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Allergies and intolerances

Probiotics...............................Allergy Specialist Advice

3 replies

mymama · 26/11/2005 22:51

DS had his allergy appointment last Tuesday and I quizzed the dr (allergy/immunology specialist) over probiotics as I had started them on the advice of all of you lovely MNers. She told me that I need to get the particular probiotics that contain Lactobacillus GG as it is particularly Lactobacillus GG that is credited with assisting allergies. Hope that helps.

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tatt · 27/11/2005 08:44

is that because its the only one that has been tried, though, or that others have been tried and not been as successful? Lactobacillus gg is hard to find (and expensive) although this is one place that does it

www.insulinfactor.co.uk/store/gut-supplements/the-gut-supplement-plan/lactobacillus-gg-30-capsules-/showitemGUT003.aspx

However there seem to be a few very recent trials suggesting other probiotics work. There was one on mice using B. bifidum BGN4 (BGN4), L. casei 911 (L. casei), or Escherichia coli MC4100 (E. coli).

One on allergic rhinitis used Bacillus clausii, an earlier study used Lactobacillus paracasei-33 (LP-33) - I don't know if those are the same, suspect they are.

One on atopic dermatitis used L fermentum VRI-003 PCC

So although I can see why the consultant said what they did (it is the most tried probiotic) I think I'm going to stick with the cheaper, more readily available ones. That's mainly because I know my kids will have "drinky yoghurt" and they don't like pills or powders. Also some reports say they have to be taken daily and that's easier to manage when they are cheaper.

Didn't know about the allergic rhinitis studies until today, I'm going to have to take them too

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mymama · 27/11/2005 11:36

She said lactobacillus GG specifically may be beneficial to food allergies. We did not go into other allergies or eczema etc as ds does not suffer from those (yet). No studies have proven benefits as yet but as she said it can't hurt. I would imagine she would be up to date with latest figures as she is very proactive in this field and is invited to speak at many national and international conferences. The current probiotics we have do not contain it I will look out for it next time. All probiotics available to me are expensive. I have also started my other two children on them twice a week and my dd who usually gets most tummy bugs has not been sick since she started .

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tatt · 28/11/2005 05:58

the mice study was actually on food allergy and it did show benefits - not a cure but moderating the effect of the allergen. I thought I remembered a study on lactobacillus GG being useful for preventing food allergy, but none on its use for existing food allergy?

Still the question is really how it works and if the same result can be achieved by a variety of probiotics. Probiotics alter the type of bacteria in the gut. The type of bacteria in your gut semms to affect the immune response. According to one study "Allergic infants were found to have an adult type Bifidobacterium flora with high levels of Bifidobacterium adolescentis. Healthy infants had a typical infant Bifidobacterium flora with high levels of Bifidobacterium bifidum" Unfortunately not enough research yet to work out exactly how the allergic response is produced, and how it changes with different types of gut bacteria. The different types of gut bacteria in infants may not matter.

No proof that probiotics help in existing food allergy, only that they help with eczema and digestive disorders. Still the more research they do the more hopeful it looks that they may help those will outgrow allergy do so sooner. The possiblilty of moderating the allergic response in more severe reactions is more remote but as my eldest has anaphylactic reactions I'm willing to buy something that is unlikely to do any harm and may just provide a bit of help. With no definite proof that anything will help existing food allergy you have to decide how much the hope is worth to you. If they put lactobacillus gg into yoghurt I'd buy that one.

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