How Candida Affects The Brain
Candida is a yeast that lives in the body, and when there is too much of it, known as Candida overgrowth, a host of problems ensues. Candida overgrowth of the intestine or gut is a relatively common disorder which results in serious intestinal issues as well as other concerning symptoms – including brain symptoms. Yes, Candida can very much affect the brain.
Candida produces ethanol which can have an intoxicating effect on your body.
The reason Candida causes so many debilitating intestinal symptoms and brain symptoms is that Candida overgrowth releases toxins into your system.
Candida yeast lives on sugars in your gut.
When Candida consumes sugars, one of the byproducts that it releases is a neurotoxin called acetaldehyde. This is just one of seventy-nine different toxins that Candida releases, but its one of the two that are most detrimental to your health and well being. The other is ethanol – yes, as in the gas -which can have an intoxicating effect on your body.
Acetaldehyde can impair brain function and even kill brain cells.
This is why it is very common for candida sufferers to experience “brain fog”, sometimes very severe, as well as fatigue.
Acetaldehyde also has very damaging effects on the endocrine, immune and respiratory systems.
It damages the membranes of red blood cells, reducing their ability to effectively transport oxygen throughout the body, and to the brain. With the brain not getting enough oxygen, you can see how Candida can bring about a range of brain symptoms, from brain fog and fatigue, to worse.
Acetaldehyde doesn’t get excreted from the body like other toxins – it stays in your body and accumulates.
A build up or accumulation of acetaldehyde can result in:
- joint pain
- feeling of weakness and aches in muscles
- harmful effects on the brain.
This is where the mineral Molybdenum comes into play. Taking Molybdenum supplements can be helpful because Molybdenum converts acetaldehyde into acetic acid, which can then be excreted from the body like any other toxin.
In addition, acetic acid can also be converted into the enzyme acetyl-coenzyme A, which is an important and necessary part of your metabolism.
Acetaldehyde is released is high quantities during Candida Die-Off, which is when molybdenum is especially useful.
Candida Die-Off occurs when the Candida yeast cells are rapidly killed at a rate faster than your body can eliminate the toxic waste. Die off symptoms can sometimes be extreme, and are often even worse than the symptoms of the condition itself. This is called a “Herxheimer reaction” – it refers to part of a healing process whereby you literally have to feel worse as part of getting better.
As the yeast cells are killed by the probiotics or antifungals you are taking, they release an array of harmful toxins into your bloodstream – 79 in total, as we said earlier. These toxins accumulate in your system faster than your body (specifically the liver) can remove them. As a result, these toxic waste particles keep getting recirculated through your system, and this results in Die-Off symptoms like severe headache, fever, muscle pain and brain fog (there are other possible symptoms as well).
If you think you are experiencing Candida Die-Off – the most common symptoms are fatigue and flu-like symptoms – Molybdenum may be able to help.
A 1991 study of molybdenum, published in The Digest of Chiropractic Economics indicated:
“The addition of molybdenum, based on aldehyde olfactory sensitivity muscle testing, has resulted in turnarounds of our most difficult Candida albicans patients. The most noticeable changes are seen in the sore, achy, sluggish, “flu-type” symptoms of which many Candida patients complain. The energy returns, the generalized musculoskeletal achiness improves, and mental sluggishness disappear, and sinus and nasal congestion clears up.”
How to take Molybdenum for Candida Die Off and Brain Symptoms
Molybdenum should be taken as soon as you begin taking any treatment that kills off Candida – typically antifungals and/ or probiotics. This is when Candida Die-Off is most likely to occur, and its when your liver will need Molybdenum the most to deal with the toxins released during the die-off process.
For dosage recommendations, follow the instructions on the bottle. Its very difficult to overdose on molybdenum as any excess is excreted by your kidneys.
Other Supplements for Candida Die Off
Milk thistle both repairs your liver and protects it from future damage. The active ingredient in Milk Thistle is Silymarin, which is actually a group of phytochemical compounds named flavonolignands. These compounds support your liver in a number of ways that will help you through Candida Die-Off.
Silymarin stimulates protein synthesis in your liver, helping to repair damaged liver cells and restoring their function. Secondly, it actively protects your liver cells by making changes to the cell membranes. This prevents toxins from entering the cells. And thirdly, Silymarin encourages the growth of new liver cells.
Milk Thistle is regularly used for cirrhosis, liver poisoning and viral hepatitis. Its liver-protecting properties are widely accepted in the medical community.
Patothenic Acid (or vitamin B-5) & vitamin C
These vitamins provide powerful support for your adrenal function and immune system. Die-Off puts your body under stress, so a healthy immune system is vital to make sure your stay healthy.
Vitamin C helps with Candida overgrowth in three ways.
First, it provides support to your adrenal glands, which are crucial for your metabolism, blood sugar regulation, and your body’s ability to deal with stress (Physical, emotional or mental. The adrenal glands are also imperative in your body’s production of anti-inflammatories and antihistamines.
Second, Vitamin C boosts your immune system and gives your body the best chance possible to fight off the Candida yeast.
Lastly, it helps boost your stomach acid, which slows the Candida overgrowth.
Candida causes low adrenal function and low metabolic energy
Candida overgrowth and adrenal malfunction are often seen together. The toxins released by the Candida yeast have a tremendously debilitating impact on the cells within your body. These toxins impair communication between cells, they increase the stiffness of cell membranes and they interfere with your normal metabolism.
Candida produces ethanol which can have an intoxicating effect on your body. It interferes with the production of thyroid hormones, giving rise to hypothyroidism, and can stress your liver.
Some of this ethanol is broken down by your body into Acetaldehyde. This blocks your cell membranes and prevents them from absorbing important hormones, as well as impairing your nerve function. Acetaldehyde places your adrenals under stress and causes them to produce adrenaline and dopamine.
The actions of the Candida yeast can cause great stress to your adrenals. But it also works the other way around, which is why it’s so easy for Candida sufferers to enter a negative, self-reinforcing spiral. Placing your adrenals under stress for too long will reduce your ability to fight off harmful organisms, because they are a crucial part of your immune system.
Vitamin C can boost your immune system
Vitamin C is an often recommended treatment for over stressed and fatigued adrenals. Some of the highest concentrations of Vitamin C in your entire body are found in your adrenal glands.
Taking a good Vitamin C supplement will help restore your adrenal glands to health, build up your immune system and allow your body to fight off the Candida. Healthier adrenal glands also contribute to more energy and a higher metabolism.
Other benefits of vitamin C
Vitamin C, in supplemental form, was popularized by a Nobel Prize winning doctor named Linus Pauling. His research (“Vitamin C and the common cold”, 1970) was the first to suggest that high doses of Vitamin C could help the body recover from illness. Although controversial at the time, his research has gained increasing acceptance in recent years, as the beneficial effects of Vitamin C came to be realized by the medical profession.
Vitamin C has been found to help with immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular disease, prenatal health problems and eye disease. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition even showed that Vitamin C delays aging and skin dryness.
A couple of things to remember
Vitamin C comes in many different shapes and forms; choosing the wrong one can actually be counter-productive and worsen your Candida overgrowth. Most importantly, remember to buy a supplement that contains no added sugar. Those effervescent Berocca tablets unfortunately contain sucrose, which is sure to feed your Candida.
Try to buy a good Vitamin C supplement from a trusted brand like Source Naturals or Garden of Life. Be careful to check what other ingredients the supplement contains. Sugar is certainly not the only substance that can worsen your Candida, so be very aware of what you’re putting in your body.
There’s one other thing to remember when you are taking Vitamin C. It is a natural diuretic, meaning that it helps to rid the body of excess fluids. Even though you’re unlikely to become dehydrated by just taking Vitamin C, we’d recommend that you drink plenty of water while you take these supplements.
Dosage of Vitamin C
You can take quite large amounts of Vitamin C, with many health professionals suggesting up to 3000 mg per day. Somewhere around 3000 mg is the point at which your body becomes saturated with Vitamin C and cannot absorb any more. You cannot overdose on Vitamin C but you will know when you’ve taken more than your body can absorb, because you will start to experience some mild diarrhea as your body expels the excess.
If you really want to get the most out of your Vitamin C dosage, find a formula with bioflavonoids. They enhance the absorption of the Vitamin C, and prolong its effectiveness too. For every 2000mg of Vitamin C, you should take 1000mg of Bioflavanoids.
Other vitamins that can boost your adrenals
Other vitamins and supplements that can support your adrenal function and help your immune system fight Candida:
Pantothenic acid (or Vitamin B-5)
This is almost as effective as Vitamin C in supporting your adrenals, and its actually best if you take both.
Otherwise known as Indian Ginseng, this is an adaptogenic herb that regulates energy levels and boosts the immune system.
Licorice root extract
This regulates hormone production in your adrenals and relieves adrenal exhaustion.
For more information on choosing a detox supplement and reducing your Candida symptoms, you may also want to consider the Ultimate Candida Diet treatment program.