If you’re an avid follower of health trends, you’ll know that grapefruit seed extract (GSE) has achieved much fame in the last few decades. Evidence of its incredible antifungal actions has stunned both doctors and patients around the world, and it’s used to treat a wide variety of ailments. Most notable is its efficacy in fighting Candida overgrowth.
One of the earlier studies on grapefruit seed extract showed it was as effective as 30 pharmaceutical antibiotic drugs and 18 fungicides. The bonus was that the grapefruit seed extract had none of the side effects of the drugs.
As well as killing off yeast and fungal pathogens, grapefruit seed extract is loaded with important vitamins and minerals. These are particularly beneficial during and after your Candida cleanse treatment, as they help to boost your immune system and reduce the chance of re-infection. It also helps to repair any liver cells that may have been damaged in the detoxification process.
Grapefruit seed extract was originally used in the agricultural industry due to its effectiveness in preventing mold growing on foods. It was then used in hospitals as an antiseptic for surgical equipment. In some cases, it has been used as a natural alternative to chlorine to kill bacteria in swimming pools!
How Does Grapefruit Seed Extract Help With Candida Overgrowth?
A 1990 study published in the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine found GSE to be “highly effective” against a variety of yeasts and molds including Candida, Geotrichum, Aspergillus, and PeniciIlium sp.
This was supported by a 2001 study in which Polish researchers found that GSE extract used at a concentration of 33 percent had strong antifungal effects against Candida albicans overgrowth. The study concluded that GSE is able to fight Candida by attacking yeast cells directly, effectively destroying those that have already taken over.
Another study in 2002 showed grapefruit seed extract to be useful as an all-round antimicrobial, thanks to its antimicrobial action against a wide range of harmful bacteria. Amazingly, it appears to do this within just 15 minutes of contact, even when diluted.
The American Research Institute also reports that GSE can be used effectively to kill over 800 bacterial and viral strains, 100 strains of fungi, as well as killing and preventing the growth of many different parasites. Researchers believe that GSE has the ability to interfere with the membrane of the bacteria, destroying the cell by breaking it apart. Other studies indicate that the GSE kills intestinal cells that have been absorbed by the yeast.
The nutritional content of grapefruit seed extract is not something to be sniffed at, either! Rich in nutrients and phytochemicals, GSE trumps many other natural antifungals because it helps to heal your body, too. One of its most important compounds is the bioflavonoid hesperidin, a powerful immune system booster.
Grapefruit seed extract also contains vitamin C and E, which are essential for the healthy repair of mucous membranes. Researchers have also found that GSE contains certain sterols, citric acid, limonoids, and other trace minerals that aid healing and general wellbeing.
It’s also great for digestive health: GSE is naturally acidic, which can restore the normal pH of the stomach and gut. Intestinal acidity is often out of balance due to Candida overgrowth, but GSE can bring acidity levels back to where they need to be for good digestion.
Other Benefits of Grapefruit Seed Extract
- Fights bacteria causing urinary tract infections
- Treats serious fungal infections such as H. capsulatum
- Kills topical fungal infections such as athlete’s foot
- Improves digestive symptoms associated with candida overgrowth
- Treats bacterial infections of the skin, throat, nose and mouth
- Prevents the growth of mold on food products
What is Grapefruit Seed Extract?
GSE is made by mixing the grapefruit seeds, white membrane and pulp into a thick, highly acidic liquid. If made in a laboratory, the seed and pulp may be ground and mixed with vegetable glycerin. This helps to reduce the bitterness and acidity. In its purest form, GSE is a yellow, viscous liquid that has a strong bitter taste.
Grapefruit seed extract is available as either as a liquid concentrate or in capsules and tablets. All forms of GSE will contain vegetable glycerin, but the liquid concentrate is a more potent form of extract as tablets or capsules contain a small amount of filler (such as organic brown rice protein). However, this is ok in small amounts on a Candida diet.
Here is a short explanation of the typical recommended dosages for Grapefruit Seed Extract in liquid form and in tablet form. Always read the label and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Liquid concentrate: 10 drops in a cup of water taken 3 times a day.
- Tablet/capsules: 100-200mg 1-3 times a day should be sufficient.
Who Should Not Take Grapefruit Seed Extract?
Grapefruit seed extract is non-toxic and considered safe in most cases. An independent laboratory found that you would need to take 4,000 times the recommended amount of grapefruit seed extract before the dosage became poisonous.
However, as with any form of supplementation, GSE is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Those with serious health conditions are also advised to seek advice from a health professional before commencing GSE treatment. It is possible for GSE to interact with certain medications, so these should be checked first.
Side-effects of GSE are rare. One study reported patients suffered no side-effects during a four-week treatment with GSE. Instead, they noticed an overall improvement in digestive health symptoms, including constipation, flatulence, abdominal discomfort and night rest.
Remember that grapefruit seed extract is known to have a large number of drug interactions. In many cases, GSE substantially reduces the effectiveness of prescription medication. If you are taking any medication, make sure to check with your healthcare provider.
GSE And Your Candida Plan
There are lots of factors to take into consideration when you start a Candida treatment plan. Will your antifungals interfere with existing medications? Should you take one antifungal at a time, or several at once? How do they interact with probiotics, and how can you get the best from both?
For lots more information on how to change your diet and build a supplement regimen, take a look at our Ultimate Candida Diet treatment plan.