I’ve come to believe we live in a very “anti-biotic” world. How do I mean that? It seems that everything must be disinfected, sterilized, fumigated, decontaminated, sanitized, purified, or pasteurized! Our concern about germs, viruses, fungi, and bacteria has led to a greater acceptance of living with an antibiotic bias.
Let’s examine what that term means. Biotic means “life” and anti means “against.” The word antibiotic means “against life.” Antibiotics destroy bacteria. However, that seems to also be the problem. Our desire to avoid unsanitary conditions has often brought about other unsuspected ailments.
We hear reports of colds, flu epidemics, and intestinal, yeast, vaginal, and urinary tract infections, but do we ever wonder if there’s a connection to our use of antibiotics? With all of our foods being pasteurized, irradiated, and hosed down with disinfected, sanitized water, how could such ailments arise? Perhaps it’s time to consider probiotics: nutritional elements that support and foster life.
Antibiotics destroy harmful bacteria, but eliminate the beneficial healthy bacteria at the same time. This is often evidenced by the reaction that some folks experience after taking an antibiotic—diarrhea!
Here’s what WebMD has to say about it: “Sometimes good medicines lead to bad diarrhea. ‘As more patients are treated with antibiotics, we see more cases of Clostridium difficile colitis,’ Rapisarda tells WebMD. While going after bad bacteria, antibiotics can also kill good bacteria that protect your intestines. ‘Ironically, antibiotics to treat one type of infection can make a patient more vulnerable to this other type of infection.’ Blood pressure medications, cancer drugs, and antacids can also trigger diarrhea. If you take any of these medications and experience frequent or ongoing diarrhea, let your doctor know.”
Here is where we need to go pro-life, as in probiotics. These are the beneficial bacteria that our bodies must have in order to remain healthy. Healthy bacteria such as lactobacillus and bifidobacteria are responsible for our ability to synthesize vitamins, strengthen the immune system, and detoxify pre-cancerous substances. Without these beneficial bacteria, our bodies cannot survive. The probiotic environment is essential for life.
Many people as they age are no longer able to properly digest their food.
This is especially true in more industrialized countries where fast food is easily available. Additionally, consider how sterilized our packaged, canned, and prepared foods are. Eating these foods creates nutritional stress and digestive challenges. These digestive challenges are not evident in the areas of the globe where people still consume non-irradiated, unpasteurized foods. Garden-fresh fruits and vegetables, freshly picked and unsprayed with pesticides and herbicides, are the characteristic staple of the world’s healthiest and longest-lived people. These homegrown foods come into contact with organic soils rich in microorganisms and beneficial bacteria that help produce healthy intestinal flora.
Also, fermented foods are common table fare in these regions. Raw cultured foods are rich in lactobacillus. They prevent yeast and pathogenic bacteria from taking over the colon and other associated ailments. Many naturopathic doctors use cultured and fermented foods in their anti-cancer diets with amazing success. I’ve been fascinated by how diet affects life span in the longevity pockets of the world. This is why Katrina and I include foods such as raw sauerkraut, kimchi, and coconut milk yogurt as powerful sources of probiotics in our own diet. I guess you could say it’s just being probiotic!
Yes, choose life-supporting foods and you will prosper! Good health to you!