Candida Albicans is a type of yeast that naturally lives in the human body. When the body is healthy and balanced, it is not a problem and performs important functions in the digestive system. However when something upsets the natural balance in the body, Candida can become out of control and begin to cause many types of health problems. This yeast is normally found only in the intestinal tract, genitals, mouth, and throat but when it gets out of control it can actually burrow through the intestinal walls and enter the blood stream. In this way, it can attack any organ in the body. As it courses through the blood it also emits up to 70 different toxins causing various symptoms.
Goldenseal was touted as a cure for almost any ailment in the 1800s, promoted by an enigmatic doctor named Samuel Thompson who prescribed it for a variety of illnesses. It comes from a bright yellow root, hence the name Goldenseal. Goldenseal was originally used for skin disorders, digestive complaints and even as a cancer remedy. In more modern times, Goldenseal has gained in popularity and has been used for wound healing and many types of infection, as well as an antifungal agent for ailments like Candida overgrowth.
How should you take Goldenseal for candida?
The active ingredient in goldenseal is berberine, an alkaloid that is also found in other plants such as barberry and Oregon grape. According to a 2011 paper (see here) “Berberine inhibited the growth of various Candida species”. Additionally, studies have shown Berberine to help regulate blood sugar levels, preventing the spikes that can feed a Candida overgrowth.
Berberine helps with Candida infestations in another way too. It activates the white blood cells in your body, thereby strengthening your immune system and enhancing your body’s ability to fight off infections by itself.
How does Goldenseal for Candida work?
Goldenseal is generally sold either as a liquid extract of the goldenseal root, or as capsules made from goldenseal root powder. If you buy the liquid form, you will need to take a few drops in water, 1-3 times a day, and the bottle will often come with a dropper to measure the exact amount. The capsules are also taken several times a day, and dosage will depend on the strength of the preparation. Be sure to follow the instructions on the bottle.
Also be careful not to take too much Goldenseal, as large quantities can irritate the liver. It’s better to start with a small dose (below the manufacturer’s recommended amount), then slowly increase it. You can take goldenseal in combination with other natural antifungal remedies, to prevent the Candida yeast from adapting to a single antifungal.
Those who are pregnant or breastfeeding should not take goldenseal. A major ingredient, Berberine, can caused uterine contractions and may cause problems with the pregnancy. Those with kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, or other serious conditions should consult with their doctor first.