Taking an antibiotic is a reality in the world we live in today. Sometimes we are conscious of the fact we are taking it because we fill the prescription from our Doctor but other times we can be taking antibiotics unknowingly because they can be in some of the foods we eat.
Killing bacteria can be a good thing to get rid of the bacteria that we don’t want but antibiotics also kill all of the good bacteria we need. Good bacteria is an integral part of healthy digestion and responsible for 70% of our immune system.
I fully believe that there is a time and a place for taking antibiotics and one of the reasons that I am writing this article is that I recently had to go on an antibiotic for about a month. I wanted to minimize the negative effects of taking the antibiotics so I did some digging around.
I have been to some seminars put on by Dr. Tom O’Bryan, who I would consider an authority on proper gut and digestive health. In this video he discusses how to restore your gut health after antibiotic use.
Dr. O’Bryan breaks it down into 2 main categories, Foods to avoid and foods to eat.
Foods to avoid:
Wheat, dairy, bad fats, and sugar. These are inflammatory foods that should be avoided while taking antibiotics and for 2-4 weeks after antibiotic exposure (I would recommend for a lifetime but that will be discussed in other articles). Inflammation from these foods severely delays the healing process of our body. It is kind of like throwing more gas on the fire when we should be trying to put the fire out.
Studies have found that the amount of antibiotics that are taken in kids under the age of 5 is a direct correlation with the amount they get sick in the future and their IQ in the future. This means that the more antibiotics they have the more sick they get and the lower their IQ will be. Studies have also shown that the negative effects of taking these antibiotics can be resolved by repairing the gut.
Foods to eat:
Stewed apples/apple sauce: a gut healer to help restore gut health.
Cover chopped apples with water for 8-10 min until the skin gets a shine. The shine on the apple skin is the pectin being released and this helps the good bacteria and the gut lining to heal. The frequency would be about 2x/day and that would be a small bowl of about 5-10 bite for about a week then 1x/day for about 3 weeks.
Chicken Bone Broth: The natural collagen in the broth helps seal the gut that is damaged from antibiotics.
Antibiotics cause microtears in the digestive lining thus increasing the size of food particles that enter our blood stream. Your body does not recognize these bigger molecules in the blood so it develops antibodies which causes allergies. The amount of food allergies you have can be greatly reduced by healing this “leaky gut”.
Vegetables: we have a whole new lining in the gut in 3-7 days and a whole new body in 7 years. Fuel to build the new cells come from vegetable fiber. When we don’t have bricks to build a brick house it will use straw and it will be far less strong, so when the digestive system is rebuilding without the proper raw resources it will adapt with less ideal building blocks resulting in an unhealthy gut.
Tuber/root vegetables like sweet potatoes, parsnips, carrots, beats and even bananas are good sources of fuel for good bacteria due to the insoluble fibers they contain. Bad bacteria doesn’t use this fiber as a food source.
Fermented Vegetables: non-pasteurized vegetable source is ideal.
Get a variety of different vegetables as different ones have different strains of good bacteria. Diversity of the gut bacteria is key to good gut health and this can be done by taking even just a fork full of a different fermented vegetable each day.