A Vicious Circle: Antibiotics Destroy Gut

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It has been known for a long time that antibiotic use not only kills targeted infections, but also leads to the development of drug resistant super-bugs and also permanently kills good bacteria, such as that in your gut.  However, evidence from a study in the popular journal Nature indicates that, the process of permanently killing gut bacteria is linked to mental illness.

The study showed that many children were prescribed antibiotics, which permanently destroyed bacteria in their gut, were later diagnosed with mental illness, and prescribed antipsychotic drugs to “treat” the illness that drugs had caused in the first place.  It seems that we live in a world where it is acceptable to offer drug-based ‘solutions’ to the very problems that drugs originally created,  This pharmaceutical paradigm is a system that, whether purposeful or not, generates large profits for many prescription-happy doctors and drug manufacturers alike.

This system of healthcare in North America, where it is more profitable to treat an illness than to cure it is a dangerous one.  The public must understand that these dangerous antipsychotic drugs do not cure mental illness; they merely control the behaviors of those suffering.  However, scientists have found that simply improving gut health and gut bacteria through probiotic supplementation can greatly affect one’s mental health and clarity.  What’s more startling is that large corporations seem to doctor study results, presenting drugs as safer and more effective than they are, and discrediting any research that endangers profits.  Many will remember the case of Dr. Scott Reuben, an anesthesiologist and former chief of acute pain of the Baystate Medical Center in Springfield Massachusetts.  Dr. Reuben was accused of altering the results of 21 studies on Vioxx and Celebrex to deceive customers into thinking that the drugs were safe.  Of course this is not an isolated incident, simply one that received mainstream attention.

Although antibiotic use kills gut bacteria permanently, it is possible for patients who are now suffering with this affliction to improve their gut health by utilizing natural remedies that put good bacteria back into the gut.  The use of probiotic supplements, or consumption of probiotic rich foods such as sauerkraut, tempeh, miso or kefir will help provide your gut with the bacteria it needs for optimal health.

Sources:

McKenna, Maryn. “Antibiotics: Killing Off Beneficial Bacteria … for Good?”http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/08/killing-beneficial-bacteria/

Winstein, Keith J. and Armstrong, David. “Top Pain Scientist Fabricated Data in Studies, Hospital Says”http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123672510903888207.html

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