Candida & Pau D'Arco

Pau D'Arco (Tabebuia, various species)

 Pau d’arco, indigenous to South America, is an herb that has long been used by natives of that area for medicinal purposes.  Pau d’arco contains two naphthoquinones, lapachol and beta-lapachone, that help give this herb its Candida killing power.  Often, the bark of these plants are utilized in decoctions or slaves for the express purpose of getting rid of a yeast infection.  If you can, find a salve containing pau d’arco and follow the directions on the package to treat your infection.  This herb has been proven to kill many different species of Candida, and thus should work for your unique situation!

Pau D’arco For Yeast Infection

Pau d'arco (Tabebuia, various species) is a medicinal herb that can be used to treat a yeast infection.  The plant is indigenous to South America and has been used medicinally to treat a wide array of health maladies. The plant has had reported medical uses since 1873.  Concerning the research on pau d’arco, many different species of Tabebuia have been studied for medicinal use.  Eliminating fungal infections is one use that pau d’arco has a proven track record in.  As you read further, you’ll find several different studies that have shown this herb to be a capable killer of many different Candida species.

The two primary reasons pau d’arco probably kills candida are lapachol and beta-lapachone.  These two chemicals are naphthoquinones.  In addition to killing yeast, these two chemicals also can kill various bacterial, viral, and parasitic pathogens.  Another chemical present in pau d’arco is xyloidine; a chemical with proven antifungal action.  

Dr. James Duke, in his book The Green Pharmacy, suggests that pau d’arco would be an excellent choice for an herbal yeast infection treatment.  Dr. Duke personally used a salve containing pau d’arco to clear up a yeast infection; and, says he would do so again if he had another infection.  Duke suggests that he would now use a commercial preparation of the herb and follow the package directions to cure a yeast infection.

Also note that pau d’arco is a name given to various species of Tabebuia.  The specific species of Tabebuia that you use may have a different effectiveness against Candida.  In addition to species, the part of the plant you use will also determine the phytochemical makeup of the pau d’arco remedy.  Commercial preparations of pau d’arco that are made to treat a yeast infection likely contain a good species and correct plant part.  Make sure you check with an herbalist if you are unsure your pau d’arco remedy will be effective at curing Candida.

Pau D’Arco Side Effects

In general, pau d’arco is safe for most people to use.  Side effects are uncommon, but occasionally using this herb may cause nausea, diarrhea, anemia, or dizziness.  If you take too much pau d’arco, high doses can cause uncontrolled bleeding and vomiting.

Pau D’Arco and Candida Research

One study, published in the Asian Journal of Chemistry [23.7 (2011): 3283], found Tabebuia rosea (also called pink poui, and rosy trumpet tree) leaves worked well at stopping Candida albicans.  The study used ethanol as a solvent for making an extract with the leaves.  The researchers used 100 mcg of Tabebuia rosea extract against several different species of fungi.  All the species of fungi tested with this extract, including Candida albicans, were inhibited.  Higher doses of this extract would yield more antifungal activity.

Another study, published in the Brazilian Journal of Biology [70.4 (2010): 1065-1068], was conducted on the effects of Pau D’Arco bark on various species of Candida.  The species of Pau D’Arco used in the study was Tabebuia avellanedae.  The bark of the Tabebuia avellanedae plant was used to create a methanol extraction.  The species of Candida used in the study were Candida albicans, C. dubliniensis, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, C. guilliermondii, C. utilis, C. krusei, C. lusitaniae, C. glabrata, and C. rugosa.  The study found that the methanol extract of pau d’arco worked exceptionally well at inhibiting the development of all the Candida species.  Only a fraction of a milligram of the extract was necessary to inhibit the Candida yeasts. Alongside is a chart showing the results of the study; please note that TA stands for Tabebuia avellanedae.

A study published in Mycoses [52.6 (2009): 511-517], revealed that pau d’arco (Tabebuia caraiba) stem bark was capable of inhibiting Candida albicans.  The dose that was used in the study which inhibited Candida albicans was 20 mg / mL.

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