I get yeast infections sometimes and it’s annoying. My friend told me that eating yogurt every day will help. Can eating yogurt really prevent yeast infections? Or get rid of them?
Yeast infections are kind of the worst, and so I understand that you want to do everything you can to stop them from happening. I think we’ve all heard that yogurt can help – I’ve even had doctors recommend eating more yogurt when starting a prescription medicine that is known to cause yeast infections – but is it really true? As someone who is invested in getting to the bottom of this (full disclosure: I absolutely cannot stand yeast infections), I had to ask a real doctor that I trust to get the answers we all need to hear.
So, I obviously got in touch with my friend, Dr. Sherry Ross from the site HelloFlo (a monthly period care package you need to check out). Dr. Ross said, “Some people believe that if you eat yogurt or insert yogurt into your vagina every day, it will decrease your risk of getting yeast infections. It sounds a bit crazy to some, but yogurt actually contains a healthy bacteria called Lactobacillus acidophilus, which does help in preventing and treating yeast infections.”
Does this mean that yogurt is the natural miracle cure we’ve all been waiting for? Sort of. Dr. Ross explains: “Normally the vagina has a number of healthy bacteria keeping it clean and free from yeast and other infections. If this delicate balance of bacteria is upset by antibiotics, douching, spermicides, sex toys, pregnancy, breastfeeding, menopause, illness, stress, and new sexual partners, yeast and other bacterial infections can occur.” Basically, when you eat yogurt that has the healthy bacteria your vag needs, it helps restore the balance and keep things healthy down there.
Now, before you run out and buy a whole bunch of yogurt to eat every day for the rest of your life, know that this doesn’t work with just anything. Dr. Ross says, “If you prefer a natural alternative to preventing and treating yeast infections, I suggest getting a plain yogurt that doesn’t have fruit at the bottom.” In other words, plain yogurt – not the sugary, fruity kind – is what’s going to help you out here.
Another important note: while yogurt can certainly help prevent yeast infections, it shouldn’t be used as the primary treatment for one. If you think you have a yeast infection, don’t just start eating all the plain yogurt you can find – go to a doctor for the correct medication. If left untreated, yeast infections can lead to other serious infections that you definitely don’t want to deal with.
Oh, and one more note. If you can’t stand yogurt or you don’t eat dairy, there’s another alternative! All drugstores should sell a natural pill called Acidophilus. This is the bacteria found in yogurt that keeps you healthy down there. The pill has a stronger dose of acidophilus, and there are vegetarian and dairy-free versions available. If you take one or two every day, it’s basically the equivalent of eating yogurt.