In 1929, Alexander Fleming, the man credited with discovering penicillin, warned that bacteria could develop resistance to the newly discovered antibiotic, thus creating a more difficult problem. Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) lists antibiotic-resistance as one of the top 3 threats to human health. There are now 7 common species of bacteria that are resistant to all antibiotics, with Tuberculosis (TB) being one of the main ones, and concerns of upcoming TB epidemics being untreatable by medicine.

Was Alexander Fleming a prophet, or a scientist who clearly observed the harmful potential inherent in antibiotics? With antibiotics being identified as one of the “top 3 threats to human health” on the planet, his words have now become an unavoidable reality.

The word antibiotic means “against life”, which now seems to have been a very appropriate choice of words. The widespread use of antibiotics began after World War II. It was quickly heralded as a cure-all for everything, even though from the very beginning it was associated with causing diseases and conditions. Despite the fact that antibiotics have only demonstrated effectiveness against bacteria, MDs continue to use it for viruses, yeasts, fungi, parasites, inflammation, vertigo, tinnitus, and a wide variety of conditions in which its use has never been approved.

A look at the research provides more information on how this threat is affecting us. Antibiotics have been shown to cause:

Increased cardiovascular disease, strokes, and death (1), Immune system suppression (2), Altered behavior, anxiety, and nervous system imbalances (3), Increased pathogenicity of Staph Aureus (4),  Development of systemic allergic diseases (5), Increased risk of pancreatitis (6), Increases in Strep throat (7), Increased risk of sudden death (8), Increase risk of infections (9), Increased risk of breast cancer (10), Life-threatening colitis (11), Obesity (12-15), Kidney stones (16), Kidney damage (17), Asthma (18), Systemic lupus (19), Eye disorders (20), Cancer (21), Sepsis and Systemic inflammation (22), Colon Cancer (23), Increased susceptibility to disease (24), Arthritis (25), Nerve Damage (26), Lung damage (27), Nutrient deficiencies (28), Liver failure (29), and many more as yet to be determined effects.

How can one class of drugs create so many diseases? The human body is now being designated as a “super-organism” that consists of 10 trillion human cells and over 100 trillion bacterial cells. Together, they have co-evolved over centuries to become one organism that we know as man. Destroying any of the cells creates an imbalance in the stability, or homeostasis, of this super-organism.

Antibiotics destroy the homeostasis created by the bacterial flora, immune system, and epithelial cells lining the intestinal tract. Most researchers refer to the role of the bacterial flora in health as “Important,” “Necessary”, “Crucial,” “Critical,” “Essential,” and “Vital.”

Several studies have shown that 5- and 7-day courses of antibiotics can destroy all 100 trillion of the bacteria in the gut and permanently alter the make-up of bacterial flora (30,31).

The (WHO) and the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) have instituted campaigns to reduce the occurrence of antibiotic resistance, but the ever-growing list of harmful effects associated with antibiotic use has yet to be addressed.

Arjun Srinivasan of the CDC has stated that, “Medicine is a study in humility, we learn every day that something we thought was true is not correct.”

The medical field’s continued adherence to the “see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil” philosophy with medications continues to pave the way for diseases and deaths related to antibiotic use.

Many people are tired of the “one pill for everything” approach and have turned to the use of probiotics and natural remedies. Probiotics aptly mean “for life,” a much more attractive proposition for anyone seeking to solve problems instead of create them.

Ongoing research into the use of probiotics parallels that of antibiotics, but with the opposite effects. Whereas antibiotics have been shown to cause pancreatitis, probiotics have been shown to help correct it (32).

Where antibiotics create cardiovascular disease, probiotics prevent it (33). The list goes on and on. Intestinal bacteria are so involved in our state of health and function that they even play a role in sustaining a woman’s pregnancy, and thus ensuring the ongoing proliferation of man as a species (34).

The concept of attacking these lifelong bacterial “friends” of ours was promoted by Louis Pasteur, but later rejected by him prior to his death. The medical profession seized the opportunity to promote a war against bacteria and other microorganisms, and like most war-mongers, it fails to see the resultant death and collateral damage as anything but just and necessary.

It is time for each of us to take responsibility for our own health, instead of entrusting it to a profession that has lost its way. We can no longer expect the medical profession to lead us out of the abyss they have led us into. We must make choices that are for life, not against it. Over 100,000 people die each year from medications, and many more have their lives destroyed by them. It’s time to make wiser choices!

(1) Azithromycin and The Risk of Cardiovascular Death. N Engl J Med 2012; 366:1881-1890May 17, 2012.  http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1003833

(2) Experimental Study of Antibiotic-Induced Immunosuppression in Mice. II. Th, Ts and NC Cell Involvement. Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 1983;6(4):301-12.   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6231158

(3) The Intestinal Microbiota Determines Mouse Behavior and Brain BDNF Levels. Gastroenterology, Vol. 140, Issue 5, Supplement 1, Page S-57. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110517110315.htm

(4) Impact of Sub-Inhibitory Antibiotics on Fibronectin-Mediated Host Cell Adhesion and Invasion by Staphylococcus Aureus. BMC Microbiology 2011, 11:263.   http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2180/11/263/abstract

(5) Commensal Bacteria-derived Signals Regulate Basophil Hematopoiesis and Allergic Inflammation. Nature Medicine 18, 538–546 (2012).  http://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v18/n4/full/nm.2657.html

(6) Pancreas: Acute Pancreatitis Risk Higher in Current Tetracycline Users. Nature Reviews Gastroenterology and Hepatology 8, 658 (December 2011).  http://www.nature.com/nrgastro/journal/v8/n12/full/nrgastro.2011.192.html?WT.ec_id=NRGASTRO-201112

(7) Association of Pharyngitis With Oral Antibiotic Use for the Treatment of Acne. Arch Dermatol. 2012;148(3):326-332.  http://archderm.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1105235

(8) Antibiotic Interaction Boosts Sudden Death Risk. Health News. 2005 Jan;11(1):2.  http://www.mc.vanderbilt.edu/reporter/index.html?ID=3511

(9) Antibiotic exposure as a risk factor for fluconazole-resistant Candida bloodstream infection. Antim. Agents Chemother. 56:2518-2523.  http://www.asm.org/images/Communications/tips/2012/0512candida.pdf

(10) Antibiotic Use in Relation to the Risk of Breast Cancer. JAMA. 2004;291:827-835.  http://www.ama-assn.org/special/827.pdf

(11) Gastrointestinal Disorders and the Critically Ill. Clostridium Difficile Infection and Pseudomembranous Colitis. Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2003 Jun;17(3):475-93.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?db=pubmed&cmd=Search&doptcmdl=Citation&defaultField=Title%20Word&term=Wilcox

(12)  The Gut Microbiota as an Environmental factor That Regulates Fat Storage. PNAS November 2, 2004 vol. 101 no. 44 15718-15723.  http://www.pnas.org/content/101/44/15718.full

(13) An Obesity-Associated Gut Microbiome with Increased Capacity for Energy Harvest. Nature. 2006 Dec 21;444(7122):1027-31.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17183312

(14) Gut Microbiota and Its Possible Relationship with Obesity. Mayo Clin Proc. 2008 Apr;83(4):460-9.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18380992

(15) Role of Gut Microflora in the Development of Obesity and Insulin Resistance Following High-Fat Diet Feeding. Pathol Biol (Paris). 2008 Jul;56(5):305-9. Epub 2008 Jan 30.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18178333

(16) Oxalobacter formigenes and its role in oxalate metabolism in the human gut. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 230: 1–7.  http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1016/S0378-1097%2803%2900864-4/abstract;jsessionid=3F1DA9AFF4253C3DE513B8A5567A91B2.d03t02

(17) Anthracycline Antibiotics Induce Acute Renal Tubular Toxicity in Children with Cancer. Pathol Oncol Res. 2007;13(3):249-53. Epub 2007 Oct 7.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17922055

(18) Antibiotic use in early childhood and the development of asthma. Clinical & Experimental Allergy, 29: 766–771.  http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1046/j.1365-2222.1999.00536.x/abstract?deniedAccessCustomisedMessage=&userIsAuthenticated=false

(19) Minocycline-Induced Lupus. Dermatology 2000;200:223–231.  http://content.karger.com/ProdukteDB/produkte.asp?Aktion=ShowAbstractBuch&ArtikelNr=18387&ProduktNr=225592

(20) Drug-Induced Optic neuropathy. US Pharm. 2011;36(4):HS2-HS6.  http://www.uspharmacist.com/content/d/feature/i/1473/c/27859/

(21) Variation in Antibiotic-Induced Microbial Recolonization Impacts on the Host Metabolic Phenotype. J. Proteome Res., 2011, 10 (8), pp 3590–3603.  http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/pr200243t

(22) Antibiotic-Induced Endotoxin Release and Clinical Sepsis: A Review. J Chemother. 2001 Nov;13 Spec No 1(1):159-72.  http://ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/11936361

(23) Altered Gut Flora Are Associated with Septic Complications and Death in Critically Ill Patients with Ssytemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome. Digestive Diseases and Sciences, 2011, Volume 56, Number 4, Pages 1171-1177   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3059822/

(24) Shifting the Balance: Antibiotic Effects on Host-Microbiota Mutualism. Nature Reviews Microbiology 9, 233-243 (April 2011).  http://www.nature.com/nrmicro/journal/v9/n4/full/nrmicro2536.html?WT.ec_id=NRMICRO-201104

(25) Drug-Induced Arthritic and Connective Tissue Disorders. Semin Arthritis Rheum 38:249-264.  http://www.laboratoriosilesia.com/upfiles/sibi/r_002_drug.pdf

(26) Peripheral Neuropathy with Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics.  Annals of Pharmacotherapy, Dec. 2001;35(12):1540-47.  http://medicationsense.com/articles/may_aug_05/warning_antibiotics_052205.html

(27) Azithromycin Reduces the Viability of Human Bronchial Smooth Muscle Cells: Azithromycin Effect on Human Bronchial SMCs. The Journal of Antibiotics 63, 71-75 (February 2010)  http://www.nature.com/ja/journal/v63/n2/full/ja2009125a.html

(28) Reduction of Vitamin K2 Concentrations in Human Liver Associated with the Use of Broad Spectrum Antimicrobials. Clin Invest Med. 1994 Dec;17(6):531-9.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7895417

(29)  Drug-related Hepatotoxicity and Acute Liver Failure. Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition. October 2008 – Volume 47 – Issue 4 – p 395-405.  http://journals.lww.com/jpgn/Fulltext/2008/10000/Drug_related_Hepatotoxicity_and_Acute_Liver.1.aspx

(30) ProphylacticNon-Absorbable Antibiotics in Leukaemic patients. J Hyg (Lond) 1980 August; 85(1): 141–151.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2134008/?tool=pmcentrez

(31) Phillips ML 2009. Gut Reaction: Environmental Effects on the Human Microbiota. Environ Health Perspect 117:A198-A205.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2685866/

(32)  Correlation between Protection against Sepsis by probiotic Therapy and Stimulation of a Novel Bacterial PhylotypeAppl. Environ. Microbiol. November 2011 vol. 77 no. 21 7749-7756.  http://aem.asm.org/content/77/21/7749

(33) Potential of Probiotics in Controlling cardiovascular Diseases. J Cardiovasc Dis Res. 2010 Oct-Dec; 1(4): 213–214. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3023901/

(34) Host remodeling of the Gut Microbiome and Metabolic Changes During Pregnancy. Cell, Volume 130, Issue 3, 3 August 2012, Pages 470480. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S009286741200829X