When we say antibiotics, probably the first thing that comes into your mind are medicines—whether be it in tablet or bottled. But even these products of research and technology are introduced, humankind has been using natural cures and remedies to treat wounds and prevent infection. In fact, some of the ingredients used in these medicines are derived from nature.
Today, we’ll be looking at natural antibiotics that you can easily find sitting in your kitchen cupboards or pantry which are all proven effective by science!
Antibiotics vs. antiseptics
Before we dive deep into this list, let’s find out the difference between antibiotics and antiseptics first. Though they similarly work against bacteria and are commonly interchanged (or sometimes regarded as the same), there’s a simple way to separate one from the other.
Antiseptics slows down the growth of bacteria, effectively weakening them and preventing the further spread of the infection. Antibiotics, on the other hand, are the ones who primarily kill bacteria and sometimes other forms of parasite and fungi.
Antiseptics are also effective in inhibiting the growth of other microorganisms and not just bacteria, making them the best method to combat infection. Antibiotics are also believed to also work against certain parasites and fungi but usually you’ll need a prescription to buy one since they are considered stronger.
What are some natural antibiotics?
Ever since during the Egyptian times, honey is used as a natural antibiotic and even skin protectant.
The major reason why honey is one of the best antibiotics out there is because it contains hydrogen peroxide. Honey is also rich in sugar, which can inhibit the growth of certain bacteria. And with its low pH level, it cuts down the moisture, effectively dehydrating the bacteria before it dies off.
Simply apply honey directly into the affected wound or area. Among all the honey types available, the raw Manuka honey is proven to have lots of health benefits.
Aside from treating wounds, burns and skin grafts, honey can also be taken to alleviate sore throat and other internal infections. You can either swallow a tablespoon of it or mix it in drinks like tea.
Garlic is also one of the oldest antibiotics in the world of natural medicine, and we applaud again the Egyptians for realizing that. And recent studies backed the claim of Egyptians as research has found that garlic is effective against many forms of bacteria like Salmonella and Escherichia coli (E. coli).
You can either apply garlic directly into the affected wound or blemish. You can purchase garlic extract in your local health food store or totally make your own by soaking cloves in olive oil.
Echinacea are plant species belonging to the daisy family. Native to North America where they usually thrive in prairies and open, wooded areas and bloom with pinkish-purple, yellow, or white flowers.
Echinacea are also regarded for their aid in fighting inflammation due to bacterial infection and their ability to kill streptococcus pyogenes, the bacteria responsible for strep throat and toxic shock syndromes.
Echinacea supplements are available in your local drug store or online.
Aside from being an amazing spice in your food, oregano also possess quality health benefits for your body, especially when turned into essential oils.
Oregano essential oil contains Carvacrol which is helpful in treating gastric ulcers, inflammation, and fungal infections.
Follow the ratio of one drop of oregano essential oil per one teaspoon of carrier oil in treating fungal infections. One of the best ways to maximize the benefits of oregano essential oil is to diffuse it. Remember, do not ingest, inhale, or apply pure essential oils as it can cause inflammation and irritation.
You probably know about myrrh because of the story of the Three Wise Men. Well it’s about time you know about its medical benefits.
According to a study conducted in 2000, myrrh extract can eradicated strains of bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, Candida albicans, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Myrrh, when ingested in small amounts is considered safe, with diarrhea as a side effect. However, taking large doses can be detrimental to your health.
Before using myrrh, make sure you’ve read and understood the instructions found on the label.
Precautions on using natural antibiotics
Albeit all natural, you should still take precaution in using and ingesting these antibiotics.
For instance, taking concentrated garlic may cause internal bleeding and increase the risk of bleeding, which could be dangerous for a person who’s about to undergo a surgery or is taking blood-thinning drugs. Garlic is also seen to weaken the effect of HIV medications.
For your safety, be sure to discuss with your health professional is you are interested in using these natural antibiotics as he or she can provide helpful medical insights.
Precautions on using antibiotics
You should only take antibiotics only when prescribe by the doctor and only when necessary. Due to the increasing number of drug-resistant diseases, medical professionals are only prescribing antibiotics that are proven effective.
Moreover, strictly follow the dosage indicated in the prescription.