You’re feeling that familiar pressure in your sinuses. Or maybe it’s a cut that has become itchy and inflamed. When experiencing the early symptoms of any potential infection, it might be your first instinct to rush off to the doctor’s office for a prescription antibiotic.

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With the rise of antibiotic “superbugs,” it is especially important to utilize prescriptive antibiotics only when medically necessary. “Superbugs” are strains of bacteria that have become resistant to known antibiotic treatments over time. While there are certain occasions in which antibiotics are absolutely necessary and life-saving, nature provides us with plenty of alternatives without the potentially harmful side-effects.

Natural antibiotics could very well be part of the solution in fighting the impending “superbug” antibiotic crisis. We’ve compiled a list of nature’s best antibiotics that not only have antibacterial properties, they also aid in boosting the immune system.

Top 10 Best Natural Antibiotics

1.) Neem

Neem has been utilized as a powerful antibiotic in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. Neem can be taken in capsule form for purifying the blood and treating bacterial infections in the GI tract, or as a topical lotion/cream/oil to treat bacterial infections of the skin such as acne or boils.

2.) Garlic

Another common cooking ingredient, garlic is known as a “broad-spectrum antibacterial.” This means that garlic has the ability to fight a very wide variety of pathogens. Taking cloves of garlic raw, either by eating or juicing, is the best way to obtain its antibiotic benefits. However, if you’re on-the-go or don’t like the odor you can take these: BRI Nutrition 1000mg Odorless Garlic – 120 Softgels

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3.) Turmeric

This bright yellow cooking spice is a potent antibiotic due to its curcumin content. By incorporating turmeric into your meals, you can aid in fighting helicobacter pylori (a bacteria known for causing stomach ulcers) and gastritis. Turmeric is also particularly beneficial for reducing inflammation.

4.) Pau D’arco

Pau d’arco comes from the inner bark of the Lapacho tree. Usually prepared as a tea, pau d’arco modulates the immune system and provides an overall antibiotic benefit that only affects your body’s harmful bacteria. Pau D’arco has powerful antifungal benefits as well.

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5.) Oil of Oregano

The antibacterial properties of oregano oil can be used to treat sinus infections by inhaling the steam, or systemic infections by taking the oil sublingually (under the tongue).

6.) Colloidal Silver

This natural antibiotic reduces the oxygenation ability of one-celled bacteria, causing them the inability to multiply. Colloidal silver is used most often as an extract, and is particularly effective in treating bacterial infections of the mucous membranes.

7.) Raw Manuka Honey

All raw honey has antibiotic properties, but manuka honey might be the most beneficial of all. The honey originates from the manuka plant, a shrub directly related to the tea tree plant. This plant has many antibacterial benefits of its own, so its honey is extra potent. Manuka honey has shown success in the treatment of chronically infected wounds, including the methicillin-resistant staph aureus (MRSA) superbug. Manuka honey can be taken internally to treat strep throat as well as a variety of stomach infections.

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8.) Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar‘s antibiotic properties can be attributed to both its high malic acid content and the good bacteria it obtains through the fermentation process. While antibiotic in nature, many people take a diluted teaspoon of apple cider vinegar daily as a general health tonic.

8.) Grapefruit Seed Extract

This natural antibiotic is taken as an extract in dropper form, treating a broad range of conditions. It’s often found in liquid preparations like nasal sprays to aid in the treatment of sinus infections.

10.) Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

Caprylic and lauric acids found in coconut oil are well-known as antimicrobial, antiviral and antifungal. You can incorporate extra virgin coconut oil into your diet by using it as a cooking oil, or simply taking a tablespoon per day.

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Next time you’re facing a potential bacterial infection, know that there are many powerful and natural alternatives available. Consider seeking the advice of a Naturopathic Doctor, a primary care physician trained in the use of both natural and prescriptive antibiotics.

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