Thursday, July 24, 2008

Do Antibiotics "Cure" Disease?

Antibiotics have been grossly overused in modern times. When they were first invented, they were certainly necessary to help wipe out virulent diseases spreading and killing people. As time went on, doctors began prescribing them for everything from sore throats to common colds to skin infections. We are now faced with serious repercussions. Due to the overuse of these drugs, it is now commonplace for super-bacteria to thrive and are virtually unstoppable when doctors prescribe medications to combat them.

Antibiotics are commonly used to treat infections caused by bacteria, but many people underestimate the power of alternative treatments and the body's own natural immune system to defend against these invaders. The average health of a person living developed societies is less than good, and because of this factor immunity is generally lower anyway. If a healthy person were to become ill, depending on the circumstances, conceivably the time to get over an infection or illness would be much diminished or even non-existent compared to someone with a weakened immune system.

When antibiotics are used, the stronger bacteria can survive and cause a strengthening of the bacteria instead of destroying it. What results is bacteria mutating into even stronger forms which are then resistant to the same medication. Because of the overuse of these drugs in humans and animals, many antibiotics are virtually useless against bacteria - such as Staphylococcus aureus. Penicillin used to be the commonly prescribed medication for this bacteria, but S. aureus is now resistant to it.

It is best to live a healthy lifestyle and allow the natural immunity to fight infection rather than taking antibiotics at the first sign of illness. It is also important to avoid eating factory or industrial meats, meat products, and dairy products as they contain antibiotics which can also increase bacterial resistance. Many natural remedies exist to help destroy certain bacterias, and should be considered before resorting to pharmaceutical medications. For best results, consult a qualified health care practitioner experienced with these methods.

For more information on the overuse of antibiotics, visit the Sustainable Table.

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