Garlic for Yeast Infection - Complete Guide
Garlic is well known all around the world for its wonderful medicinal qualities. In Ayurveda, the ancient Indian medical science, it is used for its various health benefits like in treating urinary tract disorders, diabetes, worm infections, asthma and chronic respiratory disorders, cough, common cold, fever, etc. It is believed to be an anti aging spice because it improves strength, immunity, and stimulates cell and tissue rejuvenation.
What is a Yeast Infection ?
Yeast Infections, also called Candidiasis, is caused by the overgrowth of a type of yeast called Candida. This yeast is normally found in small amounts in a healthy human body. The good bacterias present in our bodies keep a check on the levels of this yeast and stop them from overgrowing. But certain medications and diseases kill our good bacterias resulting in a wild reproduction of yeast which can colonize any area in our bodies - skin, genitals, throat, mouth, blood, intestines to name a few. One of the most common type of yeast infection is vaginal yeast infection.
Overgrowth of yeast can result from one or more of the following factors -
- Antibiotics and immunosuppressive drugs - These drugs kill our good bacterias also making it possible for the yeast to reproduce without any check.
- Oral Contraceptives - The hormones in birth control pills encourage yeast growth.
- Hormone Therapy
- Some illnesses like Diabetes
- Suppressed Immune Systems
- Pregnancy (due to hormonal changes and stress)
- Alcohol, Tobacco, drugs like cocaine, marijuana, etc.
- Reduced oxygen due to shallow breathing - Candida hides out in parts of your body where there is poor circulation and little oxygen.
How Garlic Cures Yeast Infections ?
Garlic produces a chemical called allicin which has powerful antifungal properties. Allicin helps fight bacteria, viruses, yeasts and helps in the prevention of many serious diseases. Garlic also improves body's immunity which in turn helps further in clearing up the yeast infection.
There are many scientific studies which establish garlic as an effective antifungal. For example, a 1988 study found that “the growth of Candida Albicans was found to be markedly inhibited by aqueous garlic extract”. Another 2005 study has shown that fresh garlic extract inhibits both the growth and function of Candida yeast.
Allicin is produced when garlic is chopped or crushed. This is why it’s important to cut, chop or crush a garlic clove to obtain the desired medicinal effects. These medicinal properties degrade substantially by cooking the garlic or within a few hours after the garlic is chopped / crushed.
Garlic for Yeast Infection - How to take ?
Regular intake of garlic is a very effective method for controlling yeast infection / candida. Garlic can be used in many different forms - eating fresh raw cloves, garlic tea, garlic pills, garlic oils, etc.
Eating Raw Garlic for Yeast Infection
- Chop or crush - Take a clove of fresh garlic and peel off its cover. Chop in small pieces or crush it. Wait for 5-10 minutes before consuming. This will maximise the formation of allicin, a powerful antifungal agent.
- Mix Oil (Optional) - Pour some edible oil or butter over it. This will counteract the burning stinginess of garlic and will make it easy on your mouth and stomach. You can skip this step if you abhor those extra calories.
- Swallow - Swallow it with water or any other drink of your choice.
Dosage - 2-3 cloves per day on an average. Start with a lower dose initially and increase if your body feels comfortable. Please do not take more than this dose as it might cause serious harms. Spread the dosage throughout the day so that garlic is there in your body consistently. Eg. take 1 clove at breakfast, another at lunch and another at dinner.
Garlic Tea to cure Yeast Infection
- Chop Garlic - Take a clove of fresh garlic, peel off its cover and chop in small pieces to release allicin. To maximise the production of allicin, let the chopped garlic sit for around 10 minutes.
- Mix it in Boiled Water - Boil a cup of water and take off the burner. Add garlic pieces to this boiled water.
- Add Lemon or Honey (Optional) - You can add lemon or honey for taste. They will decrease the garlic smell and make the tea taste fresh.
Dosage - 1 clove for one cup of tea. Take 2-3 cups per day on an average. Start with a lower dose initially and increase if your body feels comfortable. Please do not take more than this dose as it might cause serious harms. Spread the dosage throughout the day so that garlic is there in your body consistently. Eg. take 1 cup at breakfast, another at lunch and another at dinner.
Allicin is inactivated by cooking, but chopping and letting the garlic stand for at least 10 minutes before exposing to heat can make allicin more stable and resistant to heat.
Garlic Pills / Supplements for Yeast Infection
If you cannot stand the thought of eating raw garlic, you can make use of garlic capsules / supplements which can be found at your local drug store. Because you just need to pop them without any preparation, it will be a convenient way to maintain the regularity of intake.
Garlic capsules contain garlic powder, garlic oil or other extracts of the garlic plant. These are available for oral use.
Dosage - 600-900 mg per day on an average. Start with a lower dose initially and increase if your body feels comfortable. Spread the dosage throughout the day so that garlic is there in your body consistently. Eg. take 200 mg at breakfast, another 200 mg at lunch and another 200 mg at dinner.
Garlic for Vaginal Yeast Infection / Thrush
Garlic capsules are available as a vaginal suppository also. But usually women prefer to use a fresh garlic clove to treat vaginal yeast infection. In this treatment garlic is inserted inside the vagina and kept there for some hours.This treatment is done overnight to avoid the strong taste of garlic which will travel up to mouth from the vagina! Here are the details of the process
- Take one Garlic Clove - Take a clove of fresh garlic and peel off its cover.
- Sew a string - Take a needle with string and sew this string to the clove. Tie a knot at one end so that the string does not come out of the clove easily
- Insert into vagina - Insert this into the vagina at bedtime. If you wakeup in the night with stinginess and burning in vagina take out the clove.
- Remove in the morning - Pull the string to remove the garlic in the morning. Throw it away.
You should immediately see improvements in your symptoms. Depending on the severity of infection, you might have to continue this for 2-3 days.
* Lowest - A full whole clove is the lowest dose with minimum exposure of the inside of garlic.
* Medium - A clove with one or more small fingernail slits is a slightly higher dose than an intact clove. It releases more of the garlic chemicals into the vagina.
* Highest - A clove cut in half is the highest dose with maximum exposure. It might burn the vaginal skin so use this cautiously.
Always start from the lowest dose and then depending on results and severity of infection work your way up to a higher dose.
That's it. We wish you a healthy body and a healthy spirit!