This time of year, many of us will be prescribed necessary antibiotics for respiratory, throat, and stubborn ear infections. Others will ask for antibiotics when they aren’t really needed: for viruses (which aren’t affected by antibiotics anyway) or minor infections that can resolve on their own with a little time and management.
When you take antibiotics too often or for the wrong reasons, it can alter certain bacteria so that antibiotics don't work against them anymore. This can leave you with fewer options when you really DO need an effective drug.
Antibiotics don’t just kill the bacteria causing your infection. They can also wreak havoc on the beneficial bacteria in your gut, where balance is key to keeping your digestion, mood, and immune system on track.
For these reasons, I’m not a fan of antibiotics at all, and have managed without them for nearly a decade. But recently, I had an eye infection that just would NOT respond to natural remedies. My eye swelled shut, and it was time to ask for help.
When my eye doctor prescribed a 10-day antibiotic, I knew I’d need to take steps to keep my system in balance. In addition to my usual prebiotics and a daily serving of yogurt with live cultures, I made a batch of applesauce using a recipe by integrative pediatrician Dr. Ana-Maria Temple.
This recipe requires keeping the apple skin ON, to preserve the pectin – a soluble starchy fiber that occurs naturally in the cell walls of fruits and vegetables, giving them structure.
Apple pectin works as a prebiotic, stimulating the growth and activity of helpful bacteria, and inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria in the digestive tract. In essence, it coats your gut, protecting it from antibiotic damage. Keep this recipe handy – it’s a good one!
DR. TEMPLE’S APPLESAUCE
- 3 apples
- ¼ cup raisins
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Blender/Food Processor
- Lidded container
1 - Core and cube the apples, leaving the skin on.
2 - Place apples in the saucepan with raisins and cinnamon.
3 - Add water until the apples are 1/3 of the way submerged.
4 - Boil for 5 minutes, stirring often, until apple skin is shiny.
5 - Cool mixture completely, then blend.
6 - Store applesauce in lidded container in the fridge.
7 - Eat 2 Tbsp. of this mixture 3 times daily while you’re taking antibiotics.