Posy Dec 2021

HAYFEVER UPDATE: The power of probiotics

Spring is with us again – and that means it’s hayfever time. If your body has allergy reactions, then this recent research finding could be really useful for you to know about.

New research has uncovered a novel approach to hayfever – one that which looks at restoring the normal balance between immune system cells that promote allergic reactions and those that suppress them. It’s tackling the root cause of hayfever.

This research is focussed on the Microbiome and the balance of various gut microbes. This new approach focuses on Probiotics for the treatment of seasonal allergic rhinitis (hay fever).

At the National Institute of Integrative Medicine, the Research Department did a study where the participants were given a Probiotic, then monitored for their symptoms, quality of life and immunological factors.

I was fortunate to participate in this research study, being in Melbourne at this time. I liked being ‘in’ the research to see how it feels as one of the ‘numbers’ referred to in research. The whole process was interesting with interviews, blood and stool tests, online surveys to complete etc.

I found it took quite a commitment to stick to the regime required with reporting and supplement taking. As a practitioner this reminded me how challenging it can be for patients to follow well intended recommendations.

The findings – probiotics help hayfever

The study concluded specific probiotics were effective in reducing hay fever symptoms, such as runny nose and itchy eyes, and improved the quality-of-life and immunological parameters while being well tolerated.

Mainstream allergy medications target symptoms, not the root cause of the problem, and come with an array of potential side effects. Certain Probiotics may provide a unique option for improving the quality of life in allergy sufferers.

Reference: Karin Ried, Nikolaj Travica, Yeah Paye, Avni Sali, Effects of a Probiotic Formulation on Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis in Adults—A Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trial: TheProbiotics for Hay Fever Trial. Frontiers in Nutrition, May 2022

If you’re facing the annual struggle with hayfever, talk to your Naturopath about whether a course of specific Probiotics and other supplements or lifestyle adjustments could make your life easier.

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