The Candida And Oxalate Connection

A new connection that is being recognized with respect to chronic candida (and digestive imbalances, including inflammation and leaky gut) is the role of oxalates.

Oxalates are organic compounds naturally occurring in many foods. An accumulation of oxalic acid (oxalate) crystals in the kidneys can cause kidney stones (calcium-oxalate crystals). However, oxalate crystals can accumulate all over the body including the muscles and connective tissue cells, causing muscle aches and pain associated with fibromyalagia and other chronic pain conditions. These crystals can also accumulate in bones, blood vessels and even the brain. 
Candida and other forms of yeast/fungus are known sources of oxalates - another reason to stay on top of candida. The good bacteria in our digestive system normally helps to keep oxalates in check by breaking them down so they can be eliminated. A lack of normal digestive bacteria, as found with chronic candida, can lead to increased oxalate availability and absorption into the blood. Oxalates are also said to suppress the immune system and make an individual more susceptible to candida overgrowth. This creates a vicious cycle where you need to decrease candida and oxalates simultaneously in order to get a handle on the problem.

It is likely the tie to yeast infections involves a problem in the immune system and its ability to recognize yeast overgrowth and respond. Oxalate is known to impair carboxylase enzymes producing symptoms equivalent to biotin or biotinidase deficiency. The literature on those conditions is clear that when carbxylases are impaired, it is easy to get runaway problems with yeast. Perhaps this explains why some people on the low oxalate diet would lose this inhibition, resulting in a loss of their tendency towards chronic candidiasis.

William Shaw, director of the Great Plains Laboratory has been testing oxalates for years. Shaw reports that arabinose, (a marker used for yeast/fungal overgrowth on the organic acid test for years) is correlated with high amounts of oxalates. Arabinose is also an important fuel for oxalate production. Candida organisms have been discovered surrounding oxalate stones in the kidney.
To help with the elimination of oxalate's it is wise to go on a low oxalate diet, and to eliminate yeast overgrowth by following a candida diet and taking appropriate supplements.

Eating food high in oxalates is not the only way to get high oxalates systemically. Our bodies make oxalates on their own, especially when certain enzymes aren't balanced in their activity. Normally, once oxalates are in the gut, they may encounter particular species of bacteria which will digest them and turn them into something else that isn't so irritating. This system of microbial digestion may be why the body seems to purposefully route excess oxalate from the rest of the body to the gut. Unfortunately, the very microbes we need to do this digesting of oxalates for us are subject to being killed by antibiotics in common use. Even if there was no exposure to antibiotics, these microbes might not have colonized yet in very young children, for it does not tend to be in breastmilk, but must be picked up from the environment.

Lactobacillus acidophilus in the gut is an oxalate-eating species, but when oxalates are in excess, lactobacillus can be killed off. It will be interesting to learn whether this may explain why certain people have great difficulty colonizing lactobacillus acidophilus. 

Supplementing with probiotics can help with the elimination. The lactic acid in the probiotics binds with the oxalate's and helps with elimination. With the high number of artificial additives, preservatives and antibiotics etc in our diet, it can make it very hard for our gastrointestinal system to keep in balance. Probiotics are important in every person's diet regardless of what health problem they are experiencing.

High Oxalate Foods

Some high oxalate foods include:

Peanut butter
Chocolate...and many more.


There is only one oxalate cookbook on the market. It is called THE LOW OXALATE COOKBOOK 
It contains tons of recipes that make you feel less deprived when you first go on this diet. At the back of the book, there is also a comprehensive list of food items and their oxalate content. A great book to have if you suffer from oxalate issues and are making permanent eating changes.

Thanks for reading! What do you think?


  1. There is no published or known scientific documentation/confirmation that candida can create oxolate

    1. There's plenty of evidence that fungi in general produce oxalic acid.