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Health Condition

Chronic Candidiasis

  • Barberry

    Barberry contains berberine, an alkaloid with antibiotic activity that also been shown to help relieve the diarrhea seen in some people with chronic candidiasis.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Barberry
    ×
     

    Berberine is an alkaloid found in various plants, including goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape, and goldthread. Berberine exhibits a broad spectrum of antibiotic and antifungal activity in test tube, animal, and human studies.6,7 Berberine has shown effective antidiarrheal activity in a number of diarrheal diseases,8,9,10 and it may offer the same type of relief for the diarrhea seen in patients with chronic candidiasis. Doctors familiar with the use of berberine-containing herbs sometimes recommend taking 2 to 4 grams of the dried root (or bark) or 250 to 500 mg of an herbal extract three times a day. While isolated berberine has been studied, none of these herbs has been studied in humans with chronic candidiasis.

  • Betaine Hydrochloride

    Betaine hydrochloride is a type of digestive enzyme that inhibits the overgrowth of candida and prevents it from becoming established in the small intestine.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Betaine Hydrochloride
    ×
     

    It is unknown if taking pancreatic enzymes or betaine HCl (hydrochloric acid) tablets is beneficial for chronic candidiasis. Nonetheless, some doctors recommend improving digestive secretions with these agents. Hydrochloric-acid secretion from the stomach, pancreatic enzymes, and bile all inhibit the overgrowth of Candida and prevent its penetration into the absorptive surfaces of the small intestine.11,12,13 Decreased secretion of any of these important digestive components can lead to overgrowth of Candida in the gastrointestinal tract. Consult a physician for more information.

  • Caprylic Acid

    Based on some historical use and theoretical research, caprylic acid is sometimes recommended as a treatment for yeast. 

    Dose:

    500 to 1,000 mg three times a day
    Caprylic Acid
    ×
    Test tube studies and case reports from the 1940s and 1950s indicated that caprylic acid (a naturally occurring fatty acid) was effective against yeast (Candida) infections of the intestines.1415 However, these effects have not been studied or proven in controlled trials. Doctors sometimes recommend amounts of 500 to 1,000 mg three times a day.
  • Digestive Enzymes

    Digestive enzymes inhibit the overgrowth of candida and prevent it from becoming established in the small intestine.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Digestive Enzymes
    ×
     

    It is unknown if taking pancreatic enzymes or betaine HCl (hydrochloric acid) tablets is beneficial for chronic candidiasis. Nonetheless, some doctors recommend improving digestive secretions with these agents. Hydrochloric-acid secretion from the stomach, pancreatic enzymes, and bile all inhibit the overgrowth of Candida and prevent its penetration into the absorptive surfaces of the small intestine.16,17,18 Decreased secretion of any of these important digestive components can lead to overgrowth of Candida in the gastrointestinal tract. Consult a physician for more information.

  • Echinacea

    The fresh-pressed juice of Echinacea purpurea has been shown to help prevent recurring yeast infections in one trial.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Echinacea
    ×
     

    The fresh-pressed juice of Echinacea purpurea has been shown to be helpful in preventing recurrence of vaginal yeast infections in a double-blind trial; it may have similar benefit in Yeast Syndrome.19 The typical recommendation for this effect is 2 to 4 ml of fluid extract daily.

  • Garlic

    Garlic has been shown to have significant anti-Candida activity.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Garlic
    ×
     

    Garlic has demonstrated significant antifungal activity against C. albicans in both animal and test tube studies.20,21,22 Greater anti-Candida activity has resulted from exposing Candida to garlic, than to nystatin—the most common prescription drug used to fight Candida.23 No clinical studies of garlic in the treatment of candidiasis have yet been conducted. However, some doctors suggest an intake equal to approximately one clove (4 grams) of fresh garlic per day; this would equal consumption of a garlic tablet that provides a total allicin potential of 4,000 to 5,000 mcg.

  • Goldenseal

    Goldenseal contains berberine, an alkaloid with antibiotic and antifungal activity that also been shown to help relieve the diarrhea seen in some people with chronic candidiasis.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Goldenseal
    ×
     

    Berberine is an alkaloid found in various plants, including goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape, and goldthread. Berberine exhibits a broad spectrum of antibiotic and antifungal activity in test tube, animal, and human studies.24,25 Berberine has shown effective antidiarrheal activity in a number of diarrheal diseases,26,27,28 and it may offer the same type of relief for the diarrhea seen in patients with chronic candidiasis. Doctors familiar with the use of berberine-containing herbs sometimes recommend taking 2 to 4 grams of the dried root (or bark) or 250 to 500 mg of an herbal extract three times a day. While isolated berberine has been studied, none of these herbs has been studied in humans with chronic candidiasis.

  • Goldthread

    Goldthread contains berberine, an alkaloid with antibiotic and antifungal activity that also been shown to help relieve the diarrhea seen in some people with chronic candidiasis.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Goldthread
    ×
     

    Berberine is an alkaloid found in various plants, including goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape, and goldthread. Berberine exhibits a broad spectrum of antibiotic and antifungal activity in test tube, animal, and human studies.29,30 Berberine has shown effective antidiarrheal activity in a number of diarrheal diseases,31,32,33 and it may offer the same type of relief for the diarrhea seen in patients with chronic candidiasis. Doctors familiar with the use of berberine-containing herbs sometimes recommend taking 2 to 4 grams of the dried root (or bark) or 250 to 500 mg of an herbal extract three times a day. While isolated berberine has been studied, none of these herbs has been studied in humans with chronic candidiasis.

  • Oregano

    Volatile oils from oregano have been shown to have significant antifungal action. Doctors recommend enteric-coated capsules, which break down in the intestines instead of the stomach.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Oregano
    ×
     

    Volatile oils from oregano, thyme, peppermint, tea tree, and rosemary have all demonstrated antifungal action in test tube studies.34 A recent study compared the anti-Candida effect of oregano oil to that of caprylic acid.35 The results indicated that oregano oil is over 100 times more potent than caprylic acid, against Candida. Since the volatile oils are quickly absorbed and associated with inducing heartburn, they must be taken in coated capsules, so they do not break down in the stomach but instead are delivered to the small and large intestine. This process is known as “enteric coating.” Some doctors recommend using 0.2 to 0.4 ml of enteric-coated peppermint and/or oregano oil supplements three times per day 20 minutes before meals. However, none of these volatile oils has been studied for their anti-Candida effect in humans.

  • Oregon Grape

    Oregon grape contains berberine, an alkaloid with antibiotic and antifungal activity that also been shown to help relieve the diarrhea seen in some people with chronic candidiasis.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Oregon Grape
    ×
     

    Berberine is an alkaloid found in various plants, including goldenseal, barberry, Oregon grape, and goldthread. Berberine exhibits a broad spectrum of antibiotic and antifungal activity in test tube, animal, and human studies.36,37 Berberine has shown effective antidiarrheal activity in a number of diarrheal diseases,38,39,40 and it may offer the same type of relief for the diarrhea seen in patients with chronic candidiasis. Doctors familiar with the use of berberine-containing herbs sometimes recommend taking 2 to 4 grams of the dried root (or bark) or 250 to 500 mg of an herbal extract three times a day. While isolated berberine has been studied, none of these herbs has been studied in humans with chronic candidiasis.

  • Peppermint

    Volatile oils from peppermint have been shown to have significant antifungal action. Doctors recommend enteric-coated capsules, which break down in the intestines instead of the stomach.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Peppermint
    ×
     

    Volatile oils from oregano, thyme, peppermint, tea tree, and rosemary have all demonstrated antifungal action in test tube studies.41 A recent study compared the anti-Candida effect of oregano oil to that of caprylic acid.42 The results indicated that oregano oil is over 100 times more potent than caprylic acid, against Candida. Since the volatile oils are quickly absorbed and associated with inducing heartburn, they must be taken in coated capsules, so they do not break down in the stomach but instead are delivered to the small and large intestine. This process is known as “enteric coating.” Some doctors recommend using 0.2 to 0.4 ml of enteric-coated peppermint and/or oregano oil supplements three times per day 20 minutes before meals. However, none of these volatile oils has been studied for their anti-Candida effect in humans.

  • Probiotics

    Lactobacillus acidophilus is a type of probiotic that appears to help re-establish proper intestinal flora and prevent yeast overgrowth.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Probiotics
    ×

    Lactobacillus acidophilus products are often used by people with candidiasis in an attempt to re-establish proper intestinal flora. Acidophilus produces natural factors that prevent the overgrowth of the yeast.43,44 Although there are no human trials, supplementation of acidophilus to immune-deficient mice infected with C. albicans produced positive effects on immune function and reduced the number of Candida colonies.45 The typical amount of acidophilus taken as a supplement is 1–10 billion live bacteria daily. Amounts exceeding this may induce mild gastrointestinal disturbances, while smaller amounts may not be able to sufficiently colonize the gastrointestinal tract.

  • Rosemary Oil

    Volatile oils from rosemary have been shown to have significant antifungal action. Doctors recommend enteric-coated capsules, which break down in the intestines instead of the stomach.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Rosemary Oil
    ×
     

    Volatile oils from oregano, thyme, peppermint, tea tree, and rosemary have all demonstrated antifungal action in test tube studies.46 A recent study compared the anti-Candida effect of oregano oil to that of caprylic acid.47 The results indicated that oregano oil is over 100 times more potent than caprylic acid, against Candida. Since the volatile oils are quickly absorbed and associated with inducing heartburn, they must be taken in coated capsules, so they do not break down in the stomach but instead are delivered to the small and large intestine. This process is known as “enteric coating.” Some doctors recommend using 0.2 to 0.4 ml of enteric-coated peppermint and/or oregano oil supplements three times per day 20 minutes before meals. However, none of these volatile oils has been studied for their anti-Candida effect in humans.

  • Thyme

    Volatile oils from thyme have been shown to have significant antifungal action. Doctors recommend enteric-coated capsules, which break down in the intestines instead of the stomach.

    Dose:

    Refer to label instructions
    Thyme
    ×
     

    Volatile oils from oregano, thyme, peppermint, tea tree, and rosemary have all demonstrated antifungal action in test tube studies.48 A recent study compared the anti-Candida effect of oregano oil to that of caprylic acid.49 The results indicated that oregano oil is over 100 times more potent than caprylic acid, against Candida. Since the volatile oils are quickly absorbed and associated with inducing heartburn, they must be taken in coated capsules, so they do not break down in the stomach but instead are delivered to the small and large intestine. This process is known as “enteric coating.” Some doctors recommend using 0.2 to 0.4 ml of enteric-coated peppermint and/or oregano oil supplements three times per day 20 minutes before meals. However, none of these volatile oils has been studied for their anti-Candida effect in humans.

What Are Star Ratings
×
Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

References

1. Truss CO. The role of Candida albicans in human illness. J Orthomol Psychiatry 1981,10:228-38 [review].

2. Crook WG. The Yeast Connection, 2nd ed. Jackson, TN: Professional Books, 1984, 1-2 [review].

3. Kroker GF. Chronic candidiasis and allergy. In: Brostoff J, Challacombe SJ (eds). Food Allergy and Intolerance. Philadelphia, PA: WB Saunders, 1987, 850-72 [review].

4. Bauman DS, Hagglund HE. Correlation between certain polysystem chronic complaints and an enzyme immunoassay with antigens of Candida albicans. J Advancement Med 1991;4:5-19.

5. Bennett JE. Candidiasis. In: Fauci AS, Braunwald E, Isselbacher KJ, et al (eds). Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine New York: McGraw-Hill, 1998.

6. Hahn FE, Ciak J. Berberine. Antibiotics 1976;3:577-88 [review].

7. Mahajan VM, Sharma A, Rattan A. Antimycotic activity of berberine sulphate: an alkaloid from an Indian medicinal herb. Sabouraudia 1982;20:79-81.

8. Bhakat MP. Therapeutic trial of Berberine sulphate in non-specific gastroenteritis. Indian Med J 1974;68:19-23.

9. Kamat SA. Clinical trial with berberine hydrochloride for the control of diarrhoea in acute gastroenteritis. J Assoc Physicians India 1967;15:525-9.

10. Desai AB, Shah KM, Shah DM. Berberine in the treatment of diarrhoea. Indian Pediatr 1971;8:462-5.

11. Boero M, Pera A, Andriulli A, et al. Candida overgrowth in gastric juice of peptic ulcer subjects on short- and long-term treatment with H2-receptor antagonists. Digestion 1983;28:158-63.

12. Rubinstein E. Antibacterial activity of the pancreatic fluid. Gastroenterology 1985;88:927-32 [review].

13. Sarker SA, Gyr R. Non-immunological defense mechanisms of the gut. Gut 1990;33:1331-7 [review].

14. Keeney EL. Sodium caprylate: a new and effective treatment of moniliasis of the skin and mucous membrane. Bull Johns Hopkins Hosp 1946;78:333-9.

15. Neuhauser I, Gustus EL. Successful treatment of intestinal moniliasis with fatty acid resin complex. Arch Intern Med 1954;93:53-60.

16. Boero M, Pera A, Andriulli A, et al. Candida overgrowth in gastric juice of peptic ulcer subjects on short- and long-term treatment with H2-receptor antagonists. Digestion 1983;28:158-63.

17. Rubinstein E. Antibacterial activity of the pancreatic fluid. Gastroenterology 1985;88:927-32 [review].

18. Sarker SA, Gyr R. Non-immunological defense mechanisms of the gut. Gut 1990;33:1331-7 [review].

19. Coeugniet EG, Kuhnast R. Recurrent candidiasis: adjuvant immunotherapy with different formulations of Echinacin®. Therapiewoche 1986;36:3352-8.

20. Moore GS, Atkins RD. The fungicidal and fungistatic effects of an aqueous garlic extract on medically important yeast-like fungi. Mycologia 1977;69:341-8.

21. Sandhu DK, Warraich MK, Singh S. Sensitivity of yeasts isolated from cases of vaginitis to aqueous extracts of garlic. Mykosen 1980;23:691-8.

22. Prasad G, Sharma VD. Efficacy of garlic (Allium sativum) treatment against experimental candidiasis in chicks. Br Vet J 1980;136:448-51.

23. Arora DS, Kaur J. Anti-microbial activity of spices. Int J Antimicrob Agents 1999;12:257-62.

24. Hahn FE, Ciak J. Berberine. Antibiotics 1976;3:577-88 [review].

25. Mahajan VM, Sharma A, Rattan A. Antimycotic activity of berberine sulphate: an alkaloid from an Indian medicinal herb. Sabouraudia 1982;20:79-81.

26. Bhakat MP. Therapeutic trial of Berberine sulphate in non-specific gastroenteritis. Indian Med J 1974;68:19-23.

27. Kamat SA. Clinical trial with berberine hydrochloride for the control of diarrhoea in acute gastroenteritis. J Assoc Physicians India 1967;15:525-9.

28. Desai AB, Shah KM, Shah DM. Berberine in the treatment of diarrhoea. Indian Pediatr 1971;8:462-5.

29. Hahn FE, Ciak J. Berberine. Antibiotics 1976;3:577-88 [review].

30. Mahajan VM, Sharma A, Rattan A. Antimycotic activity of berberine sulphate: an alkaloid from an Indian medicinal herb. Sabouraudia 1982;20:79-81.

31. Bhakat MP. Therapeutic trial of Berberine sulphate in non-specific gastroenteritis. Indian Med J 1974;68:19-23.

32. Kamat SA. Clinical trial with berberine hydrochloride for the control of diarrhoea in acute gastroenteritis. J Assoc Physicians India 1967;15:525-9.

33. Desai AB, Shah KM, Shah DM. Berberine in the treatment of diarrhoea. Indian Pediatr 1971;8:462-5.

34. Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. In-vitro activity of essential oils, in particular Melaleuca alternafolia (tea tree) oil and tea tree oil products, against Candida albicans. J Antimicrobial Chemother 1998;42:591-5.

35. Stiles JC, Sparks W, Ronzio RA. The inhibition of Candida albicans by oregano. J Applied Nutr 1995;47:96-102.

36. Hahn FE, Ciak J. Berberine. Antibiotics 1976;3:577-88 [review].

37. Mahajan VM, Sharma A, Rattan A. Antimycotic activity of berberine sulphate: an alkaloid from an Indian medicinal herb. Sabouraudia 1982;20:79-81.

38. Bhakat MP. Therapeutic trial of Berberine sulphate in non-specific gastroenteritis. Indian Med J 1974;68:19-23.

39. Kamat SA. Clinical trial with berberine hydrochloride for the control of diarrhoea in acute gastroenteritis. J Assoc Physicians India 1967;15:525-9.

40. Desai AB, Shah KM, Shah DM. Berberine in the treatment of diarrhoea. Indian Pediatr 1971;8:462-5.

41. Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. In-vitro activity of essential oils, in particular Melaleuca alternafolia (tea tree) oil and tea tree oil products, against Candida albicans. J Antimicrobial Chemother 1998;42:591-5.

42. Stiles JC, Sparks W, Ronzio RA. The inhibition of Candida albicans by oregano. J Applied Nutr 1995;47:96-102.

43. Collins EB, Hardt P. Inhibition of Candida albicans by Lactobacillus acidophilus. J Dairy Sci 1980;63:830-2.

44. Fitzsimmons N, Berry DR. Inhibition of Candida albicans by Lactobacillus acidophilus: evidence for the involvement of a peroxidase system. Microbios 1994;80:125-33.

45. Wagner RD, Pierson C, Warner T, et al. Biotherapeutic effects of probiotic bacteria on candidiasis in immunodeficient mice. Infect Immun 1997;65(10):4165-72.

46. Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. In-vitro activity of essential oils, in particular Melaleuca alternafolia (tea tree) oil and tea tree oil products, against Candida albicans. J Antimicrobial Chemother 1998;42:591-5.

47. Stiles JC, Sparks W, Ronzio RA. The inhibition of Candida albicans by oregano. J Applied Nutr 1995;47:96-102.

48. Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. In-vitro activity of essential oils, in particular Melaleuca alternafolia (tea tree) oil and tea tree oil products, against Candida albicans. J Antimicrobial Chemother 1998;42:591-5.

49. Stiles JC, Sparks W, Ronzio RA. The inhibition of Candida albicans by oregano. J Applied Nutr 1995;47:96-102.

50. Horowitz BJ, Edelstein SW, Lippman L. Sugar chromatography studies in recurrent candida vulvovaginitis. J Reproduc Med 1984;29:441-3.

51. Weig M, Werner E, Frosch M, Kasper H. Limited effect of refined carbohydrate dietary supplementation on colonization of the gastrointestinal tract of healthy subjects by Candida albicans. Am J Clin Nutr 1999;69:1170-3.

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The information presented by Healthnotes is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2019.