We've already gone over candida overgrowth, so let's look in depth at why systemic candida albicans infections (also called candidiasis) can be so debilitating.
In the presence of an acidic body pH, candida can change from its yeast form into a fungal form.
The fungus grows long, stringy structures (rhizoids) that burrow into the intestinal wall. This causes inflammation all along your digestive tract.
It also can prohibit nutrients from getting into the bloodstream, further weakening our bodies. Nutrients are absorbed through the lining of our small intestines, but when candida covers that lining it greatly reduces the surface area for nutrient absorption.
These parasitic little organisms live off the carbohydrates we consume, and are especially fond of refined sugar and white flour. As they digest the carbohydrates they release waste products that turn our bowels toxic, making it even more difficult to absorb nutrients. Our bodies become more and more acidic and more and more debilitated.
Eventually the rhizoids burrow all the way through the intestinal lining and get into the circulatory system. They travel around the bloodstream and infect our organs – like the liver, kidneys, heart, spleen, lungs and brain.
Leaky gut syndrome and allergies are quite common, since the rhizoids poke holes in our intestines allowing food particles and byproducts of digestion to get into the blood. If you are developing more and more allergies and food sensitivities, systemic candida is a likely explanation.
But it doesn't stop there – systemic candida overgrowth can also cause mental difficulties, hormonal disturbances, frequent urinary tract and vaginal infections, skin infections, aches and pains in joints and muscles, and an overall weakening of the entire immune system.
As the fungus spreads, our bodies get more and more polluted with all the toxins candida albicans release.
Some of these toxins include:
The most harmful of all the chemicals candida releases is believed to be acetaldehyde. This is partly because of the toxic effects it has on our central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord).
Acetaldehyde has such an effect on us that we can literally feel like we are going crazy!
And it gets worse.
Besides being a potent neurotoxin, acetaldehyde can also damage our liver and kidneys and is considered a probable carcinogen. Plus this chemical actually blocks hormones from entering into our cells.
This is why hormone imbalances (hypothyroidism is the prime example) typically don't show up with a candida infection. Doctors test our blood levels, which come back normal because the BLOOD levels are fine. It's the CELLS themselves that cannot get enough of the hormones.
It is no wonder that those who have candida yeast overgrowth have such a wide range of seemingly unrelated (but very much related!) symptoms.
So that's where we go next - a list of many of the more common candida symptoms.