Saccharomyces boulardii alleviates symptoms of diarrhoea
The therapeutic use of Saccharomyces boulardii in the treatment of diarrhoea (see Probiotics Learning Lab for more glossary terms) has been researched and validated in a number of scientific studies, and a recent human trial has released results that further strengthen this notion.
The study evaluated 25 subjects who had symptoms of acute diarrhoea (which was characterised by more than three loose bowel motions in the last twenty four hours which had occurred for less than a week). All of the patients were instructed to consume five capsules of S. boulardii twice daily for ten days, with each capsule containing one billion colony forming units. (That’s ten billion colony forming units daily for those that are not mathematically inclined!)
Saccharomyces boulardii under the microscope: read more about this amazing organism here
The main factors which were evaluated during the study included duration of diarrhoea and how frequently it occurred, the experience of abdominal pain and stool consistency. These factors were measured on days 1, 3, 6, and 10 of the study. Secondary outcome measures which were also monitored during the study included biochemical evaluations of the patients, as well as physical examination and stool inspection.
The impressive results of the study included a significant reduction in the duration and frequency of diarrhoea, abdominal pain decreased from severe to absent (what a great result!) and the overall stool consistency changed from watery to soft. It was concluded that S. boulardii is useful in improving symptoms of diarrhoea without being accompanied by any adverse effects. Although the study only involved a small sample size, and was not a randomised controlled trial, the results were still very impressive and strengthen the idea that Saccharomyces boulardii is an effective treament for acute diarrhoea.
If you are interested in reading more about this fascinating strain, see the following:
Sudha, et al. (2012). 'Oral consumption of potential probiotic Saccharomyces boulardii strain Unique 28 in patients with acute diarrhoea: a clinical report. Beneficial Microbes. 3 (2). pp. 145-50.