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Probiotics may reduce cold and flu symptoms in children

A new study, published in the journal Pediatrics, suggests that a daily probiotic supplement could help reduce the incidence of cold and ‘flu-like’ symptoms, in children, by 50% or more.

During the study, the researchers recruited 326 children, aged between three and five, and divided them into three groups. One group was given the probiotic Lactobacillus acidophilus, the second group was given a probiotic containing both Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium and the final group received dummy pills. The researchers then monitored the children to see how frequently they experienced a fever, cough or runny nose, as well as noting how often they needed antibiotics or had to miss childcare.

For the Lactobacillus acidophilus supplements, the results showed a 53% reduction in fever symptoms, a 28% reduction in runny noses and a 41% drop in the incidence of coughing. However, the combination probiotic results....

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