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Probiotic Combo May Help With Respiratory Infections in Children

Respiratory infections are a common problem for children, especially in the winter months, and they can affect the whole family. A recent study suggests that the probiotics Lactobacillus acidophilus DDS-1 and Bifidobacterium lactis UABLA-12 taken in combination may help reduce the severity and duration of acute respiratory infections in children.

Participants in the study included 223 healthy children between the ages of 3 and 12. They were given supplements containing 5 billion colony-forming units of the probiotics with 50 mg of fructooligosaccaride or rice maltodextrin as a control as soon as a member of their household became sick. Intervention and follow-up lasted for two weeks or until the end of the child’s acute respiratory infection, if they contracted one.

The researchers found no significant differences in the development of acute respiratory infections between the two groups, with 57% of the probiotic group contracting one compared to 65% of the control group. However, they did find a difference in duration. Infections lasted an average of five days in the probiotic group and an average of seven days in the control group. They also noted that the infections were significantly milder in the probiotic group when compared with the placebo group.

Researchers from the Lviv National Medical University in Ukraine conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on October 14, 2015, in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

More and more research suggests that probiotics may help with a wide range of ailments. Previous studies suggest that different strains may help with weight loss, improve digestion, prevent recurring yeast infections, boost the immune system and reduce the risk of chronic disease.

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