Unfortunately, many of the most commonly used pharmaceuticals can be quite damaging to the “good germs” or healthy microbiota in the gastrointestinal system.
Antibiotics, oral contraceptives, NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen), asthma medications, acid-reflux drugs, and many others, either kill the good bacteria or create an environment in the gut where good bacteria no longer thrive.
The consequence is often gut dysbiosis and downstream immune dysregulation, the two mechanisms at the root of chronic illnesses.
Children are not spared this fate.
In fact, children are the fastest growing demographic of pharmaceutical drug users in recent years.
Even fifteen years ago, it was rare for a physician to prescribe an acid-reflux medication to a child, but today, use of these drugs is widespread in the pediatric population.
Pharmaceuticals are also widely found in our food and water supply, so that even if one thinks they are “drug-free”, they are probably consuming a certain amount of drugs (especially antibiotics) in their food and water.
Excess pharmaceutical consumption alone might not be responsible for the epidemic of chronic illness in children, but in conjunction with other environmental factors, it can be a serious problem.
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Sources & References
Baker, B.H., et al. Association of Prenatal Acetaminophen Exposure Measured in Meconium With Risk of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Mediated by Frontoparietal Network Brain Connectivity. JAMA Pediatrics. 2020 Sep 28;e203080.
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