A Follow-Up Formula with DHA, Prebiotics and Yeast Beta Glucan Supports the Immune Systems of Healthy Children
Results of Study in 310 Children Published in Pediatrics
A study demonstrating that a follow-up formula containing a combination of DHA, a prebiotic blend of PDX and GOS, and yeast β-glucan supported the immune systems of healthy three- and four-year-olds was published in the June issue of Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Children who consumed the follow-up formula (FUF) designed for this study by Mead Johnson Nutrition had fewer episodes and shorter duration of acute respiratory infections (P = .007) than children consuming an unfortified cow’s milk-based beverage. They also required fewer antibiotic treatments (P = .01) and missed fewer days of day care due to illness, the study found. In addition, the FUF group had both higher interleukin-10 and white blood cell (WBC) counts at the end of the study, suggesting an anti-inflammatory mechanism and/or an increase of effector immune cells. (WBC counts remained in the normal range.)
In a double-blind, randomized, controlled, prospective trial, 3-4 year old children were fed 3 servings per day of either a FUF containing 25 mg DHA, 1.2 g PDX/GOS, and 8.7 mg yeast β-glucan (Wellmune WGP®) per serving or an unfortified, cow’s milk-based beverage (control) for 28 weeks. Fecal and blood samples were collected to assess immune markers and iron/zinc status. The incidence of acute respiratory infections, diarrheal disease, and antibiotic treatment was obtained from medical records.
“As the study’s authors noted, children are vulnerable to diet inadequacies, which may affect immune function,” said Donald Cox, Ph.D., senior vice president, Healthcare Research & Development – Wellmune. “This research demonstrates the importance of supporting the developing immune systems of young children.”
The research paper is entitled, “Follow-up Formula Consumption in 3- to 4-Year-Olds and Respiratory Infections: An RCT.” Pediatrics. 2014 May 19. pii: peds.2013-3598.
Wellmune WGP is an ingredient in Mead Johnson Enfagrow® and Enfakid® Premium children nutritional products in numerous countries in Asia and Latin America. The FUF used in this study is not a marketed product at this time.