Hay fever could be linked to your gut health
Have you noticed more people sneezing their way through the summer months? A staggering 1 in 5 people suffer from hay fever and allergies and this could be due in part to the bacteria in your gut.
We have more bacteria than human cells
Even before we are born our gut starts to ‘colonise’ with bacteria and by the time we are adults we have millions of bacteria and thousands of different types. Studies have shown however, that those will allergic conditions, which include hay fever, have fewer different types in their gut. A balance between ‘good’ and bad’ types is important.
As 70% of immune cells are based in our gut, this lack of diversity is thought to have an influence on building tolerance to different proteins (and not developing an allergic response)
So, what influences this change in gut bacteria diversity? Maybe we just didn’t spend time outdoors getting dirty and exposing ourselves to bacteria in the soil and on animals.
And if this seems like a new idea, it’s not. A study 60 years ago found that children with more older siblings had less chance of hay fever. It was thought that the more brothers and sisters you had, the more freedom you had to play outside ‘building up immunity’.
More recently, other factors have been linked with negatively changing the diversity of our gut (reducing good bacteria) and these include stress, antibiotics, alcohol, smoking and a diet rich in high fat and sugar. Eating a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegetables, and taking Bimuno can feed the good bacteria in your gut.
You are what your grandmother ate
The lack of diversity in gut bacteria may help explain why more adults are developing allergies and, as gut bacteria is passed from mother to baby, this is then passed onto children.
Helping our guts to have a diversity of bacteria by maintaining a healthy lifestyle can only be a good thing!