There is no getting around the fact that good quality probiotics are expensive and taking them regularly over the course of the diet can be prohibitively expensive for some. Fortunately, there are foods that contain high quality probiotics that when combined with the anti Candida diet plan are very effective at controlling a Candida overgrowth. Of course, for the very best results a good strategy is to combine high quality probiotic supplements along with foods that naturally have probiotics and antifungal properties themselves.
On the whole yogurts are a good source of the probiotic cultures but the quality and concentration of the cultures they contain can vary considerably. For this reason it is important that you look at the bacteria that the yogurt contains (and in some special cases the approximate bacteria count) especially when a product promotes itself as a ‘Probiotic’. Common cultures that are effective against a Candida overgrowth are Bifidobacteria Bifidum, Acidophilus and Lactobacillus. You want to avoid any yogurt that calls itself a probiotic but does not actually state what form of bacteria it contains. Be aware that many yogurts have added sugar that can feed your Candida overgrowth. Look for plain yogurt that does not have fruit or flavourings added to it. You might find that it tastes a little plain to being with but you will soon adapt and find flavoured yogurts too sweet. Tip: You can add flavour and antifungal properties to your yogurt by stiring in a little coconut milk or dried coconut flaks. Finally, make sure that the yogurt you choose is also made from Organic milk.
Kefir is a delicious and nutritious probiotic drink that is made by fermenting milk with Kefir gains or cultures. You may be able to buy ready made Kefir in your local health food shop or supermarket but it is also very easy to make at home making it a very cost effective way to get probiotics into your diet. We have detailed information about Kefir with step by step instructions on how to make it at home on our Kefir page.
Fermented foods are a good source of probiotics especially if you find dairy or lactose difficult to digest. The bacteria that have to be present for fermentation to occur are the same friendly bacteria that are present in yogurt. The most commonly fermented foods are Kinchi and Sauerkraut which are both forms of fermented cabbage. You can buy both of these in supermarkets but make sure you only buy the ‘raw’ or unpasteurised versions. To improve the shelve life of the products some manufactures pasteurise the cabbage before bottling thus killing off the benefitical bateria in the process. Should you be unable to find a raw Sauerkraut or Kimchi in your local supermarket or health food shop you can always make it at home. Simply slice an organic, washed cabbage into thin strips and then sprinkle with a little sea salt. Place in a bowl and cover with a wooden lid or board to allow the fermentation process to start. Keep at room temperature and out of direct sunlight for a couple of weeks. Fermented vegetables will keep longer than you would normally expect, in the past they were used to stave off scurvy by mariners during long sea voyages due to their high vitamin C content and long shelf life. In addition to vitamin C Sauerkraut is also high in vitamin B12 and packed with the probiotic bacteria that will fight your Candida overgrowth.
Prebiotics are not to be confused with probiotics as they do not contain bacteria or cultures like the probiotics do. In fact prebiotics are foods that feed probiotic bacteria and encourage them to grow in your gut, in turn they keep the harmful bacteria in check. Adding prebiotic foods to your diet will keep your gut healthy and help kill the Candida yeast as quickly as possible.
List of prebiotic foods: