A yeast free diet is a very important step in eliminating yeast infections, especially those that are recurring or systemic. This was a step I tried to skip when I was going through the process. What I found was that I was constantly treating symptoms but never really addressing the problem. By continuing to eat the wrong foods, I was simply “feeding” the yeast. You may think that the diet I’m going to outline is extreme – and it is. But an extreme yeast free diet is necessary in order to eradicate the yeast overgrowth and stop the symptoms from coming back.
I did my yeast free diet in 3 different steps. I think these will make sense for you, as well. The 3 steps are:
1. Stop eating ALL sugar and foods containing yeast
2. Reintroduction of some foods – check for any adverse reactions or signs of yeast infection
3. Maintain your yeast free lifestyle by only eating foods that don’t affect you
Yeast Free Diet Step 1 – Cut out ALL sugar and yeast
This includes (but is not limited to) cutting out the following:
- Refined sugar
- Most fruits (yes, they contain natural sugar)
- Fruit juices
- Coffee (yikes)
- Black Tea
- Yeast containing foods (check labels)
- Refined Carbohydrates such as pasta, rice
- Starchy Vegetables
- pumpkin, etc.
- Most canned and processed foods
- Fungus – mushrooms
- Fermented foods
- Smoked/Processed Meats
- hot dogs
- sausage, etc.
- Peanut Butter
- Dairy products -
- ice cream
- sour cream
- whipped cream
- cow cheeses
- Artificial sweeteners – use Stevia instead
- Vegetables pickled in white vinegar
This is not a complete list for a yeast free diet, but it will give you a good idea of the types of foods that actually encourage the overgrowth of yeast.
Stay away from fast food. There is nothing in the fast food restaurants that will help you here.
But What Can I Eat?
Obviously, your selection will be very limited for a few weeks but there are still plenty of tasty meal options for you. You should focus on meat (almost any type), fish, vegetables, legumes and some nuts. Slim list, huh? You’ll be surprised at how creative you get. For instance, if you have to go out to eat with friends or family, just try ordering a meat with vegetable on the side, no bread or starchy sides. You can even order a hamburger with no bun.
Buy whole foods that have not been processed. I found that shopping around the outside perimeter of the grocery store was the best place to find foods that I could eat. There you’ll find nutrient rich, whole, and organic foods. It may seem logical that canned vegetables are good alternatives, but you’d be surprised at how much yeast and sodium is in processed foods. If you have to have pre-packaged foods, try frozen vegetables instead.
Here are a list of foods that are allowed in this restrictive phase of your yeast free diet:
- Organic Meat (not processed)
- Whole grain oatmeal and pasta; corn, rice or spelt pasta.
- Legumes – soaked and/or sprouted
- Organic fresh herbs
- Most Vegetables
- Some Nuts and seeds (unprocessed)
- Brazil Nuts
- Sunflower Seeds
- Macadamia Nuts
- Olive Oil
As you get into your yeast free diet and start taking naturopathic or prescribed medications for killing the yeast, you’ll notice some things happening in your body. First of all you will get incredibly tired. Don’t panic, this is totally normal. I can remember how I felt and it wasn’t good but it will pass and when it does you will feel amazing.
You should start feeling much better during this first phase after about 2 weeks but don’t let that fool you into thinking you’ve got this beat. If you can just follow these directions, you won’t have to keep starting at this extreme phase.
Yeast Free Diet Step 2 – Reintroduction of Foods
After a few weeks of being on the ultra restrictive yeast free diet, you can start re-introducing things into your diet to test your reaction to them. Start slowly and only add one thing at a time. That way you’ll know exactly which foods trigger your yeast reactions. If you notice any of your symptoms coming back, stop eating that food. Wait a few days and see what happens. If you are not experiencing any symptoms, try introducing a different food. Rinse and repeat.
Here’s a list of some of the foods that will most likely not be a huge problem if you re-introduce them into your yeast free diet. Since everyone responds differently, you will need to experiment with these.
- Sweet Potatoes
- Cooked Carrots
- Some organic fruits:
While you are on your yeast free diet, you should drink plenty of water. Make sure the water is purified so if you don’t have some type of water purification system in your home, buy the bottled kind.
Yeast Free Diet Step 3 – Maintenance
After you’ve successfully used your yeast free diet to help get rid of your yeast problem and have started re-introducing foods into your diet, you should always be aware of any symptoms that might start creeping back. If you will pay close attention to your body, you will probably be able to pinpoint which foods are causing you problems. When you notice any changes, stop eating those foods immediately. If you simply start eating everything you did before you went on the yeast free diet, chances are really high that you’re going to relapse and have to start all over.
There’s no need in having to start from square one. And most people will be able to go back to a normal diet after several months of the yeast free diet. No one can predict how long it will take for your yeast overgrowth to be under control so you’ll have to monitor your progress. After all who knows your body better than you?
Drugs, Smoking and Alcohol Usage
Alcohol is certainly on the list of foods to be avoided on your yeast free diet. Taking drugs and smoking are two other habits that tend to negatively affect the body’s immune system. It is advisable to stop these while trying to get your yeast under control.
Since stress is one of the causes of yeast infections, you should try to reduce it. Regular exercise is a great way to reduce stress while you’re on your yeast free diet. Getting plenty of rest and relaxation will reduce stress and will help the body in healing itself.
Antibiotics and steroids (anabolic and corticosteroids) are two of the most common causes of yeast infections. Those who have been on either of these for an extended period of time are most susceptible. If you are taking these types of medications while trying to fight your yeast infection, you’re probably fighting a losing battle. Talk to your doctor to see if there are any alternatives for you.
Find a Homeopathic Remedy
I’m a huge fan of homeopathic medicine because the idea behind it is to give your body what it needs in order to function at its very best. After all, the body has the innate ability to heal itself. After we’ve abused it for years, that ability to heal itself has diminished, but we can get it back.
When I was trying to get rid of my yeast problem that I’d had for 10 years, I was on a very restrictive yeast free diet for quite a while. During that time I took several homeopathic remedies to help kill off the yeast. This combination was the only things that worked for me and I’ve spoken to many others who say the same thing – Kill the yeast and stop feeding it and do it at the same time.
One of the best homeopathic remedies that I highly recommend is Yeastrol. You can do some research but it gets rave reviews from both men and women. Check it out here: Yeastrol
One of the “side effects” of my yeast free diet was that I lost weight and actually stopped craving sugar. I didn’t eat it for years but not because I couldn’t, because I didn’t want it. These days I can safely have a dessert after dinner if I want and I don’t have any adverse reactions to it.
If you’d like to have a step by step guide to follow, in addition to tons more information, you can find a program online called “Yeast No More“. It has all the information you’ll ever need about how to set up and follow a yeast free diet and get rid of that yeast infection forever.