During the winter months, a healthy immune system is particularly important as this time of year is typically the height of flu seasons as well as many other winter bugs. And who can afford to miss a work day due to illness or feeling sluggish? We know your health is at a premium, so we would like to spotlight a key supplement that we consider to pack a powerful punch in boosting your immune system.
Recently, we came across that shows additional benefits of a certain strain of probiotics. Probiotics are a collective class of healthy bacteria commonly referred to as L. acidophilus, B. bifidus, or S. thermophilus. This study showed that this particular strain of probiotics (Lactobacillus) boosted the function of natural killer (NK) cells in male smokers.
The good news reaches far beyond smokers to potential benefits for everyone related to cancer prevention as well as anti-viral defenses against the seasonal flu and viral infections in general. Probiotics are commonly known as the “good bacteria” that line the intestinal tract and have been shown to support gut health. This fact alone may not seem like much, but scientific research has found 80 percent of the immune system to be in the GI tract; therefore, probiotics can be very useful in maintaining immune health. We have long known this fact, but this latest study further highlights how building intestinal health can be a critical component to overall immune function even prevention of serious diseases such as cancer.
This study shows NK cells are needed to wipe out cancer cells; and therefore a deficiency in NK cells would make a smoker more at risk for cancer. Beyond this fact, these results also show NK cells are needed to kill virally infected cells in general not just in smokers. With this in mind, it’s an obvious indicator that the not only play a critical role in boosting intestinal and/or digestive l health, but in return this has a great impact on overall health. Once again, this proves prevention is key!