Candida Test UK
What are the most reliable Candida tests ?
There are a number of tests that can be conducted to detect Candida and other species of yeast- these include blood, urine and stool and saliva tests.
Stool test for Candida
The benefit of a stool test is that it is able to highlight the best anti-fungals (both pharmaceutical and natural) to eradicate your strain of yeast so that treatment can be very targeted.
This means that you will not have to spend money purchasing anti-fungals that may not work with your specific strain of yeast.
What does the Stool test Cover
The test also covers 50 strains of parasites and 70 strains of bacteria and 70 strains of yeast (including Candida).
The Candida stool test overs the following markers:
Beneficial bacteria, including Lactobacillus spp. and Bifidobacterium spp.
Bad bacteria such as Klebiella
The presence of any Parasites, including Giardia lamblia and Cryptosporidium Blastocystis Hominis and D. Fragilis and Giardia
Yeast/fungal overgrowth, commonly referred to as Candida albicans
The stool test is also able to highlight the best supplements to take to eradicate your specific strain of yeast or bacteria should you test positive for either.
In order to do the test you will need to produce two separate stool samples (on separate days).
Urine test for Candida - OATS test and MOAT test
We often use a urine test for Candida. The benefit of this test is that it is highly sensitive, easy to perform. It will test for fungal overgrowth but will not tell you the specific anti-fungals to take.
It provides an accurate evaluation of intestinal yeast and bacteria.
Saliva Candida test
There is also a saliva test for Candida that measures Candida antibodies.
The test however only checks for Candida it cannot test for bacteria or parasites.
What is Candida?
Many patients with a diagnosis of IBS - Irritable Bowel Syndrome may actually have an underlying yeast or fungal infection know as Candida Albicans (7)
Candida is a not a type of bacteria but is a type of fungi that includes more than 150 species or strains of yeast. Candida is an opportunistic pathogen or fungus that may grow or proliferate given the right conditions such as use of antibiotics or a high sugar diet (3).
Our gut microbiome consists of a combination of bacteria, fungi, viruses and parasites (3).
Candida or Yeast infections are actually due to our Western lifestyles. Candida overgrowth may be triggered by high sugar or high carbohydrate diets, as well as medication such antibiotics and the Pill or HRT.
Identifying whether Candida is indeed your issue is the first and most important step to take and whilst it might be tempting to simply assume its existence, similar symptoms may be experienced from other pathogens such as a common parasite called B Hominis. Whilst an anti-candida diet (low in sugar and starch) is useful in eradicating many parasites the anti-fungal supplements typically used for Candida are can be ineffective against B Hominis and a stronger suplement may be warranted for a longer period of time in order to achieve an effective eradication.
Is Candida an infection?
We all have Candida and in small amounts it does not cause any problems and is quite harmless.
Where is Candida found?
Candida can be found all over your body. It is found in your ears, your eyes, your gastrointestinal tract, your mouth, your nose, sinuses, skin, stool and vagina. In fact it is part of your beneficial flora .
There are a number of symptoms that may be associated with Candida- these include:
Constipation or Diarrhea
Ringing in the ears
Sugar cravings or cravings for bread or marmite or balsamic vinegar
Brain fog/difficulty concentrating/fuzzy thinking
Food intolerances/ food sensitivities
Feeling worse on damp or muggy days
Bladder infections/urinary tract infections
In Women, Thrush and Vaginal infections
In Women, PMS
In Men, Jock itch
Sensitivities to perfumes
Psoriasis- Patients using medication for psoriasis may be at an increased risk of developing Candida infections (4)
Chronic sinusitis (5)
What are the causes of Candida ?
If you have taken repeated courses of antibiotics, as a child, teenager or adult you are more likely to develop an overgrowth of candida. Many patients report having had repeated courses of antibiotics for tonsillitis and acne. The contraceptive pill (2) and steroids may also be a risk factor.
Drugs such as broad spectrum antibiotics alter our gut flora thereby creating a perfect environment for candida to proliferate.
You may have also consumed the typical western diet- a high sugar or high yeast diet including foods such as bread, stock cubes, soya sauce balsamic vinegar or alcohol. All of these factors may contribute to Candida growing and lead to overgrowth and, possibly, infection. The medical profession does not routinely test for Candida. This is because there is not enough of evidence-based research, however candida is certainly a problem with women who experience thrush and in men jock itch.
How can Candida be treated ?
The key in treating patient's with Candida is to combine dietary approaches with anti-fungals. Taking anti-fungals without changing your diet will not be effective.
Patients will need to cut out sugar, cakes biscuits, honey, maple syrup from their diet as well as alcohol and all foods that contain yeast- bread and pizza and beer lager and wine.
I am not a fan of using extremely restrictive dies which remove all all carbohydrates including rice, potatoes. First and foremost there is limited research in this area and I have not seen any benefit of being overly restrictive . This can lead to fatigue and insomnia. Instead I focus on removing obvious offenders including alcohol and sugar and processed foods.
Do you have any Candida Specialists at your clinic and what type of treatment do they offer for Candida?
The treatment for Candida includes anti-fungal supplements as well as supplements to kill Biofilms where appropriate.
Natural anti-fungals are extremely potent and include Caprylic acid, Oregano, Graperfruit seed extract or Berberine.
Probiotics also are paramount- again we will recommend the appropriate strain based on your stool test results. The stool test has the uncanny ability to identify whether you are lacking important strains of healthy gut bacteria such as Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium species for example.
This means we can be very targeted in our candida treatment.
Diet is also very important. There is no need to follow extreme diets- we recommend low sugar, low yeast diets, however we do not remove all carbohydrates.
Do Doctors test for Candida?
Dr. Orian Truss and Dr. William Crook were the first Doctors to in the USA to increase public awareness of candida albicans yeast infections.
Unfortunately in the UK, Candida is not routinely tested for on the NHS.
Dr. Crook’s wrote a bestselling book called “The Yeast Connection” this book explains the true extent of candida infections in the population.
Will I experience die-off?
There is a huge spectrum of reactions. Some patients temporarily feel worse when they begin treatment- headaches, brain fog, fatigue are very common. It is very important to be gentle and not bombard your body with too many anti-fungals or dietary changes all at once. Candida produces a toxin called acetaldehyde and this can make you feel nauseous. I will design a protocol for you that will minimize reactions.
How long does it take to get ride of Candida?
Typically most people feel better in 3-4 weeks. But you may feel worse before you feel better. This is due to the die-off reaction.
You will be amazed to see how your sugar cravings will vanish after the 1st week.
How many appointments will I need to get rid Candida?
We suggest 2 appointments. You will have all the tools that you need after your 2nd appointment but we will also explore food intolerances with you as well as improve your immunity.
Feel free to contact us to book an appointment at our Clinic.
The IBS & Gut Disorder Centre
9 Weymouth Street
London W1W 6DB
0345 129 7996
1. US National Library of Medicine - Arun Singh, Renuka Verma,1 Aditi Murari,2 and Ashutosh Agrawal2: Oral candidiasis: An overview-
2. US National Library of Medicine - Rezk M1, Sayyed T1, Masood A1, Dawood R: Risk of bacterial vaginosis, Trichomonas vaginalis and Candida albicans infection among new users of combined hormonal contraception vs LNG-IUS.
3. US National Library of Medicine - Louise Basmaciyan,a,b Fabienne Bon,b Tracy Paradis,b Pierre Lapaquette,b and Frédéric Dallea,b: Candida Albicans Interactions With The Host: Crossing The Intestinal Epithelial Barrier
4. A Clinician’s Guide to the Diagnosis and Treatment of Candidiasis in Patients with Psoriasis
April W. Armstrong,corresponding author1 Michael Bukhalo,2 and Andrew Blauvelt3
5. Science Daily - Mayo Clinic Study Implicates Fungus As Cause Of Chronic Sinusitis
6. Yeast Infection - Candida’s True Medical Pioneers
7.Candidiasis: predisposing factors, prevention, diagnosis and alternative treatment.
Martins N1, Ferreira IC, Barros L, Silva S, Henriques M.