Can Yogurt Help CIDP Symptoms?

The underlying cause of CIDP is inflammation. There is promising research showing that yogurt may tame inflammation in the body and thereby help CIDP symptoms. 

By Shiraz Abbas

About a year ago, we wrote an article on the role of bad gut bacteria and CIDP. The problem with bad gut bacteria is that it produces endotoxins which cross into the bloodstream from the gut and produce inflammation. In that article, we suspected a possible link between the toxins produced by bad gut bacteria and CIDP and other kinds of autoimmune inflammatory diseases.

If this link is correct, then it would make sense that limiting and fighting bad gut bacteria can help reduce inflammation in the body and thereby the inflammation associated with CIDP neuropathy.

A good and old candidate for fighting gut related bad bacteria is none other than yogurt. According to Medical News Today,

Yogurt is thought to reduce inflammation by improving the integrity of the intestinal lining. And, by bolstering this layer of tissue, endotoxins — produced by gut bacteria — cannot cross into the bloodstream and promote inflammation.

There are two studies published that have confirmed the positive results of yogurt on intestinal bacteria, the first is from the British Journal of Nutrition and the other is from the Journal of Nutrition.

The results of the study from the first journal were as follows:

Half of the participants were asked to eat 12 ounces of low-fat yogurt each day for 9 weeks while the others ate a non-dairy pudding instead.

Throughout the experiment, at various points in time, the researchers took blood samples and assessed them for biomarkers of endotoxins and inflammation.

The results, which were published in December 2017, showed that some inflammatory markers — such as TNF-alpha — were significantly reduced in the yogurt eaters.

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The second study is summarized as follows:

This challenge was designed to stress their metabolism by overloading them with a high-fat, high-carbohydrate breakfast. Half started the feast with a serving of yogurt, while the other half began with a non-dairy pudding.

Bolling explains the contents of the meal challenge, saying, “It was two sausage muffins and two hash browns, for a total of 900 calories. But everybody managed it. They’d been fasting,” he continues, “and they were pretty hungry.”

Tests over the following hours — as the meal was digested — showed that the yogurt eaters had significant reductions in certain endotoxin markers. The researchers also noted that in obese participants, post-meal glucose levels dropped more quickly in the yogurt group, which demonstrates improved glucose metabolism.

The two studies are quite promising, however you need to be careful in how you select your yogurt. The sugary market brand yogurts are not very good for you. First they contain a lot of sugar which may exacerbate your CIDP.

Second, they are usually not fermented long enough which means that they don’t have enough good bacteria which can fight off the bad bacteria in your gut. For yogurt to have its maximum efficacy, try making your yogurt at home and ferment it for about 24 hours. Make sure not to add any sugar to it.

Shiraz Abbas is the founder and manager of the CIDP Neuropathy Support Group. He is also one of the main community educators of IVIG therapy. He resides in Fresno, California. Shiraz can be contacted through our free CIDP advice service at 1-855-782-0574.

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