Nail fungal infections, also known as onychomycosis, are a common and often frustrating condition that affects millions of people. Understanding the root causes of these infections is essential for prevention and effective treatment. In this blog post, we will look into the reasons behind nail fungal infections, the role of Candida, and the foods or lifestyle choices that may contribute to their development.
Causes of Nail Fungal Infections
- Fungi in the Environment: Fungi are everywhere in our environment, and some strains specifically target the nails. Dermatophytes, such as Trichophyton and Epidermophyton, are the primary culprits responsible for nail fungal infections. These fungi thrive in warm, moist environments like public pools, showers, and gyms, making frequent exposure to these places a risk factor.
- Damaged Nail Barrier: Nails act as a protective barrier against infections. Any injury or damage to the nails, such as cuts, cracks, or nail separation from the nail bed, creates an entry point for fungi. Activities that involve repeated trauma to the nails, like running or contact sports, can increase the risk of infection. Please always make sure to check that your nail technician sterilises their equipment before and after you have a mani or pedicure.
- Weakened Immune System: A compromised immune system can be less effective in fighting off fungal infections, allowing fungi to establish and grow in the nails. Conditions like diabetes, HIV, or undergoing immunosuppressive treatments can increase susceptibility.
The Candida Connection
Candida is a type of yeast that naturally resides in our bodies, primarily in the digestive tract and on the skin. Under normal circumstances, it doesn’t cause harm. However, when the balance of microorganisms in our body is disrupted, Candida can overgrow, leading to an infection called candidiasis.
In relation to nail fungal infections, Candida can also play a role. In some cases, Candida species can invade the nails and cause onychomycosis, usually seen in individuals who have a weakened immune system, are prone to candidiasis, or have experienced Candida infections in other areas of the body.
Foods to Avoid to Prevent Fungal Infections
While diet alone may not be the primary cause of nail fungal infections, certain foods can encourage fungal growth and contribute to an environment conducive to infection. To reduce the risk of developing or exacerbating nail fungal infections, consider limiting or avoiding the following:
- Sugar and Refined Carbohydrates: Fungi, including Candida, thrive on sugar. High sugar intake can disrupt the balance of gut microorganisms, promoting Candida overgrowth. Limit sugary snacks, desserts, and drinks, as well as refined carbohydrates like white bread and pasta.
- Yeast-containing Foods: Some foods contain yeast or promote yeast growth, which could potentially contribute to fungal infections. These include bread, pastries, beer, and other fermented products.
- High-Fat Foods: Diets high in unhealthy fats can weaken the immune system and create an environment where fungi can flourish. Reduce consumption of fried foods, processed meats, and high-fat dairy products.
- Dairy and Gluten: Some individuals may be sensitive to dairy or gluten, leading to inflammation and compromising the immune system’s ability to fight infections. Pay attention to your body’s response to these foods and consider alternatives if needed.
Beautiful Nails are Still Possible
Nail fungal infections are a common issue that can be caused by various factors, including exposure to fungi in the environment, nail trauma, and weakened immunity. Candida, a type of yeast, can also play a role in onychomycosis development, particularly in individuals with compromised immune systems. By being mindful of our diet and lifestyle choices, we can reduce the risk of fungal infections and maintain healthy nails. A good probiotic taken daily will create an environment within the body that the fungus cannot grow in. Remember to consult a healthcare professional for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan if you suspect you have a nail fungal infection.
Nail Fix Anti Fungal Treatment has been used in South Africa for many years to assist in eliminating nail fungal infections. The all-natural products include Wormwood, Clove, Thuja, Guajava, Blood Root, Chaparral, Propolis, Tansy and Poke Root combined with Essential Oils of Clove, Lemon, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree. This potent combination of natural products provides an anti-microbial, anti-viral and anti-fungal treatment to safely eradicate nail fungal symptoms plus it stops cracking and peeling of the nails and promotes healthy nail growth.
Nail Fix is available at Takealot, Dis-chem, Clicks and most leading pharmacies and health shops.