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Are These Allowed on the Candida Diet?

Questions about the Candida diet are the most common topic on this blog. Here are a few more, I’ve grouped together, as each one requires a short response.

Q. I just recently started the candida diet. Is it true I need to avoid cottage cheese? The diet is difficult and cottage cheese is a fast source of protein since peanut butter is not allowed. ~Meagan.

A. Hi Meagan,

Yes, cottage cheese should be avoided or restricted because it is high in lactose, which is milk sugar. Any type of sugar feeds the yeast. Additionally, many people with Candida have lactose intolerance or a dairy sensitivity, which compounds the GI problems. If there is not a milk sensitivity or lactose intolerance, then cottage cheese can be eaten once in while, but not on a regular basis.

In the early phases of the Candida diet, it is best to keep your protein sources as meat. Cook extra chicken thighs or breasts, or an extra piece of steak, so you can snack on them as needed. When some progress is made, then nuts can be used. However, peanuts are never a good choice. Walnuts, macadamia and almonds are the best choices, pecans, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds are good as well. Most people with Candida react to nuts and the yeast will feed off them, until some progress is made.

Q. Hello Cynthia,

I have been reading around your website and blog and most grateful for the excellent information you provide.

I do however have a couple of questions regarding the candida diet:

1. Is nori (dried seaweed) allowed?
2. Do you agree with the policy of ‘rotating’ vegetables to prevent the Candida becoming ‘tolerant’ of the food consumed.

Many thanks – keep up the excellent work with your site and blog…
the raw cacao article
was very interesting.

Take care, James

A. Hi James, I’m glad you are finding my site and blog to be helpful. Thank you.

Yes, nori and other seaweed is allowed on the Candida diet, as it won’t feed yeast and it has a variety of nutritional benefits. However, you must be careful and make sure it is a clean source. Anything from the sea is highly contaminated with heavy metals and other pollutants, so look for brands who state their products are free from these contaminants.

Anything dried has a little mold in it, and many people with Candida are quite sensitive to mold, so some people may have trouble with seaweed because of the mold factor.

As to rotating vegetables. Candida isn’t going to become tolerant of the food. As long as the vegetables are low-starch vegetables they aren’t going to feed Candida. However, I do recommend rotating all foods, as most people with yeast overgrowth have many food sensitivities. Rotating your foods makes reactions to sensitivities less severe and it prevents new ones from developing.

Q. Hi, my 5 year old daughter is ADHD and I’ve been doing a lot of research about how candida contributes to certain symptoms. She’s been on a gluten free, low sugar diet for over a year. (Now we are starting to eliminate dairy…) We had switched to agave nectar back over a year ago. But now I’ve read conflicting info about it being processed similar to corn syrup… I’ve switched to xylitol and use it to sweeten herbal teas… Is xylitol okay on the candida diet? Also, is candida treatment for children different than adults? My last question is I’ve read kefir cheese is okay on the candida diet. I notice you allow for butter and plain yogurt what about kefir?

Thank you so much for all the great info! Carol

A. Hi Carol,

You’re welcome.

Yes, xylitol is okay on the Candida diet. It will not feed yeast, and is believed to have some antifungal properties. Xylitol also has no negative effects on insulin and blood sugar, thus won’t lead to insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease etc. Agave is a better choice than sugar, but it still feeds yeast, increases insulin, blood sugar etc. so it should be greatly restricted.

Yes, Candida treatment for adults and children is the same, except for the dosage of antifungals and probiotics would be lower for children than adults.

Many people with yeast problems find kefir products to be helpful, while other people feel worse. I was unwilling to try it because Kefir is very high in naturally occurring alcohol. This is one of those things you just have to try and see how your child responds.

Keep in mind that Candida is only one aspect that contributes to ADHD. It is certainly one of the most important, but you want to explore all the avenues. Be sure to read my Causes of ADHD page for more info on this topic.

Best
Cynthia

{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Ellen December 11, 2011, 11:34 pm

    I’m so excited to have found your site…I’ve been struggling for 2 1/2 years with all kinds of symptoms and misdiagnoses and in the last three months of ‘eating/breathing and sleeping’ researching this on my own, I’m finally making some progress.

    I am compiling a list of questions to set up a consultation with you but as long as we’re on the subject here I’d like to address this. I was using xylitol but just discovered it CAN be derived from corn, which I’ve developed a sensitivity to and I read that Yacon is an acceptable sweetener to use. Can you confirm this…I’d trust your opinion over anything I read…it’s all so overwhelming and confusing sometimes.

    I so appreciate all this information you’re providing.

    Thank you so much,
    Ellen.

  • Admin - Cynthia Perkins December 12, 2011, 9:49 pm

    Hi Ellen,

    That’s a very good point that I forgot to include. Xylitol is often derived from corn. However, it is also derived from birch. I usually always recommend that people use the birch form and not the corn form, but I forgot in this post.

    Yacon supposedly has no negative effect on blood sugar or Candida, so it is considered acceptable. However, I can’t testify to this personally. When I tried it, it made my tongue and lips numb and I had a hard time breathing. So I apparently had a sensitivity to it. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t an acceptable choice for others.

    However, keep in mind, that any sweeteners should be used sparingly. Your sweets should come directly from nature, in the form of low-sugar fruit and they should not be eaten in excess.

    You’re welcome.

    Best
    Cynthia

  • Delia January 16, 2012, 5:42 pm

    Hi Cynthia,

    I’ve started a candida free diet and was nearly 100% on target with the food for two weeks. I had a little die off symptoms, but it was manageable. At the end of week two I drank one glass of red wine and had one diet coke several hours later. I could tell immediately that my body does not like the diet coke. But the next day, I felt horrible. Tired and flu-like. Much worse than the earlier die off symptoms (light-headaches, and some muscle aches).

    Am I understanding your candida post correctly, that if you don’t stay on the diet that the die-off symptoms could get worse?

    I am on anti fungals from my MD. And don’t want to change the medication. I’m wondering if I do the obvious… ‘stay on the diet’ and not eat or drink sugar if my current symptoms will subside.

    Thank You,
    Delia

  • Admin - Cynthia Perkins January 16, 2012, 6:04 pm

    Hi Delia,

    Yes, that’s correct. Anytime you eat or drink anything that feeds Candida, then die off will be worse. If you feed the Candida while killing it, then you have much more to kill off. Alcohol is a sugar that doesn’t have to be digested, so it is the worse thing you can consume, next to white sugar.

    The exacerbation of symptoms should subside once the level of overgrowth is reduced, as long as more alcohol or sugar are not consumed.

    Diet coke contains aspartame, which has many detrimental effects on neurotransmitters in the brain. Additionally, it contains caffeine. Caffeine should not be consumed either on the Candida diet, because when you consume caffeine it triggers the liver to release sugar it has stored into the blood stream. So drinking caffeine is basically the same as eating a candy bar.

    Best
    Cynthia

  • Caz December 16, 2015, 10:30 am

    Are raspberries and blueberries ok on this diet? Is an anti candida diet basically the same as an anti parasite diet? How do the symptoms differ? I have yet to have a comprehensive stool analysis but the simple stool test at the doctor was negative for anything. My long term ab pain and ibs symptoms leave me thinking something is going on along the lines of candida and parasites.

  • Admin - Cynthia Perkins December 18, 2015, 8:56 pm

    Hi Caz,

    Raspberries and blueberries are permitted in small amounts on the Candida diet depending on how one responds to them. Anti-parasite diet is about the same, yes. You can read about parasites on the following page

    https://www.holistichelp.net/intestinal-parasites.html

    And I have hundreds of pages on Candida on the site you can read.

    Long term abdominal pain and IBS may be SIBO, so you should take a look at the following page and the pages that link out from this page.

    https://www.holistichelp.net/blog/sibo-101-a-comprehensive-guide-to-small-intestinal-bacterial-overgrowth/

    Best,

    Cynthia

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