The Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Treatment of Yeast and Candida
Chief Complaint: yeast infections
Western Diagnosis: yeast infection/candida
Medical History: Patient complains of consistent vaginal yeast infections. She excercises regularly, eats a lot of sugar in her diet and is on the birth control pill. She is a first year lawyer and is under a great deal of pressure.
Questioning exam: Q:Are you on the birth control pill?
A: yes, for 5 years
Q: Do you have any digestive problems?
A: fullness in stomach, bloating
Q: How is your energy:
A: low, feel sluggish
Q: How often are you getting yeast infections?
A: once a month
Q: have you seen your dr. about this matter? have you had a recent hiv test?
A: yes and yes…I am healthy and negative for HIV
Q: do you have vaginal discharge? what color?
A: yes, white
Q: How is your appetite?
Q: How much water do you drink?
A: not much…drinks a lot of soda
Pulse exam: Pulse:
right side: slippery, weak
left side: slightly bowstring
Tongue exam: pale color and greasy, white coating
patient is slightly overweight. pale face
OM Diagnosis: Spleen qi deficiency with dampness
Patient is suffering from a spleen qi deficiency which is leading to a decrease in the amount of transformation/transportation of fluids in the body. This is causing a dampness to occur. This dampness is affecting the middle and lower body giving her abdominal fullness, lack of appetite and yeast infections (with white vaginal discharge)
Treatment Principle: Expel dampness, tonify spleen qi
Point Prescription: ST 40
moxa on Kid 7 (great for yeast infections!)
Herbal Formula: Er Chen Tang (pill form): 8 pills 3 X day
for one month then, si jun zi tang pills 8 3X day for one month
Lifestyle Prescription: I gave her the following information:
Controlling Yeast Infections with Diet
In Chinese medicine we say the Spleen is in charge of digestion & transforming/transporting fluids throughout the body. If the spleen becomes deficient (common when the body is under stress), fluids are not transported and dampness in the body occurs. Symptoms of dampness include a general feeling of heaviness in the body, fatigue, phlegm, nasal congestion, yeast infections and even weight gain. There are many foods that make it hard for the spleen to function properly (especially when your body is prone to dampness). The following are some basic foods to avoid/add to your diet:
Decrease consumption of cold beverages/raw food:
The yeast and “dampness” creating foods are those which are cold in temperature, too sweet or salty, mucus-producing, and stale/rancid. Too much raw food can also affect your digestion leading to dampness.
Decrease consumption of carbohydrates:
Foods rich in carbohydrates must be used moderately since they are usually somewhat mucus- and acid-forming, and therefore any small excess can contribute to yeast conditions.
Decrease consumption of sweeteners/fruits:
All refined and concentrated sweeteners (e.g., sugar molasses) and fruits help propagate yeast in the body and should be avoided.
Avoid milk/dairy products:
Most milk products, eggs and red meats can also promote yeast and are not recommended. (fish and chicken are okay)
Increase intake of Garlic:
Garlic has exceptional anti-viral/fungal properties and does not damage the healthful intestinal flora. (you can eat a clove of garlic twice a day before meals or get garlic pills at the health food store)
Increase amounts of cooked/warm foods:
I highly recommend you eat mostly cooked foods. Lots of soups that are warm and even a cup of hot water (with or without tea) before bed at night to help your digestion (spleen/stomach).
Increase amounts of chlorophyll:
Chlorophyll promotes the growth of beneficial intestinal flora. Parsley, kale, collard, watercress, romaine lettuce, cabbage and micro-algae, wheat grass all contain significant amounts of chlorophyll. (Go to the juice bar and get lots of fresh wheat grass!)
These are simple things to take into account with your diet to avoid and decrease the amount of yeast infections in your body. In Chinese Medicine, we believe that everything should be done in moderation, so donзІТt feel that you have to eliminate any foods all together. You should just watch the amount of damp-causing agents that you take into your body AND increase the amount of Spleen-aiding agents.
Results: Results were great! Her yeast infections stopped once on the er chen tang. And her stomach discomforts are relieved and appetite is back! Sometimes when she feels she is getting another yeast infection, she comes in for a preventative acupuncture treatment.
Synopsis: Since her yeast infection consisted of white discharge, I didn’t have to clear any heat in her system. However, this is an important fact to consider. Cleansing her dampness with acupuncture and herbs AND making some very important dietary changes can make a huge difference in this scenario.