Hi. It’s Dr. Connie.
As someone who lives with a chronic disease, I’m always weary of antibiotic use and medications.
If I wasn’t as aware of the truths behind prescription medications, I’d be a lot less concerned.
However, I’m happy to report that I’m meeting more and more like minded clients who are preferring the natural healing approach as opposed to using meds to perpetuate or exacerbate their conditions.
As a clinician, I’m seeing more clients who are exhibiting a common thread of symptoms, including:
- Weight gain
- Brain fog
- Severe fatigue
- Digestive issues
- Swallowing issues
- Full body aches and pains
For the last few weeks, I’ve been talking about the importance of our microbiome, but the more I read, the more I find that our microbiome may be the culprit.
Antibiotics save lives, there’s no doubt about it. However, we are now finding that they are grossly overprescribed today and their implications on our health are scary.
Antibiotics are overused worldwide.
According to the CDC, 69% of US children under 2 years experience ear infections and strep throat, and by 18 years old, they will have taken 10-20 full courses of antibiotics.
And because many women are especially prone to UTIs, by the time we are 30 years old, a typical woman would’ve had 30 rounds of antibiotics.
According to the CDC and other official reports, at least 50-75% of antibiotic prescription is unnecessary and inappropriate.
For example, a doctor will prescribe an antibiotic to “do something” in that short visit time even if it’s a viral infection, which we know antibiotics don’t work for.
Antibiotics are not just prescribed but are rampant in our non-organic animal products.
Animal feedlots that are highly unsanitary use antibiotics not only to treat infections but to make more profit, as using antibiotics fattens the animals by 15%.
Also, evidence suggest that even the organic fruits can be contaminated by antibiotics.
We know that simply washing those fruits and vegetables does not fully remove the pesticides and antibiotics. They have penetrated the skin and have gone into the pulp.
Antibiotics Wrecking Havoc On Our Health
Antibiotic reactions are common.
They’re responsible for approximately 140,000 hospital visits a year in the United States alone. They’re the most common drug reaction in kids under 18 years old.
We also know that antibiotic resistance is a global health threat. The Zika and Ebola epidemics do not even come close to competing with antibiotic resistance.
Antibiotic resistance is a direct result of inappropriate prescription by our doctors and overuse in the meat and dairy industries.
It’s not just that we become resistant, but our bacteria itself become highly resistant to the antibiotics.
The resistant bacteria are capable of mutating, and the interplay between our genes and their genes creates a problem in epidemic proportions.
According to the CDC, approximately 2 million Americans are resistant to antibiotics and at least 20,000 people die every year due to antibiotic resistance.
Global health declares that this is by far the largest global health threat today.
Antibiotics and Weight Gain
Remember the blog from a few weeks ago on microbiome?
If antibiotics are given to the cattle to fatten them up, how does that translate to us?
If you are struggling with weight gain, and despite your efforts to eat healthy and exercise, it may be due to “dysbiosis” which means that you have an imbalance of good and bad bacteria.
The bad bacteria holds on to the toxins that reside in your fat cells and further creates an inflammatory response in such a way to cause weight gain despite your efforts.
Also the interplay between your mutagenic genes and the bacterial genes adds to this toxic pool, causing your body to be at a metabolic disadvantage.
Antibiotics and Chronic Disease
As a chronic illness patient, I am always questioning the how’s and why’s of my personal health.
I’ve had my share of antibiotic use from when I was a young girl.
Antibiotics in Korea, where I was born, were considered a miracle drug, so they were given out like candy for just about any little medical concern.
We now know that antibiotic use can cause chronic disease. This is because they kill off all the good bacteria in our gut, and when you’re given antibiotics at a young age, those good guys never fully recover.
Good gut flora, collectively called microbiome, can affect our weight, mood, hormones, and our ability to detoxify.
So if antibiotics are causing our body to shift negatively, we’ve got a huge health crisis on our hands.
At the onset of my Lupus diagnosis, the doctors scrambled to provide me with multiple antibiotics just to try without knowing exactly what was causing my mysterious fevers, pain, and tachycardia.
They assumes the cause was an infection.
As I mentioned, damage to our microbiome can cause obesity, autoimmune disease, anxiety, brain fog, diabetes, heart disease, asthma, Crohn’s, and IBS just to name a few diseases.
It’s implied in just about any disease.
Why Are Antibiotics Over Prescribed?
According to the CDC, here are the top 4 reasons:
- Doctors think patients expect antibiotic prescription, and because of this, 50-80% of antibiotics are overprescribed.
- Doctors are scared to be sued if they missed an infection so it’s to cover their liability.
- Because the doctors don’t have time to explain the risks to the patients, and with patients overbooked and overwhelmed, doctors find it easier to prescribe a solution rather than taking the time to dig deeper.
- Doctors aren’t knowledgeable about alternative solutions like herbs and holistic practices.
What Can You Do?
- Adapt a healthy, alkaline way of eating by incorporating vegetables of all colors of the rainbow, take a probiotic, and supplement with a good multivitamin to prevent getting sick.
- Incorporate adequate protein to fight infections, including organic meats, eggs, nuts, and seeds. Eat some at every meal
- Avoid processed foods and sugary foods, as they further work to amplify the bad bug problem.
- Take natural supplements to boost your immune system.
- Take a good quality probiotic, especially those loaded with a variety of strains, like lactobacillus, saccharomyces, and bifidobacterium. Take especially during flu and cold season and rotate the brands every three months.
- Take immunoglobulins and L-Glutamine to help heal gut permeability
- Consume prebiotics to feed the good probiotics; Jerusalem artichokes, burdock roots, sweet potatoes, garlic, and onions. Pretty much all vegetables are good options.
Herbal Remedies to Help Fight Infection
Herbal Safety Considerations
If you have an immune disorder or are pregnant, please consult with your healthcare provider.
If you experience persisting symptoms, including cough, fever, difficulty breathing, headache, neck pain, abdominal pain, or vomiting, that last more than a week, then please seek medical treatment asap.
Top 7 Immune Boosting Herbs to Treat Common Infections
Common infections include the cold and flu. I recommend following the dosing on the product label unless otherwise specified.
1. Andrographis is an amazing herb for the prevention and treatment of colds, viral sore throat, and sinus infections. Andrographis and Siberian Ginseng combined is especially helpful for treating colds especially if treatment is initiated within 72 hours of the onset of symptoms. If you are pregnant, please avoid and it is generally safe for children.
2. Elderberry has been researched and is considered effective in treating flu in both adults and children. It is also most effective if initiated within 2 days of onset of symptoms.
3. Echinacea is mostly effective for cold prevention and recurring infections so it’s a good idea to dose up throughout the cold and flu season.
4. Umckaloabo or Pelargonium is also known to be effective in shortening the duration of the colds, bronchitis, and sinus infections.
5. Ginger effectively fends off viral infections, as well as to ease digestive symptoms combined with fever, cold, and flu. With its pungent taste and smell, it breaks up congestion. It’s my favorite when boiled with lemon and local honey. It’s very soothing and healing.
6. Garlic is a strong herb that can help your body fight viral and bacterial infections. Use abundantly in your diet by incorporating in stir fried vegetables, soups, salad dressings, or make a garlic tea. In the winter, I cut the whole garlic in half and roast in the oven for 5-7 minutes and use it as a spread on my gluten free bread or celery with extra virgin olive oil.
7. Maitake Mushrooms are also great for supporting our immune system and especially for upper respiratory infections.
We have professional quality herbals available for you on our site, please click here to visit.
Thanks for joining me today and let’s do our part in creating our own health.
See you next week.