What is Candida or Yeast Infection?
Often candida is incorrectly referred to as a minor yeast infection. But in reality, it is a fungal infection wreaking havoc and destruction throughout the body. This fungal pathogen is your enemy. It will ravage you from the inside out until you are dead. We must know our enemy in order to create a successful plan of attack. This article is a general overview of what candida is and it’s behaviors. In other articles, we will explore more details and strategies to vanquish this foe. Keep in mind most pathogenic bacteria and fungus behave similarly to candida.
Candida is a Dimorphic Fungus
Candida Albicans or candida is a dimorphic fungus which means it can morph between existing as a single-celled yeast or a parasitic multi-cellular fungus. Yeast is a single-celled fungus. The yeast form of candida lives in symbiosis within the gut microbiome. It cleans up dead matter and our immune system keeps it in check. Yeast evolves into a parasitic fungus when food is plentiful and competition is low. Oral antibiotics kill all good and bad gut bacteria which creates a ripe environment for yeast.
Single-celled yeasts feed on the dead bacteria with no competition and establish population dominance of the gut microbiome. The symbiosis between yeast and bacteria is broken. Single-celled yeasts are allowed to feed and multiple unchecked which results in their evolution into a multicellular parasitic fungus.
The fungal form of candida is a mold and grows in a hypha formation. Imagine hypha as one cell thick filaments that grows and branches off in different directions, very similar to plant roots. These roots puncture your intestinal walls, organs and tissues. They also absorb and steal your nutrients.
Candida Reproduces Thru Cell Division and Spore Releases
Hypha will creep along growing one cell at a time. Candida also releases spores which are a lot like seeds or eggs. Candida releases its spores similar to the way dandelions sheds its seeds to the wind.
Imagine your body is a field spotted with dandelions. Imagine these dandelions are established colonies of candida. These dandelions periodically flower, bloom then launch their seeds to the wind. Imagine the wind is your blood stream, the highway of the body. When these spores find a suitable resting spot they establish another colony. A candida infection spreads quickly once it reaches the bloodstream.
Candida also constructs biofilms to help protect itself against the immune system. It is primarily composed of glucose and other nutrients from your body. This is typical behaviour of a lot of micro-organisms. The big white “mushroom” or scooby that grows at the top of a kombucha brew is an example of a biofilm.
I know... sounds like an alien out of a science fiction movie.
It is very important to understand candida’s behaviors. It is the root cause of disease. As the fungal form of candida grows in the colon it progressively steals more nutrients and dumps more waste. From here it spreads to the small intestine where it burrows thru the lining of your gut into the bloodstream.
Candida Causes Leaky Gut Syndrome and Various Diseases
Candida drills holes in your GI tract to the bloodstream, the highway of the body. When candida reaches the bloodstream it now has access to infect the rest of the body. Once candida starts launching spores into the bloodstream is when disease starts to set in. From here it also steals vital nutrients from the bloodstream and dumps its toxic waste.
Fungi’s favorite food is glucose, this is why people experience discomfort when eating starchy food. Starch goes down the hatch to the colon. Your body expends valuable resources to digest food. Digested food goes to colon for absorption but candida absorbs it instead and dumps waste. Your body spends valuable resources to clean up candida’s waste.
The nutrients that do make it to the bloodstream are again partially robbed by candida and dumps more waste. Candida will have various looting checkpoints along the blood stream and at its infected organs. Each time candida loots your nutrients, your body expends more valuable resources cleaning up candida’s mess. Your body was just robbed of nutrients it worked so hard to digest and only got a fraction of the nourishment. Then you had to clean up after the thieves that ate it.
The body is now in a cycle of losing nutrients instead of gaining nutrients.
Candida is a Hydra with Many Heads
Candida travels through the bloodstream searching for easy points of attack such as weak organs and vulnerable tissues. Dandruff, athlete's foot and toenail fungus are some examples of fungus eating away at tissues. These ailments return time and time again because the candida infestation is systemic with multiple sites of infection.
For example, treating athletes foot will only kill candida localized in that area. Let's not forget that candida is circulating in the bloodstream and also has set up shop in the colon and who knows where else. It is a tricky adversary. So it is only a matter of time before candida attempts to retake ground.
Disease usually sets in after a Candia establishes a colony on a particular organ:
- GI Tract Diseases: Candida infection of small intestine or/and colon
- Mental Diseases: Candida infection of the brain
- Diabetes: Candida infection of the pancreas
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
― Sun Tzu, The Art of War
In another article, we will explore how to vanquish this foe, candida. With candida’s anatomy and behaviors mapped out, we can devise a successful battle plan. Please provide feedback and questions in the comments section and I'll do my best to clarify accordingly. Thanks for reading and good luck on your road to health.
Keep in mind most pathogenic bacteria and fungus behave similarly to candida.