You recently heard about the benefits of a healthy diet and health practices and made up your mind to follow them. How then does it seem like things are getting worse? You have just cleaned up your diet, and this headache, nausea, and brain fog suddenly show up from nowhere. What could be the cause? You have even given up gluten foods, so you know it can’t be an allergy. You gave up on alcohol too, so it can’t be related to that. How then is it that you feel worse with these flu-like symptoms? You are most likely experiencing candida die-off symptoms.
The reason why you feel drained and crummy is that something good is happening in your body. The harmful microorganisms in your body are beginning to die off because you have just cleaned up your diet. Unfortunately, when these microorganisms die, their cells disintegrate and release toxins into your body. It is these toxins that your body is reacting negatively. Candida die-off is also known as “herxheimer reaction”. Some prefer to call it by its full name, Jarisch–Herxheimer reaction. Thankfully, there are ways to manage the symptoms of this reaction.
What You Should Know About Candida Die-off
When large numbers of yeast and fungal cells like candida die off rapidly in the body, there is a release of metabolic by-products into the body. These metabolic by-products are toxic to the body, and they cause symptoms. That is how candida die-off symptoms occur.
It can occur due to any of the following reasons:
- You started following an elimination diet plan recently
- You dived right into a restrictive diet plan like a cleanse or detox-type diet.
- Alcohol was cut out from diet. You are more likely to experience symptoms if you were a moderate or heavy drinker
- You are on antifungal or antibiotic medications. These medications can affect your gut microbiome and lead to the rapid die-off of microorganisms.
- You recently added probiotic foods and supplements into your meal plan.
There are at least 79 toxins that Candida cells can release into your body when they are rapidly killed. These toxins and other noxious substances that these microorganisms release into the body have harmful effects on your health and wellbeing.
There is such a long list of noxious substances that these microbes could release into your body. We can’t possibly mention them all. A few examples are uric acid, ethanol, and acetaldehyde.
Acetaldehyde, for instance, is a neurotoxin. It can kill brain cells and impair brain functions. You may begin to experience fatigue and brain fog due to excess acetaldehyde.
Many organs and systems in your body can be affected by candida die-off. Your endocrine system could be affected, and your immune system could suffer some damage as well. Even your respiratory system is not left out.
Candida die-off also impairs the functions of your red blood cells by damaging their membranes. It means that there will be a shortage of oxygen supply around the body.
What Are Candida Die-off Symptoms
There is almost no system in your body that the noxious by-products of candida die-off cannot affect. You may experience allergic reactions and inflammation as well as a host of other undesirable symptoms.
Candida die-off simply overwhelms the whole of your detoxification system. The symptoms usually vary in manifestation and intensity from person to person. This depends on the degree and type of infestation in each person.
Since your liver is mostly involved in getting rid of toxic substances from your body, candida die-off places a lot of stress on your liver. So you may experience a sore abdomen usually localized in the region where your liver is located.
Apart from your liver, all other organs and systems involved in detoxification are also affected. They include your entire lymphatic system, your gut, and your kidneys.
In most cases, there are flu-like symptoms that affect the whole of your body. It may feel like seasonal allergies or a common cold. You may also experience symptoms of inflammation. These symptoms have a sudden onset. They just come on suddenly.
The following are some of the symptoms you may experience:
- Low-grade fever
- Chills (Your fingers and toes may feel extremely cold)
- Joint and muscle pains/aches
- Brain fog
- Irritability and anxiety
- Stuffy nose
- Blokes sinuses
- Rapid heart rate
- Skin eruptions
- Body rashes
- Sore abdomen
- A decrease in blood pressure
- Increase in heart rate
- Swollen glands
- Excessive sweating
- Gastrointestinal symptoms (e.g. Gas, diarrhea, bloating, constipation, etc.)
You may wonder how long these symptoms will last. That depends on quite a several factors. Such factors include the cause of the candida die-off, the degree of the infestation, how well it is managed, and of course, the overall state of your health before the reaction.
Treatment and Management Tips for Candida Die-Off
1. Make gradual changes in your diet
If you want to cleanse your diet, you should make gradual changes. If you start an extreme detox diet suddenly, the rapid death of microorganisms that will occur in your body may be too overwhelming for your detoxification system.
2. Support your immune system with supplements
Supplements can be of great benefit in managing the symptoms of candida die-off. These supplements will promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in your body. These bacteria can help promote detoxification and can help to reduce inflammation. Examples of beneficial supplements include vitamin C, curcumin, molybdenum, milk thistle, probiotics, and glutathione.
3. Relax more and reduce stress
Prioritize activities that relieve you of stress. Sleep for about 8 hours daily, and take out time for self-care practices. There is a lot of stress going on internally already. You don’t want to add to that.
4. Reduce your exposure to toxins
Your detoxification system is overwhelmed already, so you should not expose your body to more toxins. You should avoid cigarettes, including secondary smoking. Don’t consume alcohol, caffeinated drinks, and unnecessary medications. You should also not use any toxic body product.
5. Stay hydrated
Your kidney is doing a lot of work. So you should drink a lot of water to aid the detoxification process. The more water you drink, the faster the detoxification process will be. Your liver needs a lot of water to get rid of the toxins through your sweat and urine.
Candida die-off symptoms can be managed and treated at home. You should, however, consider seeing a doctor if you experience wheezing, difficulty breathing, weak pulse, loss of consciousness, or severe skin symptoms.