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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD

International Best-Selling & 20-Time Book Author, Celebrity Nutritionist

Beat Spring Allergies with Bacteria

It may sound odd that bacteria can actually reduce allergy symptoms.  But, certain bacteria can reduce inflammation in the body, improve nutrient absorption, and reduce nasal and sinus symptoms linked to allergies.  Of course, not just any bacteria will do. 

Research by scientists at the Osaka University School of Medicine found that certain probiotics were effective in the treatment of nasal and sinus symptoms linked to allergies.  According to their study published in the International Archives of Allergy and Immunology, the specific strains that are effective include:  Lactobacilli casei, Lactobacillus paracasei, L. acidophilus, and Bifidobacterium longum.

Supplement your diet with a high-quality probiotic taken on an empty stomach, preferably one containing a wide variety of bacterial strains. Don’t worry about remembering their lengthy names. Usually the word “Lactobacillus” will be shortened to “L.” and “Bifidobacterium” will be shortened to “B.” on product labels.

Usually bacteria are measured in colony forming units—(CFU) for short—and most types will have between 1 and 20 billion CFU. Or the package may just indicate, say, 4 billion per capsule. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that choosing a quality probiotic is just a numbers game.  Unfortunately, there isn’t a good way to discern between good and poor quality probiotic supplements without trying them.

By taking a broad-spectrum probiotic supplement, you increase your likelihood of reducing allergy symptoms.  Probiotic supplements work over time.  Do not expect to see immediate results like you would with certain other supplements.  Take probiotic supplements on an empty stomach and away from antibiotics or oregano oil supplements. For most people, the ideal time is either before bed or first thing in the morning. If you take it in the morning, try to leave at least 20 to 30 minutes before eating.

Adapted from  my e-book:  Allergy-Proof: Over 60 Drug-Free, All-Natural Ways to Beat Allergies.  Reg $9.95.  Now 20% off--use coupon code SPG20.

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