A prebiotic a day keeps the doctor away

2015 Research

Ever wondered why you should be eating more fibre?

Scientists at the University of Reading say the results of their new randomised controlled trial show the best evidence yet that ’prebiotics’ can boost an elderly person’s immune system back towards the level of younger healthy adults and keep all manner of illnesses at bay.

Prebiotics are the fibrous foods, which feed ’good’ bacteria already in the intestine. They can turn billions of a helpful, friendly bacteria into trillions in just 24 hours. More than 90 trillion bacteria reside in your gut, and their diversity and volume are crucial to your health.

The Reading study took 40 volunteers, between the ages of 65 and 80, and tested a prebiotic called BiMuno on gut bacteria, markers of immune function and metabolites.

They found that a daily supplement in powder form led to a significant increase in the beneficial bacterium, Bifidobacteria, in the gut, while boosting the immune system, producing higher numbers of white cells to help fight infections, viruses and illnesses. Interestingly there was also a reduction in inflammation in the body.

Professor Glenn Gibson, who led the study at the University of Reading’s Department of Food and Nutritional Science, said: "As we get older, we tend to lose some of the health-protecting bacteria in our gut, which makes us particularly susceptible to infections."

Readers can discover far more in our book; ‘The Secret Source of your good health’.


Ref: "Influence of galacto-oligosaccharide mixture (B-GOS) on gut microbiota, immune parameters and metabonomics in elderly persons." British Journal of Nutrition DOI: dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0007114515001889



2015 Research
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