A study has shown that a daily probiotic drink changed how cells lining the nasal passages of hay fever sufferers reacted to a single out-of-season challenge. However, it did not lead to significant changes in hay fever symptoms, although this challenge test may not have accurately represented natural allergen exposure. Our immune system must distinguish between “friends” that can be beneficial to our health and “foes” that can have harmful effects. There is now a growing body of evidence that the gut microbiota, the trillions of bacteria that live in our gut, influences that recognition. When it fails an immune response occurs. This is the case with hay fever, or seasonal allergic rhinitis, when the immune system reacts to pollen or fungal spores.
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