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Posted on 12-02-2016

How a Probiotic Can Keep You Healthy, Naturally
And boost the effectiveness of the flu vaccine

by Dr. Lawrence Hoberman

There are trillions of good bacteria in our bodies that help fight against diseases and viruses. Cold and flu season is here, and with it come additional stresses such as of lack of sleep, germs and fluctuating outside temperatures that can wreak havoc on our immune systems. This can also offset the balance of good versus bad bacteria that affects overall health.

Fortunately, there are a few basic things a person to can do to prevent the onset of the flu:

  • Avoid crowds
  • Drink lots of fluid
  • Exercise regularly
  • Get the flu vaccine
  • Wash your hands often
  • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables
  • Get at least seven hours of sleep per night
  • Sneeze or cough into the elbow rather than the hand

However, there’s one more key step that could make the difference for you this flu season and that would be to add a probiotic to your daily vitamin regimen.

The Proof Is in the Research

According to health studies from the medical journal of Pediatrics, the use of probiotics as a preventative health supplement shows to be effective as a preventative health supplement.

For example, one particular study divided healthy children, ages 3-5, into three separate groups:

  • Those receiving a placebo (104 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus (110 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus & Bifidobacteriumlactis (112 participants)

For the purposes of the study, each child received their supplement daily for six months under close cold and flu symptom scrutiny.

At the end of the study, researchers found that when compared to the placebo groups, the other two participant groups had reduced flu-like symptoms, reduced antibiotic use and fewer days missed from school – a welcome relief to parents and physicians alike. Similar to the Pediatrics study, other studies performed on adults indicate similar findings, particularly in cases of upper respiratory infections.

What The Research Means for You

Scientific outcomes conclude probiotic supplements can stimulate the gastrointestinal tract to produce more immune cells. Those cells can then stop cold and flu inflammation before it becomes severe, and attack viruses as they invade the lining of the respiratory tract.

Results like these highlight the importance of taking a daily, oral probiotic supplement during flu season – particularly one containing the potent bacteria strain combination of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in a serving size of 10 billion colonies or more.

Boost your flu shot with a probiotic

It is important to remember to keep children and family members on track to receive their annual flu shot. There are two schools of thought when it comes to having the flu shot; one thought is to routinely receive the flu vaccine, the other is the thought that the flu vaccine does not work because it is likely a person will contract the flu regardless of whether or not the vaccine was received.

There are valid reasons why some people should not get the flu vaccine. For some, the vaccine is linked to severe allergies in the vaccine ingredients. Other reasons for not receiving the vaccine may be linked to age restrictions, problems with Guillain-Barre Syndrome or the current state of a person’s health.

However, some people succumb to medical misconceptions; but before risking the health of your family this flu season, it’s important to address these misconceptions with solid health information.

These misconceptions include:

The last time I had a flu shot, it made me sick.
It’s not uncommon for the flu vaccine to make a person feel a little under the weather. Some people may develop temporary soreness or swelling where the flu shot was delivered, and other reactions may include a low-grade fever that can last up to two days. However, these symptoms do not mean a person has the flu. The symptoms are actually the immune system actively building up cells to fight against the flu virus.

The last time I had a flu shot, I caught it anyway.
Flu vaccines are made from an inactive or weakened virus that doesn’t make a person sick. The flu shot may take up to 14 days to effectively boost the immunity in your body.

I never get sick, so I can’t spread the flu around.
A person’s individual immunity and daily hygiene habits have nothing to do with whether or not they are responsible for spreading the flu virus. The flu virus can be spread from personal contact from other people such as shaking hands or hugging a child.

I take vitamins… isn’t that enough to keep the flu away?
A daily vitamin regiment is important for the body to receive nutrients that the normal western diet does not provide, but vitamins alone are not enough to keep the multiple strains of the flu virus from attacking the body.

Give the Body a Fighting Chance

Now that the flu misconceptions have been answered, it is important to consider getting the flu vaccine and adding a probiotic to the daily diet. In fact, a recent study showed taking a probiotic filled with multiple species of beneficial bacteria along with a flu shot can provide the extra boost to the immune system to stay healthy during the flu season.

A properly working immune system is the best defense to fight against viruses and diseases, but in order to keep the immune system in proper working order; there must be a healthy balance of good to bad bacteria in the gut. To maintain an optimal balance of bacteria in the gut, the use of a probiotic is recommended. While the western diet is mostly absent of providing good bacteria (because of high intake of processed foods and sugars), taking a probiotic supplement is vital to boost the effectiveness of the flu vaccine and help support the immune system.

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Board-certified gastroenterologist Dr. Lawrence Hoberman is the creator of EndoMune Advanced Probiotic and has more than 40 years experience practicing medicine. Frustrated by the lack of options to treat patients suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) in the early 2000s, Dr. Hoberman collaborated with a Ph.D. microbiologist to identify a combination of bacteria that might work to destroy harmful bacteria living in the intestines and help improve and maintain the overall health of his patients. The result is the development of the only probiotic supplement developed by a gastroenterologist.

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