Are You Gaining Weight Due To Antibiotics?


Are You Gaining Weight Due To Antibiotics?

Hello All!!!!

When you contract an infection, the doctor prescribes you antibiotics in order to cure you. That seems fine! However, do you know that you gain weight when you consume antibiotics? Sounds strange, right? But this is the reality and research is also beginning to catch up!

How self medication can be dangerous

What does research say?

Let us have a look at what research has to say in this regard.

British researchers stated in 2012 that kids who were exposed to antibiotics early in life have higher chances of getting overweight later in life. Certain fascinating studies have been conducted. It was demonstrated that mice who were fed antibiotics gained 2 times the weight in comparison to untreated mice on the same diet. This was followed by a study on humans. 92 individuals were given a course of a particular antibiotic and it was found that there was a significant weight increase. The researchers also detected a dramatic increase in ghrelin-the hunger hormone. Ghrelin strongly stimulates appetite and promotes belly fat. The study revealed that antibiotics increase the amount of ‘ghrelin’ by 6 times and it stayed high for a period of 18 months. Antibiotics also affect ‘leptin’-the satiety hormone.


It is not just the ghrelin effect that is behind the weight gain caused by antibiotics. The friendly intestinal bacteria also get damaged due to antibiotics leading to metabolic changes that science has just begun understanding. It is the gut bacteria that determine the number of calories you absorb. To know more about gut bacteria read here.

Antibiotics are known to damage the mitochondria too. This has an effect on weight because the job of mitochondria is to convert food into energy. If you haven’t heard of the term mitochondria before, let me tell you that they are tiny organelles existing in every cell of the body. They burn calories, manufacture the main protein in hemoglobin, slow aging, boost communication in the brain, etc. (These are just a few of the jobs they do for us).

Self-medication– please avoid it!

pill and bowel cancer

There are a lot of people out there who self medicate when they are down with infection. You get most antibiotics over the counter in India and it seems easy to pop in a pill from the chemist when you have a sore throat. Not visiting the doctor is a big mistake that people are committing. The funniest part is that there are many self-proclaimed doctors who advise you which antibiotic to take. The conversation is often like this-

‘Oh! Stomach infection? Try having xxx antibiotic. You will be fine soon.’

‘Sore throat? I always take 500 mg of yyy antibiotic. It works well for me, and I am sure it will work for you too!’

I request all self-proclaimed doctors to stop prescribing drugs to people with your half-baked knowledge 😛

So, I think after hearing about the weight gain side-effect of consuming antibiotics, this self-medication would stop because people are very cautious about their body weight these days.

This post doesn’t say that you shouldn’t eat antibiotics when you are down with an infection. The request is to pay a visit to the doctor whenever you are down. He/she will prescribe you the right antibiotic with the right dosage. Read about the harmful effects of self-medication here!

Hope you found this post useful!

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