Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
Is there a way to eliminate the excess yeast that causes yeast infectons?
A: It isn’t possible to eliminate Candida albicans permanently. No matter how successful a treatment may be, as soon as it is stopped, candida will return. It has to because it is a natural inhabitant of the body. However, sufficient intake of probiotics, or “friendly” bacteria, can help keep yeast re-growth within reasonable bounds. It is probably best to use a mixture of organisms, including acidophilus, bulgaricus, and bifidus.
Agents that may reduce the amount of yeast in the body include capryllic acid, grapefruit seed extract, betaine hydrochloride, peppermint oil, oregano oil, lavender oil, tea tree oil, barberry, red thyme, pau d’arco (lapacho, and garlic. However, the scientific foundation for the use of these treatments is weak, and the appropriate dosage of each has not been determined. Some of these treatments may be toxic if taken to excess or for prolonged periods. As always, consult with your physician/herbalist before undergoing any potentially dangerous treatments.