are common yet stubborn skin conditions. Although any part of the skin
or mucous membranes can be affected, fungi tend to thrive in moist
environments with poor air circulation. Athlete's foot, jock itch, yeast
infections and thrush are among the most typical, and affect the
calloused areas of the foot, the groin, the vagina and the mouth.
Persistent itching, irritation and flaking of skin eruptions with raised
borders are typical. Flare-ups may produce tiny, moist, red blisters.
Sometimes the skin becomes softened and peels away easily, as is common
in athlete's foot. Afflicted nails can be particularly resistant to
healing if the fungus spreads underneath the nail, causing
softened white areas that raise the nailbed. Ringworm obvious by its
circular appearance on the skin, is another type of fungal infection
that appears as red, scaly areas that heal from the inside outward. It
is sometimes found on the scalp or bearded facial areas, causing hair
loss. If allowed to settle on the mucous membranes, these fungi can
cause a vaginal yeast infection, characterized by much itching and
irritation. Often, a creamy white discharge accompanies it. Thrush,
which occurs as a white patchy coating in the mouth and on the tongue,
is also caused by Candida fungi.
infections are highly contagious, but an underlying susceptibility must
exist for them to appear and take hold. Taking medications like
antibiotics, cortisone and oral contraceptives often precede fungal
infections because they change the normal acid balance of the skin's
surface and reduce its resistance to disease. Hormonal changes during
pregnancy also create a susceptibility.
are more likely to develop when the acid-alkali balance of the skin is
disturbed, for instance from cosmetics, creams and perfumed products.
Even bathing too frequently can be a problem, by repeatedly removing the
skin's natural protective oils. Neglect can also leave the skin more
defenseless. Synthetic clothing that traps dampness and hinders air
circulation promotes fungal growth. The elderly and all persons with low
immune system function are most susceptible to stubborn and repeated
fungal infections and systemic Candida infections.
Supplements and herbs
acidophilus supplements replenish the friendly intestinal bacteria
normally found in healthy bowels. These fight against fungal growth in
the bowels and throughout the body. Antibiotics, the contraceptive pill
and intestinal disturbances disrupt this natural balance. This
disruption often affects the absorption of
B vitamins, which in turn reduces resistance.
Zinc further increases resistance to infection.
Garlic and citrus
seed extract are both fungicides, supplements that destroy fungal
organisms. These should be taken internally to increase resistance and
reduce overall susceptibility. The citrus seed extract is also available
in spray form or diluted for external use.
If the immune system
needs some support, vitamins A, C and E should be added. Vitamins A and
E are also used to improve skin health.
Herbal remedies are
quite beneficial in eradicating the bacteria and fungi that cause
infections of the skin.
walnut and castor bean oil are natural antifungal remedies. Taken
internally they can kill most harmful bacteria and fungi without
Aloe vera gel is
not only cooling for irritated skin, but also has antiparasitic
Tie an absorbent
cotton cloth soaked in liquid whey concentrate around the affected
areas and leave on overnight. Continue until condition improves.
Millet and silica
supply an acid coating to skin to help it protect itself.
Tea tree oil has
antimicrobial and antifungal properties. Soak affected area with 5
drops of oil in water. Dry well and apply tea tree lotion or pure oil
or oil mixed with olive oil. Add 5-10 drops of tea tree oil to your
regular shampoo and use tea tree oil soap for washing.
More useful herbs
Cat's Claw, Echinacea, Figwort,
Pokeroot, Sangre De Crago, Thyme, Turmeric,
What else you can do
cream in a flax seed oil base twice daily.
Change hair and
toothbrushes regularly and do not share them with others.
Take care around
cats and dogs; they can transmit fungi.
improve low hydrochloric acid secretions may benefit weak nails.
How much to take
acidophilus complex, 3 capsules or 1 tsp.
Vitamin C, with
bioflavonoids, 1,000 mg
Vitamin E, with mixed tocopherols, 400 IU
Zinc, 50 mg, with
3 mg copper
Garlic, 3 capsules
three times daily
Vitamin A, 25,000
IU for six months, then decrease to 10,000 IU (avoid during pregnancy)
Vitamin B complex, 50 mg three times daily
extract, 3 capsules three times daily