Using a probiotics supplement could help to boost the immune system and reduce the risk of catching the flu, according to researchers.
They said the probiotic supplements were found to be effective for boosting the immune function of people with mild to moderate symptoms of influenza and those with milder symptoms of flu.
They said that while the study was limited by the lack of a control group, the results showed that the probiotics were able to protect against flu infection and provide protection from infection in healthy people.
The study, published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, showed that people taking the probives had higher levels of antibodies to influenza viruses and of a number of immune-boosting proteins, compared to those taking a placebo.
The researchers said the findings suggest that the use of probiotics may have a role to play in reducing the risk and severity of influenza, especially in those at high risk for flu infection.
The research, which was carried out by researchers from the University of Warwick in England, used data from the Vaccine and Immunisation Surveillance System, a large database of vaccinations and adverse events.
The scientists examined data from a cohort of nearly 10,000 people, who were randomly selected to take the probifood supplement and matched against a control cohort of people who did not take the supplement.
They found that people in the probiosis group had significantly lower levels of IgA, IgG, IgM, IgA-binding antibodies, IgE, IgD, and T-cell antibodies than people in other groups.
The probiotics also reduced the number of IgE-expressing cells in the body, which can lead to inflammation, inflammation of the lining of the blood vessels, and increased risk of developing autoimmune disease.
Researchers said that the study shows that probiotics can help to protect people from influenza infection and also help to reduce the likelihood of catching it.
Dr Andrew Brown, lead researcher of the study, said: “This study is a reminder that a healthy immune system is vital to preventing influenza, and that it is possible to get the benefits of probiotic supplementation without increasing your risk of influenza infection.”
It also shows that people can take probiotics supplements without increasing their risk of getting influenza, so they are a great supplement for people who are worried about influenza.
“He said that although it is not known how long probiotics would have a beneficial effect, the research suggests that it could be up to six weeks before people are immune to flu infection again.
The Irish Times understands that the research was funded by the UK Government.