Constipation + bloat
I read that garlic pills could prevent yeast infections, and since I’ve had more than my fair share, I started taking the pills as a precaution. But after two months I still got an infection. What gives?
While garlic does contain antifungal compounds, supplements may not deliver enough of those active ingredients to vaginal tissues to stave off infection. In fact, women in an Australian study who took garlic tablets daily for two weeks experienced no greater reduction in vaginal candida yeast than those who took a placebo. So that said, I don’t recommend garlic pills for this particular problem.
The good news is that there are natural strategies proven to ward off yeast infections. First, I advise scaling back on sugar and refined carbohydrates, both of which fuel candida growth. I also recommend taking a daily probiotic containing yeast-fighting lactobacillus strains such as L. acidophilus and L. rhamnosus. A six-month study published in the journal Probiotics and Antimicrobial Proteins found this strategy prevented infection recurrence in 93% of women.
Finally, since research conducted at Sweden’s Karolinska Research Institute indicates that chronic stress can impair immunity to make repeated infections more likely, I suggest practicing diaphragmatic breathing, which calms the parasympathetic nervous system to lower stress and increase immunecell activity. To do: Place your hand on your belly just below your rib cage and inhale deeply through your nose for five seconds so your belly expands. Then exhale through your mouth for another five seconds and repeat the sequence for 15 minutes twice daily.
If you continue to develop yeast infections despite taking these steps, see your doctor to discuss other ways to keep yeast in check.