|English: A basket of garlic (allium sativum) offered for sale at the farmers' market in Rochester, Minnesota (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
If you are expecting a baby girl and you are considering "Candida" to be lovely name, I advise you to think again and perhaps come up with some variation instead unless you want your child to go through life getting made fun of for having the name of a fungus.
Unfortunately for me, I became quite familiar with Candida during a brief brush with Oral Thrush. I'll try to explain things to you in a way that will cause you not to lose your lunch. On your tongue there is a whole ecosystem of microorganisms. One of these is Candida at it is harmless in itself because its population is regulated by the other organisms living in the ecosystem. However, every so often a situation arises where the population of Candida somehow does not get regulated properly and the growth gets out of control.
Eventually what happens is the fungi spreads to sides of your mouth, throat making painful to swallow or eat or drink anything. What I believe happened with me is that I was coming to a time where i had confront some deeply painful events that happened to me in Canada. To make a long story short my stress went up, my immunity went down and all of a sudden Oral Thrush appeared out of nowhere like the Joker in Gotham City.
All I can say is that in times like these there is nothing like having a roommate who happens to be a doctor. She definitely agreed that it is a fungus and if I wanted there is a hospital nearby where I could show my passport and get it looked at. But the good ole hippie lovin girl from the west coast in me wanted to see if there was a more natural method that I could try first. The last thing I wanted was to sit in a waiting room with my passport and having to explain in another language my condition when I already can't eat, drink, or swallow.
After searching home remedies, I discovered that raw garlic is one of the most powerful enemies to fungi. I had already been eating a few pieces of raw garlic a day for almost a month when this happened. So I told my roommate that I was gonna try a method more natural first and if that didn't fly I would head to the hospital. Normally I chew on raw garlic and swallow it but this time the point was to suck as much of the juice and spread it around my mouth.
The first clove I broke up with my teeth and then put it in my mouth and tried to suck out the juices. Like wasabi it burned and I had to remove it from my mouth after a short period. I did the same with a 2nd piece, I put it in my mouth but couldn't swallow. I simply tried to get as much juice as possible. Then the third time later that day I put another piece of garlic in my mouth but this time I found that I could swallow the pieces of garlic after sucking on the juices abit.
It was then that I realized that the juice from the raw garlic was destroying the bacteria. By the end of the day I was eating again and after going through 8 pieces of garlic in the next few days, after 4 or 5 days the infection was almost completely destroyed.
When you are in a 3rd world country, quick thinking is important and as it turns out, taking raw garlic was one of the best decisions I could have made. I still eat 1 or 2 cloves on a daily basis. A great survival technique for life abroad is to constantly do your research. If creating strange health rituals are gonna make all the difference then it is so worth it. A tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil a day, chewing cloves of garlic, eating quails eggs.
Definitely spend time doing research. I am on the internet all the time reading the health benefits of various foods and ingredients. While living abroad, it pays to be a geek with too much information in your head like the people on the Big Bang Theory :)