Dr. Nashat Latib

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Yeast Overgrowth and Fertility: The Hidden Threat

By Dr. Nashat Latib • June 11, 2024

How Candida Can Impact Your Reproductive Health

On your quest to improve your odds of conceiving, you may have already discovered that an overgrowth of candida can negatively affect fertility. So, how can you identify if this is a problem—and then reverse it?

What is Candida?

Candida is a type of yeast that can be found in the mouth, throat, gut, or reproductive tract. Although it is a normal part of the human microbiome, when the body’s immune system is weakened or when the natural balance of healthy microbes is otherwise disrupted, it can sometimes “bloom” or overgrow, causing infections that may negatively impact reproductive health by decreasing your “optimal fertility zone.”

The “optimal fertility zone” refers to a range of lifestyle and environmental factors that create the most favorable conditions for conception and a healthy pregnancy. These factors include maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet, managing stress, avoiding harmful substances, and minimizing exposure to environmental toxins, all of which can impact the reproductive health of both females and males.

How Candida Can Decrease Fertility in Women and Men

If you have ever had a yeast infection, then you know just how annoyingly itchy and uncomfortable they are! Not only does this experience decrease your sexual desires and willingness to participate with your partner, but the infectious agents actually wreak havoc on your reproductive systems, making it harder for you to get pregnant naturally.


In females, signs and symptoms of a yeast infection include intense itching, burning, and irritation of the vagina and vulva, along with a thick, white, cottage cheese-like discharge. Males with yeast infections may experience a red, itchy rash on the penis, as well as burning and discomfort during urination or intercourse.

In women, chronic or recurrent yeast infections can lead to fertility-harming inflammation and changes in the vaginal environment, disrupting the delicate balance of the vaginal microbiome by altering the pH, making the environment potentially less hospitable for sperm survival. Candida infections left untreated can also sometimes cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), leading to scarring of the fallopian tubes. 

In men, candida overgrowth can cause inflammation of sexual organs, leading to discomfort, itching, and redness that can potentially affect sexual function. In rare cases, candida may cause prostatitis, an inflammation of the prostate gland, leading to decreased sperm quality and motility or scarring of the epididymis (the tube that stores and carries sperm), potentially obstructing sperm transport.

It’s important to note that when one partner has a candida infection, the other is likely to get it as well. That’s because yeast infections can be passed between partners. This is yet another reason why if you are on a quest to get pregnant, eliminating a candida infection in both partners is critical—otherwise, you are just passing it back and forth, increasing your inability to conceive.

Diet and Lifestyle Tips to Avoid Candida

The main supply of candida in the body is located in the gastrointestinal tract, where infections can occur due to dysbiosis, immune dysfunction, and damage to the muco-intestinal barrier.

Common risk factors that can increase the risk of oral, digestive, and/or genital candida overgrowth include antibiotic use, high-sugar, high-carb diets, diabetes, or pregnancy. Certain medications also lead to candida infection.

Maintaining a healthy immune system by eating a healthy anti-inflammatory diet, practicing good hygiene, and avoiding excessive antibiotic use can help prevent candida overgrowth and related infections.

Here are some other recommended lifestyle and hygiene measures that can help you avoid developing candida or heal more quickly once you’ve been diagnosed:

  • Keep the affected area clean and dry
  • Wear loose, breathable clothing
  • Avoid using scented products or douches in the genital area
  • Reduce sugar and refined carbohydrate intake, as these foods can feed candida growth
  • Use natural antifungal supplements like caprylic acid, oregano oil, and berberine to help fight candida overgrowth
  • Consume prebiotic-rich foods, such as onions, garlic, and asparagus, which feed beneficial gut bacteria
  • Incorporate probiotic-rich foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi to help restore beneficial gut bacteria
  • Eat foods with natural antifungal properties, such as coconut oil and ginger
  • Practice good oral hygiene
  • Prioritize getting enough quality sleep, as poor sleep can impair immune function and make you more susceptible to infections
  • Practice stress-reducing techniques like meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga, as chronic stress can weaken the immune system and contribute to candida overgrowth
  • Treat your partner at the same time to prevent reinfecting each other

Candida Prevention is Key to Optimal Fertility

In recent case studies, a strong correlation has been made between a healthy microbiome and fertility. If candida infections are recurrent or left untreated (either in the reproductive tract or in the gut), they may eventually contribute to fertility issues. 

Once it’s blooming where it shouldn’t be, candida employs various insidious mechanisms to protect itself from antifungal drugs and evade the host’s immune response – so the best treatment is prevention! 

Prompt treatment of candida infections and maintaining a healthy balance of microbes in the genital tract can help minimize the potential impact on fertility.

While Candida can potentially impact fertility for both women and men, it is not the most common cause of infertility. That’s the good news! Other factors – such as hormonal imbalances, structural abnormalities, and genetic issues – play a more significant role.


Candida overgrowth can significantly impact women’s and men’s reproductive health and fertility. Risk factors include antibiotic use, high-sugar diets, and weakened immune systems. In women, it can cause recurrent yeast infections and disrupt the vaginal microbiome. In men, it can lead to genital yeast infections and potentially impact sperm quality. Treatment options depend on the severity and location of the infection, often involving antifungal medications and lifestyle changes. If you suspect candida is affecting your reproductive health, consult your fertility specialist for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan. 

Don’t accept a diagnosis of “unexplained infertility – there is always a reason!

In our practice, Dr. Christina and I have achieved an over 80% success rate in helping couples struggling with infertility finally get pregnant. If you would like to learn more about the methods we use to achieve that 80% success rate, watch our free, on-demand masterclass here and take the action step to apply to work with us. We’ve helped countless couples like you succeed in optimizing their fertility, even when they are starting a family a little later in life.

If you would like our support to walk through the process step by step, we are here for you! Watch our free, on-demand masterclass here and take the action step to apply to work with us. We’ve helped countless couples like you succeed in optimizing their fertility, even when they are starting a family a little later in life.


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