Eating too many carbohydrates and added sugars is one of the major causes of Candida overgrowth. It raises your blood sugar, increases the availability of sugars in your gut, and allows Candida to convert to its pathogenic, hyphal form.
It might seem paradoxical to say that Candida sufferers often complain of symptoms related to low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, but this is the case. There are several ways in which Candida can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels, resulting in all sorts of unpleasant symptoms.
Blood sugar spikes are caused by the typical, high-sugar diet that is so prevalent in the West. And for every blood sugar spike, there’s a blood sugar crash. So a poor, imbalanced diet can lead to people oscillating between high and low blood sugar.
Those embarking on a Candida diet, even with the best intentions, can also suffer from low blood sugar. By switching too quickly from their regular diet, they don’t give their bodies enough time to adjust to new sources of fuel.
What is Low Blood Sugar?
Blood sugar is a measurement of the glucose being stored and transported by your blood. Glucose is the body’s main source of energy, and typically comes from rice, potatoes, bread, fruit and other carbs. When you eat these foods, the glucose is absorbed into your bloodstream. With the help of insulin, it is then taken into your cells and used for energy.
Excess glucose is stored in the liver and muscles, or else turned into fat. When you don’t get enough glucose, your body can’t function. This can happen if you’re on medication that doesn’t allow your body to produce the insulin it needs to use glucose. This results in a drop in blood sugar levels. Low blood sugar can also be caused by diabetes, and drinking alcohol without food.
Signs of Low Blood Sugar and/or Hypoglycemia
Symptoms of low blood sugar usually hit very suddenly and can include:
- Blurred vision
- Increased heartrate
- Sudden mood change
- Nervousness or irritability
- Pale skin
- Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- Poor sleep patterns
- Inability to think clearly or concentrate
Why Low Blood Sugar Is Linked to Candida
Low blood sugar problems in Candida sufferers are most often linked to diet. Let’s take a look at why this happens.
- Eating starches, grains, and high-carb vegetables can feed candida because they have a high glycemic (GI) index. Like sugar, this causes an insulin resistance within the cells, which can later lead to problems with blood sugar management.
- Skipping meals may seem like a good way to reduce the amount of sugar you’re eating, but it actually may do you more harm than good! Suddenly going for long periods without food causes blood sugar to drop. Then, when you do eat, you’re more likely to eat too much! This can lead to more insulin resistance as the body has to work harder to deal with the excess glucose.
Those who start a Candida diet can also sometimes experience low blood sugar symptoms. Here are two reasons why:
- Those who are just beginning an anti-Candida program are most at risk of blood sugar imbalances. This is because, in most cases, they have been eating high-sugar foods for a long time. The sudden dietary change from regular sugar intake to no sugar at all can be severely disruptive to the body. The body’s main energy source has been cut off, and it might take some time to re-adjust. Sudden drops in blood sugar are quite common at the beginning of an anti-Candida program., especially if someone has quit sugar ‘cold turkey’.
- On the other hand, eating the wrong kind of non-sugar foods can also cause problems. Although Candida sufferers know to avoid sugar, they may compensate by eating other sweet foods such as fruit. Dried fruit is especially problematic, as it is very high in fruit sugar. Too much can cause blood sugar spikes, followed by a sudden surge of insulin – then a major crash as blood sugar levels drop.
5 Tips To Avoid Low Blood Sugar
Long-term management of Candida requires keeping your dietary sugars at a sustainable, reasonably low level, and as stable as possible. In most cases, your body will adjust to your new low-sugar diet and your blood sugar levels will be stable again. Most health professionals expect this to happen within 2-3 weeks.
However, managing Candida-related blood sugar imbalances is much easier with a few tips and tricks. Here are 5 tips to help stabilize your blood sugar as you begin a Candida diet. Some of these tips might sound like they help to avoid blood sugar spikes, but remember that avoiding the spikes will help to avoid the post-spike crash too!
1. Minerals can help to stabilize blood sugar
Minerals such as chromium, zinc and magnesium are essential for healthy blood sugar management. Chromium helps to balance the amount of sugar your body absorbs by working with the insulin-signaling pathways. This helps to balance blood glucose levels while still allowing you to have stable energy.
Magnesium is important too, because elevated blood glucose levels can increase the loss of magnesium through your urine, reducing the amount of magnesium in your blood.
Zinc is needed for the formation of insulin in the beta cells in the pancreas, which produce insulin.
2. Are you getting enough fiber?
Fiber is essential for keeping blood sugar levels in check. Fiber helps to slow down the digestion of carbohydrates, keeping you feel satisfied for longer. This also helps to slow down the rate at which sugars are absorbed into the bloodstream, preventing sudden spikes.
3. Stay hydrated!
Drinking plenty of water helps your kidneys to function efficiently, allowing them to flush out toxins and excess sugar in your urine. In fact, one study showed that drinking more water helped prevent high blood sugar levels in women.
Physical activity will help use up any excess blood sugar, which helps to prevent sudden peaks and dips. Exercise also boosts your metabolism so you’re able to burn stored glucose more efficiently. And as an added bonus, exercise will take your mind off wanting to eat sugary treats!
5. Don’t go cold turkey!
The anti-Candida diet may be quite a radical change from your normal diet, and your body can only handle a certain amount of change at once. A complete change in diet can be a very difficult adjustment. Take it slowly and start changing your diet before you do your Candida cleanse.
Beat Candida Without Blood Sugar Issues
Giving up sugar is hard enough without having to deal with low blood glucose! Fortunately, there are lots of ways to avoid suffering.
Eating well and checking the nutritional labels on all foods for sugar content is a good start. Don’t expect to quit sugar overnight – give your body a little more time to adjust.
In the meantime, keep your blood sugar levels in balance by drinking plenty of water and getting daily exercise. The health benefits will keep you motivated!
For more tips on stabilizing your blood sugar and switching to a healthy, long-term diet, check out the Ultimate Candida Diet program. Remember – stable blood sugar will boost your immune system, help you lose weight, and give you lots more energy!