How I Avoided and Got Rid of GBS

How I Avoided and Got Rid Of GBS with Natural Remedies How I Avoided and Got Rid of GBS

GBS, or Group Beta Streptococcus, is an colonization that affects many people and around 1/4 to 1/3 of women in the third trimester of pregnancy. Many people carry this bacteria in their digestive systems with no problem, but it can cause complications in a newborns of mothers who are colonized.

Mothers are often tested for Group B Strep in the third trimester of pregnancy and if they are positive, are usually given antibiotics during labor. I tested positive for GBS in my fourth pregnancy, though I eradicated it and tested negative before the birth, and then I tested negative in my next pregnancy (thus the title of the post). As there is a very small chance of serious and life threatening complications for baby in GBS positive moms (even with antibiotic use), I wanted to share what worked for me in hopes it would help other women avoid this risk to baby. This is just my experience and is not intended to be medical advice.

For more information on the risks associated with GBS and with antibiotic treatment, check out this well-researched article or this one from Mothering.com. This page provides a compilation of a lot of research on GBS and antibiotic use.

Natural Remedies for GBS

GBS certainly has the potential to be serious and shouldn’t be ignored, but antibiotics carry their own risks and can cause problems as well. Especially with all the emerging research about the transfer of gut flora and immunity from mother to baby during delivery, it would definitely be preferable not to take antibiotics if it can be avoided.

The good news is, at least in my case, GBS can be gotten rid of or prevented with natural remedies.

As GBS occurs naturally in the digestive track for some people, I felt it was important to treat the digestive track as a whole when working to eliminate GBS instead of just focusing on the genital area. A probiotic rich diet is beneficial for overall health,and I also found it helpful in getting rid of GBS.

When researching, I found the following advice for treating/preventing GBS:

  • Eating a probiotic rich diet including things like Kombucha, Water Kefir, Yogurt, Sauerkraut and other fermented foods to help create a healthy gut environment.
  • Taking a probiotic supplement and using it vaginally (I used this one orally daily and vaginally every day or two).
  • Consuming garlic capsules or raw garlic cloves daily.
  • Consuming Coconut Oil for its naturally antiviral properties.
  • Using plain organic yogurt vaginally to help balance bacteria.
  • Taking Vitamin C daily.
  • Using a Chlorhexidine rinse vaginally before and during labor. (This is the usual protocol)
  • Consuming raw apple cider vinegar daily and using it as a diluted rinse.

What I Did That Worked

With my fourth pregnancy, I tested positive at 35 weeks for GBS and then at 37 weeks was tested again and the result was negative. What I did during that time (and what a friend did successfully after testing positive very early in her pregnancy) that worked:

  • Took 2,000 mg of Vitamin C in divided doses each day
  • Consuming 2 cloves of raw garlic each day by finely mincing them and drinking them down with water
  • Consuming at least 1/4 cup of coconut oil daily for its antibacterial/antiviral properties
  • Using a diluted apple cider vinegar rinse vaginally each day
  • Taking 6+ probiotic capsules a day
  • Consuming large amounts of fermented foods and drinks
  • Using a garlic clove vaginally for one night (anecdotal evidence supports that this is very effective)

In my next pregnancy to prevent GBS to begin with, I followed a protocol that is recommended by a midwife I know (and she is yet to have a case of GBS when a mom is following this):

Have you ever had GBS while pregnant? What did you do? Share below!

Reader Comments

  1. Jennifer L. says

    You’re so amazing to compile all of these things. GBS is one of those things where if I had it at 35 weeks, it would have taken a week (for me, at least) to find all the information I needed to do something about it, and that would have only left a few weeks to actually do it. I like having a list of things to just do–things that we maybe ought to be doing anyway! I am not pregnant again right now, but if that should happen again, it’s good to have these resources organized in one place.

      • Jennifer L. says

        I can tell you care a lot about the well-being of babies and their safe arrival into the world. You are definitely correct, Group B Strep should not be taken lightly. That said, if you find out about it early enough, and try something a bit less invasive than antibiotics, thereby potentially resulting in a negative test before the child is born, great! Your OB isn’t going to object to you rinsing your areas with ACV, taking higher doses of Vit. C, taking probiotics, or eating more fermented foods. If it doesn’t work, well the antibiotics are still there for you.

        Hopefully you’re not the type who runs to the doctor for antibiotics every time you have a sniffle because gargling with salt water and eating chicken soup is too strange, and simply based on your mom’s uneducated opinion about what might work to help a cold. Most people here are working with doctors, midwives or other professionals who have tests to find out about Group B strep.

        • Tracy Rodgers says

          Actually, I’m the type that has spent years of my life studying obstetrics and gynaecology, and I have over ten years experience in clinical practice. I wouldn’t object to probiotics, but If your urine tests positive for GBS, or you have a positive swab at term, declining antibiotics is not a wise choice for your baby. Antibiotics, when used appropriately are not invasive, and are life saving. It’s such a first world attitude to refer to something as life saving as antibiotics as invasive. Group b strep? Meh. Have you ever seen a baby being treated for GBS septicaemia in NICU?

          • Jennifer L. says

            Great! We need more expert opinions. I suspect that what you would like to convey to mothers to be is that if the Group B strep test is positive at the time of delivery to get the antibiotics. Most of us are in agreement on that. However, if you have a few weeks still, trying to get rid of it via alternative methods is reasonable. What’s the harm in trying to test negative?

            Tell me, please if you don’t have any first world ideas and problems? Hmm, which kind of coffee should I get at Starbucks? Petty first world problems. We can also agree more about the appropriate, necessary use of antibiotics more via email instead of in the comments section of a blog. First world problems. Oh wait, perhaps I’ll go hunt for my breakfast, first.

          • Jeff says

            What is your opinion about Hibiclens?

            Hibiclens
            I know third world countries and midwives use Hibiclens in the vagina. but when penicillin is available it should be used. It has the wrong vagina pH and is against manufacturers recommendations.
            HIBICLENS® is an antiseptic antimicrobial skin cleanser possessing bactericidal properties. HIBICLENS contains 4% w/v chlorhexidine gluconate, a chemically unique cationic bisbiguanide with inactive ingredients: Fragrance, isopropyl alcohol 4%, purified water, Red 40, and other ingredients, in a mild, sudsing base adjusted to pH 5.0-6.5 for optimal activity and stability as well as compatibility with the normal pH of the skin. (pH of the vagina is 3-4, hibiclens could induce bacterial vaginosis to develop which in turn could cause preterm labor).
            Manufacturers recommendations: Avoid getting this medication in your eyes, ears, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. Chlorhexidine topical is for use only on the skin.
            FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether chlorhexidine topical will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.
            It is not known whether chlorhexidine topical passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not breast-feed if you are using this medicine to treat a skin condition in the breast area.
            Be very careful when using chlorhexidine topical on a child younger than 2 months old. This medication may cause severe irritation or chemical burns on a very young child.
            Read more at http://www.drugs.com/mtm/hibiclens.html#iIV3vSXrKQkUR0c4.99

          • Bevology says

            I think it foolish to never look at LONG TERM effects of antibiotic use. We are often too busy panicking about the immediate effects of a bacterial infection to think ahead. My Mom needed to take high level antibiotics in my older sister’s first week of life due to a uterine infection. In the ’80s, we never thought about antibiotics being passed through the breast milk—and it is possible (although not conclusive) to ascribe my sister’s terrible colic/constipation as an infant, followed by years of terrible food intolerance/allergies as a child and current struggle with Crohn’s/Colitis to the fact that her tiny, baby gut was completely stripped of all healthy bacteria as a new born.
            Suffice it to say, that given the actual given incidence of GBS infected babies ACTUALLY DYING—is it really worth it to kill all bacteria—good and bad— in the bodies of 25%-30% of all our newborns, especially since we don’t know how important that good bacteria is for the rest of that newborn’s life?

          • Camila Irwin says

            Not everyone’s decision is as simple….

            I tested GBS+ on this pregnancy (neg my other two). I am all about natural remedies, I try to avoid drugs and unnatural treatments at all cost, I believe in the natural nature of pregnancy, labor and delivery….our bodies were perfectly designed for it. It is a NATURAL part of a women’s life and not a sickness to be treated in a hospital….women who are pregnant are clients and not patients…we are not sick. With that said I WAS planning on the antibiotic….as I couldn’t bare the thought of being the 1 person in 200 to loose my baby to GBS (although I know the antibiotic doesn’t reduce the risk completely). I would much rather have a live baby than no baby…..even with all the things out there on the effects of antibiotics….I still think a live baby is better than no baby! I was then going to do everything to reduce the effects of the antibiotic (start my newborn and me on probiotics, Vit d3, Vit C, nurse, etc.)…..however, I feel my decision is a bit more icky than most…. My last labor was 2 hrs start to finish, this would mean I don’t have enough time for the full dose of antibiotic….AND I am allergic to penicillin the antibiotic of choice, my GBS strand is resistant to the next option (amoxicillin), and the next option is Cefazolin which has been shown to cause an allergic rxn in 10% of patients with a penicillin allergy. This means that I risk totally disrupting my labor and delivery by potentially having a severe rxn to the antibiotic. I think it is worth attempting all natural options to eliminate the GBS from my vaginal canal given my short labors and my history with allergies to antibiotics. If I can test negative for GBS the second time around I am going to try as hard as I can….this would reduce my risk of a severe rxn and my babies risk of having harmful effects to GBS.

          • Natalie says

            The information posted by “Wellness Mama” about the mother transferring her immunity to the baby at delivery is erroneous. Immunity is transferred mainly through BREASTFEEDING, NOT DURING THE DELIVERY OF A BABY. Therefore, the advice to avoid taking antibiotics in the case of testing positive for strep B is RIDICULOUS and not based upon fact. If you’re going to give such advice, try to educate yourself first.

          • says

          • Amira Ibrahim says

            I am 36 weeks pregnant and just found out i have Strep B (GBS). I have read about the home remedies of vitamin C, garlic and probitiocs, also the use of ACV rinse. I would like to know how many billion cultures of the probiotics are ok to consume orally during my stage of pregnancy and what brands do you recommend ? I had asked my obgyn and he said he doesn’t know anything about it even though he is a very good doctor. I would also like to know how the garlic can be used vaginaly?

            Thank You

        • Tracy Rodgers says

          See how my comment was deleted? Having an OB commenting on her blog must be a threat to wellness mama. Oh well. And, the first world problem of what coffee to get at Starbucks is hardly a comparison to choosing not to treat a potentially life threatening infection for the sake of your child. It’s easy to poo poo antibiotics if you are naive enough to think you can prevent GBS with garlic. Where is the evidence that’d this protocol is associated with reduced incidence of neonatal GBS?

          As for your suggestion to argue via email, the whole point in me posting here isn’t to argue, but to educate and to try to confine people to question the source and think objectively. I’m not interested in arguing with anyone. I happy with the currenydcientific evidence and guidelines on the prevention of neonatal GBS and I don’t embrace pseudoscience without evidence. Apparently the people who read this blog generally do.

          • Jennifer L. says

            It is imperative that a woman be retested to know her GBS status going into birth. No one is really poo-pooing the very real benefits to antibiotics. Keep educating. You might want to start your own blog though.

          • Tracy Rodgers says

            No, I think it is imperative that we attempt to base our decisions on what the evidence shows. There is no evidence for these recommendations and interfering with a GBS screen is dangerous. I’m just so tired of having to dispell pseudoscience every day in my office because people who think they are educated ( google university ) peddle useless advice. There really seems to be an effort to push women back into the cave.

          • Jennifer L. says

            If we had better healthcare overall, Google University would not be so appealing to some. I am glad your family had the resources to send you to medical school (and I’ll trust that you paid for it entirely yourself through hard work and perseverance). Start your own blog and be your own well-informed Google University.

          • sibyls sweets says

            I have recently been diagnosed with Group B strep im a 35 yr old NON PREGNANT female and have already been on augmentin which didnt work and started penicillin yesterday but had a reaction to it, is there anything else you can recomend?? I dont know what else to do, ive called my doctor but it may take a few days before i hear back from them. thanks!

          • Jeff says

            :-P GBS is not an infection in a non pregnant adult. It is merely a colonozation presence. It doesn’t cause any discharge, pain, or problems. GBS has the propensity to affect a newborn with sepsis, meningitis, pneumonia, or death.

          • Tanya says

            That’s not true I had it w my 4th daughter 8 mos later I’ve been complaining of cramping and discharge foul odor and they said its due to strep b I’m taking ampicillin 2pills 4x a day for 10 days and I hope and pray it works.

          • Melinda says

            It does cause symptoms in “non pregnant adults”. I have had it twice….not pregnant. It can cause irritation, burning, and bladder infections to name a few symptoms. After being treated for a bladder infection symptoms were still present both times. Both times I saw my ob after my family doctor. They did a vaginal culture and both times it showed gbs.

          • Jeff says

            40% of women will be positive for GBBS anytime you swab them. So you are telling me it cannot possibly be coincidence. A correlation but not causation. If you had a sore throat and GBBS was found on a vaginal swab, are you telling me that GBBS was causing your sore throat? 40% of women are walking around with GBBS at this very moment. Are you telling me that 40% of women have vaginal irritation right now? Think a little. Tell me why Sibyls Sweeets didn’t get better after being treated for GBBS, because something else was causing the problems and the presence of GBBS was purely coincidence.

          • Melinda says

            Many carry it and will never have symptoms. I am saying that in my case when no other explanation could be found that testing positive for group b strep both times, with the same symptoms was the common denominator. It is also common in the elderly. So your original post that it doesn’t effect non pregnant adults is false. Plus judging from a few of the other posts on here, I am not alone. If I had a sore throat and they swabbed my THROAT and it showed positive for strep, yes I would believe the sore throat was caused by strep. Same goes for gbs and a vaginal swab. My ob treats it, so I’d imagine it’s not all in my head. Apparently you believe you have all the answers and are only on here to argue.

          • Jeff says

            What causes sore throats is group a streptococcus. Look it up. It is not GBBS. Believe what you want if it makes you feel better. There are several species of streptococcus, GBBS is not a pathogen to adults.

          • Melinda says

            Lol! Did I say that group b strep would be found in your throat? I said if they swabbed your throat and told you you were positive for strep it would explain your sore throat. If they swab your vagina and tell you that you are positive for group b strep it would explain your symptoms if you had some. Are you a doctor? I believe because I know what I felt and am feeling and my doctor tells me so. And now I’m done conversing with you.

          • Jeff says

            Group a strep is a pathogen for pharyngitis. Group b strep is not a pathogen in the vagina. Please explain how 40% women carry group b strep in the vagina and none of them have symptoms, and 100% of people with group a strep in the throat do have symptoms. Your logic is like saying vaccines cause autism because your kid got autism after having a vaccine. Correlation not causation.

      • cera says

        Tracy needs to get off her soap box! I would rather not put an antibiotic into my body if I don’t have to, especially IV. Antibiotics do a lot of good, in some cases. More often than not once a course of antibiotics is started something else flares up and a medication is needed to fix that issue, and so on. If there is a natural or less evasive remedy I am going to search it out. I am having an unassisted homebirth by choice, because I want nothing to do with hospitals, Dr’s, OB’s and nurses telling me what I should and should not be doing with my body, or how I should be birthing my baby. Thank you Wellness Mama for all of your articles, research and blog posts!!

        • Lisa Duhamel says

          Jeff is incorrect. I still have group b strep and on second dose of antibiotics. Symptoms EXIST and are the same…vaginal discharge, slight cough, fatigue, etc.

          • jeanie says

            Every doctor/midwife I’ve talked to will tell you that Strep B does not cause problems in non-pregnant women. It’s only an issue for the baby being born. Treating GBS during labor is only to prevent early infection, and early infection can be tested for and treated within the first 48 hours if the mother does not get antibiotics. It’s not ideal. But like mentioned before antibiotics are not 100% in prevention either. And if you are allergic to penicillin, and have to take a different antibiotic the effect of the other antibiotics is even less, and you risk the issue of a bad reaction, and who knows what the outcome of that would be. Also, many women with GBS are not treated and do okay. Also note that the infant can still be infected later, not related to birth.

            “Unfortunately, the method recommended to prevent early-onset disease (giving women who are group B strep positive antibiotics through the vein (IV) during labor) does not prevent late-onset disease. Although rates of early-onset disease have declined, rates of late-onset disease have remained fairly stable since 1990. At this time, a strategy has not yet been identified for preventing late-onset group B strep disease.”

            All that said, thank you for offering alternatives Wellness Mama.

            Now, if you are not allergic to antibiotics, and you are healthy – then my opinion is go for the antibiotics. Unless you have time to retest and come back negative for GBS.

  2. Courtney Brandwein says

    This is perfect timing! I just found out today that I tested positive this time. I will be 37 weeks next week, and all of my babies have been early, so anytime after next week I am prepared to have a baby :). What would you do if you had 1week to treat the group b strep? Would you try to get retested before baby is born or would you do this treatment and then do the wash during labor and feel like that was enough? I have tested positive with 1 other pregnancy and then have been treated with 2 pregnancies after that. I am using a midwife this time so things are so much different. I am able to try these natural remedies and have her approve. I have enjoyed reading all of your pregnancy posts from your pregnancy and look forward to any after baby posts you may have.

    • says

      Personally, I wouldn’t re-test and just do all of these and not do antibiotics unless there was a medical reason (long time after ROM, premature, etc)… good luck!

      • Something From Nothing says

        Is putting your baby at risk of group b sepsis, as all of the reliable scientific evidence shows, not reason enough? That isn’t a medical reason, in your educated opinion? You are giving people advice to avoid antibiotics when group b strep positive based on NO evidence whatsoever, and you think that’s ok? I’m flabbergasted.

        • Lisa says

          The risks v benefits of using antibiotics for something SO LOW as ONE HALF OF ONE PERCENT do not make it worth it for some. I am SO sick of western medical modalities being pushed by those who practice it as though they are THE ONLY WAY, THE ONE WAY to treat the human issues we face. You should be thrilled spitless that people are educating themselves! You should also recognize that we don’t have huge studies of ALTERNATIVE methods because of people like you, who sneer at and spit upon those of us who take a different viewpoint while you SHOVE your modality like a religious person knocking on the door shoving their literature!

          • Holly says

            Try losing your 49 day old daughter. How about watching your baby girl take her last breath after bring removed from life support. How abou watching your daughter’s head swell to the point of complete brain loss and devestation? Group B Strep is not something you want to mess with. I’d hate to have another mom experience losing a baby like I did two months ago. I tested negative by the way…

        • Rosella says

          I am curious to know what you think of probiotics? I would do antibiotics if I still test positive closer to the delivery date. Since I am 5-6 weeks pregnant and have tested positive for GBS, I would like to try to do what I can in the meantime to obtain a negative test result closer to the delivery date as long as it is not harmful to the embryo/fetus.

    • Highlandview Pantry says

      I just went through this. I tested positive 2 weeks before delivery. I used hibiclens, probiotics, garlic supplements orally and vit c. I then re-tested. I went into labor before receiving the results of the second test. My son was born within ten minutes of being in the hospital; therefore, there was not enough time for IV antibiotics. Because I didn’t receive antibiotics they cultured my son to see if group b strep would grow. We had to stay an extra day in the hospital. My son was fine and did not test positive. However, a few days after my delivery I received my second set of test results and I was still Group B strep positive. It is important to note that my water did not break until I pushed and then the doctor broke it. It is my understanding that the sooner the water breaks the greater the chances of group b strep transmission. I feel that my water breaking late in labor was the greatest blessing in preventing transmission.

  3. breathingstars says

    So glad you are touching on this!
    Just wondering if you had come across info about applying GSE topically on the bum? I’ve also heard that using garlic vaginally has the potential to be painful and burny…thoughts?
    Thanx again for all the wonderful things you share, I find myself checking frequently for your recepies and diy stuff.

      • concerned mama says

        Thank you for responding and giving you’re testimony. I am a special care nursery nurse. Although I feel naturopathic medicine is helpful, it isn’t always successful. Please think of the baby you carried for 9 months. It would be devastating to lose your baby due to your views about what is natural or not. We are lucky
        to have the means to prevent such tragic outcomes. Even if there is a small risk, are you willing to take that chance of being the unlucky one to lose your child? I’m sure you want a baby to bring to your nursery, and not the alternative of a baby coffin and burial.

    • Libby Sinback Tipson says

      Just be careful not to nick the clove. It’s the garlic juice that will sting, but as long as you keep the clove intact, you shouldn’t have any irritation.

      • Neda says

        I have GBS in my urine. I read that it’s more serious if in the urine. Will all this still work for me? I do not want the antibiotics during labour. Any shills on here or “medical professionals” are not welcome to reply. I had a yeast infection when I did my urine test, I treated it with inserting probiotics and am not having any yeast infection symptoms anymore. I’m doing another urine test in a month. I’m 28 weeks right now. I’m hoping all these remedies will work for people who have it in their urine. I’m feeling very down and not confident but going to try my best.
        I also did the garlic inserts. I cut my garlic in half and was just fine it didn’t sting one bit and you get more effect from the garlic that way.

  4. Libby Sinback Tipson says

    One thing worth noting: for using probiotics vaginally, you want to make sure there’s food for the bacteria, but not food for other flora like yeast. I’ve seen some probiotics that contain sugar, maltodextrin (Bio-Kult is one of those) and potato starch. Those aren’t things you want to put in your vagina. It’s better to use something that has a prebiotic like inulin or nothing but the probiotics.

  5. Libby Sinback Tipson says

    I wouldn’t use Bio-Kult vaginally because of the maltodextrin in it. I’d use a different probiotic that hasn’t got any sugar or starches in it vaginally. Orally Bio-Kult is great though.

  6. karen rainford says

    Hi I recently went into preterm labor at 25 weeks and my baby passed away during labor and they ran tests sn said it was do to GBS. I was wondering what should I take on a regular basis to avoid this again. Ilove your blog and need some natural advice thanks again

  7. Pati Lois says

    I also took probiotics both orally and vaginally during the last trimester and was negative. My sister on the other hand was positive with both her kids and she didn’t do it. I’m close to my third trimester on my second kid and am going to start with probiotics again. This time I’m also drinking water kefir!

  8. dribby says

    I wish more women would know about probiotics and GBS. I am a licensed naturopathic doctor and I recommend a high dose probiotic to all my pregnant mothers as soon as they become pregnant. I am a mother of two and with the high dose probiotic, a probiotic rich diet and Vitamin C I tested negative for both my pregnancies. It is important to start early so that pregnant mothers are not scrambling at the last minute before they are tested again.

    Great blog by the way Katie. I am enjoying reading it.

    • Captain Obvious says

      60-70 % of women test negative for GBS. The evidence would be if you were positive and the probiotics helped you become negative within a week or two.

      • dribby says

        The problem with this logic is that it takes weeks to months for probiotics to colonize the vaginal tract. Taking probiotics after testing positive for GBS does not ensure that there will be enough good bacteria to displace the unwanted one. Giving pregnant women probiotics prophylactically does not cause any harm to mother or baby and may even save lives.
        What you are proposing is reactionary medicine instead of proactive medicine.

        • Captain Obvious says

          Can you show me evidence based research that probiotics have “saved lives”? GBS is not pathogenic to an adult. It is merely a transient colonizing bacteria that lives on the adult body not causing any harm. It is only a potential pathogen to a fetus or neonate. Where is the evidence that probiotics select out GBS. For all we know, probiotics promote GBS existence and may only select out gram negative bacteria like E. coli or Klebsiella. If you are proposing that probiotics treats Group B streptococcus, how are you sure it doesn’t treat the “good” staphylococci and streptococci? Can you show me the evidence!

    • says

      I am not pregnant and was diagnosed with GBS and put on Amoxicillin. I’m not a fan of meds and only took it for the week because I was desperate for some relief! Today is the last day and there hasn’t been any significant changes. I am calling my NP back after lunch to see what else she suggests but in the meantime I’ve been told my other “crunchy moms” to insert a garlic clove, use coconut oil for relief (which I do), take probiotics (what kind? which ones? Not a lot of $$ to spend here), and do an ACV rinse (ouch!). Any other natural suggestions? Again, not a lot of $$ to spend !!

  9. multitaskmom says

    I tested positive with my first baby and I honestly don’t remember for sure with my other two. I’ve had antibiotics all three times though. And all four of us have systemic yeast issues. If I could not have to do antibiotics again, I would be VERY happy. The only thing is…I’m not sure how to *eat* a 1/4 cup of coconut oil. Or if I could even swallow down garlic water (and I love garlic) because I have such an intolerant stomach when I’m pregnant. Think I could spread raw garlic onto toasted bread? And I like yogurt, but I guess I’m pickier than I thought because I don’t usually even think about eating the other items on the “fermented” food list. Geez. I sound like such a woos. Maybe I just need to buck up and follow the plan anyway because it would be worth it. But the last pregnancy I was so sick I could barely keep down the foods I really liked. (And I guess I should say that I could be pregnant right now because we are trying for one more.) Any suggestions? How did you do the coconut oil? Is it important that everything stay really raw or can I cook it?

  10. Abby says

    quick question – I tested positive with my first 2 children and am starting the ‘strep b’ diet 7 days before my text for this pregnancy [next week]. My midwife recommends all of the above AND eliminating all sugar, all fruit, all flour/potatoes/white rice from the diet as well. Did you modify your diet or *just* add the supplements/fermented foods/etc. as listed above? thanks!

  11. Kimberly Olivarez says

    Hi, I am attempting to rid myself of GBS after testing positive with just a few weeks before my expected due date. I am curious about the diluted apple cider vaginal vinegar rinse. Is there a particular ratio and did you use the rinse internally or externally? Thanks so much!

  12. says

    I had GBS with my daughter and I was so bummed! I had an un-medicated birth besides the penicillin for GBS and I was so disappointed that I had to have an IV. Next time if I am positive for GBS, I will have to try this!

  13. Danielle Honan says

    i recently tested positive for GBS and am currently following your protocol so i can do a retest. I am 38 weeks and really want to get a negative test… im just wondering if a week is enough time… also, even if i do get a negative the second time around im not sure they will allow me to go home, i might have to go to the hospital. (im giving birth in a birth center) has anyone had any luck with getting out of going to the hospital? If i have to pick one thing to do, hospital for observation or antibiotics which is the lesser evil? thanks!!

    • says

      It could be enough time… depends on your body. That’s a tough call, but if I got a negative test, I’d opt no hospital and no antibiotics, and if still positive, maybe consider antibiotics over hospital. Just me personally though…

  14. Jessik says

    I am glad I ran into this on pintrest! I am currently 16 weeks along with my 5th baby and all 4 of my previous pregnancies I have tested positive for GBS. I was wondering if you suggest that follow this recipe for the remainder of my pregnancy or only for a certain amount of time?:
    Taking a high quality probiotic daily (I took 2-4 of these) and occasionally using them vaginally.
    Taking 2,000 mg of Vitamin C daily
    Taking garlic capsules daily
    Also, how many probiotic pills do I take daily? I have a midwife, do I need to check with her before I start taking this on a regular basis or no? Thanks for your advice on GBS, I look forward to hearing your response!

    • says

      My midwife was fine with all of these from the beginning of the first trimester on.. She definitely suggested it for the third trimester though. I’d check to be safe, but none of it should hurt…

  15. Jacqueline Kotei says

    My girlfriend from the blog 365daysofselfcare.com shared this with me and I am so very grateful! It’s my first pregnancy and I’m about 10 weeks. Thankfully my midwife/doctor tested for GBS among other things because I found out that I do have it. When I asked what to do to combat it, the nurse mainly said cranberry juice and apple juice. It’s good to read your blog though and find out more about its origin as well as ways to combat it. I’ll be stopping by the co-op to get start integrating your suggestions into my diet.

    PS – I’ve tried a garlic clove in my vagina one for a yeast infection and it did indeed work ;)

  16. Robby Lyon says

    This information is great and I have shared it with my wife.
    I have been looking for probiotics and it seems like a minefield out there. Is there a specific brand or type that it’s better for general/family health?
    Thanks

    • Bevology says

      If you live in the States be sure to get Garden of Life Brand “Primal Defence” supplements. I live in Canada and they are unavailable here (silly government!) They are a little pricey, but SO worth it as they truly can heal and maintain imbalanced gut flora, which is where GBS issues come from in the first place.

  17. sarah says

    I had it with my first pregnancy, and assumed I would with this one. I got tested a week ago and it was negative. I was already doing some of the things listed here, like taking a high dose of probiotics and consuming lots of coconut oil, that must have done it.

  18. Jill says

    Hi. I tested GBS positive when pregnant with my son and unfortunately didn’t know enough back then to do anything about it. I had antibiotics during labor and I blame that for the multiple allergies my son has. Since then, I’ve done some reading on it and it’s my understanding that mom’s “good” bacteria is passed to the baby as they pass through the birth canal. It literally goes in their mouth and nose. And you want them to get the good bacteria because that’s what helps them jumpstart their own immune system.

    So, it would seem to me that the best option is to do the oral supplements and avoid having to insert anything vaginally if at all possible. Something like garlic would definitely kill ALL bacteria — both the good and the bad. On the other hand, my opinion would be that it is better to do an insert than to have to take IV antibiotics… so if it comes to that it seems to still be the better option.

    One last thing: GBS is a rare but valid health concern and I would remind pregnant moms who use one of the above protocols that even after they test negative, they need to keep up the protocol until the baby is born (to ensure that the GBS bacteria doesn’t re-colonize before birth).

    • Bass says

      Just a note about garlic, I’m not an herbalist but I’ve read in my herbal books that garlic in fact kills “bad” bacteria but the good bacteria stays, and thus you are not upsetting healthy balance buy using it. So, I would look more into garlic or speak to an herbalist before assuming that “garlic would definitely kill ALL bacteria — both the good and the bad.”

  19. Jenni Kremer says

    I got to the hospital at 10cm with waters in tact… there was no time for antibiotics. If I test positive again I won’t take the abx again (unless there’s signs of infection), but I’d rather not fight that as well as everything else I disagree with. Thanks for the information!

  20. Guest says

    I tested positive for GBS in my urine at my 12 week appointment, my midwife would like me to start antibiotics right away to try and get rid of it. I would rather institute your regime and have already started, but read that tested positive in urine means a more heavy colonization, which has scared me into thinking the infection will spread and cause a miscarriage. How fast does your protocol work?

  21. Rachel Vann says

    I tested positive for GBS in my urine at my 12 week appointment, my midwife would like me to start antibiotics right away to try and get rid of it. I would rather institute your regime and have already started, but read that tested positive in urine means a more heavy colonization, which has scared me into thinking the infection will spread and cause a miscarriage. How fast does your protocol work? Thanks!

    • fiftyfifty1 says

      I really, really would not rely on treating this naturally. If you are so heavily colonized that it has gone as far as the bladder, your baby is at high risk. Google “Wren Jones”. His mom was just like you with GBS in her urine in the first trimester, but decided to treat naturally instead of with IV antibiotics during the birth. They went on to have what seemed to be a perfect beautiful homebirth with a midwife, but baby Wren died 11 hours later of GBS sepsis.

  22. Mary Penn says

    Thank you for this information! I am hoping to prevent the GBS this time. You mentioned that a midwife you know hasn’t had anyone test positive for GBS while following her protocol: Taking a high quality probiotic daily, vitamin c daily and garlic capsules daily….was that with people starting this at the third trimester? I’m really hoping to prevent it the next time around. How many garlic capsules? You started the vitamin c and garlic in the third trimester, but I understand the probiotics should be taken from the start, right? Or do you increase the probiotics in the third trimester. Embarrassingly, I need to ask- how do you do them vaginally? Is there a right or wrong way? thanks so much and sorry if I’m repeating questions. I’m just hoping to understand this all correctly!

  23. Cameron S says

    Hi! Thank you so much for this information! I was negative my first preg and now positive for my 2nd so have just started the protocol in hopes that I can be retested and test negative. Have you heard of anyone getting extreme diarrhea and nausea by following this? Not sure if its the “die off”, but I’m on day 4 and last night I was so ill. But I am willing to do anything to get rid of gbs as long as it doesn’t send me into labor!! Btw I’m 38 weeks yesterday. Thank you!!

      • dribby says

        Vitamin C in high doses causes diarrhea. You can get buffered Vitamin C which does not irritate the GI system as much or decrease your dose by 500mg. Also you can split up your Vitamin C intake so that you are not taking the entire 2000 mg at once. 1000mg in the morning and 1000mg in the evening might be better on your GI system.

    • Something From Nothing says

      You are asking this woman for medical advice??? And taking her seriously? Really? Do you get the rest of your advice on women’s health from cosmopolitan magazine?

  24. jenny says

    Garlic can also disrupt your natural flora. Just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it can’t have side effects. You are much better off requesting IV antibiotics because they are targeted to work on GBS, and they don’t disrupt your gut flora nearly as much as oral antibiotics. Take a good probiotic a few hours afterwards to replenish your flora. Drink all the kefir you want! But get that antibiotic. GBS is so simple to treat and has such excellent results for babies and their families. This is one thing the US health care system does right. Other countries where they do not offer routine antibiotic prophylaxis for GBS+ moms (in order to save money) see much higher rates of loss due to GBS.

    • dribby says

      I will have to diagree with you. From a medical perspective, IV antibiotics do not target GBS. Antibotics kill everything they come in contact with and they do not clear up room for the right bacteria. There are real and serious consequences to getting IV antibiotics during labour. With all do respect, this information is medically unsound and incorrect. The consequences for mother and baby as a result of antibiotics can be very stressful. Sure you have prevented meningitis but now the baby’s GI system is compromised and it can effect them for life. If you are pregnant, be proactive, and don’t ask for IV antibiotics unless it is absolutely necessary.

      • Something From Nothing says

        Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Look up the spectrum of penicillin. GBS isn’t treated with broad spectrum antibiotics. What are the serious consequences of IV antibiotics given in labor? You think altered gut flora is a bigger consequence than meningitis? Where’s the evidence that antibiotics given in labor affect your child gut for life??? That’s a neck of a claim. Advice like yours could take gullible people out of the gene pool. And, exactly when do the antibiotics become, as you say, absolutely necessary?

        • Kat says

          Isn’t Penicillin a broad-spectrum antibiotic? It’s what they gave me with my first baby for my GBS. And it wiped out everything. Yeast problems galor in both me and my infant.

      • jenny says

        GBS is a gram positive infection. The antibiotic most commonly used, penicilliin, targets gram positive bacteria. Now it’s true that some of your beneficial flora is also gram positive, which is why you should take a probiotic. But some of your flora is gram negative and some are yeasts and other microorganisms which will be unaffected by the antibiotic. Garlic contains a lot of sulfur and has the potential to kill a broader spectrum of organisms all while still missing the one we want to get rid of. No one is suggesting all laboring mothers recieve antibiotics, only the ones who need it.

        • Julianna says

          Other microorganisms (e.g. Yeasts, parasites, etc) ARE affected by the antibiotic, in that once the antibiotic wipes out the protective good bacteria along with the bad, the other microbes such as the yeast and parasites have no resistance to prevent their proliferation. An imbalance in our bodies natural protective immunity is the result.

          Once these parasites and fungi are free to proliferate, they will do so unhindered, to the point where they seek more space to feed and grow. They bore holes in the intestinal wall (a condition known as “leaky guy syndrome”) leading to systemic issues like chronic yeast fections, skin rashes, chronic fatigue, mood disorders like depression, arthritis, intestinal disorders like Chron’s and colitis, to name a few.

          Antibiotics are mycotoxins, TOXINS, fungal metabolites, that are meant to kill. Yes, they kill the bad guys, but they also kill the good guys, our “allies”.

          To believe there is no residual effect from ingesting or circulating literal toxins in our bodies is short-sited. Yes, the antibiotics may reduce the risk of infant GBS infection rates by 80%, but even WITH antibiotics, there is still a 20% chance an infant will STILL get a GBS infection.

          When a GBS+ mother choses NOT to use antibiotics during birth, her child has a 50% chance of being colonized, NOT infected, just colonized. About 1% to 2% of those babies can then later become infected. Mortality rates for infants born to GBS+ mothers whether or not they get antibiotics during labor is the SAME.

          The reason CDC encourages universal GBS screening and free administration of antibiotics for positive mothers is not for mortality rates but for the morbidity rates, and the costs of hospitalizations. What they do not take into account is the long-term healthcare costs AFTER taking antibiotics and the affects it has on our immunity and acute and chronic conditions that result thereafter.

          • Neda says

            Do you know why some people get it in the urine and would you still opt out of antibiotics if you had it in your urine?

  25. Tracy Rodgers says

    It is very irresponsible to post your lay “advice” without scientific research to back up your claims. I hate to think of how many gullible women will read this and believe your silly pseudoscience and think its real. Back it up with some science or stop yourself from from endangering the lives of innocent babies. Now go ahead and moderate my comment. Must silence anyone who disagrees with you, right?

    • Rakan says

      Is the fact that Stanford U. is conducting a study called “Effects of Oral Probiotic Supplementation on Group B Strep (GBS) Rectovaginal Colonization in Pregnancy” scientific enough for you? Maybe you should give them a call and tell them they are wasting their time on pseudoscience…

      • Sonm says

        Thank you! I was GBS+ and the way it was handled medically leaves a lot to be desired. As usual the medical establishment is the last one to catch on but better late than never.
        And no, we are not gullible women. Just better informed ones taking our health in our won hands because those we trusted let us down!

        • Juliann says

          Amen, and amen, from someone else who is dealing with long-term effects of antibiotic use during delivery in myself and also my now toddler. My son and I have both struggled with systemic inflammatory diseases since his birth, and I am 100% confident the use of during and the over-prescription of antibiotics after his birth are 100% related to our current health nightmares. Western medicine does rely too much on antibiotics, and sadly, they will be the last to realize that, since most of them believe they are God’s gift to men and know everything and therefore have no need to learn more. Many lives will be blessed WHEN Western medicine acknowledges and implements the practice that antibiotics should not be handed out like candy. It makes complete sense if you realize to take out the “enemy” (aka. GBS in a soon-to-be-delivered mother), the answer is not wiping out your “allies” (aka. friendly bacteria who actually make up the IMMUNE SYSTEM), but increasing the number and strength of your armies and allies (aka. strengthening your immune system w/ probiotics vs. weakening it with antibiotics) in order to properly fight the “enemy”. I predict when Western medicine as a whole becomes truly educated, it will be probiotics prescribed, and not antibiotics.

  26. Jessica says

    I had GBS last pregnancy and I’m hoping to not get it this time. By taking garlic capsules daily, am I killing off my good bacteria too? I’m only 22 weeks and just started adding them to my diet. I’m taking Bio-Kult probiotics but if i take them with the garlic, will that be counter productive? And should I keep taking the garlic, even after(or if) I get a negative test result?

  27. Sara says

    I am 37 weeks pregnant and tested Negative. I am mid-twenties, healthy and active and this is our first baby. One thing that i changed after hearing about GBS was that I stopped wearing thong underwear and switched to cotton only.

    About two weeks before my swab, i…started taking 1,000 mg of Vitamin C, drank Kefir, ate live-active yogurt everyday(i already ate yogurt everyday), minimized my consumption of sugar, switched from whole grain/white bread to sourdough(it’s fermented and much more beneficial for your digestion!), ate about two cloves of garlic daily(either in my food, or ate garlic-stuffed-olives. For the three days prior to my test I diced up a garlic and drank it down with OJ…this worked for two days and the night before my test I tried to drink it down but threw up after-yuck!), rinsed with diluted apple cider vinegar(also have since learned about all the health benefits of ACV and love it!), stopped using harsh fragranced soap down there and instead clean around with unscented basic soap and just rinsed with hot water and would wipe with with hazel and water also I always wipe front to back. I am thankful that I tested negative but totally understand everyone being worried about it. I didn’t want to be forced to receive penicillin during labor(I am requesting a HepLock and do not want fluids). I plan to continue this regimen best I can(Although pumpkin pie has been my recent craving-yummy sugar!) up until birth because I felt great and understand that GBS can come and go and is a real threat to baby. I don’t know if I would have tested negative without all these changes, but I’m not sorry I made them! Good luck girls:)

  28. jen says

    Dont mess with GBS! I almost lost my baby because of my not receiving IV penicillin during L&D. Spent his first week of life fighting for his life which was totally avoidable. Choose your battles. GBS is not to be taken lightly. <3

  29. jen says

    *especially if you will be birthing outside of a hospital! In retrospect, my having to be transferred from home to hospital in order to deliver was the best thing that could have happened. Surely my baby would not have made it otherwise

  30. Uke says

    My story is very similar to rest of prev comments but i was wondering if I can use a probiotic supplement vaginally if directions say to take it orally? I really don’t have lot time left before I want to get retested for GBS in next 4 days and i cannot not find a store that carried the ones you insert vaginally (I just bought RepHresh Pro-B for feminine health thinking that’s it, but got home & saw the directions to take it orally) and I do not have time to wait if I order one online. And if I can, does it matter what type of probiotic it is? Does it have to be gel capsule or can it be solid form? I have been taking probiotics orally everyday even before I tested positive but in last several days I’ve taken about 3 a day (same w vit. C supplements). Also I am doing a Hibiclens rinse for last 3 days & inserting raw garlic clove for 2 days now and will continue. I’ve been eating raw garlic cloves with 1 or 2 of my meals daily & drinking milk Kefir & Activia yogurt. But the reason I feel I need to focus my attention on getting rid of the bacteria more so in vaginal area is bc I get yeast infections often and believe I had one after I got tested (or even during) and also had bacteria vaginosis during my pregnancy.

  31. Harry Lvs Amy says

    Hey Katie, did you increase the intake of probiotic capsules orally during pregnancy? I just got prescribed with the pill, and it says ‘2 capsules daily with or after the main meal’ only. I’m struggling with GBS for way too long already! =(

  32. Megan says

    Hi! I’m in the same boat :( Just wondering how you did the apple cider vinegar rinse and how you consumed the coconut oil. Thanks!

    • Brie Shaffer says

      You posted months ago, but to do an apple cider douche, I do 2-4 tablespoons to 8 oz of water, I just use the disposable douches from CVS, I dump out their vinegar & pour in my own apple cider vinegar (raw organic)
      Apple cider douches have completely gotten rid of yeast infections for me. I swear by it. However I recently had intense irritation & my normal apple cider remedy didn’t work (usually after 1 or 2 douches I am completely back to normal) so I got a pap & the results were that I had no yeast but tested positive with Strep B. I immediately cut grains & sugar out of my diet, and alcohol (I am NOT pregnant) and the symptoms subsided but are still mildly there.

      I am now trying garlic cloves orally & vaginally but just started today. Hopefully the natural approach will work, otherwise my DR wants to give me penicillin.

      To consume coconut oil, you can cook eggs with it, pour on your salad, or just take it orally. I’m not sure what the site recommends but 1/4 cup would be quite a bit to swallow. You can blend it in a smoothie.

      I had strep b when I was pregnant. I had 2 IV drips of antibiotics during birth. I WISH I had done more research and tried a natural approach and retested closer to my due date. My poor 1 day old son smelled like penicillin when he burped. Undeniably those antibiotics were in my milk and saturated in my and my sons body.. I would NEVER risk his life and not do antibiotics. That is NOT what I’m saying.

      I’m saying, if I had known I would have at least tried to get rid of Strep B naturally well before my due date just in case I was able to get rid of the Strep B. I would have stopped eating mint chip ice cream every day and eaten garlic and fermented veggies etc etc. What’s to lose?

      And if I retested and was negative, great, if I tested positive, then I would do the antibiotics.

      It’s called PREVENTATIVE measures. No one is arguing that antibiotics have saved millions upon millions of lives. It’s just we do have the option to use nutrition to prevent needing antibiotics.

  33. Camila Irwin says

    wondering if you’ve heard of women’s probiotic called RePHresh Pro-B and if you have any idea how well it works to regulate GBS…?

  34. Carol says

    I think it’s great to learn from you about GBS and what to do about it! Thanks! I have questions though…Once pregnant and informed of having GBS, say at 3 months, how long should a person follow the regime? What is the maintenance regime? And what is the ratio of apple cider vinegar to water for the rinse? Is there a possibility of having too much fermentation in your system with this regime? Would appreciate your response! Thank you.

  35. Karen M says

    Hi all,

    I’m jumping into a heated discussion it looks like. Let me add some more heat from another angle. I have Crohn’s disease. I was fortunate enough to have 2.5 healthy/flare-free/drug-free years (post-massive-emergency-surgery) topped off with a beautifully healthy pregnancy and natural delivery. An absolute miracle. A time in my life that I cling to because I want it back so badly.

    Post-delivery, I went to hell in a handbag. Weeks before delivery, I tested positive for GBS, and I received IV antibiotics during labor. Within a week, I went into the most insane downward health spiral, and I’m still reeling from it 1.5 years later. I am still trying desperately to crawl out of it, I’ve been on all the nasty immunosuppressant drugs (prednisone, Remicade, Humira, Cimzia), more antibiotics, etc., and nothing is working to keep me afloat. I just spent four days in the hospital after a massive bleed that required a major blood transfusion.

    Antibiotics are a b*tch, especially for anyone with an autoimmune disease-and there are more and more of us popping up every single day. If antibiotics can be avoided, they should be. I would NEVER put my baby at risk by refusing treatment, but why can’t we all put our heads together and look for alternative solutions like high-dose probiotic therapy? What is so wrong with that? Why is it so wrong to look for a more natural approach, especially if it can be just as effective as the harsh drugs WITHOUT all the terrible side-effects? If there is a way to pre-treat ourselves with probiotics and manage to shift our internal flora to the point where we test negative, then that is A-W-E-S-O-M-E!!!! Why wouldn’t we do it???????????

    I really hope that I can manage to get out of this flare, and get pregnant again and have another healthy pregnancy. I’m going to continue to saturate myself with lots of probiotics in hopes of avoiding a positive GBS test so I do not have to rinse and repeat my post-delivery trip to hell.

    BTW, I was SO bummed when I tested positive for GBS because I didn’t want my son to have to be stripped of all the beneficial microflora that he would have gotten from me via the birth canal. That is enough of a reason to want to beef up on probiotics and avoid the antibiotics. But I walked away with another reason to avoid the antibiotics – one that I never saw coming!!!!! Lots of people, including people that do NOT have Inflammatory Bowel Disease, end up with C Diff infections and all sorts of nasties because of the IV antibiotics given for GBS. So keep hunting for alternatives ladies!!!!! You do NOT want to deal with these issues post-delivery. Taking care of an infant is enough!

    • Amanda says

      I wanted to post this in response to the “Medical Professional” that is displaying unprofessional and ill-mannered behavior on a blog in which you are not welcome. Here is a site with credible evidence (research-based) http://www.healthychild.com/treating-group-b-strep-are-antibiotics-necessary/.

      It is interesting to note: 10 one study found no decrease in GBS infection or deaths among newborns whose mothers were given IV antibiotics during labor.

      There are women out there that genuinely appreciate any remedies that could offer their newborn a better chance for an active and productive life.

      • JC says

        Thank you for posting that link. I agree that the “Medical Professional” is behaving unprofessionally. The original article never suggested that antibiotics shouldn’t be used, just that there may be a natural way to rid oneself of GBS and then get tested again before labor. Wellness Mama is careful to state that she is not a doctor or offering medical advice, yet the “Medical Professional” seems to think that she is qualified to recommend antibiotics to all women who test positive for GBS despite the fact that she is not their doctor.
        I read the article from the link you posted and found it to be relevant, informative and very current.

      • Jacquelyn says

        thanks for posting this link. Looks like administering antibiotics in this perceived risk situation doesn’t out way the consequences that can then arise from taking antibiotics. I understand that this bacteria can harm however a .5% chance of the baby contracting it during labour and then a 6% chance that it will cause a serious disease is a risk that I would be willing to take in order for my baby to have a chance at a regular gut flora. With the amount of allergies, illnesses and cancers in infants/young children I think we need to start questioning over use of medication. How can you bring health into the body by poisoning it

      • LC says

        Excellent article! A must read for anyone scared of transmitting group b strep. The information will set your worried mind at ease. DONT LET THOSE ILL INFORMED OB/GYN’S SCARE YOU ANYMORE. I know I am not worried about gbs anymore and I will refuse antibiotics. For anyone scared to refuse something from a doctor…print out that article and keep that in your arsenal! Good Luck

  36. Rye says

    Have tested positive for gbs and I am NOT pregnant. My 16 yr old daughter also had same symptoms and her swab came back positive for gbs. How is it contracted? I was given clamidicyne(sp?) And was symptom free for months then it is back again.

  37. Rachel says

    Do you happen to know how Hibiclens affects the good bacteria? I am still gbs positive even after doing the protocol, and myidwife suggested Hibiclens rinses during labor. Will this also kill all the good gut bacteria I have worked so hard at building?

  38. Rakan says

    Thanks for the info Katie,
    I have been using garlic supplements and probiotics, and plan to do real garlic maybe for a week or two closer to the end, but for the rest of the time, which garlic supplements are better for gbs prevention purpose, ones which say fresh garlic or aged garlic, the fresh one claims to have 22x higher allicin, the aged one is well known and reviewed for cleansing yeast…

  39. Kimber says

    Thanks for all the I info! I was very upset to test positive with my first pregnancy. I’m now 10 weeks with my second baby and ordered the probiotics and garlic capsules to start now and continue until birth. However, they just came today and I got the garlic capsules provided in your link….I was disappointed to see they contain soybean oil :(. I’m on the search for a better brand.

  40. Susan says

    How do you use the probiotic vaginally? Also, I tested positive for strep b in my urine and I am only 16 weeks. They put me on Amcillin to get rid of the infection. Am I doomed to not be able to get rid of this? I’ve been told if it is in your urine your levels are really high. My midwife didn’t seem worried but I’m worried. Any advice would be appreciated.

  41. 'Bin says

    I have to comment even though inhaven’t read through them all. I need to inform the people claiming group b strep does nothing to adults they are wrong. I, in my early twenties came down with recurrent tonsilitis. Each swab, 4 times, they did it came back for group b strep NOT a. Antibiotic everytime did nothing, it came back everytime. Eventually imgave up on modern medicine for this and went to an herbalist. 2 weeks gargling and swallowing clevers tincture inhad one reoccurrence then never again. It can cause issues doesn’t mean it will for all, same thing with uti’s – remember universal doesnt exist. This prompted me to get atibiotics with my first. I was going to refuse with my second when he decided pprom was a good idea, never got a chance to retest. I try to walk the fine line between crazy and sheep, that being said using vaginal washes without allowing for bacteria time to multiply to be in sufficent quantity to test positive is reckless. 3 days before a test stop, umless one plans to continue with this up until birth? Which seems rather harsh on an area about to go through some trauma. Everything else go for it.

    • 'Bin says

      The reason I think it is reckless is, say one doesn’t continue until birth, they cant accurately assess symptoms should they appear. Fever, prolonged rom, etc are risk factor associated with increased risk of transmission. Just thought I should clarify.

  42. Christine says

    I was GBS+ with my first pregnancy. Ended up with a NICU kiddo because I developed a placental infection after being given the antibiotic and my daughter had to be treated as soon as she was born. I’m allergic to penicillin, and my OB goes straight for vancomycin (sp?) due to the prevalence of resistance. Not only am I NOT planning to get to the hospital 12 hours before delivery (which is needed for this drug to work), I’m not even sure my labor will be that long this time around. So I don’t feel like there is a viable antibiotic alternative for me, and thus have been researching how to naturally get rid of GBS as to test negative in the first place (I’m beginning 3rd trimester). What is posted here is similar to the information found on midwife websites and published articles, only in a more user-friendly format.

    What I have found interesting, but not mentioned at all on any site I’ve found, is that the natural treatments for GBS seem to run parallel to those used in treating Candida. So I’ve become interested in trying to determine if there’s actually a link – that moms who have Candida are more likely to have GBS, and that in treating the Candida you are helping your body regain control over GBS as well. Since the organisms are similar in that they are yeasts, or yeast-like and are opportunistic, I logically see that there could be a connection, be it causation or correlation around another issue (maybe poor gut flora). Because I know I’ve had issues with Candida in the past, and many of those symptoms are returning thanks to a high carb pregnancy diet (I’ve been sick the whole pregnancy and it’s what I can tolerate to eat), I’m starting to treat both the Candida and GBS (though, like I said, treatment recommendations are largely the same). I just think it could be interesting to see if there’s a link between the two, since no one appears to have looked into that before (not that modern medicine generally considers Candida a medical issue anyway – I’ve gotten so much pushback when I tell doctors my GERD is directly related to Candida and food allergies even though I’ve been med free since dealing with both and no reflux, until pregnancy.) Oh, and there are enzymes and such that can help deal with Candida that are ok during pregnancy – I’m adding those to what is listed here in hopes to have my gut flora back to health by the time baby arrives.

  43. Coraline says

    Honestly, I must admit, I think it was just chance that you ended up testing negative after these “natural remedies.” That happens – a woman can test positive one time, and negative again at another, even a couple weeks later. That can be the natural course of events, and it can have nothing at all to do with what you did or didn’t do. It’s anecdotal, but I did all the “correct” things during my whole pregnancy, especially the third trimester – lots of probiotics, especially. And I’m still GBS positive. I think it’s rather dishonest to be touting these “natural” remedies as a “cure” for GBS when there is, in fact, no evidence that this is the case. I understand people who adhere to natural remedies like these don’t care about “evidence” for it (anecdotes win!) but it’s just my two cents, as someone who did all the “right” things, and for many months, and still ended up GBS positive. It can happen. :)

  44. Martin says

    I am just about 38 weeks pregnant. I tested at 36 weeks for GBS and my test came back positive… I have been doing all of these remedies to try and cure the colonization. I really don’t want to have to get the antibiotic during labor due to all of the important bacteria the baby is colonized with while exiting the birth canal that literally completes her immune system… With my last pregnancy I was a sheep… I didn’t go natural and ended up with a fourth degree tear that I still have problems from. I will never know if it was because I am extremely petite (4″11 and 80 lbs.) or if it was due to the medical intervention (the rush of delivery and me being cut). Despite all of my problems from my last labor I have been offered & declined 2 elective c-sections due to the extreme importance of a drug/intervention free birth. We don’t vaccinate and my baby needs all of that important bacteria! We never use any prescription or OTC drugs and instead treat everything holistically or with homeopathy & I eat extremely healthy (all organic GMO-free vegan diet and am fluoride free)… I will retest at my next appointment in a few days even though my midwife said that I am a carrier regardless and they will still recommend the antibiotic… I am really freaked out because I don’t want the antibiotic AT ALL. but also don’t want to risk the baby’s life (I would never forgive myself if something happened and I could have possibly prevented the problem with an antibiotic)… If I do retest and it’s positive I feel absolutely obligated to get the penicillin- I would then leave the baby in her vernix, BF right away, & keep her skin to skin for at least 2 hours before ANYTHING… If my test comes back negative I still feel unsure on if it’s worth the risk or not… If I am a carrier, but am not colonized on the next test is the baby still able to get GBS (if I’m still negative when I go into labor)? I am really having a hard time understanding!

  45. Devchenka says

    I was diagnosed with B strep with my third pregnancy at 35 weeks, did take probiotics on a regular basis after that and tested negative at 37 weeks. Refused antibiotics during the labor by doing research, my baby girl was well healthy although doctor had to keep me overnight to check her blood. She is 2 years old now and very healthy baby vaccine free.

    My 4th pregnancy im positive again, i do drink kambucha, kefir, probiotics, sorcerous you name it and im a little confused how i still have it, this time im having home birth and will not be taking antibiotics, i know i might be risking, but i will do everything on my part but the side effects of antibiotics that can suppress baby’s immune system after birth and more simply not worth it to me.

  46. Amy says

    Interested in your insight. With my first pregnancy, I tested positive for GBS, and received the antibiotics for an hour every four hours during labor until my baby was delivered. (I prepared with Hypnobirthing, had a 40 hour drug free labor–slow and steady, doable contractions). He came out wide eyed and alert, and perfectly healthy. A little over 2 1/2 years later, I was pregnant with my second. I tested negative for GBS (I was told that GBS comes and goes, and is perfectly normal for an adult). Fast forward to when I went into labor, had bloody show around 6 AM, contractions started at 6:30 and HARD, and figured I must be progressing quickly. I was only 3 cm though, and I figured that if I was going to be having another 40 hour labor, I wanted an epidural. Received epidural at 7:35 AM, delivered at 8:53 AM. My baby was motionless and his eyes were closed. After suctioning the meconium out his status wasn’t changing. Apparently (although they wouldn’t tell us anything about what was going on) he still hadn’t taken a breath and his heart beat at one point couldn’t be found, and another point was 40 BPM. They whisked him away and did 4 minutes of CPR (still not telling us what was happening–can you tell I’m a little traumatized by that?). After he had been resuscitated and we had some skin to skin time, they found he had GBS, and they attributed his rough start to that infection. He stayed in the hospital for a week to receive antibiotics every 8 hours. What do you think about this?? I’m nervous about my next delivery (I’m not pregnant, but when I am..). Of course I want to avoid that GBS situation again and feel like my only option is to be induced (since my labor was so quick), so I can have time to have the antibiotics….now I came across your site and found that possibly there’s some other ways to avoid GBS. I’d love your insight. Can you email me at “at.ormond [at] gmail.com”?

  47. Brenda says

    Hi all. I’m reading all these posts with great interest. I have a Step B Bladder and Vaginal infection. I’m not pregnant, 55 years young :) I am allergic to Penicillin, and 4 of the other antibiotics that have been prescribed to me. I’ve had this for 2-3 months now, how I contracted it in the first place, I have no idea? I went to a Naturopathic Dr. two weeks ago, he has me on all kinds of different “medicines”, I’m taking 10 different pills each day, i have a vaginal capsule to insert at bedtime, i have a spray which i spray in my mouth twice a day. Its only been 10 days, but I feel absolutely no different. I’m supposed to do this for one month and visit him again. I’ve never heard about the garlic cloves in the vagina. I thought i had a yeast infection, very itchy and burning and uncomfortable… its certainly worth a try… so one clove at bedtime? Wish me luck!

  48. melissa parker says

    Awesome! Thank you for this significant and important article. I certainly enjoy reading all that is written on your blog.

  49. Marisa says

    Just a quick question: I’m just in the beginning of my second trimester (first pregnancy), and want to start doing things to set me up to get a negative GBS test. I’m keeping up with taking probiotics, eating plenty of fermented foods, garlic, and taking vitamin C. I also thought that it wouldn’t hurt to do some garlic/kefir/probiotic capsule vaginally occasionally, as well as the diluted ACV rinse, especially once I’m in my third trimester. Here’s my question: Did you do the rinse as a whole douche, or just rinse like you would when washing up in the shower (mostly the outside without going inside)? Thanks!! I love your blog and recipes!

  50. Shaina says

    You go girl! I’ve been experimenting home concoctions not only my Health but also using my skills around the house for the family! Self care and home rituals should be pursued more considering their holistic benefits and hidden treasures they have on our body’s system.

  51. Melanie Haspels says

    What is the dilution ratio of the Apple Cider Vinegar rinse? I just learned that I’m GBS positive at 37 1/2 weeks so I don’t have much time to turn this around. My midwife told me about using garlic vaginally but I’m going to increase my consumption all the other things you mentioned too. Thank you for this!

  52. Erin says

    Thanks for your recommendations, Katie. I tested GBS + at my 36 week appointment and have started your above regimen. I plan on telling my nurse midwife that I would like to be retested at my 39 week appointment. Do you know of any resources that state how long GBS typically tends to stay in ones system? Also, I have been seeing a nutritionist who does nutrition response testing througout my current pregnancy. She recommended bacterial nosode drops, as well as your above recommendations. I’m wondering how safe they are to take during pregnancy. The resources I have found are very contradictory to each other. Do you know much about nosodes or know of any resources that might clue me in on how safe they are to take during pregnancy?

  53. Leigh says

    I’m not sure if this has been pointed out as of yet, but Group B Strep comes and goes in cycles. So testing positive during one screening and not in another is nothing new. In fact, it’s normal.

    There has also been plenty of research into the screening. And coming Australia where we do have the option (preference) to screen for Group B Strep and The UK where they don’t screen, the statistics to how many babies get sick and how many fatalities are the same.

    So why does testing positive at around 36-37 week gestation cause a “need” for antibiotics?

    • says

      Maybe it’s an American thing. I was told by my doctor that it could be harmful to the baby if I had it during labor, and therefore would be given antibiotics.

  54. Deborah says

    Hello,
    Thanks for sharing your knowlegde and experience!
    I am 33 weeks pregnant, did not made the GBS test yet. But I started to prevent, I am taking extra Vitamin C, yestarday I started to take garlic pills and I will start to take probiotic pills next week. I will try near the exame to rinse with vinegar and yogurt and one day before insert one garlic. Hope it works, I am alergic to penicilin and I want to avoid antibiotics during labor!

  55. Logan says

    I was diagnosed GBS positive by urine culture at 8 weeks pregnant in my 2nd pregnancy (none detected in first pregnancy). I tried a few things, but subsequent tests showed GBS still present and due to early detection in urine, I ended up last minute acceding to the antibiotics. I am now 9 weeks in my third pregnancy and going to be more proactive in trying to eliminate this GBS (I know I will be considered positive regardless, because of past pregnancy records). My question: which approach would you recommend? I see your first was in a 2-week duration. This seems a bit extreme for me to do for the next 31 weeks. Should I do this for a few weeks, then maintain with the second regimen?

  56. jessie says

    Hi Katie,
    My little 4 year old was just diagnosed with GBS by a urine test :( they want me to start her on antibiotics. Im really worried about putting her on them. I can not find anything about a young girl having it and what to do naturally. Any help would be very much appreciated!!!! Thanks!!!

  57. Neda says

    So at 27 weeks I went for my regular urine/blood work and they found GBS in my urine. I was so stressed out because the last thing I want is antibiotics while I’m pregnant. I stopped having sugar and carbs and took higher dose of probiotics. I also got some homeopathic drops from my naturopath doc for GBS. Now I’m 31 weeks and did another urine test and GBS was negative :)
    Never jump to antibiotics. Even if I were still positive I wasn’t going to take the antibiotics. The side effects to baby are so much higher then the risk of baby catching GBS.

  58. Mandi Creveling says

    Hi! I tested Positive for GBS a couple weeks ago, they prescribed me antibiotics over the phone. I went online and found your blog which inspired me to to resist taking the antibiotics. I went to see my doctor after finding out I told her that I was going to try getting rid of it without antibiotics, she was doubtful but agreed to let me try it my way and test me again a few weeks later and I just go the news 2 days ago that I am now negative for GBS!!
    I am so grateful for your posting and for the support of my doula.

    Here’s what I did over the course of two weeks:
    I included about two cloves of fresh garlic in my daily diet, I took a probiotic daily, I added a dose of an echinacea tincture to my water at least once a day, and occasionally took a vitamin c supplement or drank orange juice daily. In addition to my daily prenatal vitamin and my calcium/vitD/magnesium supplement which I was taking anyways, (vitamin D helps your body absorb Vit C).

    I plan to continue this at least until birth.

  59. Emily says

    Thank you for your suggestions. I’ve been GBS+ with all 4 of my children & had to receive antibiotics during labor & delivery. However, the antibiotics led to horrific vaginal & breast yeast infections with my first 2. With my last 2 children, I started taking probiotics immediately afterwards, and it helped me from getting yeast infections. :) In the future, I am going to try your probiotic, vitamin c, & garlic regiment to try to avoid testing positive.

  60. Vanessa says

    Question for Katie/Wellness Mama: For whatever reason, I was tested for GBS pretty early in pregnancy (this is my first) and tested positive, though my OB says it’s a very mild strain. They are doing a vaginal swab next Wed (I’ll be 36 weeks) to check again. I have been drinking ACV, taking garlic, taking a good probiotic, eating yogurt, kefir, raw/fermented sauerkraut etc. My probiotic is in powder form- How would I insert it vaginally? Or how do I insert garlic vaginally? Trying to do what I can to clear this up before birth!

    • says

      I personally would not use probiotics that close to testing since it can sometimes culture a false positive. I tied a clove of garlic in a piece of gauze with a sting still attached and used it like a tampon for a couple of hours a few days before the test. Best of luck with the test. I hope you have a wonderful delivery :-)

  61. iiana says

    Hello wellness mama. I was wondering if you experienced any tiredness or sluggishness when starting this regimen for a day or two? I love your article and since my mom and one aunt are natural doctors I knew this is what I wanted to do. I do feel very tired the first day and I know with treatments my mom has given, people will feel sluggish because the infection is reacting and being killed off. Did you experience this?

  62. Kenny Shulman says

    I have witnessed a mom become sepsis with GBS, not to mention how very sick her baby was. After emergency caesarean, baby remained in NICU for full week after birth, having spinal taps, IV’s and everything else. Mom also had to remain in the hospital. Did I mention how sick she was? This was life threatening for both mom & baby. Thank goodness they have finally been able to come home…weak, very weak…but home.
    I say…
    Don’t mess
    with GBS!
    IVs can cause stress
    but it is what’s best!

    Kenny Shulman CD(DONA)

  63. Nanco says

    Hi. I don’t usually comment on blogs but I wanted to share my story!
    I tested positive through a urine test at 11 weeks. (I was told that it meant I had so much of the bacteria in my gut that it was also in my urinary tract, although I did not have symptoms of a UTI).
    I did your protocol pretty strictly for about four weeks (used Bio-Kult probiotics, Vitamin C, coconut oil, garlic, apple vider vinegar), with some days of forgetting a few things (usually drinking the garlic). I only inserted garlic vaginally twice, and did the same with probiotics maybe three times.
    I got a call from the midwives today (I’m just over 15 weeks) and my urine test from two weeks ago is NEGATIVE! They’re very impressed, and they want me to share the protocol.
    I plan to continue taking most of the protocol to ensure it doesn’t return.
    Thank you very much!

    • Neda says

      Nanco

      I have had the exact same thing early in my pregnancy happen to me. I changed my diet and took homeopathic drops. Next urine test showed GBS negative. I started moderately having some sweets and carbs…. then had the swab done at 35 weeks and it was positive. I am now 38 weeks and this week i will find out my recent urine test results. Either way i will not do the antibiotics. For the next 2 weeks i will go back to carb and sugar free and hopefully be negative again.

  64. Neda says

    From my Naturopath Doc. Strep B homeopathic drops. They worked. But i didn’t try using them without changing diet so i don’t know if they would work alone.

  65. Rachel says

    This might be a dumb question, but For the diet change, do you have to take out natural sugars like fruit too? Or just foods with added sugar? And carbs… everything has carbs. What the heck are you supposed to eat?

  66. Rachel says

    What are you supposed to eat if you cut out sugar and carbs? Fruit is good for you but has lots of sugar and vegetables have carbs. Do you just cut out foods with added sugars but still keep the natural sugar foods? And then what else can you have, meat and thats it?

  67. iiana says

    To holly, I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot imagine the pain you are feeling and I hope that your heart and soul will mend. I just had my baby and I tried for 2 months to clear gbs on my own. It didn’t work and I still tested positive just a few days before I gave birth. I still declined all medication. Then my water broke and I was in the hospital. After a few hours of being there, I could hear a woman wailing. I asked what was going on and my nurse said she wanted a natural birth and her birth was successful at home but she had gbs and the baby came down with one of the gbs problems. Her baby was hospitalized within 24 hours of birth and died by the time I got there 2 days later. At that point I quickly started rethinking everything. I realized that trying and hopefully curing gbs naturally is wonderful especially if you are successful and is still the best way to go in my opinion….. BUT you should get checked again and if you are still positive then at that point you put yourself aside and you do the next thing for your baby which is the antibiotics. Never should anyone leave their baby’s health and life to chance. That baby did not need to die. So I asked for the antibiotics and got two rounds of it by the time my beautiful baby was born. She was born on her exact due date and was still monitored for 2 days to make sure she didn’t get any of the symptoms and then I went home. Of course I didn’t want her to have ill effects from the antibiotics but I rather know I tried to save her life then leave it to chance. I hope people see that from the horrible losses others fave and I am so sorry you are one of those people who had to feel loss. My prayers go out to you and I hope you try again and have anot her beautiful baby to fulfill your life that way. With love from afar.

  68. Gmill says

    Can anyone explain more about using garlic/probiotics vaginally and also how to do the apple cider vinegar wash?
    Thank you

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