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Fungal infections take many forms, from candida to athletes foot to a yeast infection. Fungi — primitive organisms — are everywhere in our natural environment such as”in air, in soil, on plants, and in water.” Fungi are familiar to us as well, such as mold, mildew, and even mushrooms are a form of fungi.

So, why aren’t we all sick all the time? Turns out only “half of all types of fungi are harmful,” while the other half is perfectly benign.

While topical and oral antifungal medications may be necessary for some, the food you eat may also help prevent or stymie fungal infections. Many plant-based foods have fungal fighting properties such as anti-microbial, anti-parasitic, and anti-bacterial agents. Some foods that are relatively high in fungal fighting properties include coconut oil, garlic, ginger, onion, pumpkin seeds, apple cider vinegar, cloves, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Here are 15 recipes from the Food Monster App that incorporate these all natural fungus-fighting foods!

1. Coconut Oil Crispy Rice

Source: Coconut Oil Crispy Rice

Coconut oil and coconut products are some of the most popular in the plant-based world. Turns out, all that coconut you’ve been consuming may also have been fighting off fungal infections as well. Research has shown that coconut oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties making it effective at warding off fungal infections such as candida and yeast infections. This Coconut Oil Crispy Rice by Katzie Guy-Hamilton uses three full tablespoons of fungus fighting coconut oil.

2. Apple Cider Muffins

Source: Apple Cider Muffins

Apple cider vinegar — made from aged, crushed, and fermented apples — is not only a staple in the kitchen, great for all sorts of plant-based cuisines but, due to the colonies of good bacteria, it can also be used as a body and household cleanser. Apple cider vinegar is an effective fungus killer, especially when it comes to your skin and feet, yet can also work from the inside out. These Apple Cider Muffins by Danie Feld call for a third of a cup of apple cider vinegar, along with fungus fighting cinnamon. Substitute coconut oil for the canola oil and you’ve got a powerful fungus fighting treat!

3. Blistered Shishitos With Garlic and Ginger

Source: Blistered Shishitos With Garlic and Ginger

Both garlic and ginger are famous for their antibacterial and antifungal properties. These plant-based foods have been used for thousands of years as natural remedies for a laundry list of ailments. Garlic has a potent antibiotic quality called allicin and ginger — while most famously used to beat nausea — has also become an antifungal staple in the candida diet. These Blistered Shishitos With Garlic and Ginger by Adam Merrin and Ryan Alvarez are super easy to make and are a wonderful snack at home or at work! Along with whole garlic cloves and minced ginger, this recipe also calls for fresh lime juice and healthy fat-filled sesame and olive oils.

4. Coconut Kaffir Lime Cooler

Source: Coconut Kaffir Lime Cooler

Packing a powerful antifungal one-two punch, this Coconut Kaffir Lime Cooler by Viktoria Radichkova calls for two coconut-rich products — milk and water — along with a dose of fresh antifungal and antibacterial ginger. This beverage infuses the nutrients together with a bit of citrus and the sweet tang of fresh mango!

5. Garlic Miso and Onion Soup

Source: Garlic Miso and Onion Soup

Onions are not only an aromatic pleasure and flavor enhancer, but they also have antifungal, antibacterial, and antiparasitic properties. Plus, onions also “help the kidneys to flush excess fluids out the body,” keeping sodium and water levels balanced in the body. This Garlic Miso and Onion Soup by Adams Media calls for one and a half onions, four whole cloves of garlic, and a half of a cup of shiitake mushrooms, all of which are great for fighting fungal infections. In addition, this soup uses protein-rich tofu, fermented miso and soy sauce, and healthy fat-filled sesame oil.

6. Homemade Pumpkin Seed Milk

Source: Homemade Pumpkin Seed Milk

Seeds are a staple in any plant-based diet as they are usually high in fat and other essential nutrients. Pumpkin seeds are no exception! They are high in omega-3 fatty acids, plus these tasty seeds “have antifungal, antiviral and anti-parasitic properties.” This Homemade Pumpkin Seed Milk by Gretchen Lidicker is a rich and tasty source of pumpkin seeds! The recipe calls for a full cup of pumpkin seeds and adds a warming flavor with nutmeg, dates, and vanilla extract.

7. Rhubarb and Ginger Shrub Drinking Vinegar

Source: Rhubarb and Ginger Shrub Drinking Vinegar

While apple cider vinegar is excellent for baking sweet treats, it can also be used to give beverages a spicy-sweet kick of flavor! This Rhubarb and Ginger Shrub Drinking Vinegar by Rebecca Fallihee calls for fungus-fighting a full cup of apple cider vinegar and two tablespoons of fresh ginger.

8. Cinnamon and Clove Mixed Nut and Seed Milk

Source: Cinnamon and Clove Mixed Nut and Seed Milk

Cinnamon and cloves offer two ends of the spice spectrum — one being warm, spicy, and sweet, while the other is earthy, nutty, and rich. As different as their flavors are, both of these spices are great for fighting fungal infections. Cinnamon “has been used as an anti-inflammatory, antiemetic, mosquito larvicidal, insecticidal, antimycotic, and anticancer agent,” while cloves have a variety of antifungal, antiseptic, and immune system stimulating constituents including eugenol, eugenyl acetate, caryophyllene, and Iocaryophyllene. This Cinnamon and Clove Mixed Nut and Seed Milk by Steph McKercher calls for both cinnamon and cloves, along with a host of nutrient-dense nuts and seeds.

9. Cinnamon Linseed Pancakes

Source: Cinnamon Linseed Pancakes

Looking for a warm and tasty recipe to get your body going in the morning? These Cinnamon Linseed Pancakes by Melissa Tedesco not only will boost your digestion for the day with a helping of fiber-rich linseed (also known as flaxseed), but it also uses fungus-fighting cinnamon and coconut oil!

10. Lemon Sauteed Asparagus

Source: Lemon Sauteed Asparagus

Lemon juice is rich in essential nutrients — such as vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, and potassium — and is a good source of healthy sugars for those sweet recipes you crave. Yet, lemon juice has also been found to have anti-fungal properties, as well as “help detoxify your liver,” both of which aid the body heal and fight fungal infections. This Lemon Sauteed Asparagus recipe by Melissa Tedesco is a super simple way to integrate nutrient-rich asparagus and fungus-fighting lemon juice into your diet! Along with lemon juice, this recipe calls for lemon zest — shavings of lemon rind — balancing out the sweetness of the juice, as well as healthy fat-rich olive oil.

11. Blood Orange, Carrot and Ginger Smoothie

Source: Blood Orange, Carrot and Ginger Smoothie

Smoothies are an excellent way to get your necessary dose of essential nutrients without a kitchen handy. This Blood Orange, Carrot and Ginger Smoothie by Daniela Modesto has the added benefit of using fungus-fighting coconut milk and grated fresh ginger. Plus, the powerful mixture of antioxidants and vitamin C from the carrots and pineapple, the pectin (a unique form of fiber) from apples, and the inflammation-fighting and folic acid rich blood orange, make this the perfect smoothie to fight off ailments of any kind or simply keep a healthy body healthy!

12. Chaga Vinegar

Source: Chaga Vinegar

Variety is the key to a balanced diet and therefore, mixing different plant-based elements into one snack or meal, is a great way to get all the essentials that your body needs. This Chaga Vinegar by Christine DesRoches only has four simple ingredients, yet they all offer an array of wonderful health benefits. A third of a cup of adaptogenic Chaga mushrooms will help level out your body’s natural stress response, lower anxiety, and provide energy. A full liter of apple cider, plus a cinnamon stick will fight fungal infections and provide a detoxifying effect. Plus, that vanilla bean has health benefits as well such as fighting acne, reducing anxiety, and promoting good digestion!

13. Patatas Bravas With Garlic Aioli

Source: Patatas Bravas With Garlic Aioli

This dairy-free, vegan Patatas Bravas With Garlic Aioli recipe by Taavi Moore is a great way to get your daily dose of fungus-fighting garlic, as well as a slew of other nutrient-rich, plant-based food. This patatas bravas call for around four minced cloves of garlic, as well as fungus-fighting onions, and healthy fat-rich olive oil!

14. Coconut Oil Cookies

Source: Coconut Oil Cookies

Hankering for something sweet? Instead of reaching for that pre-packaged box of cookies — filled with processed ingredients — try having these Coconut Oil Cookies by Kristen Genton on hand! They are rich in fungus-fighting coconut oil, nutrient-filled coconut sugar, and fiber-filled nuts!

15. Onion and Pepper Masala

Source: Onion and Pepper Masala

Onions are a great side addition to meals that require a bit more flavor, yet they can also be the main player! This Onion and Pepper Masala by Kushi not only favors onions — one large onion, in fact — but it also incorporates other fungus-fighting agents such as cloves, ginger, and oil of your choice (substitute coconut oil!). Plus, it incorporates other anti-inflammatory foods such as turmeric — rich in curcumin — and antioxidant-rich bell peppers.  

We also highly recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 15,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to new recipes every day. Check it out!

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