Photo by a-md

Childhood Antibiotics Now Linked To Crohn’s, lupus, multiple sclerosis

Antibiotics are one of the most prescribed (and abused) medications in the world. They are often incorrectly, incompetently prescribed, particularly to children, for ailments that aren’t even resolved by taking the medications. They are so heavily prescribed that superbugs have risen from a condition known as “antibiotic resistance.”

Antibiotics are often taken for granted but can do serious damage to the body. Take Levaquin, for example, it now has a black box warning on it for the damages it has caused people. And yet, it remains a commonly prescribed form of antibiotics.

The gut is what incurs the most damage from antibiotics. The gut’s good bacteria, which is the bacteria that feeds from prebiotics (indigestible carbohydrates), that’s under attack from antibiotics. The antibiotics kill off this good bacteria. The good gut bacteria contributes to our overall mental and physical health. Disruptions in gut bacteria have often been linked to depression.

Now, things are getting worse…

A new Monash University study which was published in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology has found that antibiotics do indeed impede the growth and development of normal gut bacteria. And this means a worse immune system for kids. The immune system function is primarily located in the gut. Now, the study was performed on mice, but there is great confidence that the researchers at Monash got it right.

The study treated female mice with a slew of antibiotics while the mice were pregnant. Next, they treated the mice’s babies with the same antibiotic regimen during the first three weeks of their lives. Another group was tested without the antibiotics present.

When the mice grew to eight weeks old, it was (unsurprisingly) found that CD4 T cells (these are immune system cells) were overly active.

“Our intestinal bacteria are now understood to have a major role in shaping immune health and disease, but the details of this process remain poorly understood,” said John Wherry, Ph.D., deputy editor of the journal in a press release. “These new studies provide an important clue as to how the early signals from our gut bacteria shape key immune cells and how these neonatal events can shape disease potential later in life.”

CD4 T cells are the basis for responding to inflammation. When they become overactive, it can lead to lupus, Crohn’s, and other autoimmune diseases.

These findings also further enforce the concept that creating a healthy gut environment in humans could be one of the cures for many of our ailments. It certainly tells us that overuse of antibiotics is a real, defined problem in our society.

Photo by a-md

Photo by AngelsWings

Dr. Say He Cured Autism Through Gut Bacteria….So What’s Really Happening?

At 22-months Jackson was diagnosed on the autistic spectrum. Doctors told his parents there was no hope of recovery. Over 2 years Mark Hyman, MD addressed his gut inflammation, mercury toxicity, and nutritional imbalances. Today, Jackson’s is a normally functioning little boy who loves baseball and playing with friends.

The question is, can a better understanding of the gut and brain connection be a window into the cure for autism? Do the chemicals produced in the gut affect or cause autism?

Many people have been critical of Dr. Hyman’s video, but it doesn’t dissolve the real question and science at play.

In an article on Autism Speaks, researcher Dae-Wook Kang elaborates:

“Most gut bacteria are beneficial, aiding food digestion, producing vitamins, and protecting against harmful bacteria,” says Dae-Wook Kang of the Biodesign Institute of Arizona State University, an author on the new study. “If left unchecked, however, harmful bacteria can excrete dangerous metabolites or disturb a balance in metabolites that can affect the gut and the rest of the body, including the brain.”

There has been other research suggesting similar gut and autism connections. Research has shown that autistic kids have a different gut bacteria makeup.

In 2014, Kang and his team compared the bacterial waste products in stool samples from 23 children with autism. They compared these to samples from 21 typically developing children.

Overall, they found that children with autism had significantly different concentrations of seven of the fifty chemical compounds they detected.

“Most of the seven metabolites could play a role in the brain as neurotransmitters or controlling neurotransmitter biosynthesis,” Kang says. “We suspect that gut microbes may alter levels of neurotransmitter-related metabolites, affecting gut-to-brain communication and/or altering brain function.”

Research has also shown that abnormal and less diverse communities of gut bacteria exist in children with autism.

Does this mean we will find a cure? It seems the biggest obstacle in finding a cure exists at the pharmaceutical level where cures aren’t profitable. But maybe at some point, private funding makes headway. Autism Speaks started an initiative here.

It has been proposed that both antibiotics and vaccines alter gut bacteria. Could this be a window into the reality of the cause? The greater question is, will we ever really know?

Photo by AngelsWings