and 34.7 Billion CFU (colony forming units) per capsule. These were crafted with a passion for helping others better their digestive health. With the tips in this article and assistance with proper supplements and/or methods above not requiring supplements, you will be well on your way for attaining proper digestive and liver health and avoiding candida issues for the rest of your life.

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