Should You Take Antibiotics For Your Illness?

Prescription drugs

Antibiotics were one of the great discoveries of the 20th century, but the latest research confirms that taking them does not come without a significant cost. Besides the well-known side effects associated with antibiotics (digestive problems, diarrhea etc), they may also have a detrimental long term effect on your immune system.

This is why you should always make sure that your doctor is prescribing antibiotics for a good reason. Taking antibiotics can lead to a weakened immune system and Candida overgrowth. Sometimes, a period of rest and a healthy diet will work just as well.

The problem is that most antibiotics are broad spectrum, meaning that they kill all of the bacteria in your body. You might think that this sounds like a good thing, but in truth many of those bacteria are vital to your long term health.

While antibiotics will certainly kill various pathogens and disease-causing bacteria, they will also destroy the ‘good bacteria’ in your gut that form an indispensable part of your immune system. According to research conducted at the University of Pennsylvania, these bacteria form one of your first lines of defense against disease. You should try to keep them if you can!

Even worse, antibiotics kill the very microorganisms that are preventing a Candida overgrowth. Ordinarily, Candida Albicans has to fight with other bacteria for space and nutrients in your gut. When you destroy those other bacteria, the Candida yeast cells have all the nutrients they need to multiply and expand their colonies quickly. Indeed, antibiotics are probably the most common cause of a Candida overgrowth.

So ask your doctor whether that prescription of antibiotics is really necessary. Often a period of rest at home and some vitamin C will help you to recover just as fast, without taking a wrecking ball to your immune system. The long term benefits are more than worth it.

There are some natural alternatives to prescription antibiotics too. Oregano oil has shown a lot of promise in trials on animals, and at least one laboratory study has shown it to be as effective as regular antibiotics.

However, sometimes you really do have to take antibiotics (for example as a result of serious illness or surgery), and there is a way that you can reduce the effect that they have on your gut flora. A 2012 analysis showed that taking probiotics during a course of antibiotics actually reduces the side effects.

In other words, if your antibiotics are causing digestive problems or diarrhea, a course of good probiotics can reduce those symptoms. Why is this? The probiotics actively replenish your gut flora even as the antibiotics are destroying it. By doing this they maintain the balance in your gut and allow those ‘good bacteria’ to perform their usual functions, like digesting food for example.

Once you have completed your course of antibiotics, continue to take probiotics for as long as possible. In my Ultimate Candida Diet treatment program I describe in detail five different criteria for choosing a good probiotic. You might be surprised to learn that some of the most popular probiotics used for Candida are actually not suitable at all.

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Comments

  1. Emme says

    When suffering from a UTI, taking 1/2 tsp of d-Mannose powder (mixed in water) every 2-3 waking hours is a sure cure. The d-Mannose washes the bacteria from the wall of the bladder and doesn’t bother the good bacteria. It works every time.

  2. Karyn says

    If laboratory studies are showing natural antibiotics to be as effective as prescription antibiotics wouldn’t they too have the abilitly to kill the ‘good bacteria’ as well as pathogens and disease-causing bacteria??? Although I do appreciate how the chemicals used in prescription antibiotics are very toxic to our bodies.

  3. Eduardo says

    Not to mention the fact that our bodies build up a resistence to antibiotics. My cousin is a physician and he said they are over prescribed and one should only take them when one has a serious infection. He said that is were abuse them in our early years when we are older and we really need them when are bodies are weaker, they might not work as effective because of the resistence our bodies have developed due to the overuse.

    • dee says

      The body does not become resistant… it is the bacteria that does. You can never take an antibiotic your whole life but still get MRSA, for example.

  4. Tina says

    Over the Christmas holidays I had a sinus infection. I was prescribed antibiotics and not knowing any better, took them as told. When I went back to my naturopth dr, she told me about how they kill off the ‘good bacteria’ I had been restoring by taking probiotics everyday. I will definately look into using oregano oil and other things if I get sick again.

  5. Cathy says

    I had a severe sore throat for two days prior to going to the doctor. My doctor was on vacation so I was assigned another doctor who did a strep test that came back negative. He said it was viral. Five days later my throat was still hurting. My doctor was still on vaca so I was assigned to another doctor. This doctor did not do any tests, but still prescribed 875 mg of amoxicillin 2 x day for 10 days. W/in five days I became very ill. I could not swallow, I developed a yeast infection in my throat and larynx, a harsh cough, headache and a severe lack of appetite. I became breathless and fatigued easily. All of this happened in March 2013. Since then, I have lost 35 lbs. I had an endoscopy and was told I have a small hiatel hernia and Barett’s Esophagus. I’m 59 years old & up until taking the amox, I was in very good health. I have never had any problems with my digestion other than occasional heartburn. I wss prescribed Omeprazole 40 mg 2 x daily which has helped with most of the symptoms. However, I still have no appetite and I have to force myself to eat. I’m still losing weight.I have a difficult time swallowing and I constantly feel as if something is stuck in my throat. I tire easily and continue to have headaches. Have I developed Candida caused by taking the antibiotics?

    • says

      Antibiotics are one of the main causes of Candida, but unfortunately doctors prescribe them far too often. The good news is that you can recover, but to do so you will need to restrict the sugar in your diet and take some good antifungals and probiotics.

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