A Spoonful of Sugar Not Only Makes the Medicine Go Down, It Makes It More Effective

A spoonful of sugar not only makes medicine easier to swallow, it also might increase its potency, according to a new study. The results of research performed at Boston University show sugar can make certain antibiotics more effective at wiping out bacterial infections. The sugar tricks bacteria that would otherwise play dead into consuming the antibiotic and therefore end up really dead. Adding sugar to medication may augment treatment for some chronic bacterial infections, including staph and tuberculosis, the researchers say. So far, studies have only been conducted in animals, and more research is needed to see if the same results hold true in humans. If they do, it's possible that the antibiotics we already have could be improved without needing to make new drugs, which can be expensive. In addition, patients may not need to take multiple doses of antibiotics to combat recurrent infections, which would save on health care costs.