Candida albicans is a fungus which is completely harmless and natural when in small quantities. But, once your immune system weakens, and your other systems get out of balance, candida albicans can become widespread in your body, causing discomfort and harm.
When your delicate balance of beneficial gut flora and microorganisms gets changed, this fungus will progress into a chronic overgrowth of candida, called candidiasis. Candidiasis symptoms range from fatigue and simple headaches to persistent colds and flus, vaginal yeast infections, and even mood- and hormonal-related problems.
Once this simple yeast colony is rooted, it can cause many symptoms ranging from different daily complaints and irregularities, to chronic illnesses.
Candida overgrowth is very common nowadays due to different factors, and conventional therapies aren’t always the healthiest or most effective form of treatment. Over time, the yeasts develop resistance to anti-fungal medicines, which come with their own side effects. One of them is liver toxicity.
Therefore, taking a natural approach to control candida overgrowth and restore your system’s balance, might be an equally effective and safer plan of action.
The following herbs provide potent anti-fungal effects, and should be taken alongside a strict anti-candida diet aimed to boost your immune system and replenish your gut flora with the help of probiotics. For best effects and prevention of resurgence of candida symptoms, combine the following herbs and rotate their use. Consult your doctor if you have some health issue or take any medication, in order to prevent possible interaction of the herbs and the medication you’re taking.
Top 11 Anti-Fungal Herbs to Fight off Candida
1. Pau d’Arco
Tabebuia avellanedae, or Pau d’Arco, is a bark of a rainforest tree from South America. Its compounds reduce inflammation, boost the immune system, and treat and prevent infection. You can take it in form of capsule, as prescribed, or as tea, called Lepacho or Taheebo, throughout the day.
2. Black Walnut
Although the seeds of black walnut are equally nutritive and beneficial, what’s useful in treating fungi like candida, is the hull of this nut. It contains juglone – a natural pesticide that provides anti-parasitic and anti-fungal effects which work externally and internally to eliminate those parasites. You can find it as an extract of black walnut, or as a tincture. Keep in mind that you need to take it as advised or directed, and that pregnant women should avoid it.
The Spanish marigold, or the so called calendula, provides strong anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s generally safe, and available in different forms such as oil, tea, extracted, and vaginal suppository. Pregnant women as well as those who try to get pregnant shouldn’t take calendula, as it can promote menstruation.
Cinnamon is one of the most commonly used spices nowadays. Besides regulating the blood sugar levels, it can also control candida overgrowth thanks to its potent anti-fungal properties. You can consume it as an addition to many dishes and drinks, but the recommended form to gain these benefits is as a tea and concentrated oil.
The flower buds of the evergreen clove tree have been long used in the treatment of indigestion, candida, diarrhea, and other fungi. The best form to treat candida overgrowth is clove extract or oil, although it’s also available as spice and tea. Don’t take it in large dose, or if you’re pregnant.
6. Olive Leaf Extract
Olive leaf extract is derived from the leaves of olive tree. It has strong anti-parasitic, anti-fungal, antiviral, antioxidant and immune-protecting properties. It can as well help control the levels of blood sugar. You can find it in form of tea that needs to be consumed throughout the day, or capsules that should be taken as directed. Thanks to its strong properties, it can cause yeast die-off symptoms.
Azadirachta indica, or more known as Neem, is an Indian tree whose different parts have been widely used for medicinal purposes. However, when it comes to treating candida, it’s the extracts of the leaves, their oil, and seed kernels that are used. You can find it in various forms like capsules, oils, lotions, teas, powders, toothpastes, suppositories, soaps, and mouth rinses.
This herb provides powerful anti-fungal properties, cleanses the gallbladder and liver, fights infections, and supports the heart health. It contains berberine, a chemical which prevents yeasts from producing lipase which is an enzyme crucial to help them colonize. You can find it as tea, extract, supplement, or for external use. Barberry is not recommended for pregnant women or those trying to get pregnant. All others should you take it as directed.
One of the most potent anti-fungal that provides anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-inflammatory effects is wild oregano. Due to its amazing properties, it is often used as an alternative to antibiotics. The most effective form of oregano is concentrated oil, but always choose a reputable brand. Dilute 3 to 6 drops of oregano oil in water or gelatin capsule, twice a day. People with iron deficiency anemia, pregnant women or those trying to become pregnant, shouldn’t consume oregano oil.
Myrrh is the resin or sap from the Commiphora myrrha tree that has long been used as a potent remedy. It’s bitter and smoky smell allowed it to be used in essential oils and fragrances. Related to frankincense, it provides wide range of health benefits. It has anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, antioxidant, and potential anti-cancer properties. Its most common form is extracted essential oil which has been used for both, internal and external use.
However, when consumed, it can cause certain side effects, so don’t take it internally if you have problems with the blood sugar, heart, gastrointestinal issues, and if you’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant.
Licorice has long been used for medicinal purposes. The acid it contains help reduce candida overgrowth, so it’ll clear your candida regardless if you take it externally, internally, or as a vaginal douche. Licorice provides mucilaginous properties which help soothe inflammation of the intestines that occurred as a result of candida. Similar to cinnamon, it helps control blood sugar, and promotes digestion and controls cravings.
You can find it in a form of extract, supplement, or tea. Take it as directed. People with heart problems, pregnant women as well as those who are trying to get pregnant shouldn’t take licorice.
If you happened to overcome your candida with some other herb which is not included in this list, feel free to share in the comments below.