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The intake of probiotics may prevent depression

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The intake of probiotics may prevent depression
The intake of probiotics may prevent depression. wikimedia commons
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London, Dec 27, 2017: Besides keeping your gut healthy, consuming a diet rich in probiotics – also called as “good” or “helpful” bacteria — may help protect against depression, finds a mice study.

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for health, especially the digestive system.

The findings showed that rats which lived solely on the fatty diet were found to develop behaviour similar to depression, while the rats receiving the probiotics-enriched drinking water remained neutral in their behaviour.

Further, the rats that did not receive probiotics had an increased number of white blood cells in their brain tissue, which can be a sign of chronic inflammation, and is also seen in the fatty tissues and livers of overweight people and diabetics.

Conversely, these cells were found decreased in the brains of the rats with probiotics in their drinking water.

“This may indicate that one of the things the probiotics do is work to reprogramme the immune system. In this study, the rats offset the consequences of the fatty diet with the help of probiotics, so that they were on par with their peers in the control group,” Anders Abildgaard, researcher at the Aarhus University in Denmark.

“This is a fascinating discovery that supports the conclusion that probiotics, which primarily work in the intestines, also affect the brain. That makes the result interesting for the treatment of depression,” Abildgaard added.

In the study, published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, the rats were divided into groups and were fed an extra fatty and fibreless diet, while the other group drank water with probiotics.

After 12 weeks, the researchers observed that the rats on the fatty compound feed without probiotics behaved more depressively when they were given a swimming test.

Although it is difficult to say whether the results can be transferred to people with depression, it is possible to imagine some of the people who suffer from depression benefiting from probiotics, Abildgaard said. (IANS)

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Feeding Probiotics to Infants Daily May Reduce Antibiotic Prescription in Future

For the study, the team pooled data from twelve studies together. The probiotics used in the reviewed studies were strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium

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Probiotics
Can probiotic use help reduce antibiotic prescriptions in children? Find it out here.

Feeding probiotics to infants and children daily may significantly stave off the need for antibiotic treatment, a finding that may help address the global rise in drug-resistant infections, said researchers.

The study found that infants and children were 29 per cent less likely to have been prescribed antibiotics if they received probiotics as a daily health supplement.

The results, published in the European Journal of Public Health, are very intriguing, the researchers said.

“Given this finding, potentially one way to reduce the use of antibiotics is to use probiotics on a regular basis,” said Daniel Merenstein, professor at Georgetown University.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), antibiotic resistance occurred among 500,000 people with suspected bacterial infections across 22 countries.

Reducing the use of antibiotics is one strategy in combating resistance.

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Say no to your kids for junk food, instead add healthy snacks. Pixabay

“We already have evidence that consuming probiotics reduces the incidence, duration, and severity of certain types of common acute respiratory and gastrointestinal infections,” Merenstein said.

However, it is not clear how probiotics help fight infections.

Merenstein said: “There are many potential mechanisms, such as probiotic production of pathogen inhibitors, immune regulation, among others.

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“We don’t know all the mechanisms probiotic strains may leverage. But since most of the human immune system is found in the gastrointestinal tract, ingesting healthy bacteria may competitively exclude bacterial pathogens linked to gut infections and may prime the immune system to fight others,” he explained.

For the study, the team pooled data from twelve studies together. The probiotics used in the reviewed studies were strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. (IANS)

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