3 Anti-Candida Diet Problems

by Steven Wright

Candida is the yeast infection that never seems to die. “Try the Anti-Candida Diet,” a well meaning blogger or citizen says. And then it begins…

Unfortunately, if this was all it took to beat this problem I wouldn’t have to make this video. And I doubt I’d see so many reoccurring infections or see test result after test result showing a Candida infection even though the person is strictly following the diet.

The Anti-Candida Diet is built on logical sense. But in practice many people end up eating less than 50 grams of carbohydrate a day. And I’d say most people I’ve interacted with are actually on a ZERO carbohydrate diet.

They think even 25 grams of carbohydrate will ruin all the hard work they’ve done. And when they’re putting this much time and effort into a diet, I understand their passion and worry. The worst part is that a very low carbohydrate diet like this can actually hurt them worse if they don’t have the proper educated support helping them. And most don’t.

Okay, I agree… don’t eat processed foods, avoid sugars, eat whole foods (try SCD). But this idea that all carbohydrate needs to be cut out is unnecessary.

Many claim the diet provides relief, but not killing power from what I’ve seen… and that’s just the tip of the problems.

3 Anti-Candida Diet Myths

  1. Candida doesn’t usually live alone.
  2. When your hormones are shot, Candida comes back.
  3. Candida needs to be killed, not starved.

Watch the video as I cover these myths and what the next steps should be for you if you think that you’ve got a Candida infection, or even worse… if you do have it and it won’t go away make sure you address all 3.


P.S. – If you’re looking for someone to help you beat it, you’ve come to the right place. Head over to our recommended practitioners page to get individualized help.

Is Your Body Secretly Suffering from a Leaky Gut?

Take this 3-minute quiz to find out if you have the #1 problem missed by modern medicine... Take the Quiz NOW
(NOTE: The results of this quiz could save your life)

About the author

Steven Wright Steve Wright is a health engineer and author. In 2009, he reached a breaking point when IBS took over his life and the doctors didn't know how to help. Since then, he has transformed his health and started SCDLifestyle.com to help others naturally heal stomach problems. You can check out his story here and find him on Google+, Facebook or Twitter.

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet Works

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Andria Naranjo January 28, 2018 at 2:31 pm

Late to this post but…
What tests should be taken to find Candida and any underlying issue ( leaky gut, parasites, etc)? Or how do they test for these issues? I feel like if I don’t ask for specific tests, my doctor may not order the correct ones and I won’t figure out what the real issue is. This is speaking from my previous experiences. Any help would be appreciated.

Lori Jo Berg January 31, 2018 at 12:18 pm

HI – thanks for reaching out! We recommend these two stool tests to determine what infections, etc you may have:
Test 1: The BioHealth #401H GI Pathogen Screen: https://www.directlabs.com/scdlifestyle/OrderTests/tabid/28099/language/en-US/Default.aspx

(NOTE: This can be found by selecting Specialty Labs under Find Tests)

This test uses advanced staining and antigen techniques to recover pathogens from 3 stool samples, taken each day for three days. I like the fact that this test uses samples taken over multiple days… and not only that, but it uses state of the art technology to look for pathogens that could be missed.

Test 2: The Doctor’s Data Parasitology x3: https://www.directlabs.com/scdlifestyle/OrderTests/tabid/28099/language/en-US/Default.aspx

Update: We’ve updated our recommendations for stool testing. The Metametrix #2105 is actually no longer available and many other reasons have led us to change our recommendation for the second test to the Doctor’s Data Parasitology x3 stool test.

This article goes into detail on why we suggest 2 stool tests instead of one:


Valerie Payne January 23, 2017 at 10:38 pm

I’ve tried everything and as a pastry chef Candida doesn’t go quietly and is miserable. I have had a complete turnaround with Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar (or any brand that’s organic WITH the mother). I drink 2 tsp with 8 oz of water 3x a day. After 2 week, it’s gone. It works because ACV restore the bodies PH. “Apple cider vinegar is fermented with a beneficial yeast that acts as a prebiotic for healthy bacteria in your gut, so essentially it helps your good bacteria grow as you eliminate harmful foods that feed the harmful yeasts like candida.” Apple Cider Vinegar, it works!

LsGma January 18, 2017 at 11:05 pm

I have oral thrush which appeared after fighting a nasty virus and sore throat where I was consuming alot of almond milk milkshakes, peppermints and lots of honey in my teas…bam, enter the oral thrush. after a few days of coconut oil , oil pulling. Gargling with salt water, drinking lemon water and apple cider vinegar the visible signs of the thrush were gone and after about 5 days my tongue swelling went down. I adopted the anti candida diet (strictly) thinking i should in order to get the yeast under control and went down to 110 pounds, eating ‘healthy’ low carb, no sugars, and maintaining a diet of basically steel cut oats, kefir (with live cultures ), plain yogurt, wild salmon, organic eggs ( I was vegan for 5 years but knew my body needed more protein). I’ll have veggie heavy omlets, leafy green salads with veggies , quinoa, most low carb veggies like summer squash, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, red bell peppers, onions, garlic, herbs , avacados, tomatoes and I snack on some gluten free rice crackers occssionally. I also add bits of apple or few blueberries but not regularly.
I have no digestive issues or tummy trouble, I sleep fairly well and now only have to sip water maybe 5 or 6 times in the night or less due to my throat drying out. my only other annoyance is a lingering mild but often, cough from the virus. That and extreme fatigue which is getting better daily. I take b complex, vitamin d, slow release iron, zinc with copper, and sublingual b 12. I also take a probiotic 8 strain supplement several times a day. My question is, now that I’ve lost too much weight on this diet I’m 5 ‘ 6″ and was 124 pre thrush, do you think it’s necessary for me to stay on it this strict just to get rid of the little bit of thrush signs I still have? (Red dots tongue, dry mouth and throat in the night, occasionally irritated esophagus that does not interfere with swallowing, coated feeling after eating before brushing teeth….) I know that much of my fatigue is now caused by weight loss and not getting enough fuel, and I feel like I went into ketosis, something I didn’t think of until it happened.
For someone like me with mild symptoms of oral thrush lingering, is this strict anti candida diet really necessary. My muscles are wasting and my energy is only good right after I eat.
Thanks for any imput!

Lori Jo Berg January 20, 2017 at 1:41 pm

Hello! Recurrent thrush can be a sign your hormones are off. We’d suggest getting your adrenals tested, especially with the extreme fatigue. You can do that here: http://www.directlabs.com/scdlifestyle/OrderTests/tabid/28099/language/en-US/Default.aspx It’s also important that we not only starve the candida, but fight it with a gut infection protocol. You can find one here: http://gutinfections.scdlifestyle.com/

Carol August 20, 2016 at 3:14 pm

I went to a naturopath for my candida and she put me on a diet, but does not rule out all carbohydrates, she allows brown rice on the diet and 1/4 cup yams, carrots or sweet potatoes a day. She also allows one piece of fruti a day, apple or pear and shakes made wtih berries, 3 a day with brown rice protein powder. I am so much better, been 9 months I followed the diet and another 9 to go. I’ll probably basically follow this diet for life even when I’m over it, I’ll just incorporate a few things back. No more alcohol or white sugar for sure. It’s working for me and I was in bad shape. Not only did I have candida, but I had hives for 3 months straight, a ton of food allergies, eczema and was going throough topical steroid withdrawal with a horrible rash over my whole body. The rashes are all gone, I’ve been itchy my whole life and no more itching. I do have some eczema on my hands, it comes and goes, but nothing like before. I have hope now. And I feel like I have a new stomach! I had stomach problems my whole life. I am now 66 and finally went for help since doctors did nothing but prescribe steroids and steroid creams for me. Which made me worse. You just have to find the right naturopath, 3 other people I know with these problems all went my naturopath and are doing good as well. One a little girl 9 years old with all the same problems as me.

Vivienne August 9, 2016 at 7:29 am

Hi jay! Just wondering what carbohydrates you would recommend to eat with candida? I’v been on a 0 carb diet for 7 weeks and it’s not working so time to introduce some carbs but I don’t want to go backwards either!

Mariel Heiss August 9, 2016 at 3:18 pm

Hi Vivienne – thanks for reaching out!

Please check out this article for our starch recommendations: http://scdlifestyle.com/2013/03/starch-evil-or-golden/

We also suggest getting plenty of carbs from starchy fruits and veggies like squash and plantains.

You might be helped by this, too: http://scdlifestyle.com/2014/07/reasons-adrenal-program-isnt-working/

s April 3, 2016 at 11:56 am

I wanted to ask your opinion regarding curing candida or curing leaky gut first? As they both are strongly related it is common to have both issues. Even if one could try to do a SCD protocol with candida approach I feel that it would be very restricted and hard to follow. And if it doesn’t have to be taken care of at the same time it would be unnecessary to follow such a restrictive protocol. So I wonder which one to focus on at first? It is like the egg or the chicken question!

Best regards,

Mariel Heiss April 5, 2016 at 1:33 pm

Hi S – Jordan and Steve think that candida usually can’t be cleared until the underlying causes – like leaky gut- are taken care of. They’d suggest starting by addressing your leaky gut. You can learn more here: http://solvingleakygut.com/webinar/live-qva/

John Tropea February 24, 2016 at 1:59 am

“Paul Jaminet, who suffered from candida overgrowth, argues that since candida (being eukaryotes) have mitochondria that can feed on both ketones and carbs (as opposed to prokaryote bacteria without mitochondria), going very low carb or ketogenic will only provide more fuel for the overgrowth. Furthermore, since ketones are water-soluble and pass easily through cellular membranes, ketones will actually be a more accessible food source for candida. Don’t go high-carb, since any extra glucose will just be food for the yeast, but don’t go ketogenic, either. Stick to around 100-150 grams of carbs while still limiting sugar. Although other sources do recommend going as low-carb as possible, my money’s on Paul.”

Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/candida/#ixzz4148c4ENK

Mariel Heiss February 24, 2016 at 9:09 pm

Love this info! Thanks for sharing

Joshua Ellery December 19, 2015 at 7:29 am

Is eating fruit okay?

Mariel Heiss December 21, 2015 at 6:24 pm

Hey Josh!

Fruit is okay as part of a balanced whole-foods diet. We recommend no more than 2-5 servings per day. If you’re not getting better, too much fruit might be an issue. Remember, you should prioritize veggies over fruit when reintroducing foods and planning meals, too.

Hope this helps 🙂

natsha October 28, 2015 at 4:43 pm

i got severe unbalanced hormones and got candida from it 4uears ago plus i have severe ibs . any tips would be awesme please…………..

Mariel Heiss October 29, 2015 at 8:33 pm

Hi Natsha – I’m sorry you’ve been struggling with your hormones and candida. Those are complex problems that be really tricky to heal.

From what you have said, I think your time, efforts, and energy would be best invested in a one-on-one consult with a functional medicine practitioner. They will be able to assess all the details and get you the attention you need to get healthy.

We have a recommended practitioners page now so you don’t have to look very far. Here are the details: http://scdlifestyle.com/practitioners/

nada December 24, 2014 at 12:23 pm

Then what should you eat to treat candida? I did gaps for 6 months and at first it was great but now i’m so out of energy and feeling worse than i did before i started. i’m sensitive to so may foods and my practitioner wants me to get more variety by eating more carbs like rice and gluten free oats. ive been scared to try to but i think i will because i really do need energy. im just so confused because i tried reintroducing potatoes and that didnt go so well….. arent potatoes easier to digest than carbs? i also do have leaky gut and a lot of yeast overgrowth. bacterial not so much. getting a stool test done soon too… how many days in advance should you stop antifungals?

Lori Jo Berg December 26, 2014 at 5:22 pm

Hi Nada, thanks for reaching out! Attacking candida takes a multi faceted approach of diet, supplements, and lifestyle. Please do check out our Solving Leaky gut program here: solvingleakygut.com, as this is a complete program to heal the gut as well as attack the root causes of these issues.

sumi April 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm

Dear Jay,

Could you be more specific ???
I mean I am struggling with this issue and would like to have your advice …

Elaine March 5, 2014 at 12:54 am

Can you kill the candida during pregnancy? I just got my stool test results back but also found out I’m pregnant. I’m worried and confused about what to do! Thanks for your help.

jessica c. March 1, 2014 at 4:01 am

Can you please be more specific about the hormonal imbalance? I am often under a lot of stress and never have normal periods, although i am on birth control. I thought for the longest time i have had hypothyroid symptoms but after being tested, my doctor told me my thyroid was in normal range. My number one symptom is chronic peeling/dry/flaky chapped lips. It is predominately on the lower lip and it happens every single day, year round. i have read many articles and know that the lips are connected and related to the intestines/colon and that i why i think candida is the culprit as i know it can manifest in many ways. What do you think? I have had this issues for years and years and nothing i have done has helped. Do you think i am on the right track? Please help in any way you can. My lips depress me every day and make me very anti social bc of their appearance.

Laurie April 26, 2017 at 1:46 pm

Hi Jessica,
It has been almost 3 years since your comment on this thread but I just came across this site in my long term research for relief. I have suffered many illnesses/ailments including hormone imbalance, hypothyroid, auto immune disorder, chronic fatigue, depression, etc… I have never come across anyone with lip issues as you’ve described. Since I was a child, I’ve had dry, chapped, peeling, flaking, painful, sometimes itchy, nasty lips. I’ve tried scrubbing them, peeling them, leaving them alone. I’ve tried every oil, balm, ointment (both natural and commercial brand), I’ve had allergy testing, gone on several health diets, used a humidifier, moved to a different climate. I’ve talked to doctors but non seem very concerned. My family and friends tell me not to touch my lips but they bother me and cause me discomfort and low self esteem. They are always red and look irritated. Since your comment was a while ago, I was wondering if you ever found relief or the cause? Anything to help?

Jonny February 16, 2014 at 4:33 pm

How do you fix your hormones?

Rob November 28, 2013 at 6:53 pm


I have a question regarding candida and was wondering if you could help.

As a sufferer of candida, my nutritionist has advised me to minimise my intake of carbohydrates, especially those in grain based foods. However, I have been permitted to eat starchy veg such as squash and sweet potato in relatively small amounts.

My problem is this, I have just been given a work out programme at the gym and my trainer has advised me that I should consume more carbs if I want to “bulk up”. Is there a safe way of doing this without compromising my health?

Also, what is your opinion on juicing vegetables, certainly greens but also maybe sweet potatoes etc for the extra calories?

I hope you can help.

Mags May 14, 2014 at 5:31 pm

Hey Rob! I have the same question. Did you ever find a resolution? Soon as I upped my carbs to bulk I got so tired and sick. My trainer suggested a high fat diet instead of high carbs (good fat of course, coconut oil, avocado etc). This has helped me gain weight but it also bring some belly fat with it. Not sure it’s the best plan so I’ve been adding a little but if carbs before and after workout but still struggling here and there.

Heather November 26, 2013 at 12:02 am

I TOTALLY agree with fixing your hormones. The scd did it for me. I went from having insanely heavy periods every two weeks to a normal period every 4 weeks. Anemia-gone!
But .. there is something to Jay is saying also. It’s a two-fold thing. And yes, lemon in water will do it. Also apple cider vinegar with a touch of baking soda in water.

jay July 19, 2013 at 3:44 am

As one who had candida in almost every part on my system including head, i just would love to help people out here. Anti-candida diet don’t work and you will loose some vital nutrients if you follow that. Candida is a ph disorder in the body. Call me crazy but i used normal salt to work on my 7 months candida and go it to work in 4 days. just a quarter tea spoon to one glass of water twice daily. Even in fish ponds, they do the same. You’ve got nothing to loose,right? Lemon also does the same. Just drop a segment lemon in your drinking water. Don’t squeeze, just let it sit in the glass and drink your water like they do in restaurants

bob November 11, 2013 at 7:23 am

Hi Jay,
I’m very tired of being sick and tired from what seems to be a candida problem. I just bought a book on the Candida Diet hoping that it would help. Now you and others are saying the diet does not help.
Is it as simple as putting salt or lemon in your water? This is getting frustrating, but I really have to get rid of this. Because my blood pressure has been up, my doctor put me on a diuretic which takes salt out. Possibly the lemon would help.

Steven Wright November 15, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Bob – focus on the hormones as they will be the key to defeating Candida forever.

Andre February 7, 2017 at 5:57 am

Its jist like saying focus on defeating candida,thats not an advice you are giving cause we all know that candida and hormones disbalance are connected.

betty April 30, 2013 at 4:15 pm

read about oil of oregano….the vulgre strain…. be carefull of dosage! I just started it
di-flucan has helped me when prescribed, but I am hopeful this will be a natural remedy.
I now have a compromised immune system from over and uneccessry anti-biotic treatments for lung and sinus and uti infections (yes, i smoke, have copd and am over 60) Doc put too much emphasis on dispensing drugs that might help, not enough diagnostic testing before prescribing and are insufficiently trained in fungal/yeast infection according to my experience and NIH article saying fungal/yeast infections way under-diagnosed. Add c-diff to the equation and all they tell you is to quit smoking!
i will try to remember to report back how the oil of oregano works. I am not a suppliment junkie, eate a balanced diet, but can’t seem to gain my weight back and suffer hospital ER stays from shortness of breath! Thet fix me up on steroids and anti-biotics, but I hope to get well enough to eliminate exaserbations altogether!

Emily Garcia February 23, 2013 at 4:48 pm

Hello and thanks for posting. Can you explain a little bit about the hormone imbalance you mention here, or direct me to a resource that does? I was unclear if this imbalance is a result of following a strict anti-candida diet, yeast overgrowth or yet another gut ailment. I have been strictly following an anti-yeast diet (the Body Ecology Diet) for about 2 months now. But after not much improvement I recently got tested for SIBO, and sure enough, I have this too. So now my doctor recommends a treatment of antibiotics to kill the SIBO followed by the SCD diet, but I’m wondering how hormones fit into this picture. Thanks again.