When you realize that your entire system has been overrun by Candida, it;s easy to compare it to a previous diagnosis of intestinal bacteria overgrowth. Although the two are alike in some ways and in recent years even health care providers have mistaken them for one another, they are not the same. To advocate for your own health and make the right decisions, it is imperative to be sure that you are treating the right illness. Therefore, you need to know how to recognize both issues.
Understanding Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth
Intestinal bacteria overgrowth occurs when the bacteria that is normally present in healthy amounts in the colon, instead occur in excess amounts in the small intestine. This illness is often referred to as SIBO and can only be diagnosed by testing fluid removed from the intestines or in-depth breath testing. Symptoms include gastric problems, such as bloating, gas, diarrhea and if left untreated vitamin deficiencies and even weight loss.
How Does SIBO Develop And How Can It Be Treated?
SIBO can be caused by a variety of different problems, including:
• Failure of the nerves or muscles within the intestines to work properly
• Blockages in the small intestines
• The existence of intestinal loops that force food to not be digested as it should
After its presence has been confirmed, strong antibiotics, priobiotics or a combination of both will treat SIBO.
Recognizing Candida Overgrowth
By now, you are probably familiar with some of the symptoms of candida overgrowth. Unfortunately, there are many symptoms it can appear with and they are not all common. For instance, it is simple to see the association of chronic yeast infections and Candida overgrowth. You may not know that repeated cases of athlete’s foot and toenail fungus are also red flags for Candida overgrowth.
Feeling like you cannot focus or remember things that you should are also commonly blamed on other issues, when candida is the likely culprit. Candida could be the cause, just as it may be for moodiness and irritability. There is no conclusive test for candida, but a thorough health history and physical exam will usually determine its presence. In some cases, urine, blood and stool tests can confirm high amounts of yeast and Candida, but many people with this problem will never have a positive test for it.
In order to treat Candida, it is first necessary to starve it and force its death. Depending on the severity of your infestation, you may find that an especially rigorous treatment plan is required. It is often necessary to use a low carbohydrate diet, free of grains, most fruits and sugars for a pro-longed period of time, after undergoing a cleanse to kill off some of the candida. The use of anti-fungal medications and vitamins is also helpful.
Finally, Candida overgrowth and SIBO are both serious health problems that can impact you for years. Although symptomatically, they are remarkably similar, they are two different illnesses that require different treatment options.