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The Basic Candida Diet Do's and Don't's

Posted 10/27/2021

Written by Dan Jackowiak Nc, HHP - Medically reviewed by Dr. Vibhuti Rana, PhD

Here are our recommended Basic Candida Diet do's and don'ts along with meal ideas for breakfast, lunch and dinner. There are also links to expanded good and bad food lists, Candida compliant recipes, and questions about certain foods below. 

  • Stevia and Stevia Plus are ok as a sugar substitute. However, Xylitol is even better because it is a proven anti-fungal and inhibits candida yeast. It has also been proven to reduce tooth decay in children and adults by reducing bad bacteria. It is very heat stable and makes a great cooking and baking substitute for real sugar. It tastes pretty good, too!

  • The yeast infection diet calls for NO fruit juices because of the sugar and fructose they contain.

  • NO Breaded Meats...All others ok.

  • NO Egg substitutes...Eggs themselves are is best since they contain the correct omega fatty acids ratio...with fertile, if you can find them, being the ideal.

  • Do not drink milk and here is why.

  • NO Margarine and butter substitutes.

  • On the yeast infection diet, low-fat yogurt (especially made from goats or organic), cream cheese, sour cream made from real cream, unsweetened whipping cream, and butter are all ok. With yogurt, get the lowest sugar content possible.

  • NO Potatoes and legumes on the yeast infection diet.

  • Fresh vegetables and freshly made vegetable juice ok

  • NO Coffee (regular or decaf) with added sugar or artificial creamers. NO Diet or regular sodas. Organic or black tea and herbal teas are ok.

  • Bottled and reverse osmosis filtered water; distilled water is the best for removing toxins but should only be half of the water you drink. Freshly squeezed lemonade or lime-ade is ok.

  • On the yeast infection diet, most Grains are not allowed...this includes white rice, wheat, amaranth, buckwheat, oats, and barley for at least the first couple okfweeks. You can find out why on the FAQ and Grain page.

  • No corn products and only certain types of soy are allowed. More information here.

  • Absolutely NO Yeasts allowed...this includes bread, pastries, alcohol, and hydrolyzed yeasts...Read your labels. This study points out that you can become infected by them.

  • NO Pickles, salad dressings, green olives, or soy sauce.

  • Salad dressings made of olive oil, Braggs apple cider vinegar, water, and lemon juice are ok.

  • Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (Braggs is best) and black olives not aged in vinegar are ok.

  • NO Partially hydrogenated oils including corn and peanuts.

  • Coconut oil, olive, grape seed, and flax seed oils in a cold pressed formula when available are ok.

  • NO Peanuts, peanut products, and pistachio nuts on the yeast infection diet. I would avoid cashews too.

  • NO VINEGARS. These include ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, pickles, pickled peppers, hot sauce, salad dressings, green olives, horseradish, dips, and mayonnaise.

  • NO high sugar fruits are allowed but low sugar fruits are ok if you only have one serving per day. Please see the good food list and the Candida Diet Questions page for specific recommendations.

  • It is best to avoid tuna, swordfish, shark, Atlantic salmon, and shellfish because of high mercury content.

  • Gmo foods are not suggested because of the damage they do to your bodies detox system. Studies on this webpage.

  • Make sure you eat plenty of fresh vegetables preferably raw or steamed on the Basic Candida Diet. This is very important on the Candida yeast diet because vegetables absorb fungal poisons (mycotoxins) and carry them out of the body.

  • If you are concerned about weight loss, I suggest you increase the amount of good fat you eat. Fat contains 9 calories per gram, carbohydrates contain 4 calories per gram so a little extra fat goes a long way. Coconut oil liquid or capsules works very well for this, one tbls or 4 capsules contain 130 calories so a tbls at every meal would give you an extra 520 calories a day. Coconut oil also kills yeast and is easily converted to energy by the body.

  • Do not starve yourself! If you are hungry, eat! But eat the right foods and it will help maintain your weight.

  • If you have kidney disease, you should consult a physician before you go on the Candida diet. The kidneys can have a problem with the protein load of this yeast infection diet. If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, you may not be suitable for this Candida diet either because of reduced simple carbohydrates. Please consult a doctor before proceeding.

  • Try to consume 50 to 60 grams of good carbs daily because the red and white blood cells need some carbs to function. Those white blood cells are part of your immune system so you don't want to shut them down while fighting Candida yeast infections. Please see the Good Food page for a list of what to eat daily to accomplish this.

Basic Candida Diet Breakfast Ideas

Good Candida yeast diet foods for breakfast are eggs, cooked any style, occasionally with bacon, ham, steak, or chicken (not breaded). Grapefruit and vegetable juices are good, especially fresh carrot juice with a clove of garlic. A person could get tired of eating eggs, I must admit, on the yeast diet so just treat breakfast as any other meal. Have chicken salad, raw nuts, or yogurt, just use a little imagination. If you don't normally eat breakfast you can skip it entirely or do like I do and eat breakfast at lunch time.

Basic Candida Diet Lunch Ideas

For lunch, have chicken salad or chicken, fish, or beef patties with a vegetable basted in butter. Don't worry about fats on the anti-yeast diet since you need them for energy production for the body. That is how the body was originally designed to get its energy from. The body was never designed to use sugar from processed grains for fuel, and this is what makes most people fat, along with feeding Candida and other yeasts.

Basic Candida Diet Dinner Ideas

Just about anything goes on the Candida diet for dinner, as long as it is an allowed food. Beef, fish, poultry, wild game, and occasionally pork are all OK as the main dish. Raw or lightly steamed vegetables are the best, not over done, but still crisp so you don't kill all the available enzymes in these foods. Herbal teas or water are OK to drink.

I have further expanded upon diet and its affects upon the immune system as it relates to treating yeast infections and illness here. Along with many others, this is definitely a large factor in the cause of this condition.

People always ask me where can I get a Candida diet cookbook? They also tell me they're starving to death and don't know what to eat. The diet is so boring, how did you do it for so long, can I have this or that, and so on. I own and recommend these two cookbooks below.

Primal Cookbook at Amazon

Quick and Easy Meals at Amazon

The recipes are mostly Candida-yeast-diet compliant. There are a few that aren't but then my diet is different from most Candida yeast diets as well. So just pick and choose keeping the simple carb and sugar content low.

Expanded List of Candida Yeast Diet Good Foods

Expanded List of Candida Diet Foods to Avoid

Candida Diet Vegetable Recipes

Candida Diet Chicken Recipes

Candida Diet Beef Recipes

Candida Diet Fish Recipes

Candida Diet Desert Recipes

Commonly Asked Candida Diet Questions About Foods

Medical Review by Dr. Vibhuti Rana, PhD

While some people have still not accepted the concept of “yeast diet” till date, numerous reports prove otherwise. The book “The Yeast Connection”, first published in 1983 by William G. Crook, MD, listed several versions of “Candida Diet”.(1) Candida requires nutrients to grow and multiply successfully. In an article published in Food, Culture, and Society, Alissa Overend discussed the effect of food changes in 24 people living with the infection. She concluded that the Candida diet can provide productive possibilities in the regulation and maintenance of an illness not fully identified by medicinal science.(2)

It is the best alternative to taking drugs, i.e., a non drug approach for treatment of Candida infections. The diet plan starves the excess Candida from the host system by mainly restricting the intake of sugar sources. This, in turn, helps the gut microbiota to replenish by overpowering the bad bacteria.

Furthermore, a study conducted in mice models to check the reduction in colonization of gut C. albicans was conducted by Gunsalus et. al in 2015. It reported that coconut oil could become the first dietary intervention to reduce C. albicans GI colonization.(3) Similarly, many other alternatives to grains and sugar are available for the convenience of the diet-followers.

2. Alissa Overend (2013) Candida, Food Discipline and the Dietary Taming of Uncertainty, Food, Culture & Society, 16:1, 145-160, DOI: 10.2752/175174413X13500468045560.
3. Kearney T. W. Gunsalus, Stephanie N. Tornberg-Belanger, Nirupa R. Matthan, Alice H. Lichtenstein, Carol A. Kumamoto. Manipulation of Host Diet To Reduce Gastrointestinal Colonization by the Opportunistic Pathogen Candida albicans. mSphere Nov 2015, 1 (1) e00020-15; DOI: 10.1128/mSphere.00020-15

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