The Good, Bad and Ugly of Antibiotics

We all have to admit to the many advances in our health care we can be thankful for today. Before the 1900’s poor sanitary conditions including inadequate sewage waste and disposal systems as well as contaminated food and water were attributed to the main causes of death aside from natural causes. Once we began to understand more about the invisible world full of bacteria, things like indoor plumbing and the sterilization of medical instruments were introduced. With the passage of time, we have become more and more conscience about our personal hygiene. This has resulted in a significant decrease in infectious diseases.

On the other hand, while there has been a tremendous decrease in deaths due to infectious diseases, starting with the introduction of penicillin in the 1940’s, new issues within the disease related causes of death cropped up. Instead of dying of many infectious diseases, death from serious chronic conditions has gotten out of control. The main causes of death are not from poor hygiene, they are dying from the lack of something else.

And this is where our discussion turns to the dark side of antibiotics. The sad truth of the matter is this – the destruction of bad bacteria by means of antibiotics also kills our amazing probiotic bacteria friends.

While antibiotics have helped us eliminate so many diseases, the constant abuse of these medications, which includes prescribing them when people have colds and flues, which are virus related, not bacterial. Virus related illnesses are those that antibiotics cannot help. Instead, they simply kill off both good and bad bacteria inside your intestinal tract without any rhyme or reason.

With the misuse of antibiotics comes the introduction of the antibiotic resistant bacteria. This has created a cycle that keeps getting worse. Drug companies continue to manufacture and develop stronger antibiotics and the abuses such as mentioned above continue to happen. It is a never ending cycle that is become quite frightening when you dig deeper into the consequences.

Each and every time we take antibiotics, we are depleting our intestines of that wonderful bacteria that helps us stay health. What is the solution?

Doctors are well aware of the physical consequences that result from antibiotics. If doctors know that antibiotics destroy our healthy flora, how come they don’t follow up their prescriptions with probiotics?

As easy as it is to blame all the damages and destruction of our healthy flora in our intestines, fast food, soda, diet products, processed foods and the total lack of eating well-balanced meals are also to blame. We are living in a world of convenience which is running at a very fast pace. This causes a great deal of stress, lack of proper amounts of sleep, emotional distress and so forth. Our bodies are simply bombarded day in and day out. Our intestinal health promoting bacteria are exhausted. And we have only ourselves to blame.

So, how do we fix this problem? If you’re reading this article, no matter where you live, you have access to the solution. Even if it means ordering it online.

Helping our intestinal tract is just a matter of introducing the probiotics our bodies have lost and continue to lose daily. It’s as easy as eating good unprocessed foods, organic fruits and vegetables if we can afford and acquire them. We can also add them by way of probiotic powders, probiotic liquids and probiotic supplements.

In the next article I’ll be talking about some of the more common foods that we can buy to encourage our healthy probiotic bacteria to grow and outnumber the bad bacteria.

Article by Kimberly Shannon. If you missed the first article on probiotics you can find it at our breast cancer support site.


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