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Vitamin A, high-fibre diet keeps food allergies at bay

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Sydney: Consuming high-fibre diet consisting of a bowl of bran and some dried apricots in the morning and intake of Vitamin A can help reduce food allergies, finds a new study.

The findings showed that mice allergic to peanuts were protected against the allergy when fed on a high-fibre diet.

Food products rich in fibre reshapes the gut and colon microbiota and helps to fight against food allergies, said the study, led by Jian Tan, professor at the Monash University in Australia.

The immune system works with the good bacteria in the gut to help protect against life threatening allergic responses, the researchers said.

The microbiota in the gut was found to assist the immune system in resisting allergies through the breaking down of fibre into short-chain fatty acids.

These short-chain fatty acids boosted a particular subset of the immune system called dendritic cells, which control whether an allergic response against a food allergen happens or not.

Increased levels of short-chain fatty acids switched these cells to stop the allergic response.

Further, deficiency in vitamin A levels could promote food allergies, especially in infants and children, the researchers noted.

The study opens a potential route for drug therapy for allergies by delivering short-chain fatty acids as a treatment, said the paper published in the journal Cell Reports.

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