Who would have imagined that an unexpected bonus as we age would turn out to be a renewed and greater appreciation of cheese? But in their report on the effects of probiotic Gouda cheese on immune system function, scientists in Finland have found reason to believe that this should be so.
Seems that sometimes the immune systems of elderly people may have a problem called immunosenescene, a nasty condition leaving them prone to infection. Immunosenescene leaves the body less able to kill cancer cells and immune system function is weakened.
Volunteers between the ages of 72 and 103 were asked to eat cheese, half of them eating probiotic Gouda cheese, and half eating a placebo cheese. They did this for four weeks. At the end of that time, results very clearly indicated a marked improvement in immune system function.
"Both the Gouda cheeses used in the experiment were commercially available, said the scientists. The probiotic Gouda cheese was rich in the bacteria Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001 and Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM."