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美国国家公共电台 NPR Could Probiotics Protect Kids From A Downside Of Antibiotics?

时间:2019-07-18 06:43来源:互联网 提供网友:nan   字体: [ ]
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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Go online, walk through any health store or supermarket, and you'll find all kinds of products being sold as probiotics. They're being promoted for all kinds of things - preventing upset stomachs, boosting the immune system, fighting anxiety and depression even. Americans spend billions of dollars every year on probiotics. But what is the science behind all these claims? We asked NPR health correspondent Rob Stein to take a look.

ROB STEIN, BYLINEhectic2 morning at Michele Comisky's house in Vienna, Va., when she gets a knock on her door.

MICHELE COMISKY: Hi. How are you?

KEISHA HERBIN SMITH: I'm Keisha. It's nice to meet you.

COMISKY: Nice to meet you, Keisha.

HERBIN SMITH: Hi.

STEIN: Comisky leads Keisha Herbin Smith into her kitchen.

COMISKY: This is the one not feeling good.

STEIN: Comisky's 8-year-old son Jackson - he has a bad ear infection. So he's starting 10 days of antibioticsearache5. That's why Herbin Smith is here.

HERBIN SMITH: And what time did he take his antibiotic3?

COMISKY: He just took it about 10 minutes ago.

STEIN: These antibiotics won't just wipe out the bad bacteria. They could mess up the good bacteria in Jackson's body, too. This is why antibiotics can cause stomach problems, including sometimes nasty diarrhea. Herbin Smith's a research assistant. She rushed here to test a special yogurt drink scientists hope will prevent that.

HERBIN SMITH: We want him to take the first yogurt within 24 hours of taking his first antibiotic.

STEIN: The yogurt contains a probiotic. That's a living strain of bacteria that researchers think could help prevent diarrhea and other complications of the antibiotic. Daniel Merenstein of Georgetown University says this yogurt study will hopefully prove it. He says it's the first big, carefully designed test of a probiotic to get reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration.

DANIEL MERENSTEIN: The problem is with a lot of probiotic research is that they haven't always been the best of studies. Many are done by industry. Many were done in other countries.

STEIN: In this study, 300 kids will drink the specially6 made strawberry yogurt. Half the kids will drink yogurt that contains a probiotic called bifidobacteria.

MERENSTEIN: So we're looking to see if it actually prevents diarrhea in kids.

STEIN: During a visit to his office, Merenstein offers me a taste.

MERENSTEIN: You're going to be our guinea pig?

STEIN: Sure. Not bad - it's pretty good, actually.

The study is part of an explosion of research into the microbiome. That's the billions of friendly bacteria, yeast7 and other microorganisms that live in the human body. There's mounting evidence that these microbes play important roles in keeping us healthy. So Merenstein and his colleagues are also studying the kids' microbiomes to try to figure out exactly how probiotics might work.

MERENSTEIN: One of our goals is to show that taking the probiotic will get your microbiome back to what it was before you started the antibiotic and/or protect you from the changes because there's no question that taking antibiotics, which the kids need - they have an infection - is good for their infection. But it does wipe out other good bacteria.

COMISKY: Jackson, you want your yogurt?

STEIN: Back at Michele Comisky's house, Jackson takes his first gulp8 of Merenstein's special strawberry yogurt.

COMISKY: All right.

JACKSON: Done.

COMISKY: Was it good?

JACKSON: Yup.

COMISKY: Oh, good. OK.

STEIN: It'll take years for Merenstein's team to gather and analyze9 the results of the study. So it'll be a while before they can say for sure whether this probiotic works or not.

MARTIN: That's NPR's health correspondent Rob Stein, who joins us in our studios right now to talk a little bit more about this. Hi, Rob.

STEIN: Hey, Rachel.

MARTIN: So it's going to be a while before we know if probiotics and yogurts like this really work. In the meantime, what should parents with kids on antibiotics do?

STEIN: Well, the short answer to that is it may be worth a try. There have been some other studies that suggest that it does work. And some doctors are already recommending it to parents. So if your child is otherwise healthy, it might be worth a shot.

MARTIN: OK, so what else do we know about probiotics? I mean, what do we know that they're really good at addressing?

STEIN: You know, honestly, at the moment, there really isn't anything that we're 100 percent sure that probiotics will work for. That's the truth, unfortunately. But there is, you know, some evidence that it could work for some other things, like, you know, for example, what we call traveler's diarrhea - you know, you go to Mexico or someplace like that. If you take a probiotic every day while you're traveling, it might help prevent that. It could help adults who are taking antibiotics have - not have stomach problems. There's some evidence that it could help women who have vaginal infections, maybe soothingirritablebowelsyndromealleviate14 some of their pain. So there's some evidence that kind of thing.

MARTIN: Could being the operative word in all this. I mean, at the same time though, it seems like probiotics are everywhere. They are marketed for all kinds of different things, right? - boosting the immune system, preventing heart disease. They can combat obesity15, so they say. How do we as consumers know what's true and what's not?

STEIN: Yeah, I've been talking to a lot of scientists about that over the last couple of weeks. And, you know, the short answer to that is it depends who you talk to. There are some researchers that are pretty gung-ho and say that probiotics can do all sorts of things and even think you should take one every day to sort of maintain your health. But many of the scientists I talked to said, look, the bottom line on this is the marketing16 of these things, of these probiotics, has gotten way ahead of the science. And we really don't know anything for sure. We need do a lot more research. And, you know, it's important to note that the Food and Drug Administration has not approved a single probiotic for anything at this point.

MARTIN: So I've heard you say in the course of this conversation that some people think you should take probiotics every day just as a preventive measure or that it could help with a variety of things. But is there a downside to taking probiotics?

STEIN: Well, you know, probiotics are not regulated like regular medicines. So, first of all, there's no guarantee that whatever is on the label is actually in the bottle and whatever was in the bottle is still alive. These are living organisms, don't forget. So it could be they don't last forever. And, you know, they are living organisms. So there are concerns about some people, like people with weak immune systems, people with HIV or taking chemo, they could be dangerous. And if they get contaminated with something, they could be - cause serious problems, even for healthy people. And the other issue is, you know, the cost. These things aren't cheap, you know? And you could just be wasting your money. And you'd be better off buying fruits and vegetables, which we know will improve your health.

MARTIN: Yeah, bottom line - don't assume that they will work for your particular ailment17.

STEIN: That's right. That's right.

MARTIN: Do some thinking. Do some research.

STEIN: The bottom line is buyer beware with this stuff.

MARTIN: NPR health correspondent, Rob Stein.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEEN DAZE'S "BY LOVE")


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 byline sSXyQ     
n.署名;v.署名
参考例句:
  • His byline was absent as well.他的署名也不见了。
  • We wish to thank the author of this article which carries no byline.我们要感谢这篇文章的那位没有署名的作者。
2 hectic jdZzk     
adj.肺病的;消耗热的;发热的;闹哄哄的
参考例句:
  • I spent a very hectic Sunday.我度过了一个忙乱的星期天。
  • The two days we spent there were enjoyable but hectic.我们在那里度过的两天愉快但闹哄哄的。
3 antibiotic KNJzd     
adj.抗菌的;n.抗生素
参考例句:
  • The doctor said that I should take some antibiotic.医生说我应该服些用抗生素。
  • Antibiotic can be used against infection.抗菌素可以用来防止感染。
4 antibiotics LzgzQT     
n.(用作复数)抗生素;(用作单数)抗生物质的研究;抗生素,抗菌素( antibiotic的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • the discovery of antibiotics in the 20th century 20世纪抗生素的发现
  • The doctor gave me a prescription for antibiotics. 医生给我开了抗生素。
5 earache tkrzM     
n.耳朵痛
参考例句:
  • I have been having an earache for about a week.我的耳朵已经痛了一个星期了。
  • I've had an earache for the past few days.我耳痛好几天了。
6 specially Hviwq     
adv.特定地;特殊地;明确地
参考例句:
  • They are specially packaged so that they stack easily.它们经过特别包装以便于堆放。
  • The machine was designed specially for demolishing old buildings.这种机器是专为拆毁旧楼房而设计的。
7 yeast 7VIzu     
n.酵母;酵母片;泡沫;v.发酵;起泡沫
参考例句:
  • Yeast can be used in making beer and bread.酵母可用于酿啤酒和发面包。
  • The yeast began to work.酵母开始发酵。
8 gulp yQ0z6     
vt.吞咽,大口地吸(气);vi.哽住;n.吞咽
参考例句:
  • She took down the tablets in one gulp.她把那些药片一口吞了下去。
  • Don't gulp your food,chew it before you swallow it.吃东西不要狼吞虎咽,要嚼碎了再咽下去。
9 analyze RwUzm     
vt.分析,解析 (=analyse)
参考例句:
  • We should analyze the cause and effect of this event.我们应该分析这场事变的因果。
  • The teacher tried to analyze the cause of our failure.老师设法分析我们失败的原因。
10 soothing soothing     
adj.慰藉的;使人宽心的;镇静的
参考例句:
  • Put on some nice soothing music.播放一些柔和舒缓的音乐。
  • His casual, relaxed manner was very soothing.他随意而放松的举动让人很快便平静下来。
11 irritable LRuzn     
adj.急躁的;过敏的;易怒的
参考例句:
  • He gets irritable when he's got toothache.他牙一疼就很容易发脾气。
  • Our teacher is an irritable old lady.She gets angry easily.我们的老师是位脾气急躁的老太太。她很容易生气。
12 bowel Bszzy     
n.肠(尤指人肠);内部,深处
参考例句:
  • Irritable bowel syndrome seems to affect more women than men.女性比男性更易患肠易激综合征。
  • Have you had a bowel movement today?你今天有排便吗?
13 syndrome uqBwu     
n.综合病症;并存特性
参考例句:
  • The Institute says that an unidentified virus is to blame for the syndrome. 该研究所表示,引起这种综合症的是一种尚未确认的病毒。
  • Results indicated that 11 fetuses had Down syndrome. 结果表明有11个胎儿患有唐氏综合征。
14 alleviate ZxEzJ     
v.减轻,缓和,缓解(痛苦等)
参考例句:
  • The doctor gave her an injection to alleviate the pain.医生给她注射以减轻疼痛。
  • Nothing could alleviate his distress.什么都不能减轻他的痛苦。
15 obesity Dv1ya     
n.肥胖,肥大
参考例句:
  • One effect of overeating may be obesity.吃得过多能导致肥胖。
  • Sugar and fat can more easily lead to obesity than some other foods.糖和脂肪比其他食物更容易导致肥胖。
16 marketing Boez7e     
n.行销,在市场的买卖,买东西
参考例句:
  • They are developing marketing network.他们正在发展销售网络。
  • He often goes marketing.他经常去市场做生意。
17 ailment IV8zf     
n.疾病,小病
参考例句:
  • I don't have even the slightest ailment.我什么毛病也没有。
  • He got timely treatment for his ailment.他的病得到了及时治疗。
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