Yeast Allergies Symptoms and Treatment

Background on yeast allergy

In the late 1970s and 1980s, a pair of doctors in the United States promoted the idea that an allergy to a common yeast type of fungus, Candida albicans, was behind a host of symptoms. They pinned a long list of symptoms on Candida, including:

  • abdominal bloating, constipation, and diarrhea
  • anxiety and depression
  • hives and psoriasis
  • impotence and infertility
  • menstrual problems
  • respiratory and ear problems
  • unexpected weight gain
  • feeling “bad all over”

According to doctors C. Orian Truss and William G. Crook, it was difficult to find any symptom that couldn’t be traced back to Candida albicans. They suggested that 1 out of 3 Americans suffered from a yeast allergy, and also coined “candida-related complex.” An entire supplement industry sprung up around “the yeast problem.”

However, the real problem wasn’t yeast — it was that the science behind the allergy turned out to be mostly bogus. State and medical boards began fining the doctors involved in promoting and treating Candida allergy, and they put these doctors’ licenses on probation for this as well.

Does that mean yeast allergies don’t exist? No, they do — they’re just not nearly as common as these doctors proposed.

How common are yeast allergies?

According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, over 50 million Americans have some type of allergy. Only a small portion of allergies are food allergies, and yeast allergy makes up only a tiny fraction of food allergies.

Sources of a yeast allergy may include:

  • most breads and some baked goods, such as muffins, biscuits, croissants, or cinnamon rolls
  • cereal products
  • alcohol, especially beer, wine, and ciders
  • premade stocks, stock cubes, and gravies
  • vinegar and foods containing vinegar, such as pickles or salad dressing
  • aged meats and olives
  • mushrooms
  • fermented foods such as ripe cheeses and sauerkraut
  • dried fruits
  • blackberries, grapes, strawberries, and blueberries
  • buttermilk, synthetic cream, and yogurt
  • soy sauce, miso, and tamarind
  • tofu
  • citric acid
  • anything that has been opened and stored for an extended period of time

When someone is having a negative reaction to yeast, they need to determine whether they have a yeast buildup, a yeast intolerance, or a yeast allergy.