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October 11, 2022 3 min read

Here is why we highly suggest the use of probiotics while taking antibiotics in order to combat antibiotic-related gut issues which occur when dealing with gut dysbiosis.

 

Our body is made up of trillions of tiny microbes and these are found at various parts of our body which makes up what we call the human microbiome. These gut bacteria help in digesting food and improve liver function. They also prevent abdominal infections and enhance the immune system. But what happens when antibiotics are used? Well, unfortunately, antibiotics are known for destroying the good microbes along with the harmful ones and this can affect your overall health.


The antibiotic era began with penicillin. Antibiotics are typically prescribed for bacterial infections, but not only. Antibiotics can also eliminate yeast, viruses and parasites in the human body. Although antibiotics save many lives, they have a dark side: gut dysbiosis caused by antibiotic treatment may remain hidden yet irreversible even years later. Treating infectious diseases with antibiotics is common practice. Unfortunately this initial success rate drops off rapidly over time. Hence 30 % of the patients require a second course and the percentage rises to 50% after a third course. 


Antibiotics play the role of the hero and the villain. They have saved so many lives and are extremely effective at killing off infection, bacteria, viruses, however in doing so take the good gut bugs with them. If you’ve recently been prescribed antibiotics or have a history of repeated use, not only can you take a probiotic at the same time, but it is highly encouraged.


Probiotics make antibiotics more effective


It’s argued that there is no point in taking a probiotic while on antibiotics as they will just kill them off, however research shows that taking a probiotic while on antibiotics may actually increase their effectiveness. 


Studies on probiotics and gut health and steadily rising, which will be able to give us more research and data to refer to, however there is a decently recent study with over 20,000 patients that you can read more about here that was able to see greater results and effectiveness in patients who took probiotics with antibiotics versus those who were only taking antibiotics.


Probiotics taken with antibiotics can also reduce antibiotic-related side effects


Probiotics are also recommended to be taken with antibiotics as they help to decrease the side effects that take place when on antibiotics. We know that the probiotic bacteria in our GI tract help with so many critical functions in the body from digestion, to immune support, hormone production, regulating inflammation and so much more. Therefore it’s no surprise that when antibiotics enter our system and bulldoze through our digestive system killing everything and anything that gets in its way, we can experience some sudden side effects. The use of probiotics with antibiotics can reduce or prevent antibiotic-related side effects relating to the gut which often include:


  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pains


Should you take probiotics with antibiotics?


Our answer simply is, yes. Mixing probiotics with antibiotics can help you get through that pill bottle without dealing with antibiotic-related side effects that take place as your probiotic bacteria is getting wiped out. Our gut microbiome can take a huge hit from antibiotics, especially to a person that has dealt with a long history of use. Antibiotics can be great for treating a one time infection, but we must consider the long-term effects of gut dysbiosis. 


Dysbiosis occurs when we are dealing with an imbalance in the gut microbes and if gone untreated for too long can cause many other health issues as well as make your gut more vulnerable to diseases. The use of probiotics before, during and after the use of antibiotics will help to maintain balance and reduce the risk of dealing with gut dysbiosis.


Once antibiotics enter the system, any probiotic bacteria that they kill off are gone forever. Though probiotics are an essential component to the gut, our bodies do not know how to produce them naturally, this means that supplementing them through our diet is important at all times, but especially when taking antibiotics.





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