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recovering from antibiotics and surgery? what herbs would be helpful?

Thelma McGowan

Joined: Jul 03, 2011
Posts: 170
Location: western Washington, Snohomish county--zone 8b
My son has been on antibiotics for 30 days and just had surgery.
he is recovering well but i feel like he might need a boost. I am mostly concerned that his "Gut Flora" might be devistated. How can I gently get his body back to normal? I have heard that Mushrooms are good for introducing bacterias and yoghurt of course.

Any suggestions?

We had our septic tank pumped recently and the septic Guy was explaining how a trace amount of antibiotics will destroy the beneficial bacteria in the septic tank. if a trace amount in a huge tank----100 gallons?? can cause havoc, I am petrified as to what it does to a little boy!

There are no experts, Just people with more experience.
ellen rosner

Joined: Aug 14, 2011
Posts: 135
I'm glad your son is recovering well.
Even tho you asked for herbs, I would recommend probiotics if you are concerned about his gut flora.

My friend refers to antibiotics as weapons of mass destruction - bec. they do wipe out the good bacteria that we need. Probiotics replace the good bacteria and are a gentle aide to the whole system.

There might be herbs that do this too, but I don't know any.

As far as what kind of, how much of probiotics, I'm afraid I don't know. I don't take them myself altho I have them. I have never done the research, and I should. Some people feel that we all should take some probiotics regularly, for optimium health.

Perhaps someone here will give more specific advice, or you might consult a naturapath, if probiotics is the route you choose.

I'll be interested to see if there are herbs that do something similar.

good luck for a quick recovery for your son,
Amber Westfall

Joined: May 26, 2011
Posts: 13
Location: Ottawa
Hi Thelma,

I agree that probiotics are essential to reestablishing healthy gut flora after antibiotics.  I prefer powdered products that I can mix with water, yogurt or applesauce, but capsules will work as well.  Make sure that you get the ones that require refrigeration.  Probiotics are alive and prolonged storage at room temperature will cause them to die off.

Stay away from sugar, caffeine and alcohol until recovered, these all depress the immune system.

If your son will eat them, fermented foods like sauerkraut, kosher dill pickles, kimchi and kefir are loaded with probiotics, and the yogurt you mentioned.  Only thing is, you need to find them unpasteurized. And get plain yogurt without sugar and other preservatives.  Don't bother with fancy claims about probios on the uberpackaged, big brand stuff.   If you can find something local and organic, or even make your own, that would great!

To further help him recover, if he is not vegetarian, bone broth will be deeply nourishing and healing.  You can add shitake or oyster mushrooms to this to help boost the immune system.

Eating less and lighter foods in general will allow his body to spend more energy on healing, rather than digesting, particularly if gut flora is compromised.

If he has limited mobility due to the surgery, he'll want to make sure that his bowels are moving regularly.  Make sure he is adequately hydrated.

If there is pain, bruising or inflammation at the surgery site, or any kind of emotional stuff like anxiety, restlessness, difficulty sleeping, which are all common with people who are ill and recovering, there are many herbs to address this, but would require more information and would be a lengthier post!

Of course, it goes without saying that rest is a must. 

Best wishes for a speedy recovery.


"Forgive me if I never visit. I am from the fields, you know, and while quite at home with dandelion, make a sorry figure for the drawing room" ~Emily Dickinson
Thelma McGowan

Joined: Jul 03, 2011
Posts: 170
Location: western Washington, Snohomish county--zone 8b
Thank you for your responses. that is helpful

Joined: Nov 04, 2011
Posts: 1
Location: southwest Oregon
My daughter is allergic to whey which is in almost every yogurt dairy type pro-biotic so I had to find as many alternative sources of pro biotic as I could.  I came upon a website
Preserving your foods in this manner gives it beneficial bacterias that work as a pro-biotic. You can get your beneficial bacterias from many sources such as cabbage heads, cucumbers, green tomatoes, string beans, okra, zucchini, eggplant, peppers, and more.

Disobedience, in the eyes of anyone who has read history, is man's original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion.
~Oscar Wilde~
George Lee

Joined: Mar 15, 2011
Posts: 539
Location: Athens, GA/Sunset, SC
Thelma, consider making this honeymoon concotion.
Peace -

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Corin Royal Drummond

Joined: Dec 26, 2011
Posts: 18
Two traditional remedies for convalescence are nettles and borrage. They are both packed full of nutrition in easily assimilable form. For someone who's in a weakened state, drinking a liter or two of cool tea a day made with a handful or two of herbs steeped in just boiled water can provide them with a major boost. Additionally, the soluble silica in nettles is incorporated into the collagen matrix of healing tissues and makes them stronger. A tea with borage, nettle and a mint is rather nice and also sooths a tummy sore from too many pills.
richard valley

Joined: Aug 18, 2011
Posts: 216
Location: Sierra Nevada mountain valley CA, & Nevada high desert
Let me suggest Matzoon[ yogurt]. That will return in the gut the nessary that has been killed by the antibiotics, that is where most problems will be.
The rest if anything will be done for comfort, like mint tea. Nana is the mint not sure the English name it is the wrinkley leaf tea. I'm a med tech, not working at that now, and I have had in the past need to take antibiotics myself and found the above to be as they say" what the doctor ordered"

good luck!
Denice Moffat

Joined: Nov 15, 2011
Posts: 30
Location: U.S.A.
Is he depressed? Some people who have been under anesthetic get very depressed for a few months after the surgery while the detox is happening. I'd recommend homeopathics for the anesthetic detox instead of herbs. Lots of dark green leafy vegetables should get the liver processing those drugs and after 17 years of practicing natural medicine I'm not that impressed with probiotics. It seems to me that you'd want to support the natural production of good gut flora instead of flooding the bowels with a probiotic (God made vs. man-managed). For this I'd recommend good old Jerusalem Artichokes and baked apples for their luscious supply of Fructo Oligo Saccharides. My handout on that here: and of course cutting back on sugar until he's healed. Every time you eat refined sugar it suppresses your immune system for about 8 hours. So "they say".

Dr. Denice Moffat & Michael Robison or
subject: recovering from antibiotics and surgery? what herbs would be helpful?