Diarrhea, vomiting and stomach upset are common side effects of taking antibiotics. These symptoms usually disappear by themselves a few days after stopping antibiotics. However, antibiotics can leave your body “out of sync”; this is because antibiotics kill not only the bacteria behind your infection, but also any friendly bacteria in your body, such as your intestinal flora. There are natural ways to help your body recover from the effects of antibiotics.
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Eat foods containing acidophilus, a type of probiotics -- live microorganisms that help replenish the flora in your gastrointestinal tract. Foods rich in acidophilus include yogurt, kombucha tea, raw sauerkraut and kefir, a fermented yogurt drink. Eat these foods while you’re taking the antibiotics or start them after you finish your prescription.
Take probiotic supplements, available in powder or capsule form, while you’re taking the antibiotics, or start them after you finish your prescription. Follow label directions, since each brand has different amounts and recommendations.
Take milk thistle supplements, sold at health food stores and vitamin shops. Antibiotics can stress your liver, causing it to overwork trying to process the drugs. Milk thistle, a natural supplement, helps lower liver enzymes and might aid your recovery.
Eat a light diet of mostly fruits, vegetables and lean proteins, and avoid heavy, greasy foods rich in fats or sugars. This is especially important if you're experiencing gastrointestinal distress after taking antibiotics. A healthy, wholesome diet helps your digestive system heal quicker.
- “Antibiotics Simplified”; Jason C. Gallagher, et al.; 2011
- Bupa: Antibiotics
- AskDrSears.com: Antibiotic Side Effects
- Health Sciences Institute: Antibiotic Overuse Puts Liver Function in Danger