Antibiotics are sometimes necessary, but can we protect ourselves from the downsides.
We are all becoming increasingly aware of the downsides of antibiotics on the microbiome. Antibiotics can remove all bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, including the ones we want to keep! But antibiotics clearly have a role in our healthcare. I can proudly say that my patients are very attuned to protecting their favorable gastrointestinal bugs, but occasionally, that means I have to convince them to take an antibiotic when necessary!
This mouse study shows that the food we eat can play a role in protecting us from the downsides of antibiotics.
At DCIM, we often recommend Probiotics alongside antibiotics, and generally a blend of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species can protect against the removal of those “good bacteria” that can simultaneously happen when flushing out the “bad bacteria” with antibiotics. (Of course, you should always consult with a doctor on your specific case before engaging in any supplemental regime.) This animal study suggests that the diet we consume plays a role in how capable the good bacteria are of staving off their demise in the face of antibiotic attack. It’s still early days, but my guess would be that certain prebiotic fibers feed certain beneficial strains of bugs. Now we just need to wait for more answers from science to connect the dots. Exciting stuff! And another reminder that Food is Medicine.