The company provided supplements containing its L. reuteri protectis bacteria for a study on 181 subjects working at two different places in Sweden.
L. reuteri protectis is a bacterium that is naturally found in the human intestine, and is the one marketed in numerous products globally by BioGaia.
The double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomised study found that daily consumption of a portion-pack drink containing the probiotic in the firm's LifeTop straw halved the number of subjects reporting sick leave due to gastrointestinal illness or colds over a three-month period.
In the placebo group, sick leave due to these illnesses was 0.9 per ent of working days, whilst in the Reuteri group this was reduced to 0.3 per cent. These differences were highly statistically significant.
"The result is revolutionary and has a major implication for public health," said Peter Rothschild, managing director of BioGaia.
"We have had similar results from a study in day-care children where health frequency was also significantly improved by Reuteri bacteria. Now we have confirmation that Reuteri gives the same health-promoting effect also in adults," he added.
"If the product is consumed regularly by the Swedish working population, we could increase the number of working days by 5 million per year in Sweden," continued Rothschild.
The study has not yet been published. For further details, contact BioGaia.