Hopefully you read my recent post on how probiotics can reduce the side effects of a course of antibiotics. Over the past few years, research has shown probiotics to be an invaluable tool for medical practitioners, and awareness among the medical community is steadily growing.
However this is just one of many scenarios where probiotics can complement, or be used in place of, other medical treatments. Although most probiotic research focuses on gut complaints and the immune system, researchers are continually discovering new and surprising applications for probiotic supplements.
A good example is a recent study that shows how probiotics can be used to control oral thrush. Otherwise known as oral Candidosis, oral thrush is most commonly caused by various Candida species and is frequently present in Candida sufferers.
Probiotics and oral thrush
A Brazilian study in 2012 examined how probiotics could help elderly patients suffering from oral thrush. Researchers worked with 42 otherwise healthy women, who were given a probiotic containing Lactobacillus casei and Bifidobacterium breve. The probiotic was administered 3 times a week for 30 days.
After examining saliva samples from before and after the treatment, the researchers noted a significant drop in the amount of Candida. In fact, “There was a reduction in Candida numbers in 57.1% of the elderly, and total elimination of the yeasts in 11.9% of them.”
The study also looked at how the immune system reacted to Candida, and found that the body’s immunological response was stronger after taking the probiotics. Specifically, they noted, “a significant increase in the levels of anti-Candida IgA”, in other words a greater number of anti-Candida antibodies.
The interesting thing to note about this study is that they used only 2 strains of probiotic bacteria. I recommend that Candida sufferers use probiotics with many more strains of bacteria and with a much higher CFU count. If a more potent probiotic had been used in this study, the results would have been even more impressive.
Probiotics to boost your immune system
A chronic Candida overgrowth can result in a wide variety of symptoms. These can range from yeast-related complaints like oral thrush and yeast infections, to more commonplace ailments like headaches, digestive problems and fatigue.
This study provides more evidence that taking probiotics should be one of the key elements of your Candida treatment (along with antifungals and a low-sugar diet). Not only are probiotics proven to restore balance to your gut and support your immune system, but they can also provide relief from oral thrush and other symptoms of Candida.
In my Ultimate Candida Diet treatment program I have set out a clear timeline for Candida sufferers to follow. There are also full instructions on how to get the most out of your antifungals and probiotics, along with guidelines on how to follow a healthy, low-sugar diet.