It’s September 1928. Alexander Fleming had just got back to his lab after a two-week vacation. Mistakenly, he had left a Petri dish of Staphylococcus bacteria out while he was gone. Before throwing it away, he noticed something strange about it. In the dish, there were circles of dead bacteria, where a fungus had started to grow. He hastily identified the fungus as a Penicillium fungus and isolated the chemical killing all the bacteria––and named it penicillin. Fleming had no idea what he had stumbled on––Fleming had found humanity’s first antibiotic.
For millions of years, a small cut had potential to be fatal from bacterial infection. For the first time in human history, only less than 100 years ago, bacteria were no longer a threat. People today see bacteria as more annoying than dangerous. If you get an infection today, like strep throat or get a dirty cut, you can go to the doctor and get one of many different antibiotics discovered to protect yourself and get better. Doctors are willing to give out these magical drugs to anyone. Unfortunately, like all good things, there’s a catch. And with antibiotics, the catch can be deadly.
Let’s say you’re prescribed some penicillin to heal your strep throat. After swallowing that first pill, it immediately starts killing the bacteria, killing the weakest bacteria first. The strong can handle a little more penicillin than the weak, but you’ve been prescribed enough to be sure that none of the bacteria live. Eventually your strep throat goes away, and you feel great! You stop taking the antibiotics before the bottle is finished, because your throat feels fine and you feel cured. This is where the trouble starts. The few bacteria scattered around that barely survived are the strongest bacteria of the bunch. They’ve learned how to fight off penicillin a little better, and now have a chance to get you sick again. The only difference is, this time, the penicillin might not work as well as it did. So, you take penicillin when you get sick again, and the strongest survive and spread again. See the problem? We’re breeding super-bacteria!
This cycle has bacteria-scientists panicked globally, and rightfully so. Many of our antibiotics don’t work at all anymore, and there are bacteria such as MRSA and VRSA (called superbugs) that are immune to our antibiotics that are becoming a real threat, especially to children with weak immune systems. The days of getting a deadly infection from a cut may be sooner than you think! So, what can we do about it? Unfortunately, doctors will understandably continue to prescribe antibiotics for as long as we––the consumers––want them. Luckily, the solution may be simple!
If you have acne, a mild strep throat, or are bothered by some bacteria, antibiotics should not be the only answer to turn to. Another way to fight off bugs is to boost your own immune system so your body can fight them off itself without any help from some fungus. Choosing other options for staying healthy rather than antibiotics may keep bacteria at bay! It’s healthier for you, too!
If you’re looking for an immune helper in a pill, Kare~N~Herbs certainly has the products for you. We specialize in adaptogens––herbs known to help fight stressors in the body and assist the immune system! (as well as mental health, fitness, hormones etc., but those are for another blog).
The two immune helpers scientifically studied herbs in our high-quality lineup of adaptogens is Rhodiola rosea in Energy Kare, and the Andrographis paniculata in our Kold Kare and Immune Kare boxes. These rare supplements have been touted for thousands of years as being beneficial to human health, and recently entered scientific study as potential future options to benefit modern human’s health too! You can try them out yourself by visiting karenherbs.com! Stay healthy, everyone!
The Adaptogen Experts at Kare~N~Herbs