A small Welsh study has demonstrated just how beneficial the right combination of supplements can be for children.

In a trial of 57 children, supplementing with a combination of two probiotic strains plus vitamin C accomplished what every parent dreams of: a 30% reduction in missed days of school and daycare.

The age of the trial subjects was three to five years old, and the study was conducted over a six-month period.

During this period researchers recorded a 33% reduction in the incidence of upper respiratory tract infection (URTI).

Multi country collaboration

It is worth noting the trial was sponsored by the Welsh probiotic manufacturer Cultech Biospecialty Products; however, the trial was a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study.

Moreover, other researchers also contributed to the trial, including researchers from Comenius University and the Juvenalia Paediatric Centre in Slovakia, along with the Imperial College London.

Though a relatively small trial, it was built on a previous meta-analysis of 20 different trials involving the use of probiotics and the reduction of URTI.

Infections shorter and less intense

According to research leader Nigel Plummer MD, “The conclusion of the analysis was that probiotics led to a decrease in intesity and duration of URTI by 30%. That’s quite a consistent effect, and I don’t think the traditional combination of vitamin C and zinc, for instance, achieves that kind of consistency.”

In addition to lowering the rate of URTI—and accomplishing fewer missed school days among the test subjects—the vitamin C and probiotic combination also achieved other positive outcomes.

This included a “significant reduction” in the use of antibiotics, painkillers, cough medicine and nasal spray.

When supplementing with a vitamin C product, be sure to choose a “whole food” product, such as Whole C from Optimal Health Systems.

When choosing a probiotic product, remember research shows multiple-strain products, such as FloraPlus, are more effective.

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Source: European Journal of Clinical Nutrition