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Don’t Let Hay Fever Spoil Your Child’s Spring Fever

Healthy Aging
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  • Vitamin D May Reduce Risk of Asthma Flare-Ups

    Wednesday, April 21, 2021
    New Science
    Vitamin D May Reduce Risk of Asthma Flare-Ups

    A large study has found that low vitamin D levels are associated with an increased risk of asthma flare-ups. Published in the journal, Allergy, the study examined data from approximately 308,000 adults whose vitamin D levels had been measured, and identified 21,237 as diagnosed asthma patients. Researchers took into account variables that might affect asthma status, such as obesity, smoking, and other diseases. Here’s what they discovered:

    • Flare-ups were 25% more likely in asthma patients who were vitamin D deficient compared to asthma patients whose levels were in the normal range. A flare-up, or exacerbation, was defined as requiring a prescription for oral corticosteroids, or more than five prescriptions for short-acting beta agonists, or a physician’s visit for asthma four or more times in a year.
    • The researchers did not find, however, that vitamin D levels were associated with an increased risk of having asthma in general.

    While previous research on vitamin D and asthma has been inconsistent, the researchers believe that the new findings support vitamin D screening in asthma patients with recurrent and uncontrolled flare-ups—and possibly recommending supplements to those who are vitamin D deficient.


    Source: Allergy


  • An Apple a Day May Help You Age More Healthily

    Monday, April 19, 2021
    New Science
    An Apple a Day May Help You Age More Healthily

    The old saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” may have some truth to it after all. According to a new Harvard study, women who consume higher amounts of flavonoids are more likely to experience healthy aging. Flavonoids are water-soluble plant pigments found in fruits, such as apples, and other foods like vegetables, chocolate, and tea. Published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the study examined dietary data from 13,818 middle-aged women (median age of 59). The researchers then looked at which of these women aged healthily over the course of 15 years. “Aging healthily” was defined as living to be 70 years or older with no major chronic diseases and no major cognitive, physical, or mental impairments. Here’s what the researchers discovered:

    • Women with the highest average intakes of flavones, flavanones, anthocyanins, and flavonols—all of which are types of flavonoids— increased their chances of healthy aging by 32%, 28%, 25%, and 18% respectively, compared to those with the lowest average flavonoid intake.
    • Consumption of flavonoid-rich foods, in particular oranges, berries, onions, and apples, was also associated with healthy aging.

    Supplements, such as bilberry extract, can also be a good source of flavonoids.

    Source: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

  • Gut Health Is Critical For Overall Well-Being

    Wednesday, April 14, 2021
    New Science
    Gut Health Is Critical For Overall Well-Being

    The standard American diet, also known as SAD, has been linked to the state of your gut (the digestive system), which is critical for ensuring good health. According to a recent report by CNN, 100 trillion bacteria live in our gut. These bacteria protect us from dangerous strains and help us digest foods properly. However, if our “good” bacteria, known as probiotics, are damaged through antibiotics or a poor diet, harmful bacteria can take over. To encourage the growth of good bacteria, a person should consume plenty of probiotics, eat a healthy diet with whole grains, vegetables, and less fat, and reduce stress.

    Source: CNN

  • PUFAs May Help Reduce Teen Allergy and Asthma Risk

    Monday, April 12, 2021
    New Science
    PUFAs May Help Reduce Teen Allergy and Asthma Risk

    Allergies and asthma often surface during childhood and adolescence, but there may be a way to dodge that bullet. According to some research, high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, or PUFAs, in childhood could help reduce the risk of asthma and allergies in teens. PUFAs are found in foods such as nuts and seeds, vegetable oils, oily fish, poultry, and eggs. The study was published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and included data from 940 children participating in a Swedish study that followed participants from birth to identify factors associated with allergies. Blood samples were taken when the children were 8 years old to measure levels of PUFAs, including the very long-chain omega-3 fatty acids docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosapentaenoic acid (DPA), as well as the very long-chain omega-6 fatty acid arachidonic acid (AA). The researchers evaluated the children at ages 8 and 16 for allergies and asthma via questionnaires and levels of IgE antibodies—a marker of the immune system’s allergic response and found:

    • Higher levels of very long-chain omega-3 and omega-6 PUFAs at age 8 were associated with a lower risk of asthma, hay fever symptoms, and sensitivity to airborne allergens such as pollen, animal dander, and dust mites at age 16.
    • Higher levels of AA were also associated with a greater chance of asthma and hay fever symptom remission between ages 8 and 16.

    Some of these findings are supported by other research indicating an association between higher levels of very long-chain omega-3 PUFAs and a reduced risk of asthma in preschool-aged children; however, this study goes a step further and examines these relationships into adolescence. While it’s still unclear exactly how PUFAs affect the development of asthma and allergies, some theorize that their anti-inflammatory and complex immune-regulating effects may help reduce the immune system’s response to allergens. To ensure your child maintains adequate PUFA levels, make sure they eat a well-rounded diet and serve fish two to three times a week.

    Source: Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology

  • Probiotics May Provide Seasonal Allergy Relief

    Wednesday, April 07, 2021
    New Science
    Probiotics May Provide Seasonal Allergy Relief

    Spring showers bring more than just flowers. For some, spring brings seasonal allergies. Luckily, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that a combination of certain probiotics (Lactobacillus gasseri KS-13, Bifidobacterium bifidum G9-1, and Bifidobacterium longum MM-2) may have helped reduce allergy symptoms. The double-blind, randomized study took place during spring allergy season and included 173 people, aged 26 to 28, with self-reported seasonal allergies. Daily for eight weeks, the participants received either two probiotic capsules (containing 1.5 billion colony-forming units per capsule) or a placebo. Throughout the study, they answered the Mini Rhinoconjunctivitis Quality of Life Questionnaire (MRQLQ) to report on the frequency of their allergy symptoms, such as sneezing, nasal and eye irritation, runny nose, and others, as well as the impact of their allergy symptoms on quality of life. At the end of the study, participants who took the probiotics showed greater improvements in allergy-related quality of life as reported on the MRQLQ, compared with the placebo group.

    This isn’t the first time probiotics have been linked with improvements in allergy symptoms. Previous research has found that the probiotic Lactobacillus salivarius may help reduce symptoms in children allergic to mold and dust. So, what’s the connection between beneficial gut bacteria and eye and nose irritation? Some research suggests that healthy gut bacteria can improve immune regulation and prevent immune cells from overreacting to allergens. However, this research is still in its early days.

    Source: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

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Copyright © 2021 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2021.