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Heal food allergy inflammation by taking high doses of probiotics: Research proven

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: probiotics, food allergies, inflammation

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(NaturalNews) If you currently suffer from persistent food allergies, this common inflammatory intolerance does not necessarily have to be a permanent scourge on your everyday health. New research published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research confirms that food allergies can actually be ameliorated entirely with the right nutritional protocol, mainly a dietary regimen that involves supplementing with high doses of beneficial, probiotic bacteria.

Researchers from the Istituto Superiore di Sanita in Rome, Italy, found this out after testing the effects of the VSL#3 brand of probiotics on mice with induced peanut allergies. When given high doses of VSL#3, which contains eight different strains of live and synergistic lactic acid bacteria, the peanut-sensitized mice no longer suffered anaphylaxis or Th2-mediated inflammation when exposed to peanut products.

Additionally, the probiotic blend was observed to help improve regulation of the mice's intestinal villi, which absorb nutrients, as well as their mesenteric lymph nodes, which aid the body in fighting off illness. Mesenteric lymph nodes, it turns out, can become inflamed when exposed to allergenic substances, resulting in a condition known as mesenteric lymphadenitis. But probiotics appear to help quell this inflammation.

"TGF-beta, induced in the gut by VSL#3 supplementation, is capable of reducing the Th2 inflammation associated with food anaphylaxis in a mouse model of peanut sensitization," wrote the authors in their conclusion. "Probiotics supplementation may represent an effective and safe strategy for treating food allergies in adult population."

Previous research found that probiotics can help cure a host of allergy-related inflammatory bowel diseases

Researchers from the Hospital Clinic i Provincial de Barcelona in Spain called for more of this kind of research back in 2009 when they published a study in the Swiss journal Digestive Diseases that discussed how probiotics might help alleviate the symptoms of, and perhaps even cure, inflammatory bowel disease in human patients.

Not to be confused with irritable bowel syndrome, which is often referred to by the acronym "IBS," inflammatory bowel disease, which categorically includes conditions like Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, is often the direct consequence of repeated exposure to allergenic substances. And the most commonly recommended treatments include taking pharmaceutical drugs and avoiding offending foods and other substances.

But researchers who are more privy to the bacterial physiology behind inflammatory bowel disease and the food allergies that often trigger it have long been curious as to how probiotics might help address the underlying cause and potentially even cure it. And the researchers involved in the Spanish study are no exception, having pointed out at the time that a growing body of research supports the notion that underlying bacterial imbalances are the true cause of inflammatory bowel disease.

According to this particular study, abnormalities in the way the innate immune system recognizes and responds to certain bacterial and microbiotic antigens is often directly responsible for causing the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease. But adjusting the composition of intestinal microbiota with high-dose probiotics has the potential to help correct this serious category of disease by effectively healing the gut.

"Numerous micro-organisms have been evaluated to induce or maintain remission, or both, in ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease and Pouchitis," wrote the authors. "Overall, probiotics have successfully demonstrated some efficacy in some inflammatory bowel disease scenarios."

More recently, a study out of the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh found that babies whose mothers supplemented with probiotics during pregnancy have a far lower risk than other babies of ever developing food allergies in the first place. This study, like the others, serves as yet more evidence that healthy gut microbiota are crucial in both preventing and mitigating food allergies and inflammatory bowel diseases.

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