Yeasts are single cell fungi living organisms that are neither animal nor vegetable. They live on the surfaces of all living things, including fruits, vegetables, grains, and your body. They're a part of the "microflora" which contribute in various ways to the health of their host. Yeast itself is nutritious, and small amounts of yeast give bread its light taste.


One family of yeasts, Candida albicans, normally lives on the warm inner creases of the digestive tract, vagina and skin. Healthy women have a natural community of Candida albicans organisms in all three locations. When your immune system is healthy, "friendly" intestinal bacteria like Bifidobacteria bifidum and Lactobaccillus acidophilus create a symbiotic system with the yeast that keeps everything in balance.

But when this system gets out of balance – through use of antibiotics, birth control pills or improper diet – candida cells develop rapidly, overwhelm the friendly bacteria, and create potentially serious results. Imbalance of intestinal flora is sometimes referred to as dysbiosis. The effects range from vaginitis to irritable bowel syndrome, food allergies, migraines, asthma and a host of other chronic health conditions. See Yeast-Fighting Program for ideas to help you determine whether dysbiosis plays a role in your health and try our suggestions for reviving your body's natural balance.