Probiotics & Allergies: Nothing to Sneeze At!

Allergies are “altered reactions,” derived from the Greek words allos (meaning different or changed) and ergos (meaning work or action). Fifty million people in the United States have allergies, with nasal allergies or hay fever, asthma, allergic eczema, and hives being the most common.

Greek or not, you know allergies by their symptoms – from itchy, runny noses to hives and rashes.

In medical terms, an allergy is an exaggerated response by your immune system to contact with a “foreign” substance. But it’s usually a misguided reaction. Your body perceives an allergen – an allergy-producing substance – as dangerous when it’s really not. If you’re allergic to a particular substance – cat hair, pollen, or mold, for instance – your body snaps to attention, producing an exaggerated response.

Several research studies show that probiotics offer promising treatments for allergies. They’ve been successfully used to treat eczema (bacteria studied include L.Planatarum, L.rhamnosus, L.casei, L.Bulgaricus). One Netherlands study found that daily probiotics prevent asthma-like symptoms in children with eczema, while another study showed decreased incidence of eczema in children when taking prebiotics.

Early research shows that probiotics impact food allergies, but conclusive evidence isn’t available yet. The same is true of hay fever – initial studies of the bacteria lactobacillus casei shirota show positive results for decreasing hay fever symptoms.

Click HERE to check out a great article on how taking probiotics while pregnant may decrease the chance of passing allergies on to babies.

Meanwhile, save some dollars in Kleenex, allergy pills and eye drops by fighting off your allergies with probiotics and prebiotics!

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

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