The following editorial is from my good friend Spencer Thornton, MD. We couldn’t agree more with his observations and the crisis that is rapidly at hand.
Antibotic Armageddon: A Global Crisis by Spencer Thornton, MD
In a recent TED talk, the esteemed science writer, Maryn McKenna, recounted terrifying stories behind emerging drug-resistant diseases that medical science is barely keeping at bay. Bacteria are showing up that are resistant to all but one or two antibiotics.
Today there are bacterial and viral diseases developing for which there are almost no effective antibiotics. McKenna reports, “In the United States and Europe about 50,000 people die annually from drug resistant diseases. It is estimated that there are about 700,000 deaths per year from antibiotic resistant diseases worldwide. If we don’t get this under control, it’s projected that by 2050 10 million people a year around the world will die from antibiotic-resistant infections.”
We are entering the post-antibiotic era.
Prior to Sir Alexander Fleming’s 1941 discovery of penicillin people died much younger than they do today, not of cancer, heart disease or lifestyle choices, but from infections (blood poisoning). Diseases that had been death-dealing prior to that time had met their match, and Fleming was awarded a Nobel Prize for his work in 1945. Penicillin was used universally from 1943 for everything you could think of. Penicillin resistance developed by 1945. Other antibiotics were developed. Vancomycin was put on the market in 1972, and resistance became evident by 1988. More recently developed antibiotics developed resistance in shorter and shorter times – some within a year of introduction.
How did this happen?
We’ve done it to ourselves. The main cause is overuse of antibiotics. We’ve gotten careless – almost cavalier, with antibiotics. We automatically demand antibiotics for every cold, sore throat, earache, and red eye we encounter.
Bacteria compete against each other for dominance and produce toxins for protection, and other bacteria evolve defenses against those toxins. These toxins are destructive to animal tissue and are becoming ubiquitous, partly because we overuse antibiotics and are careless in their use. 50 percent of antibiotics given in hospitals are unnecessary; 45 percent of those given in doctor’s offices are given for conditions (like viral infections) that antibiotics cannot help.
80 percent of antibiotics used in farm animals are given, not for active disease, but to fatten them up. Similarly, agricultural and aqua cultural uses are for product appearance. This is especially true of sea foods (shrimp and fish) imported from China and India and other Asian countries.
Why hasn’t our FDA better controlled antibiotic use in agriculture and medicine?
Armageddon is today. Tomorrow we have real problems. Without effective antibiotics we will lose people with weakened immune systems; people with cancer, aids, transplant recipients, cardiac patients, premature babies, cataract, intra-ocular and joint replacement patients. Today, preoperative antibiotics seem to be the standard-of-care for most surgical patients.
But there is hope. Chemicals produced by and in the body are effective in many cases to combat disease. Immune system modulators including fermented yeast, beta glucans and broad spectrum antioxidants are receiving more attention from the public and the medical profession. Nutrients that appropriately stimulate immune cells (B and T-cells) and provide overall antioxidant support are becoming more important as we face the challenge of resistance to disease. And, when an infection is overcome, subsequent immunity may result. All these nutrients sited by Dr. Thornton may be found in our Immune support formula: ImmuGuard
The best way to avoid antibiotic abuse it to keep your own internal defense system strong. Your immune system needs key nutrients just like every other system in your body, yet we often overlook our immune health, taking it for granted until it can no longer respond fast enough and a cold or the flu is the result. I personally do an immune boot twice a year and then whenever I travel or find myself exposed to higher levels of pathogens. I use the formula we developed right here and you can too. It’s called ImmuGuard and you can get it from the link below:
For more information on caring for your immune system click the link below to watch my video:
Click here for Dr Whiting’s YouTube video about the Immune System
Please feel free to call our offices at 1-888-454-8464 with any questions you may have