Medication Effects On The Immune System

The immune system is primarily affected by the good bacteria in our intestines. Using antibiotics is intended to kill bad bacteria, but it kills both the good and bad, leaving the intestines susceptible to pathogens.    Previously, I wrote about the need to take good bacteria after a course of antibiotics here but there are many more medications that cause the same problem.

All medications create side effects, but the detrimental  effect on the immune system is not well publicized.   Common medications such as, antifungals (Diflucan, Nystatin, etc.), pain meds (Aspirin, Ibuprofen, etc.), the birth control pill, corticosteroids (prednisone, steroid inhalers, etc.), chemotherapy and others all deplete the good bacteria in the intestinal tract.  Often these meds are taken long-term which requires daily use of probiotics to keep healthy immune and digestive systems.  I wrote about the side effects with taking antibiotics here  and these apply to all of the meds listed above.

The good bacteria produce more B-vitamins than we can consume orally each day.  The good bacteria help the intestinal cells to produce enzymes that digest proteins and carbohydrates. The good bacteria also create the proper pH to maintain the perfect balance of bacteria for a healthy immune system and the ability to fight off strep, E. Coli, staph and parasites to name a few.

The loss of these valuable healthy bacteria leads to inadequate digestion, growth of bad bacteria,  creating an increased likelihood of allergies, candida, parasites, and any digestive disorder.  The disrupted digestive function impairs absorption of nutrients, affecting neurotransmitters that may cause  emotional disorders and psychological diseases, such as ADHD, depression and even Schizophrenia.

I consider probiotics to be like seeds for a healthy garden in your intestines.  If you take any of the above medications, take a daily supply of at least 15 billion probiotics and eat mostly perishable foods such as vegetables, fruits, eggs, meat, nuts and seeds and very little processed foods to keep a healthy immune system.

June 30 2013 09:19 am | Healthy Tip Of The Week

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Julie Wilson, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Julie Wilson and her community. Dr. Wilson encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.