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Five Questions to Ask When Choosing A Probiotic for Candida Overgrowth

by Amanda Demsky
mold candida fungal infection

Choosing the most effective probiotic for Candida overgrowth can be difficult, but MoldBlogger is here to help!


Five Questions to Ask When Choosing a Probiotic for Candida Overgrowth


Question 1: Will the bacteria in the probiotic even reach my gut?


Your stomach has a resting pH level of about 4 or 5, which is considered acidic just below a neutral 7. When you eat proteins, however, that acidity increases and the level drops to a highly acidic 1 or 2. Some foods have the capacity to raise it to a 6, which is still acidic but, for the most part, your stomach will usually remain between a 1.5 and 3.5 throughout the day.


Because of this intense acidity, supplements, medication vitamins, antibiotics, or even analgesics break down quickly. This is precisely what you want most capsule and tablet form products to do, but a probiotic will be rendered absolutely useless for you if it is destroyed by the stomach’s acidity.


Supplements containing live bacteria—otherwise known as probiotics—need to deliver those microbes safely to the intestine. Once they reach the intestine, they can begin their work colonizing and promoting a healthy balance between other microbes throughout the digestive tract.


Despite claims, not many probiotic brands supply capsules that protect their ingredients all the way to the gut.


The problem with most probiotics is that they use traditional vegetable capsules, which deliver only 4% of their probiotic bacteria to the intestines. The other 96% that were exposed and died in your stomach represent the wasted hopes and nickels of a fungal overgrowth victim who needed to be better informed.


There’s a reason your doctor will tell you to double or even triple dose at times without prescribing a specific probiotic to you—it’s because they’re hoping that the more you take the first 7 or 14 days, the higher the chance of the live bacteria surviving the stomach.


If you’ve taken probiotics in the past and haven’t experienced notable positive changes, you may need to double your dose or invest in a product that incorporates controlled-release technology.


Controlled-release technology is not exactly the same as time-release capsules. Controlled-release capsules react with moisture in the mouth, throat, and stomach, causing them to suddenly form a protective layer around the live bacteria.


As of 2021, BIO-tract is the only controlled-release capsule made to transport probiotics for fungal infections. Probiotics that use BIO-tech technology deliver 60% of their live antifungal bacteria through the scorching stomach acid and safely into the welcoming arms of the intestines.


Here is where it gets even more impressive. Once it reaches the small intestine, a BIO-tech capsule will start to release their probiotic slowly throughout the day as they pass through the entirety of both the small and large intestines (which is roughly 15 feet long). This brings up one last helpful point: BIO-tech technology gives you the freedom to take your antifungal probiotic with or without food because its contents are not dumped immediately upon entering the small intestine.


So, you can keep double and triple and quadruple dosing traditional probiotics, or you can dig a little deeper in your search and find one that uses BIO-tech capsules and save yourself money and prolonged suffering from fungal overgrowth.


Question 2: How many CFUs of live bacteria does the probiotic contain and how many do I need?


Colony-forming units (CFUs) are a way of communicating the level of live and active bacteria in a single dose of probiotic. While it doesn’t reveal everything you might want to know, it does enable a fair comparison between the effectiveness of one probiotic over another. In short, the higher the CFU count, the more effective that probiotic will be against your fungal infection.

Keep in mind: The amount of CFUs on a brand’s label does not guarantee that is the precise number that will be delivered safely to the intestine. As mentioned prior, not all capsules are created equal.


If you’re concerned about taking a probiotic containing too many CFUs, don’t be. You cannot overdose on probiotics. The worst that could happen is a ostentatious experience involving your own body’s acoustics as you lose your last shred of dignity within the confines of your bathroom walls. Bloating, stomach cramps, and all that entails will be the order of the day, but it will be short-lived and nothing to write home about.


At the very least, you want a probiotic that contains 10 billion CFUs for an adult-sized body. Five billion CFUs are acceptable for most children.[1] If a probiotic’s label says nothing of its CFU count or the count is below the recommended amount for your body size, don’t even consider it. It is a complete waste of your time and money.


Question 3: Which species and strains of live bacteria would offer the most effective probiotic for Candida overgrowth?


Not all probiotic strains or even blends of probiotic strains are antifungal. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with a few of the best strains before making your purchase.


Here is a list of what bacteria strains to look for in a fungal overgrowth probiotic:


Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG/LS [2]; L. rhamnosus GR-1 [3]; L. rhamnosus HS111 [4]; L. rhamnosus 5.2 [5]
L. acidophilus LA02 [6]; L. acidophilus ATC 4356 [7]; L. acidophilus HS101 [8]
L. lactis [9]– L. helveticus [10]– L. casei GG [11][12]– L. paracasei 28.4 [13]– L. plantarum [14]; L. plantarum CMPG5300 [15]
L. reuteri RC-14 [16][17]– L. fermentum LF10 [18]; L. fermentum 20.4 [19]
Bifidobacterium breve [20]
B. bifidum [21][22]
B. animalis [23] and B. animalis subs. Lactis [24]
Saccharomyces cerevisae [25]


From the information currently available, this list consists of the major strains and species that would contribute to the most effective probiotic for candida overgrowth. As long as the formula includes several strains from the list mentioned above, such as L. acidophilus, L. rhamnosis GR-1, and L. reuteri RC-14—which are the most successful at preventing and treating various fungal and yeast infections—you will have success at regaining balance to your gut flora.


Question 4: Does it matter how many strains are included?


In short, yes. Your own gut microbiome has about 1000 different species of bacteria. Sending in just one probiotic species and strain is like bringing a knife to a gun fight.


Because the different microbes work in harmony together (except in the case of a severe imbalance), you’ll want to offer the gut a varied arsenal of bacteria.


As you search for a probiotic for Candida overgrowth, aim for one that blends about a dozen multispecies (different names of bacteria) and multistrains (different types of a bacteria under the same name, but followed by capital letters and/or numbers signifying which strain). The more species and strains, the merrier your microbiome will be.


Question 5: Are there any other ingredients that might damage my health further?


While many probiotics contain ineffective ingredients, they also include potentially harmful ingredients, such as additives—artificial fillers, colors, and binders (magnesium stearate, chromium, gelatin, silicon dioxide, etc.). Sweeteners and gums are often included, as well. Various sweeteners only offer a food source for pathogenic bacteria and yeast, while gums (gellen and xantham) are known to be gut irritants. These harmful ingredients are not necessary in the treatment of fungal infections and should be avoided.


Another concern is that some antifungal probiotic manufacturers use animal products (tissue/dairy), gluten, or nuts. If you have allergies, suffer from Celiac Disease, or you are vegan/vegetarian, you will want to read the labels very carefully.

Don’t be concerned about the inclusion of fructooligosaccharide (FOS). It is not a harmful filler. It is a prebiotic. Prebiotics offer a source of food for the live bacteria in the probiotic, which increases the likelihood of the probiotic bacteria surviving the journey through the digestive tract.


Conclusion


Let’s recap. Candida overgrowth occurs when the level of beneficial bacteria within your gut is disrupted by factors such as poor diet choices (high sugar, low vegetation diet) or antibiotics. This allows the Candida yeast the chance to proliferate beyond the control of the opposing bacteria. While healthful shifts in diet can alleviate some of the problems, a fungal overgrowth will not clear up without additional microbial support.


It is imperative that you select a probiotic that offers the correct species and strains of live bacteria in order to disrupt the overgrowth of yeast. The five points above—while they do offer suggestions and warnings that seem to significantly reduce your options—are merely meant as a guideline in your search. As mentioned prior, as long as you find a probiotic that contains multiple species and multiple strains from that list, you will see a benefit.


There is one probiotic on the market, however, that does meet all five points. Balance ONE is a unique probiotic for Candida overgrowth that passes with a solid green light. You can buy it here.

If you’ve tried Balance ONE or any of the other antifungal probiotics Moldblogger has reviewed in the past, such as MYCO-ZX, tell us your experience down below in the comments. Your personal testimony could be valuable to other victims of fungal infections.

For more information regarding mold, mold prevention, and mold solutions, please check out the rest of MoldBlogger.com.


Article by Amanda Demsky from the MoldBlogger team.


References


[1] S. J. Allen, E. G. Martinez, G. V. Gregorio, and L. F. Dans, “Probiotics for Treating Acute Infectious Diarrhoea,” Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (November 10, 2010): doi: doi/10.1002/14651858.CD003048.pub3.
[2] C. N. Allonsius et al., “Interplay Between Lactobacillus Rhamnosus GG and Candida and the Involvement of Exopolysaccharides,” Microbial Biotechnology 10, no 6 (November 2017), doi: 10.1111/1751-7915.12799.
[3] S. Y. Chew et al., “Probiotic Lactobacillus Rhamnosus GR-1 and Lactobacillus Reuteri RC-14 Exhibit Strong Antifungal Effects Against Vulvovaginal Candidiasis-causing Candid Glabrata Isolates,” Journal of Applied Microbiology 118, no. 5 (May 2015): 1180-1190, doi: 10.1111/jam.12772.
[4] K. H. Ishikawa et al., “A Multispecies Probiotic Reduces Oral Candida Colonization in Denture Wearers,” Journal of Prosthodontics 24, no. 3 (April 2015): 194-199, doi: 10.111/jopr.12198.
[5] R. D. Rossoni et al., “Antifungal Activity of Clinical Lactobacillus Strains Against Candida Albicans Biolfilms: Identification of Potential Probiotic Candidates to Prevent Oral Candidiasis,” Biofouling 34. No. 2 (February 2018): 212-225, doi: 10.1080/08927014.2018.1425402.
[6] F. Murina et al., “Can Lactobacillus Fermentum LF10 and Lactobacillus Acidophilus LA02 in a Slow-Release Vaginal Product Be Useful for Prevention of Recurrent Vulvovaginal Candidiasis?: A Clinical Study,” Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology 48, Supplement 1 (November – December 2014): S102-S105: doi: 10.1097/MCG.0000000000000225.
[7] S. F. G. Vilela et al., “Lactobacillus Acidophilus ATCC 4356 Inhibits Biolfilm Formation by C. Albicans and Attenuates the Experimental Candidiasis in Galleria Mellonella,” Virulence 6, no. 1 (2015): 29-39, doi: 10.4161/21505594.2014.981486.
[8] See [4].
[9] S. Kumar et al., “Evaluation of Efficacy of Probiotics in Prevention of Candida Colonization in a PICU-A Randomized Controlled Trial,” Critical Care Medicine 41, no. 2 (February 2013): 565-72, doi: 10.1097/CCM.0b013e31826a409c.
[10] K. Hatakka et al., “Probiotics Reduce the Prevalence of Oral Candida in the Elderly—A Randomized Controlled Trial,” Journal of Dental Research 86, no. 2 (February 2007): 125-130, doi: 10.1177/154405910708600204.
[11] R. D. Wagner et al., “Biotherapeutic Effects of Probiotic Bacteria on Candidiasis in Immunodeficient Mice,” Infection and Immunity 65, no. 10 (October 1997): 4165-41722, doi: 10.1128/iai.65.10.4165-4172.1997.
[12] A. L. D. Santos et al., “Influence of Probiotics on Candida Presence and IgA Anti-Candida in the Oral Cavity,” Brazilian Journal of Microbiology 40, no 4 (October 2009): 960-964, doi: 10.1590/S1517-838220090004000030.
[13] See [5].
[14] V. Mezzasalma et al., “Orally Administered Multispecies Probiotic Formulations to Prevent Uro-Genital Infections: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Pilot Study,” Archive of Gynecology and Obstetrics 295, no. 1 (January 2017): 163-172, doi: 10.1007/s00404-016-4235-2.
[15] See [2].
[16] See [3].
[17] G. A. Kohler, S. Assefa, and G. Reid, “probiotic Interference of Lactobacillus Rhamnosus GR-1 and Lactobacillus Reuteri RC-14 with the Opportunistic Fungal Pathogen Candida Albicans,” Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology v. 2012 (2012), doi: 10.1155/2012/636474.
[18] See [6].
[19] R. D. Rossoni et al., “Clinical Strains of Lactobacillus Reduce the Filamentation of Candida Albicans and Protect Galleria Mellonella Against Experimental Candidiasis,” Folia Microbiologica (Praha) 63, no. 3 (May 2018): 307-314, doi: 10.1007/s12223-017-0569-9.
[20] See [12].
[21] See [9].
[22] See [4].
[23] See [11].
[24] See [14].
[25] E. Gabrielli et al., “Saccharomyces Cerevisiae-Based Probiotic as Novel Anti-Fungal and Anti-Inflammatory Agent for Therapy of Vaginal Candidiasis,” Beneficial Microbes 9, no. 2(February 27, 2019): 219-230, doi: 10.3920/BM2017.0099.

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