It has been known for some time now that long-term antibiotic use or over-use leads to many unpleasant consequences, including less resistance to superbugs such as MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and conditions that affect the gut and immunity such as thrush and candida. Recent studies have also shown that not only is the use of long-term use of antibiotics harder on the health than once thought but it also leads to a higher risk of art disease, especially in older women.
Women Over 60 Most at Risk of Antibiotic Related Heart Problems
A study was done at the Tulane University Obesity Research Center in New Orleans and published in the European Heart Journal found that women who were aged 60 and over who took antibiotics for two months or more, would develop cardiovascular disease. The risk was 28% higher for women who took the antibiotics for longer than two months. A comparison study done in tandem with women between the ages of 20 and 39 found that who took the antibiotics for two months or longer revealed no elevated risk of heart disease.
The higher risk was attributed to increased and more prolonged use of antibiotics in middle age in later life and the cumulative effect of taking several rounds of antibiotics in a row. The antibiotics were prescribed mostly for urinary tract infections, dental problems, and respiratory issues.
Antibiotics Affect Gut Health Which, In Turn, Affects The Heart
It has been known for decades that antibiotics damage the health of your gut, so much so that many health professionals suggest you take a course of probiotics (good bacteria) along with the prescription to help protect your gut. When bad bacteria flourish in your gut, it can take a toll on your heart function.
Without healthy gut bacteria, your body cannot break down lecithin, a fat found in a lot of high protein foods including meat, eggs, and dairy. This encourages plaque deposits to form within arteries (atherosclerosis) and the more plaque you have in your blood, the greater your risk of heart disease becomes. A study published in the journal Atherosclerosis found that the risk of atherosclerosis was enhanced when metabolites produced by certain gut microbes were reduced.
A Shorter Course or No Antibiotics Is Best
Just one course of antibiotics can negatively impact the state of your gut’s microbiome for up to a year, so imagine what taking two or three courses in arrow could do to harm your heart health Whenever possible, take a shorter course of antibiotics rather than a longer course or none at all. It is also a good idea to avoid taking antibiotics unnecessarily. For instance, most respiratory infections are viral in nature and antibiotics, which were invented to treat bacterial infections, do not do anything to eliminate the virus from your system.
The best medicine is prevention as they say, which means that it is important for you to keep your body in balance by taking care of the health of your gut’s microbiome. To protect yourself, choose antibiotic-free, organic food and eat traditionally fermented and cultured foods, such as sauerkraut and yogurt to your diet.
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