Antibiotics are incredible tools that help millions of everyday Australians stave off illness and maintain their overall health. Their benefits are numerous – from eradicating infections, to being used as a preventive measure prior to surgery, to their rapid action that can sometimes show results within just a few hours.
However, they can cause significant disruption to your gut microbiome and impact your overall health and wellbeing. This is because antibiotics not only kill the harmful bacteria but may also destroy the good bacteria in your gut, leading to a microbiome imbalance. This can result in the onset of digestive issues, including diarrhoea, bloating, gas and more.
To help restore your gut health during and after a course of antibiotics, adding probiotics and postbiotics to your diet may be beneficial.
How antibiotics can impact your gut
The most effective property of antibiotics is that they work by eliminating the bacteria that cause infections. The main problem, however, is their inability to discern between the harmful bacteria that is causing the infection and the beneficial bacteria in your gut.
Ultimately, that means antibiotics can wipe out a significant amount of good bacteria in your gut, leaving it in a more vulnerable state. In worst-case scenarios, this can potentially lead to microbial dysbiosis, which is an imbalance in the gut microbiome that can cause a range of digestive issues.
How probiotics and postbiotics play a powerful role
Probiotics are live microorganisms that can restore the balance of bacteria in your gut microbiome – particularly helpful when you are on a course of antibiotics. In fact, the National Institutes of Health advises that health practitioners should recommend their patients take probiotics when prescribing them antibiotics.
In terms of how they support your overall wellbeing during and after taking antibiotics, probiotics can help reduce the risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, which is a common side effect. They may also boost your immune system, improve your gut health and even reduce inflammation.
Postbiotics, on the other hand, are by-products of the fermentation process that happens when probiotics in your gut start to break down food. They include short-chain fatty acids, enzymes and organic acids, which can also have a positive impact on your overall wellbeing. Postbiotics may improve the barrier function of your gut, as well as enhance your immune system and minimise inflammation – just like probiotics. In terms of their benefits for people taking antibiotics specifically, a recent study found that postbiotics can “partially restore the gut microbiota disrupted by antibiotic exposure”.
How to incorporate probiotics and postbiotics into your daily routine
During a course of antibiotics, it’s a good idea to incorporate probiotics into your diet to support greater gut balance. Probiotics are often found in various fermented foods, including yoghurt, kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut and kombucha. But they are also easy to add to your diet in supplement form with products like liquid concentrates and powders, such as Meluka’s probiotics and postbiotics range that works to support your overall gut health and wellbeing.
For example, both the P3 Gut Builder (liquid concentrate) and Complete Gut Nutrition System (powder) are triple-action products, meaning you get all the benefits of pre-, pro- and postbiotics to help kickstart your journey to better gut health. A serving of P3 is easy to add to your drinks while the Gut Nutrition powder can be mixed with water or sprinkled over food. With a mild flavour, they are so easy to integrate into your diet for digestive wellbeing.
If you want to start balancing your gut microbiome with a change of diet, you can get started today by eating the most appropriate diet for your specific needs. Our range of gut-loving recipes that include prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotics can help you decide on the right food and drinks to consume during your course of antibiotics, in order to maintain a healthy gut.
Antibiotics have become an essential part of modern life, however they come saddled with the disadvantage of destroying good gut bacteria, which may lead to digestive issues. Thankfully, both probiotics and postbiotics can help you maintain balance in your gut.
In addition to eating probiotic-rich foods as part of a balanced diet, you can also take advantage of Meluka's diverse range of probiotic and postbiotic products.
Explore the wide range of Meluka products at our online store, and get healthy ideas at our blog for ongoing health and wellness.