What is lactoferrin?
Lactoferrin is a glycoprotein found naturally in the milk of humans and cows. This protein is also found in several other body fluids, such as saliva, tears, mucus and bile.
Lactoferrin is found in the highest amounts in colostrum, the first type of breast milk produced after a baby is born.
|Fact: About seven times more lactoferrin is found in colostrum than in the milk produced afterwards.|
How does it work?
As part of the transferrin family, lactoferrin has many properties.
Its main functions in the body are to bind to iron and transport it. By depriving pathogens of the iron necessary for their development, it therefore makes it possible in particular to fight against viral or bacterial infections.
The benefits of lactoferrin
Lactoferrin stimulates the immune system. It has immunomodulatory effects, which means it improves the immune response.
|Immune Response: reaction of the immune system in the presence of an antigen|
It reduces the risk of viral infections by preventing virus entry into the host cell, either by blocking cell receptors or by binding directly to viral particles.
Its ability to bind iron inhibits the growth of pathogenic bacteria. It sequesters the iron necessary for their survival and disrupts the proliferation of these bacteria, thus reducing the risk of bacterial infection.
Promotes iron absorption
As an iron-binding protein, lactoferrin promotes iron absorption. It therefore helps to fight against iron deficiency anemia, which is important for people at risk such as athletes and women.
Effective against infections of the intestinal, digestive and respiratory mucous membranes, lactoferrin has shown promising results during coronavirus infection.
We invite you to discover our article on lactoferrin and the Covid where more details await you.
Its health benefits have been demonstrated in particular in the following cases:
In Helicobacter pylori infections
H.Plyori is a bacterium that can infect stomachs and cause gastritis, ulcers and in the worst cases, stomach cancer.
Several studies including one published in the World Journal of Gastroenrology found that bovine lactoferrin could help eliminate the bacteria and reduce infections. 1
During an infection with the Hepatitis C virus, lactoferrin supplementation has demonstrated a significant reduction in the viral load of patients. 2
When to supplement?
Taking lactoferrin food supplements can be done during viral or bacterial infections.
But being a real stimulator and support for the immune system, it is advisable to consume it for prevention. Especially before winter when the number of infections increases.
Taking lactoferrin is also recommended for all people with iron deficiency. Thanks to its transferrin properties, it is possible to naturally overcome this type of deficiency without having to take medication.