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Candida: Risk Factors, Foods & Supplements

Food As Medicine with Dr. Anh

Release Date: 02/22/2016

Welcome! My guest today is Ricki Heller, who is an RHN, Ph. D., a holistic nutritionist, and special diet coach. She is also a whole foods chef and writer who shares sugar-free, gluten-free, and allergy-friendly recipes on her blog. Ricki is the author of two cookbooks and Living Candida Free. She is the associate editor of Simply Gluten Free magazine, and has written for various publications. Ricki uses her speaking engagements at live events, along with her other platforms, to teach people how to thrive on a Candida-free diet!

Ricki shares the following about her story and her work:

  • Ricki explains that Candida is a necessary organism in the human digestive tract, but causes problems when it grows out of control, feeding exclusively on SUGAR!
  • Ricki is a self-described “case study” for Candida overgrowth, growing up with a sugar addiction that progressed to IBS, recurring yeast and sinus infections, and a regular dependence on antibiotic medications.
  • Ricki cleaned up her diet, went to nutrition school, and felt great for 10 years before returning to old eating habits in 2008.
  • When Ricki started her blog, she was amazed to hear from many people who suffered from the same health issues that she had.
  • Ricki describes her diet today as “plant-based,” even though she truly has always preferred a vegetarian diet.
  • Ricki explains the discrepancy between traditional medicine’s treatment of Candidiasis and holistic nutrition’s treatment of Candida overgrowth.
  • Candida-related complex issues are usually the effect of something else in the diet.
  • Candida symptoms include: vaginal yeast infections, rashes, itchy spots, athlete’s foot, oral thrush, toenail fungus, digestive distress, overwhelming fatigue, unnatural sugar cravings, and “foggy” brain.
  • The main health issues related to Candida are leaky gut and its ramifications and the immune/allergic/inflammatory response.
  • Causes of Candida include: antibiotic use, sugary/processed/refined foods, Rx or OTC medications, birth control pills, and stress.
  • Severe Candida cases may need prescriptions, but there are several natural anti-fungal methods of treatment: change your diet, use coconut oil, grapefruit seed extract, pau d’arco tea, oil of oregano, and colloidal silver. Ricki explains the use of these items in detail.
  • Since there are many strains of Candida that affect people differently, it’s important to rotate the use of the natural anti-fungals to minimize resistance and to take probiotics to replenish the digestive tract. Ricki has certain brands of probiotics that she recommends.
  • Foods to avoid: sugar, sweeteners, fruits, processed foods, highly acidic foods, and dairy.
  • Foods that kill Candida: coconut products, garlic, green juices (from vegetables only), salads of dark leafy greens, cabbage, nuts and seeds. Ricki allows unlimited vegetables, some legumes, and red-skinned potatoes on her plan.
  • “If you NEVER want to deal with Candida again, then you can NEVER eat sugar again!” Ricki has recipes for baked goods using low-glycemic sweeteners, Stevia, coconut sugar, and xylitol.
  • Ricki explains the benefits of her private members support group, The Sweet Life.
  • Her tips for others undergoing dietary changes to combat Candida include: NO is easier than maybe. Don’t negotiate boundaries, but stick to them when confronted with temptation. Eating to combat Candida is a give-and-take with friends and family, especially in social situations. Let them know where you stand and why.

How to reach Ricki and more:


Email Ricki: ricki@rickiheller.com

Now it’s your turn!


WHAT changes have you made in your diet? 

HOW have those changes affected your health? 

WHAT has been your biggest challenge while implementing a healthy lifestyle? 

WHO do you want to hear from?


Let me know in the comments below and I will try my best to get them on the show!  I want to answer your burning questions and for YOU to add your thoughts to the conversation.  So go ahead and leave a comment now.  


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Thanks so much for stopping by and until next time, remember to eat consciously, because the world needs a healthy and vibrant you!


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  • Summary of Pearls shared on the show
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