Antibiotics Disrupt Gut Bacteria, Create Oxygen-Rich Environment
A Key problem with the overuse/misuse of perscribed antibiotics’ is that some people including doctors assume it will not hurt to take a course just in case. But many people are not aware that antibiotics have a risk of serious side effects, including death.
In our gut, beneficial microbes grow in an anaerobic (no oxygen) environment while pathogenic bacteria like salmonella need oxygen to thrive.
One way antibiotics can promote disease is by creating an oxygen-rich environment that favors that growth of pathogens, according to a recent study published in Cell Host & Microbe.
The study involved the antibiotic streptomycin, which 1st reduces populations of beneficial microbes in the human gut. Among them are Clostridia, which help break down fiber into an organic acid called butyrate.
Cells lining the gut use butyrate as an energy source, but if Clostridia, and thereby butyrate, are reduced, the cells ferment glucose to lactate for energy, and this is what causes an increase in oxygen.
Study author Andreas Bäumler, Professor of Medical Immunology & Microbiology at the University of California-Davis said, “In essence, antibiotics enabled pathogens in the gut to breathe.”
In addition, by killing off the bacteria in the gut, antibiotics have a detrimental effect on our overall immune system, as about 80% of the immune system resides in your gastrointestinal tract aka gut.
Research published in MBio found just 1 course of antibiotics negatively alters your microbiome for up to a year. This is why its Key to only use antibiotics only when absolutely necessary.
And after use, be sure to “reseed” the gut with beneficial bacteria, either in the form of a probiotics supplement or fermented foods. If you do not, your immune function, and more, can remain compromised for some time to come.
Researchers note: “Collectively, across all conditions, an estimated 30% of outpatient, oral antibiotic prescriptions may have been inappropriate.”
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