An urgent warning for anyone who’s ever taken antibiotics or antifungals
Antibiotics can be lifesaving, but when used frequently or for long periods, they can be harmful. It’s amazing that although we have better medical technology, our nation continues to experience increasing levels of illness requiring the use of drugs.
While there are plenty of probiotic foods and supplements on the market, it’s important to understand that not all probiotic sources are created equal.
Our GI Distress Relief is expertly formulated with the same nourishing bacteria that can be found in a breastfed newborn’s gut.
Over the years, we at Body Ecology have done a lot of investigating to find answers for wellness. A lifetime of searching has taught us that the top secret to health can be found in obtaining a deeper understanding of nature.
Antibiotic overuse robs us of our healthy heritage
It was only decades ago, within the Baby Boomer generation, that antibiotic use became commonplace. The main difference then was that antibiotics weren’t overused in those days the way they are today.
By the time these Baby Boomers grew up and had their own children, antibiotics were being prescribed for almost anything.
Studies partially blame this overuse on healthcare providers — revealing that 10 percent of physicians write an antibiotic prescription for almost every patient, estimated at 95 percent or more, with bronchitis, a cold, or a respiratory infection.1
This widespread antibiotic overuse within the healthcare system links to potentially deadly antibiotic resistance. The commonly prescribed antibiotic clarithromycin has also been associated with an increased risk of heart deaths, while multiple courses of antibiotics in early life can alter the gut microbiome and potentially impact brain development.2,3
We can see this breakdown in our medical community, but in nature, there is a much different picture. All throughout the earth, we find ecosystems that constantly strive to maintain a natural state of balance, or “homeostasis.”
We humans live within an ecosystem, along with other animals and plants, but we also have an “inner ecosystem” inside our intestines. Within this inner intestinal terrain, beneficial microbes work to keep us healthy and strong. In all our years of meeting with clients, researching health, and studying the human digestive system, we have come to respect how important this inner ecosystem is to our health.
The bottom line is: When we do not have healthy microbes in our inner ecosystem, we may trade great health for reduced immunity, inadequate nutrition, too little energy, and lots of toxicity. We may also live a shorter life. In other words, pathogenic bacteria, yeast, and parasites can take over when we are lacking healthy microbes to keep things in balance.
For many of us, an inner ecosystem never formed inside our digestive tract when we were born. For the many millions of us who have taken antibiotics and other drugs and/or have consumed a high-carbohydrate/sugar diet, our inner ecosystems were likely destroyed.
What are the dangers of antibiotic and antifungal drugs?
Until recently, barely anyone out there discussed this amazing inner world. In fact, until Body Ecology began to teach about it, the fascinating world of the inner ecosystem was virtually unknown to the public.
Even the pharmaceutical companies have been unaware of its importance. So, it would naturally follow then that when antibiotics, steroids, birth control pills, and other drugs were developed, no one took a look at their “dark side.”
Whether you have been prescribed antibiotics or antifungals, there are important things to know so that you can protect your health:
- Antibiotics – On the positive side, they can wipe out disease-causing bacteria, but on the negative side, they also wipe out beneficial bacteria (making probiotics after antibiotics necessary). Like all drugs, they are acidic and may create an acidic condition in your blood.
- Antifungal drugs (like Nystatin, Diflucan, and Nizarol) – Prescribed for fungal ailments, like candida, these drugs may also have side effects that include diarrhea, stomach pain, allergic reaction, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue, just to name a few.
In addition to these unpleasant side effects, antifungal drug therapy only suppresses the pathogenic yeast in your body. Once you stop the antifungal drug, your systemic yeast infection may flare up again, often worse than before.
Probiotics after antibiotics: Look out for these superstars
Probiotics are beneficial, microscopic organisms, like healthy bacteria and yeast. Used by people throughout history, these tiny superheroes are found in the foods of most cultures around the world, like milk kefir, yogurt, and traditionally-made sauerkraut.
Some of the benefits of probiotics include helping to:
- Aid digestion and assimilation of foods.
- Curb cravings for sugar and carbs.
- Enhance immunity.
- Improve energy.
- Increase the nutrients in your foods.
- Offer a quick and effective natural treatment for diarrhea.
- Promote youthfulness and delay aging.
- Support digestion and assimilation of vitamin K.
While our modern medical establishment has been slow in the past to appreciate the value of probiotics in preventing disease and treating infections (and probiotics after antibiotics to help restore an inner ecology), there is good news on the horizon. Research in the area of probiotics is increasing at a fast pace, and probiotics are now being called “living drugs,” or “the new antibiotics.”
Within the past few years alone, compelling research has come to the forefront, praising the benefits of probiotics (including taking probiotics after antibiotics) to help establish a healthy gut and boost microbial activity, ease anxiety and depression, and even serve as a “secret weapon” to fight off the common cold.4-7
There are many types of beneficial microorganisms that are essential for your immunity and wellbeing. But not all of them have the same functions.
Getting a variety in your probiotic diet is the optimal way to protect yourself, starting with organisms like:
1. Saccharomyces boulardii (S. boulardii).
This amazing little organism is actually a beneficial yeast that was first isolated from lychee and mango fruits in 1923. We include S. boulardii in all of our probiotic liquids because of its many benefits.
S. boulardii is truly a superstar when it comes to addressing a potentially fatal bacterial infection called Clostridium difficile (C. diff), which is the most common cause of infectious diarrhea in the industrialized world.8 S. boulardii also helps control candida.
S. boulardii is typically used in helping to treat antibiotic-induced diarrhea (AAD), a complication of antibiotic use. This type of diarrhea may lead to inflammation of your colon, accompanied by abdominal pain, fever, bloody diarrhea, and maybe even death. Research has proven that S. boulardii significantly reduces the likelihood of developing AAD.9
“Superstar” S. boulardii can be found in our GI Distress Relief probiotic.
There are several types of Lactobacillus bacteria (beneficial bacteria). The most well-known among these is Lactobacillus acidophilus (L. acidophilus). L. acidophilus is the most prevalent bacteria in the human intestine — and the most widely studied. It helps inhibit the growth of gastrointestinal disease-causing bacteria, and it helps stimulate the immune system.
In addition, strains of Lactobacillus have been proven effective in the prevention and treatment of urinary and vaginal infections and in the prevention of infectious or acute diarrhea in infants.10,11
Lactobacillus plantarum is another probiotic organism abundant in naturally fermented foods and may potentially be effective as an antibiotic. This is because it blocks sites for bad bacteria to flourish in your intestines. When you eat a food containing L. plantarum, it will colonize inside your intestines. And if you have to take an antibiotic, L. plantarum will not be destroyed by the antibiotic therapy. This would then help curb the overgrowth of harmful organisms like candida.
You can get both powerful strains of Lactobacillus by eating homemade cultured vegetables.
The Body Ecology program is a system of health and healing that offers solutions for many of our modern ailments and diseases, as well as to the growing problems associated with antibiotic and antifungal drug overuse. It’s also the secret to helping you stay young, energetic, and happy.
When considering probiotics after antibiotics, we recommend that you take the necessary steps to return to our origin, our source of life, nature. As you do, you will be empowered to create the kind of hardy health and energy that sustained our ancient ancestors when they lived “close to” and “lightly upon” the land.
While modern medicine may make us live longer, don’t we really want to live better? Support your inner ecology first — with protective bacteria that come from the gut of babes — and you’ll find that you can achieve the kind of health that makes you embrace life with more joy at any age.
- 1. Barbara Ellen Jones, Brian Sauer, Makoto M. Jones, Jose Campo, Kavitha Damal, Tao He, Jian Ying, Tom Greene, Matthew Bidwell Goetz, Melinda M. Neuhauser, Lauri A. Hicks, Matthew H. Samore. Variation in Outpatient Antibiotic Prescribing for Acute Respiratory Infections in the Veteran Population. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2015; 163 (2): 73 DOI: 10.7326/M14-1933.
- 2. Wong A Y S, Root A, Douglas I J, Chui C S L, Chan E W, Ghebremichael-Weldeselassie Y et al. Cardiovascular outcomes associated with use of clarithromycin: population based study BMJ 2016; 352 :h6926 doi:10.1136/bmj.h6926.
- 3. Angelina Volkova, Kelly Ruggles, Anjelique Schulfer, Zhan Gao, Stephen D. Ginsberg, Martin J. Blaser. Effects of early-life penicillin exposure on the gut microbiome and frontal cortex and amygdala gene expression. iScience, 2021; 102797 DOI: 10.1016/j.isci.2021.102797.
- 4. Emiley A. Eloe-Fadrosh, Arthur Brady, Jonathan Crabtree, Elliott F. Drabek, Bing Ma, Anup Mahurkar, Jacques Ravel, Miriam Haverkamp, Anne-Maria Fiorino, Christine Botelho, Irina Andreyeva, Patricia L. Hibberd, Claire M. Fraser. Functional Dynamics of the Gut Microbiome in Elderly People during Probiotic Consumption. mBio, 2015; 6 (2): e00231-15 DOI: 10.1128/mBio.00231-15.
- 5. Daniel J. Davis, Holly M. Doerr, Agata K. Grzelak, Susheel B. Busi, Eldin Jasarevic, Aaron C. Ericsson, Elizabeth C. Bryda. Lactobacillus plantarum attenuates anxiety-related behavior and protects against stress-induced dysbiosis in adult zebrafish. Scientific Reports, 2016; 6: 33726 DOI: 10.1038/srep33726.
- 6. Sanjay Noonan, Meena Zaveri, Elaine Macaninch, Kathy Martyn. Food & mood: a review of supplementary prebiotic and probiotic interventions in the treatment of anxiety and depression in adults. BMJ Nutrition, Prevention & Health, 2020; bmjnph-2019-000053 DOI: 10.1136/bmjnph-2019-000053.
- 7. Tracey J. Smith, Diane Rigassio-Radler, Robert Denmark, Timothy Haley, Riva Touger-Decker. Effect of Lactobacillus rhamnosus LGG® and Bifidobacterium animalis ssp. lactis BB-12® on health-related quality of life in college students affected by upper respiratory infections. British Journal of Nutrition, 2012; 1 DOI: 10.1017/S0007114512004138.
- 8. Stier H, & Bischoff SC. (2016). Influence of Saccharomyces boulardii CNCM I-745on the gut-associated immune system. Clin Exp Gastroenterol, Sep 13;9:269-279.
- 9. McFarland LV. Meta-analysis of probiotics for the prevention of antibiotic associated diarrhea and the treatment of Clostridium difficile disease. Am J Gastroenterol. 2006 Apr;101(4):812-22. doi: 10.1111/j.1572-0241.2006.00465.x. PMID: 16635227.
- 10. van de Wijgert J, Verwijs MC. Lactobacilli-containing vaginal probiotics to cure or prevent bacterial or fungal vaginal dysbiosis: a systematic review and recommendations for future trial designs. BJOG. 2020 Jan;127(2):287-299. doi: 10.1111/1471-0528.15870. Epub 2019 Aug 8. PMID: 31299136.
- 11. Szymański H, Pejcz J, Jawień M, Chmielarczyk A, Strus M, Heczko PB. Treatment of acute infectious diarrhoea in infants and children with a mixture of three Lactobacillus rhamnosus strains–a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2006 Jan 15;23(2):247-53. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2036.2006.02740.x. PMID: 16393304.