Some science behind the scenes
Acid or alkali
The following was obtained from a website on how to get rid of fungal infections and it contains some sound common sense applicable to a number of other conditions that may be helpful.
To explain the natural pH balance which is normally in the human body; there’s a huge misconception about the acidic and alkaline balance in the body, and it all stems from the way our pH is normally tested. The way that's done is to test the blood, urine, or saliva, and all three of these are normally more alkalized. So many people assume that the entire body is and should be more alkalized than acidic. But this is not necessarily true.
The only way to get a true picture of the alkaline/acidic amounts in the human body is to look at one section at a time, because some parts of the body are naturally more acidic than others, and some more alkaline than others. So if you did a pH check on the individual parts of the body this is what you'd find:
The skin is naturally more acidic, and so is the vagina. In a healthy human, both the stomach and the digestive system have more acidic environment. However, the blood is naturally more alkaline as are some other parts of the body. So this is why it's so misleading to make a claim that the human body itself should have a certain pH balance, or that it should be more of one than the other because it really all depends on which part of the body you're talking about.
The reasons that a more acidic environment is natural and needed in certain areas of the body are because, for one, the skin needs to be more acidic because it has to protect itself from environmental factors such bacteria and toxins. The vagina also maintains an acidic environment for protection, and when the pH balance goes too high (too alkalized), yeast and bacterial infections can be the result.
The stomach and digestive system are normally highly acidic because the digestive acids are part of the process of digesting and utilizing the foods we eat as fuel, plus the acidic environment protects us from such things as fungal infections in the digestive system. When the digestive system becomes too alkaline because of eating too many alkalizing foods such as fruit, then yeast is sometimes allowed to grow and Candida is often the result. Of course, too many of the foods that the yeast live on such as sugar and simple carbohydrates can also cause a yeast overgrowth.
Below are some facts to think about as far as the human body and the acidic/alkaline balance that prove that fungi cannot survive an acidic environment but will thrive in an alkaline environment.
Research has proved that pathogens are destroyed in an acidic environment and thrive in an alkaline environment (I'm referring to the stomach and intestines which are normally more acidic). On a normal basis Candida may not be considered a pathogen, but Candida albicans certainly is.
"Candida: Any of the parasitic imperfect fungi that make up the genus Candida, which resemble yeasts and occur especially in the mouth, vagina, and intestinal tract. Though usually benign, Candida can become pathogenic, causing diseases including Candidiasis and thrush." Source, Online Encyclopedia
Also the reason that sweat and oils on the skin are able to create an acidic environment is so that harmful pathogens can be destroyed.
It’s recommended that anyone with a Candida infestation should take high doses of probiotics, and this usually turns out to be one of the main reasons the infestation is cured. It’s a well documented scientific fact that beneficial flora in the intestines create lactic acid which balances intestinal pH, they also produce short chain fatty acids as a by-product of fermentation in the intestinal tract which serve as food for the mucosal lining of the intestines and are indispensable to mucosal health and its functioning. In other words, the beneficial bacteria produce an acidic environment in our system. If producing acid isn’t a beneficial function for our system, why are the bacteria called ‘beneficial’?
Why does the human body naturally produce HCl (Hydrochloric acid) in the stomach?
Here's why: The hydrochloric acid kills most of the contaminating microorganisms in the stomach which in turn allows for easier digestion.
A statement made by another forum member, "A high alkaline diet will help to keep our bodies in the healthy, slightly alkaline state, rather than slightly acidic which is more common." If that's true, why does only a very small percentage of the population have Candida infestations if 'slightly acidic' is more common? Considering the theory of an alkaline environment being needed, it seems that the opposite would be the case.
Even though most people believe that Candida cannot be contracted through sexual intercourse, I’ve seen blogs and forums where woman have sworn that this is how they contracted either a yeast infection or Candida, and when you know the facts, it’s not that difficult to believe. The vagina normally has an acid pH making the normal environment for the vagina acidic, but semen has an alkaline pH, so having unprotected sexual intercourse three times or more within a 24 hour period will produce an alkaline environment in the vagina, and providing other aspects are suitable, such as the normal American diet consisting of high carbohydrate foods and sugar, this makes it ideal for a Candida overgrowth or yeast infection.
So if the vagina is predominately acidic in a healthy female, and Candida thrives in an acidic environment, why don't all women have yeast infections -- all the time?