Athletes Foot

Athletes Foot (Fungus)

Athlete's foot is a fungal infection of the skin, caused by fungi in the genus Trichophyton and is typically transmitted in moist areas where people walk barefoot, such as showers or bathhouses. Although the condition typically affects the feet, (the space between the fourth and fifth digits most commonly afflicted) it can spread to other areas of the body, including underneath the toenails and the groin. When it spreads, there are three different categories of infection, Toe Web, Moccasin-type, and Vesicular.
· Toe web infection usually occurs between the fourth and fifth toes. The skin becomes scaly, peels, and cracks. If there is a secondary bacteria infection, the skin break down even more.
· Moccasin-type infection starts with a little soreness on your foot. The skin on the bottom or heel of your foot can become thick and crack. The toenails can also get infected and can thicken, crumble, and even fall off.
· Vesicular infection usually begins with a sudden outbreak of large fluid-filled blisters under the skin, appearing anywhere on the foot, but mainly on the bottom. A secondary bacterial infection can occur with this type of athlete’s foot.

Main Symptoms:

· Scaling and flaking of the skin
· Itching and/or burning of the affected skin
· Blisters and cracked skin may also occur, leading to exposed raw tissue, pain, swelling, and inflammation.

Natural Help:
The fungus that causes Athletes Foot thrives in warm moist environments.
· Be sure to dry well between your toes after showering or swimming.
· Wear Sandals to allow the foot to breath.
· Wear Cotton socks to absorb excess moisture and sweat.

People get Athletes Foot by walking barefoot on contaminated surfaces near swimming pools or in locker rooms.
· Wear Sandals while in public, “wet” areas.

The Athletes Foot fungi can grow in your shoes, especially if your shoes are so tight that air cannot move around your feet.
· Consider purchasing new shoes (Buy shoes that are leather or another breathable material. Shoe materials, such as vinyl, that don't breathe cause your feet to remain moist, providing an excellent area for the fungus to breed.)
· Use *Athletes Foot Sneaker Tamer inside shoes.

  • While treating athlete's foot, dry your groin area before your feet after bathing. Also, put on your socks before your underwear. This can prevent the fungi from spreading from your feet to your groin.
  • Use hot water and bleach to increase the chance of killing fungi on your clothes and socks. Can also add 3 drops Tea Tree oil and 3 drops Lemon oil, mixed with warm water, to the Water Softener compartment or rinse water.
  • Use lamb's wool between the toes (to separate them), and/or wearing wider, roomier shoes that have not been infected by fungi can help prevent Athletes Foot. Lamb's wool is available at most pharmacies or foot care stores.
  • To help keep the feet dry, soak your feet in a drying solution of aluminum acetate (Burow's solution or Domeboro solution). Can also use diluted white vinegar soaks using 1 part vinegar and roughly 4 parts water, once or twice a day as 10-minute foot soaks may aid in treatment.
  • If the fungal infection has spread to the toenails, the nails must also be treated to avoid re-infection of the feet. Often, the nails are initially ignored only to find the athlete's foot keeps recurring.
  • Tomato-and-herb sauce. Clean your body from inside out. Take advantage of some herbs that have fungicidal properties, by creating a tomato sauce and going very heavy on the basil, celery, carrot, dill, fennel, sage and thyme. In one quick meal, you'll get a dish with dozens of fungicides: Just heat it up and pour over pasta. If you're willing to put up with the mess, you could also spread a bit of this sauce between your toes for a couple of hours.

Herbal Help:
Each of these herbal remedies should be used 2xr each day until the athletes foot is cleared up, which takes from three days to roughly one week in most cases.

Garlic (Allium sativum)
Because of the Ajoene (a compound found in garlic)Garlic is the number one herbal fungus killer.
· Rub it on with a fresh garlic clove, or use garlic powder or oil.
· Garlic footbath- Place several crushed garlic cloves in a basin with warm water and a little rubbing alcohol.
· Garlic Tincture- Crush several cloves of garlic and steep them in olive oil for one to three days. Strain out the plant material and use a cotton ball or clean cloth to apply the garlic oil between your toes once or twice a day.
· Tape a sliver of garlic between the toes of athlete's foot. Leave on for the day or at night.

Ginger Root (Zingiber officinale)
Ginger contains many anti fungal properties. Ginger ranks second among all herbs in the number of anti fungal compounds with a total of 23. That compound being caprylic acid.
· Just rub Ginger Root oil on or soak your feet in warm water that has ginger added to it.
· You can prepare a strong decoction by adding an ounce of chopped ginger root to a cup of boiling water. Simmer for 20 minutes and apply it directly to the problem areas twice a day with a cotton ball or clean cloth.

Onion (Allium cepa)
A close cousin to garlic, onion will also kill the fungus pretty easily.
· Drip Onion juice between toes and over infected areas each morning.
· Create a bathsoak, using Onion.

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
Although garlic has more potent fungicidal compounds, Licorice contains the largest number of anti fungal compounds. (Licorice has 25 reportedly fungicidal compounds, while Garlic has only 10, but they are quite potent.)
· Add some chopped licorice sticks to the garlic footbath mentioned above.
· Brew a strong decoction using about five to seven teaspoons of dried herb per cup of water. Bring it to a boil, simmer for 20 minutes, then let it cool. Apply the decoction directly to the affected areas using a cotton ball or clean cloth.

Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis)
This herb contains berberine, a powerful anti fungal and antibacterial compound, which makes it an excellent antibiotic.
· Add Goldenseal tincture to juice three times a day.
· Use it externally-Make a strong decoction with the dried herb. Add five to seven teaspoons to a cup of water, bring it to a boil and let it simmer for 20 minutes. After the liquid cools to a tolerable temperature, use a cotton ball or clean cloth to apply it to the affected area, up to three times a day.

Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)
This is a natural antiseptic that is high in iodine, which is known for its anti fungicidal properties.
· Simply rub the tincture or oil onto the affected areas.

Lemongrass (Cymbopogon, various species)
Scientists have demonstrated significant fungicidal activity for lemongrass oil against several common infection-causing fungi.
· Drink lemongrass tea one to four times a day.
· Use the spent tea bags as compresses directly on the affected area, for additional anti fungal benefit.
· Apply 1-2 drops Lemongrass Essential oil directly onto infected areas. Dilute with carrier oil for sensitive skin.

Essential Oil Help
*Please contact a Health Care Practitioner, trained in the safety and chemical understanding of essential oils and herbs, including the knowledge of anatomy, physiology, and pharmaceutical drug interactions BEFORE using any suggestions on this blog.
Place any of the following Single oils or Oil mixtures between the toes and weave a Strip of Cotton Coil between the infected toes, Do not allow the cotton to become saturated with the oil. This will keep the oil on the surface of the skin longer and absorb any unwanted moisture. It will also help separate the toes, allowing air to circulate between them.

Apply 2-3 drops Lemon oil (Neat) to the effected area, in the Morning (After showering) and in the Evening (Before retiring to bed)

Can also apply Tea Tree oil (Neat) in the same way as recommended for Lemon oil.
· Use a Q-tip and massage between the toes and effected area. Make sure to work into the nail.

Create a foot soak. Soak each evening for 10-15 minutes. Blot feet Dry.
· 10 Drops Tea Tree
· 5 Drops Lemon
· ½ cup Epsom Salts
· 1 Gallon Warm water.

In extreme cases, try any of the following:
  • Apply 2 drops Thyme oil (Neat), on location. If it gets too hot, apply a carrier oil to dilute and cool the area.
  • Can also apply Oregano. Mix 3 drops Oregano oil with 1 oz. Carrier oil, Apply liberally to the affected area of the feet, 2-3 times per day, until infection is cleared up. Be sure to apply in and around toes.
  • Take 2-4 Drops Oregano, in a capsule, filled with Carrier oil, 2x daily. Any external body fungus, is also an internal problem. Be sure to clear fungus problems from inside out.*

Athletes Foot Recipe
· 10 drops Lemon
· 10 drops Tea Tree
· 5 drops Lemongrass
· 2 drops Peppermint
· 2 drops Oregano
Apply 2-3 drops of the oil mixture (Neat) to affected areas in the Morning (After showering) and in the Evening (Before retiring to bed) until infection has cleared. There may be some skin discoloring, but this is nothing to be concerned about and will clear up after discontinued use of the oils.

*Athletes Foot Sneaker Tamer Recipe
· 1 Cup Baking Soda
· 2 drops Peppermint
· 5 drops Thyme
· 3 Drops Lemongrass
· Put 1 Tablespoon in each shoe, shake around, leave overnight.

Fungicidal Essential Oils for Internal Use*
Make an Herbal Tea to enhance internal cleansing of the body. 
(1-2 drops in 1 tsp. Honey, per 1 Cup of warm water) 
Change it up and add 1-2 drops into drinking water or as a tea each day, any one of the following:
· Cinnamon Bark, Fennel, Peppermint, Dill, Tarragon, Basil, Orange, Sage, Thyme, Lemon and Spearmint.