Side-Effects: More than Antibiotics are Harming Your Gut Bacteria

April 10, 2018

Gut bacteria have been revealed to be central to our health. The health and composition of our gut bacteria is woven tightly into our weight, our mental state, our impulses, our heart, and more. There are lots of known ways to help or hurt them, and here’s one more for the list: drugs other than antibiotics.

We already knew antibiotics could wipe out our good bacteria, it’s kind of obvious, after all–they’re job is to kill bacteria. Taking powerful antibiotics or just being on them for a prolonged period can diminish or even wipe out our good bacteria colonies, and in there place viruses, or more likely fungus (possibly even from the antibiotic) can grow. Balance is important when taking an antibiotic, which means getting lots of probiotics, too (just take them at different times).

New research is now saying a similar effect is occurring when we take other medications. While there’s no comprehensive list yet, researchers are testing different common medications on some known, important bacteria. It makes sense, our bacteria are central to so much of our functioning, maybe some drug side-effects are coming from how our bacteria are changed by the drug, and it possibly even explains who, based on their starting bacteria, are at an increased risk for certain side-effects, and how we might change drugs to prevent them. Researchers are hoping for a lot from this new line of research!

One of the limitations that all this research faces is that we haven’t yet developed a complete list of good bacteria (modern humans have already wiped theirs out, although there are studies into guts of the tribes that still exist), and there are combinatorial effects, meaning mixing bacteria together give different results, and untangling that is bigger and beyond current research (although they’re still trying).

What it means for you, now, is that probiotics need to be a top health-supporting priority, not just when you take antibiotics but any drug or medication. Supporting and replenishing your own colony starts with diet (fermented foods are a probiotic source, and healthy foods like veggies feed them), and supporting colonies gets a boost from supplements like Flora MGR.

Ideally, support your good bacteria each day. Flora MGR is a great way to make sure you’re getting replenished with good bacteria.

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