When suffering from a nasty infection, all you want is to get better…fast. Generally, that means a trip to the doctor’s office followed by a prescription for antibiotics. Antibiotics, however, are a blessing and a curse all wrapped up in one convenient dose.
Antibiotics are made to kill off bacteria. Unfortunately, the medicine kills not only the bad bacteria causing your infection, but also the good bacteria your body needs to function properly.
This imbalance of bacteria can lead to diarrhea, nausea, leaky gut, candida overgrowth, and a slew of other unpleasant side effects (4). If you have taken antibiotics and are now dealing with any of these symptoms, it is time to heal your body from the side effects of antibiotics.
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Can You Recover From Antibiotics?
Unfortunately, 100% recovery after taking antibiotics is not always possible. Some antibiotics have been shown to permanently alter gut bacteria, especially in infants and children (4). The more rounds of antibiotics you are exposed to, the deeper the damage.
This does not mean you should refuse to take antibiotics. Sometimes, the medication is absolutely necessary to fight what could otherwise become a life-threatening illness. Know when it is appropriate to take antibiotics and always ask your doctor if another treatment option is available. If not, follow the steps below to minimize damage and help your body begin to heal as quickly as possible.
How to Recover from Antibiotics Quickly
While Still Taking Antibiotics:
- Take a high-quality probiotic supplement at least three hours after your antibiotic. Studies have shown that taking probiotics while using antibiotics can reduce your risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhea by up to 50% (1).
- Add foods that naturally contain probiotics, like fermented foods and yogurt, to your diet.
- Stay hydrated. This will help your body absorb the antibiotics better and flush out toxins faster (3).
- Drink bone broth two to three times a day. Bone broth can help give your immune system a boost and reduce damage to your digestive tract (3).
- Take care of your body. Get plenty of sleep and exercise, if possible with your illness.
- Avoid highly acidic foods, like grapefruit, dairy (except yogurt), calcium-fortified products and high fiber foods. These foods may reduce the effectiveness of your antibiotics (1, 2).
How to Recover From Antibiotics After Finishing the Medication:
Now that you have completed the full round of antibiotics and are feeling better, it is time to focus your energy on healing your gut. As Hippocrates said, “all disease begins in the gut“. In fact, 80% of your immune system lives there. Therefore, getting your gut bacteria back to a balanced state as quickly as possible is crucial. Follow these five steps to help your body speed up the healing process:
- Flood your body with good bacteria.
- Continue taking a probiotic supplement for at least three weeks after completing the medication. Choose a probiotic that contains 10 billion CFUs or more.
- Add naturally prebiotic foods like cassava, leafy greens, bananas, onions, and high fiber foods to your diet.
- Continue eating fermented foods and foods naturally containing probiotics.
- Starve the bad bacteria. After taking an antibiotic you are at a higher risk of candida overgrowth. To keep candida in check:
- Avoid eating sugar, refined flours, fast food, and other junk foods.
- Consider completing a candida cleanse. Cleanses are a great way to reset your system and jump-start the process of rebuilding healthy gut bacteria.
- Repair your gut. Bone broth, collagen, and glutamine can help repair your gut lining.
- Eat real foods, such as fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and proteins, to fortify your body after your illness.
- Continue taking care of yourself by getting plenty of sleep, exercising and staying hydrated to aid in the healing process.
About the Author
Vanessa is a free-spirited, self-proclaimed modern-day hippy who uses creativity to clean up her lifestyle while saving money at the same time. You can read more about her frugal adventures on her blog, Creative Money Masters. You can also get this free calendar to successfully rid your home of toxins in four weeks or less.
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