Four Easy Ways to Curb the Side Effects from Antibiotics

Although it's better than getting an infection, the toll of taking an antibiotics can be brutal for many - myself included. The side affects can and often include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain. 

After nearly slicing the top of my pinky off in a kitchen accident, my doctor prescribed amoxicillin to treat any existing and to prevent any future infection. I really struggled the first few days and by about the third day I was able to get the side effects dampened or under control. Here are some natural and easy things you can do to help:

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1. Increase your fiber intake.

If you're struggling with bouts of diarrhea, adding some fiber to your diet can help add some bulk back to your waste. I started most of my days with smoothies that included a big handful of spinach, half of a ripe avocado, 1 cup of frozen berries, 2 teaspoons of ground flax and 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk. Another great way to add some fiber is to grab a granola bar high in fiber. My favorite are the Zing brand bars. It's also helpful to add some high-fiber vegetables to your dinners like broccoli and Brussel sprouts. 

2. Try supplementing with probiotics, or probiotic foods.

Ask your doctor if they can recommend a probiotic to take while on your course of antibiotics. While the point of an antibiotic is to kill bacteria, studies have shown that taking a probiotic supplement can reduce symptoms of diarrhea and stomach pain. You can also eat probiotic-rich foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir, tempeh and kombucha. I personally found drinking kombucha during lunchtime, between doses, helped with my stomach pain. 

3. Drink ginger or mint tea.

Ginger is considered a natural anti-inflammatory agent and has been shown to help ease digestion and feelings of nausea. If ginger isn't your favorite, try peppermint tea, which has shown to help relieve symptoms of IBS and upset stomach. Drinking tea can also help increase your water intake, which is critical especially when experiencing the dehydrating effects from diarrhea.

4. Take it easy.

Antibiotics are typically prescribed for 7-10 days. During that time it's best to take it easy and avoid strenuous exercise that could worsen the side effects. It's also best to stay away from spicy foods or introducing new foods into your diet. If you're side effects worsen, or if you have any other medical concerns, contact your doctor right away.

It will be over before you know it!