Antibiotics cause yeast infections because they also kill the good bacteria that keep yeast under control. Most antibiotics, other than broad-spectrum types, are targeted to individual species of bacteria. So in theory, taking these antibiotics should not upset your good bacterial balance. But when put to use in the human body, they do. Broad-spectrum types of antibiotics kill both good and bad bacteria.
Dr. John Pitt, on Penicillum in 1979 stated:
"It is very ironic that this humbled fungus, hailed as a benefactor of mankind, may by its very success prove to be a deciding factor in the decline of the present civilization".
Simply stated, antibiotics are dangerous mycotoxins, fungal metabolites made from fungi, that kill bacteria, even the good bacteria that is present in our intestines and essential for good health. This upsets the delicate balance of the yeast to bacteria ratio in your digestive system, giving candida yeast the upper hand in creating a yeast infection. Without the good bacteria in your system to control yeast, it spreads and becomes a toxic fungal parasite.
Penicillin is a good example of a fungal by-product called a mycotoxin. It was discovered from a mold (mold is a fungus) experiment that Dr. Fleming was performing on a bacterial colony. He added some mold from bread to the colony and observed that the fungus killed all the bacteria producing the substance he later named penicillin. The antibiotic cause of yeast infection was born in 1928 and antibiotics are so over-prescribed today that yeast infection is a growing epidemic.
In studies done on mice in 2000 and published in "Principals and Practices of Infectious Diseases", a "single injection of streptomycin eradicated the protective effect of normal flora".1 Streptomycin is usually prescribed for people that are allergic to penicillin and definitely establishes that sometimes antibiotics cause yeast.
The most common prescription for antibiotics is for upper respiratory infections, but according to Dr. Carol Kauffman, "most of these infections are caused by a fungi". These infections do not require an antibiotic as treatment, yet doctors continue to prescribe them. This will alter the natural balance of stomach bacteria to yeast allowing the yeast to overgrow, and the result is full-blown yeast infection, or worse.
In an article that was published in November of 2015, based on a study done by multiple doctors and scientists in the UK and Sweden on adults, it was found that a single 10 day course of antibiotics not only reduces population levels but also the overall diversity of the intestinal microbiome. Depending upon what antibiotic used, the effects lasted anywhere from 4 months to a year. The largest reduction was in the bacteria that produce butyrate, a substance that protect the intestine from inflammation and cancer.2,3
Doctors plead ignorance when their patients develop allergies, intestinal disorders, skin conditions, etc, not even realizing that antibiotics cause yeast infections and these other fungal diseases. Over time, your good stomach bacteria become overwhelmed by yeast as it kills even more of your good bacteria. Systemic candida or fungal disease can be the result.
With some illnesses it can become a never-ending cycle. Many women will get an antibiotic for their cold or flu, urinary tract infection, bacterial vaginosis, etc and get a vaginal yeast infection as a result. The doctor gives them an anti-fungal or an anti-fungal cream, or they purchase it over the counter at the local drugstore. The infection may go away for a little while, but then it returns. This will continue to happen until the resulting antibiotic destruction to the microbiome has recovered.
Not only do antibiotics cause yeast infections, but they have been found too cause these health conditions below.
In 1998 two scientists, Bernstein and Ross, discovered that antibiotics "significantly increased the risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in humans".
According to the 2001 Asthma and Allergy Report, the first immuno-deficiency syndrome was identified in 1952. Since that time 95 more have been identified with new conditions being discovered every day. The report also states that increased use of antibiotics in infancy is contributing to increased risks of allergies. What is interesting to me is in the 1950's antibiotics came into wide spread general use in medicine. Do you see a correlation here?
In June of 2016, Aalto University in Finland published a study linking the childhood use of antibiotics to the development of asthma, inflammatory bowel diseases, diabetes and obesity later in life.4
Antibiotic use can also lead to c difficule infection, which claims the lives of about 14,000 people a year.5
Antibiotics are also present in many common foods that most of us eat. More recently, antibiotics are now being detected in the water supply from our overuse. The waste water enters the sewer system, which is then treated, and in many cases pumped right back into the water table, rivers or lakes.6
The most common foods that have antibiotics in them in America are commercial beef, dairy and poultry. The livestock industry gives antibiotics to their animals, this is supposed to kill bad bacteria and make the food supply safer. But they are also used to fatten them up. A fat cow will sell more than a thin cow, won't it? But the antibiotics are also present in milk, cheese, and the meat itself as well. This is creating antibiotic resistance in humans and bad bacterial resistance to the drugs, not to mention the long-term health effects to our children, ultimately destroying the beneficial bacteria in your intestines allowing a yeast infection to grow.
Now it would be a rare individual that could go through life without ever being prescribed an antibiotic. I am in no way advocating to not ever take them because they do save lives. But choose wisely, do you really need to take them or not for whatever it is you have at the time? If you do, have your doctor prescribe Nystatin with it to avoid the possible overgrowth of yeast. Or get on a good high dose probiotic product such as CP-1 or the 11-Strain probiotic to offset the antibiotic caused destruction of your good bacteria and to help your good bacterial colonies replenish themselves. Doses should be a minimum 50 billion and the stronger the antibiotic, the more you should take.
While on the antibiotic do not take the probiotic at the same time of day. Usually antibiotics are taken with food so take your probiotic 30 minutes before breakfast and at bedtime. When you are done with the antibiotic, take the probiotic away from meals on an empty stomach with non-chlorinated water for at least another 4 to 12 months so you can fully recover.
To avoid antibiotics in meats, buy organic and grass fed beef. Not only is the fatty acid ratio correct, which will give you better health, but you will be avoiding the antibiotics as well.
Another cause of yeast infection and the destruction of stomach flora, although not near as bad as antibiotics, are anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen.
These two drugs are common over the counter medications that many people take and very few people realize what they are doing to their health when they take them. America has become a nation of drug dependent people. Not a night goes by when you don't see a TV commercial for some kind of drug promising some miraculous cure for something. These drugs all contribute to the destruction of bacteria which can allow yeast to get out of control.
The bottom line is, antibiotics cause yeast infections and in some cases it can take a year of good diet and taking high dose probiotics to recover.
If you have any questions about how antibiotics cause yeast infections or how to treat yourself and repair the damage? Please contact me through the contact page of this website.
1. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases. Published Date: 18th September 2009
2. Zaura E, Brandt BW, Teixeira de Mattos MJ, Buijs MJ, Caspers MPM, Rashid MU, Weintraub A, Nord CE, Savell A, Hu Y, Coates AR, Hubank M, Spratt DA, Wilson M, Keijser BJF, Crielaard W. 2015. Same exposure but two radically different responses to antibiotics: resilience of the salivary microbiome versus long-term microbial shifts in feces. mBio 6(6):e01693-15. doi:10.1128/mBio.01693-15.
3. E. Zaura et al. Same Exposure but Two Radically Different Responses to Antibiotics: Resilience of the Salivary Microbiome versus Long-Term Microbial Shifts in Feces, mBio (2015). DOI: 10.1128/mBio.01693-15
4. Aalto University. "Childhood antibiotic treatments reduce diversity, stability of intestinal microbiota." ScienceDaily. 22 June 2016.
5. Genome Med. 2016; 8: 39. Published online 2016 Apr 13. doi: 10.1186/s13073-016-0294-zPMCID: PMC4831151. The effects of antibiotics on the microbiome throughout development and alternative approaches for therapeutic modulation
6. Harvard Health Letter. Drugs in the water. Published: June, 2011
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