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Fatty Acids in Butter Might Aid AsthmaFatty Acids in Butter Might Aid Asthma

August 22, 2006

1 Min Read
Fatty Acids in Butter Might Aid Asthma

According to the results of a recent study performed by researchers from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, fatty acids in dairy products might help reduce incidence the symptoms of asthma and other allergic diseases (see http://www.health.auckland.ac.nz/news-events/news.html?id=370).

The researchers fed mice with allergic conditions a diet that included butter fortified with milk-derived fatty acids. As a result, the mice had reduced reactions to allergens. The fatty acids used to fortify the butter have been associated with anti-inflammatory properties. The fatty acids, which occur naturally in cow's milk, are found butter but not margarine.

The university press release notes a simultaneous reduction in butter consumption, an increase in margarine consumption, and increased incidence of asthma, eczema and other allergic diseases in Western consumers.

"A number of studies have shown that butter consumption is associated with a reduction in allergic disease," said lead researcher Dr. Peter Black of the school's Department of Medical & Health Sciences. "We believe that 10 grams per day of butter enriched with these natural fatty acids should help control symptoms of asthma. We are currently conducting a study to look at this."

The researchers are currently seeking volunteers to conduct a small trial using a specially enriched butter to see if similar results can be observed in human subjects.

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