By Michael Biamonte, C.C.N.
Men can suffer from Candida over growth just as easily as women. The majority of Candida in the body resides in the intestinal tract and the colon. The vaginal area and urinary tract are minor sites of colonization. This is true of men and women alike. The average, healthy male and female have the same amounts of “normal” Candida growth in their respective bodies.
Men are equally susceptible to Candida overgrowth from antibiotics, stress, steroids, poor diet, drugs, alcohol, genetic predispositions, hydrochloric acid deficiency, and metal toxicity from mercury, copper, iron, etc., just like women. The difference is that men cannot get those annoying vaginal yeast infections that are the “red flag” and “hallmark” of yeast overgrowth in women. However, they can get penile yeast infections or experience many other symptoms that may never be associated with their Candida overgrowth!
It is very important to understand that men can have yeast overgrowth in their urinary systems and can implant yeast into a woman’s vaginal area during intercourse or into the mouth during oral sex. However, these same men may not be aware that anything else is wrong with them. It is possible for men to be carriers of yeast and not be aware of it. If a man is suspected of being a yeast carrier and he studies this article fully, he may recognize other symptoms of yeast overgrowth in his body and then make “the yeast connection”.
“A night out with the boys” can easily encourage Candida overgrowth. High carbohydrate foods like pasta, French fries, and bread can encourage Candida growth.
Beer can also cause Candida. The maltose level in beer can feed the pre-existing yeast colonies in the intestinal tract and make them spread. Beer can also aggravate nail fungus, jock itch, and skin rashes.
Effect of Hormones
While men are not estrogen dominated like women- and therefore are not prone to yeast problems due to spikes in estrogen that occur during a menstrual cycle- as men get older, their ratio of estrogen to testosterone rises. This causes estrogen to have a greater effect on a man as he gets older. This change subjects a man to yeast overgrowth and prostate difficulties. Yeast can and does invade the prostate causing infections that will not resolve with antibiotics. In fact, when treated with antibiotics, the infections typically return with a vengeance!
“Andropause” is that time in a man’s life where his testosterone levels begin to drop. This occurs at any time after the age of 40 in the U.S. and after the age of 50 in Europe . As testosterone and Dhea drop, estrogens tend to rise. The stress hormone, cortisol, also tends to rise as men and women age. Cortisol further blocks the effects of testosterone and Dhea and can cause many of the signs and symptoms of “aging”. This same hormone pattern encourages the overgrowth of Candida.
Many of the symptoms of Candida overgrowth in men are also symptoms of male menopause.
Candida Symptoms in Men
Here are some of the male yeast infection symptoms:
- Burning sensation when urinating
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Rash (along the shaft or on the tip of the penis)
- Burning sensation of the infected area
- Slight swelling
- Even a light discharge is possible
- Pain during ejaculation
- Burning after ejaculation or urinating
- Low sperm count or semen volume
- Gas, bloating, belching
- Poor digestion
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Loss of sex drive
- Erectile dysfunction- mild to severe
- Loss of muscle tone or mass
- Loss of strength
- Rectal itch
- Itching mouth or tongue
- White coating on tongue
- Thrush of the mouth
- Painful tongue
- Sore throat in the morning that improves during the day
- Prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
- Sudden aversion to meat
- Dry skin or skin rashes
- Craving for sweets and starch
- Depression or moodiness
- Insomnia despite exhaustion
- Flu- like symptoms
- Hip, groin, or lower back pain
- Sore feet or painful heels
- Allergies to yeast, vinegar, or alcohol
- Sleepiness after meals
- Intolerance to alcohol
- Easily affected by alcohol
- Hay fever
- Chronic sinus infections or congestion
The Male Yeast Infection
These infections are likely to occur at the end of the penis, under the foreskin. A male yeast infection in the penis is known as balanitis. Men with a foreskin are more prone to male yeast infections because the warmth and moisture underneath the skin encourages the growth of fungus.
A male yeast infection is not classified as a sexually transmitted infection because many men already have small amounts of the Candida fungus living on the penis. People who have never been sexually active can still suffer from yeast infections for the reasons stated earlier in this article. Whether or not male yeast infections cause problems depends on the situation. Candida likes warm and moist skin, and skin that is already slightly damaged. It also thrives on the high sugar in people with diabetes. So if the skin of your genitals is already irritated by perfumes in soaps or shower gels, if you are careless about drying yourself after washing, or if you have diabetes that is uncontrolled (perhaps because you are unaware you have diabetes), Candida is more likely to multiply. When it has multiplied, you may begin to notice symptoms as a male yeast infection develops.
Male Yeast Infection Symptoms:
Balanitis – The most common symptoms of a male penile yeast infection are:
Irritation and soreness of the head of the penis
Severe itching on the head of the penis
A white, clumpy discharge
Redness on the head of the penis
Small blisters on the head of the penis
Thrush – The most common symptoms of a male oral yeast infection are:
White spots in the mouth and on the tongue that do not wipe off and are painful especially when eating and drinking
Men who get yeast infections invariably believe it’s sexually transmitted. Although possible, most experts say that male yeast infections aren’t usually the result of unprotected sex and often develop in men who aren’t sexually active. However, if you have a regular female partner, it is quite likely that she will also be carrying Candida in her vagina.
So What Do I Do?
1. If you chronically get vaginal yeast infections after intercourse, begin using condoms to stop the flow of yeast from your man to you. That’s the first important step.
a. Have your man take the Candida questionnaire on our website at.
b. Get your man thoroughly tested for yeast overgrowth by a practitioner who is familiar with the subject. Make sure the stool, urine, and blood tests are done.
c. If he has high scores on the questionnaire but the tests come out negative, assume the tests missed it and seek treatment for him or better tests.
3. Have your man’s hormones tested to see if his hormones are imbalanced in the manner described here which could encourage yeast overgrowth.
4. If he has yeast overgrowth, get him treated fully for yeast overgrowth. Make sure the treatment will kill the yeast in his urinary tract, his intestinal tract, and systemically.
5. Make sure this program involves balancing the intestinal flora and healing the gut lining. The program should address the flora after the yeast is gone and not before it is gone. Friendly bacteria cannot grow in an intestine that is full of yeast.
Michael Biamonte holds a Doctorate of Nutripathy, and is a New York State certified Clinical Nutritionist. He is a professional member of the International and American Association of Clinical Nutritionists,The American College of Nutrition and is a member of the Scientific Advisory Board for the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board. He is listed in “The Directory of Distinguished Americans” for his research in Nutrition and Physiology.
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