Friday, May 1, 2009

Probiotics for Swine Flu

The four things I am taking for influenza protection are:
1. undenatured whey protein
2. probiotics
3. antioxidants with selenium
4. omega 3 fatty acids (for the vitamin D)

Today I am going to go over Probiotics. This weekend I will tackle selenium, omega-3 fatty acids and whey. I was able to find many abstracts of studies done all of these things that have been specifically studied for influenza. In some ways I am amazed this is not being covered more in the media because they are so readily available, easy to take and effective.
Probiotics may help your body fight an influenza virus more effectively. Of course I use them for many other uses, yeast infections, chronic urinary tract infections, preventing antibiotic induced diarrhea, rotovirus, and traveler's diarrhea. We all need probiotic bacteria to synthesize vitamins. They work to prevent over growth of virulent bacteria too. You can eat a diet high in fiber with inulin (jerusalem artichokes for example) that promote the growth of these bacteria in the gut too. I personally take Dr. Ohirra's Probiotics 12 Plus (see photo above) It is available online and some health food stores. Online is significantly less expensive than what I have found in the stores. Don't pay more than $35 a box. My local co-op charges almost $50 a box which is crazy. It is enterically coated to bypass the stomach acid and release in the gut. It is a lactose-free fermented paste that has been used in Japan for years. It also has a bacteria that has been shown to be effective against MRSA. After looking at many, many probiotic supplements, I like this the most. This is what I take, and what I recommend.

Probiotics are viable microorganisms. Sufficient amounts of which reach the intestine in an active state and thus exert positive health effects. They can prevent antibiotic associated diarrhea, prevention of respiratory tract infections, urogenital infections, reduction of duration of rotavirus diarrhea. Most of us are familiar with eating yogurt for the "good bacteria". There is only one product I have found that contain the Shirota lactobacillus which was studied individually for influenza. It is call Yalult yogurt drink, and you can buy it in most grocery stores. For influenza, Lactobacillus casei Shirota given to infant mice "ameliorates influenza infection in the upper respiratory tract and protects against influenza infection". In another study, a randominzed, double-blind, placebo-controlled study was carried out with several preparations containing 3 to 5 strains of Lactobacillus and FOS or GOS (substrate for bacterial growth in gut) was given to 237 volunteers over 3 different winter seasons between 2003 and 2007. Bowel function improved (bloating, regularity), length of acute respiratory infections in both colds and flu were significantly decreased. The number of respiratory tract infections were also decreased. This was reported in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology in Sept. of 2008.
I am writing about this mostly because if I can do something to help my body be stronger against influenza, I feel better. My stress decreases. All of these things I recommend going to you are good for your body regardless of swine flu.


Sarah said...

dude--- this is great information and I'm really grateful that you're taking the time to post it. Thanks!!

Josh Merriam said...

I am definitely looking into all of this. Thanks for sharing your wisdom. What's the best option for (little) that primal defense probiotic safe for little ones? The whey protein is a no go for him though....not that he would drink it anyway. ugh.
(and this is heather... on Josh's computer. :)


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