By Calvin L. Thrash, M.D.
We advise the obtaining of Dr. William Crook's book, The Yeast Connection, if it has not been read. Our book, Food Allergies Made Simple, has a chapter on chronic candidiasis that gives a summary of the problem and our current treatments. It may be obtained through Country Life, on Uchee Pines website.
We do not advise the diet just as Dr. Crook recommends it, since he is heavy on animal protein. We do advise avoiding all yeast products and I think this is very important. That would include all bread that has been raised with yeast, but unleavened bread is all right. Of course, whole grain breads should be used. Anything of a fermented nature should be avoided, particularly including alcoholic beverages, vinegar, mayonnaise, soy sauce, etc. Cheese is also a common offender. Even dried fruits may have small amounts of mold on them and may cause trouble.
If a person is having a lot of trouble, it may be advisable for them to avoid fruits altogether for a period of anywhere from one to three months. A person can do quite well on two vegetable meals a day, along with the whole grains and nuts. It has been shown that fruits can stimulate the growth of Candida in the bowel. After several weeks of improvement, a person may start back adding the less sweet fruits carefully, and if there is no problem, continue with other fruits.
We have used Pau d'Arco (taheebo) tea and think that it has some merit. The taheebo tincture is much more potent and we have seen several people who seem to have trouble with it. We have not seen anyone have trouble with the Pau d'Arco bark as it is used to make tea, even using it double strength, that is, two teaspoons per cup. A person should generally drink four cups of this tea a day starting with it single strength and if necessary increasing it to double strength.
I have found that Lactobacillus acidophilus may be helpful. Some preparations sold in health food stores are overage or are not potent enough to be of any value. There are three products, one called Maxi Dophilus-DF (or dairy-free, from Ethical Nutrients), and the other called Megadophilus (Natren, also available in dairy free), and KyoDophilus, (Kyolic) which are essentially the same. They are very potent and seem to be helpful. We use one-fourth teaspoon in a little water, or one capsule, three times a day. This especially seems to help people with a lot of gas. Since the products are cultured on whey (except the dairy free products), they may have tiny amounts of milk protein attached to them. If you know that you have a problem with milk allergy, it would be well to proceed very carefully. We have not found this to be a problem in the people that we have treated. There are sources of acidophilus without the milk traces, but they are not really potent enough to do much good.
We have also used garlic tablets since it is antifungal. We like to use the Kyolic brand of dehydrated garlic since it is a convenient way to get the garlic in without having to take a lot of fresh garlic and having the smell on your breath. We give 8-12 tablets a day in divided doses. If you cannot get the Kyolic brand, get the most potent one that you can find. Interestingly enough, there does not seem to be any adverse effect using the garlic at the same time as the acidophilus; but you may wish to take them at different intervals.
Oil of primrose capsules may be of value in supplying some of the essential fatty acids. They should be taken, four capsules, twice a day.
We think that the diet is probably the most important factor, but the other supplements seem to be necessary in many people. If a person has longstanding or severe symptoms, they should probably use all of the supplements that I have listed above. They will not hurt you.
The question of how long one should take the supplements is a moot point. Drs. Crook and Truss, who have had the most experience with this disorder, have many patients that they give Nystatin to for months and years. Apparently the Candida is very prone to recur. I think if one is careful with the diet and is doing well, after three or four months, he can start to taper off on the supplements and see how he does. If he does all right, he can stay off them unless symptoms recur, in which case he should get back on them right away.
The majority of this content is taken from Dr. Agatha Thrash of Uchee Pines Institute, printed with permission by Wildwood Inn Health Retreat.