Approximately three million Americans suffer from peanut allergies, which can cause severe respiratory and gastrointestinal symptoms that can be life-threatening. Since peanuts are used in the preparation of many common foods, it's difficult to avoid them. Until now, there has been no cure, but Australian scientists have found that probiotics may provide an answer.
Researchers from Murdock Childrens Research Institute tested more than 60 children with peanut allergies. Participants were given either a daily dose of a probiotic (Lactobacillus rhamnosus) together with a peanut protein, or a placebo over a period of eighteen months. The aim was to see if the children given the peanut protein could become tolerant to peanuts.
The amount of the probiotic remained the same throughout the trial, but the amount of peanut protein was gradually increased every two weeks. After a maximum maintenance dose of 2 grams was reached, it was maintained until the end of the trial. The children's ability to tolerate peanuts was tested two to five weeks after stopping treatment.
Researchers found that an astonishing 80 percent of the children were able to tolerate peanuts compared to only 4 percent in the placebo group — a rate 20 times higher than the natural rate of resolution for peanut allergy.
"In the study the combined delivery of probiotic and oral immunotherapy was a safe and effective treatment for peanut allergy; however it is important to point out that this treatment must only be given under close medical supervision as we are giving peanut to children who are allergic to peanut, and children did have allergic reactions," said lead researcher Mimi Tang. "Nevertheless, the likelihood of success was high — if nine children were given probiotic and peanut therapy, seven would benefit."
© 2022 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.