In 1928, Professor Alexander Fleming, a bacteriologist working at St Mary’s Hospital in London accidentally discovered Penicillin. It was the first of the antibiotics but failed to stabilize the substance because the germ-destroying qualities lasted for only a few days.
The next major breakthrough was achieved when stabilization was achieved by Australian-born pathologist Howard Florey and the German-born Ernst Chain, a chemist, working at Oxford University in 1940
The invention of antibiotic has proved to be the "miracle drug" but indiscriminate use has led to resistant strains, such as the British Superbug MRSA.
Many microbiologists will tell you that, great though antibiotics have been, it was improvement in basic hygiene that gave the greatest rewards to health. And antibiotics are being targeted more and more as the bringers of long term ill health.Asthma and Allergies
Antibiotics linked to huge rise
in allergies - 17:06 27 May 04 Source: NewScientist.com
The increasing use of antibiotics to
treat disease may be responsible for the rising rates of asthma and allergies.
By upsetting the body's normal balance of gut microbes, antibiotics may prevent
our immune system from distinguishing between harmless chemicals and real
Asthma has increased by around 160 per cent globally in the last 20 years. Currently about a quarter of schoolchildren in the US and a third of those in the UK have the condition, but pinning down the causes of the rise has proved difficult. Some researchers have blamed modern dust-free homes, while others have pointed to diet.
Antibiotics have been implicated by some epidemiological studies. For example, the rise in allergies and asthma has tracked widespread antibiotic use. Furthermore, research in Berlin, Germany, has found that both antibiotic treatment and asthma were low in the east compared to the west when the wall came down. As antibiotic use has increased in the east though, so has asthma. This study is particularly valuable because the politically divided populations were genetically very similar and enjoyed much the same menu.
Crohn's Disease (Source BMJ Journals)
There is a highly significant association between Crohn's disease and prior antibiotic use in this data. This is unlikely to be explained by reporting bias in view of the prospective recording of all prescriptions. If this association is causal then it may explain about a quarter of all Crohn's disease.
The Body Language website prefers foods to pills, so how do you get good intestinal flora?
Pro-biotics are a dose of healthy bacteria. What you really need is PRE-BIOTICS - the foods that feed your natural bacteria.
In a healthy gut, the good bacteria
naturally produce antimicrobial agents that kill off or inhibit the more harmful
micro-organisms that can bind to the gut wall - where the damage they can cause
include a condition called Leaky Gut.
The European market in probiotics is already worth in excess of £520 million and the fastest-growing sector of that market is the UK. Researchers now estimate that globally, the total market value of so-called functional foods, including pre- and probiotics, will be in the region of $100 billion in the first part of this century - so the race is on to find those foods that will perform a prebiotic function in the gut.
Don't bother. All you need is good,
healthy food. Cheap and cheerful.
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