Lactobacillus acidophilus

Keep Your Child Cold and Flu Free

Recently, the flu and cold have been spreading around. All it takes is a cough or sneeze from someone who is already sick for you or your child to get sick. During this time of year, it is important to keep your child healthy and probiotics may help.

In a recent study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, more than 300 children were divided into three groups to study the effect of probiotics on cold and flu-like symptoms. The children, who ranged in age from three years old to five years old, were either given a placebo, a Lactobacillus acidophilus probiotic or a combination of Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium animalis

The results from the study concluded that those who consumed the probiotic supplement daily for six months suffered significantly less cold and flu-like symptoms. These participants showed between 50 and 72 percent less fevers, 41 to 62 percent less coughing and 28 to 59 percent less runny noses, overall.

With the colder weather and children back in schools, taking a daily probiotic supplement, like EndoMune Jr., may help not only treat, but prevent your child from becoming ill.

Before starting your child on a probiotic regimen, it is always best to consult with your child’s physician.

How to get rid of diarrhea

Taking probiotics may be helpful in preventing diarrhea, but a review of more than 63 studies by the Cochrane Library suggests that it can help to get rid of diarrhea quicker.

This review of nearly 8,000 patients — including 56 focused on infants and young children — concluded the use of probiotics shortened the course of diarrhea by a day, and reduced the duration of diarrhea lasting more than four days by 59 percent.

Also, probiotics decreased the chances of spreading the diarrhea infection and relieved discomfort.

Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidum — both critical strains of beneficial bacteria contained in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic and EndoMune Junior, –were among the strains of probiotic bacteria used in the studies.

Researchers found no difference between the strains of probiotic bacteria used as all the strains proved to be safe and beneficial to the study participants.

“A striking finding of this review is that most trials reported that probiotics reduced diarrhea,” said lead researcher Stephen Allen of the School of Medicine at Swansea University, UK, according to a press release. “The beneficial effect was consistent and significant across many different types of trials.”

Be wary of standard diarrhea treatments

Unfortunately, three of the more popular ways to treat diarrhea — taking an antibiotic or an over-the-counter medication or eating specific foods — may not be as safe or reliable and create more health complications you’ll want to avoid, especially if your child is at risk.

For example, some health experts advise taking antibiotics, but only if bacteria or parasites trigger diarrhea. Yet, antibiotics can cause great harm not only by disrupting the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut but by promoting the spread of antibiotic-resistant superbugs like C. diff infections.

Also, taking an over-the-counter drug like loperamide (Imodium) or bismuth-subsalicylate (Pepto Bismol) only treats diarrhea, but not the underlying cause of the problem. Plus, you should be very careful if your child has the flu or chickenpox that you don’t treat him/her with medicines that contain bismuth-subsalicylate due to their link to Reye syndrome, a rare but very serious disease.

Plus, the verdict is very much mixed about the value of following the BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce and toast), particularly for children because it doesn’t contain enough nutrients to help their guts recover from diarrhea.

However, taking a probiotic is one of most effective ways, not only to shorten the duration of diarrhea, but to give your body a healthy boost to its natural defenses to prevent it altogether.

The real trick about probiotics: There’s a huge difference between taking a probiotic containing single or multiple strains of beneficial bacteria.

A growing number of studies have shown taking a multi-species probiotic like EndoMune — containing 10 strains beneficial bacteria plus a prebiotic– are effective in treating a host problems in addition to diarrhea, including IBS, respiratory tract infections and immune functioning. More information about traveler’s diarrhea can be found here.


Probiotics and Flu Season

The temperature is dipping and you all know what that means – cold and flu season is upon us. No one wants to end up stuck in bed for a week with uncomfortable, draining flu symptoms. Happily, there are a few basic things you can do to prevent the onset of the flu:

  • Get the flu vaccine
  • Wash your hands religiously
  • Avoid crowds
  • Do not sneeze or cough into your hands
  • Drink lots of fluid
  • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables
  • Exercise regularly
  • Get at least 7 hours of sleep, per night

These recommendations are the typical prescription for prevention from most practiced care providers. However, there’s one more key step that could make the difference for you this flu season: taking a probiotic.

The Proof Is in the Research

Published health studies such as Probiotics Effects on Cold and Influenza-like Symptom Incidence and Duration in Children1 from the medical journal Pediatrics, demonstrate the validity of probiotics as a preventative health supplement.

For example, this particular study divided healthy children, ages 3-5, into three separate groups:

  • Those receiving a placebo (104 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus (110 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus & Bifidobacterium lactis (112 participants)

For the purposes of the study, each child received their supplement daily, for 6 months, under close cold and flu symptom scrutiny.

At the end of the study researches found that, when compared to the placebo groups, the other two participant groups had reduced flu-like symptoms, antibiotic use and days missed from school – a huge relief to parents and physicians alike.


What The Research Means for You

Studies in adults2, similar to the Pediatrics study, have been performed and the results indicate similar findings, particularly in cases of upper respiratory infections.

Scientific outcomes infer that this occurs because oral probiotic supplements can stimulate the immune system in the gastrointestinal tract. Once this occurs, the GI tract typically begins producing more immune cells. Those cells can then stop cold and flu inflammation before it becomes severe and attack viruses as they invade the lining of the respiratory tract3,4,5,6. Thus, the body eradicates viruses before they settle.


Take Home Message

Results like these highlight the importance of taking a daily, oral probiotic supplement during flu season – particularly one containing the potent bacteria strain combination of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in a serving size of 10 billion colonies or more.

Try a probiotic, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic or EndoMune Junior Advanced Probiotic for your little ones, that meets these standards to help counter disastrous flu symptoms this autumn and winter.

1 Probiotic effects on cold and influenza-like symptom incidence and duration in children.Leyer GJ, Li S, Mubasher ME, Reifer C, Ouwehand AC; Pediatrics. 2009 Aug;124(2):e172-9. Epub 2009 Jul 27

2 Probiotics for the prevention of respiratory tract infections: a systematic review.Vouloumanou EK, Makris GC, Karageorgopoulos DE, Falagas ME; Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2009 Sep;34(3):197.e1-10. Epub 2009 Jan 28.
Probiotics in intestinal and non-intestinal infectious diseases–clinical evidence.
Hatakka K, Saxelin M; Curr Pharm Des. 2008;14(14):1351-67. Review.

3 Probiotic bacteria reduced duration and severity but not the incidence of common cold episodes in a double blind, randomized, controlled Vrese M, Winkler P, Rautenberg P, Harder T, Noah C, Laue C, Ott S, Hampe J, Schreiber S, Heller K, Schrezenmeir J; Vaccine. 2006 Nov 10;24(44-46):6670-4. Epub 2006 Jun 6.

Probiotics in intestinal and non-intestinal infectious diseases–clinical evidence. Hatakka K, Saxelin M; Curr Pharm Des. 2008;14(14):1351-67. Review.

5 Molecular and cellular basis of microflora-host interactions.Winkler P, Ghadimi D, Schrezenmeir J, Kraehenbuhl JP; J Nutr. 2007 Mar;137(3 Suppl 2):756S-72S. Review.

6 Probiotic and prebiotic influence beyond the intestinal tract. Lenoir-Wijnkoop I, Sanders ME, Cabana MD, Caglar E, Corthier G, Rayes N, Sherman PM, Timmerman HM, Vaneechoutte M, Van Loo J, Wolvers DA; Nutr Rev. 2007 Nov;65(11):469-89. Review

Probiotics: Naturally Good

Probiotics are bacteria that help maintain the natural balance of the intestines’ microflora. The largest group of piobiotic bacterica, Lactobacillus acidophilus, is found in naturally in the intestines — as are many good gut bacteria used in probiotic suppliments.

Studies support the theory that probiotic supplements are not likely to harm the user. Rather, research suggests that probiotics can benefit the user by helping to create a balance digestive system and relieve the stomach pain or abdominal discomfort caused by diarrhea, gas, and cramping. They may also help to prevent the onset of vaginal yeast infections and urinary tract infections.

Although not a medical guarantee, probiotics have been seen to deliver a number of health benefits to those who take them. Read the full article here for more information, and consider trying a probiotics like EndoMune Advanced to see if probiotics could be right for you.

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