In the United States the number of children with food allergies has increased by 18% from 1997 to 2007 and allergy-related hospital visits have tripled. If you or a family member suffers from food allergies you can surely attest to how scary those moments can be after taking in an offending food.
In a recent study by the Academy for Immunology and Microbiology within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) and the National Institute of Animal Science research project of Rural Development Administration, a specific probiotic strain has been shown by researchers to reduce the effects of food allergies.
In this study two different strains of bacteria commonly used in probiotics were provided to mice who were later exposed to food allergens. One strain in particular lowered the mast cell reaction responsible for allergic responses, neutralizing their ability to induce allergy symptoms. The bacteria that showed effective was B longum KACC 91563.
Other studies have also shown the benefits of probiotics in lowering food allergy and sensitivity reactions, calming the immune response.
My recommendations for best practice when it comes to taking probiotics:
1. Always buy a strain that was refrigerated.
2. Keep it in the fridge when you get home.
3. Always take with a meal.
4. Start taking them slowly, every other day.
5. Mix up the brands/strains you purchase. If you can afford two different bottles at one time, every other day change which brand/strains you are taking to keep a robust and varying profile introduced to your gut.
Institute for Basic Science. "Protein from bacteria alleviates food allergy symptoms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 March 2016. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/03/160316085011.htm>.
Caitlin Johnson is a dietitian, wife, lover of ice cream, chef wannabe, California-girl, Christian, liver eating, "food-avore."
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