Benefits Of Taking Probiotics During Pregnancy
Perhaps you found this article because youve heard that taking probiotics during pregnancy is linked to health benefits.
This is supported by research. In fact, its believed that these supplements may improve certain aspects of maternal health, reduce the risk of pregnancy complications, and benefit newborns.
Garden Of Life Once Daily Prenatal Probiotic
Why its great: This 20 billion CFUs, once daily probiotic supplement contains 16 probiotic strains for digestive health, immune system support, and so much more. Each bottle contains a 30 day supply of capsules that are easily swallowed or can be broken open and sprinkled over food. Garden of Life probiotics are all dairy free, gluten free, soy free, and vegetarian.
Because the probiotics are shelf-stable, you can easily throw them in your purse and not worry about them losing potency. This supplement also includes 115mg of organic Acacia fiber, which is a prebiotic that helps good bacteria thrive. All and all this is a great choice throughout pregnancy and lactation.
Keep in mind: These pills come in a mysteriously large bottle, so storing them can be a bit cumbersome.
Good for: Soon to be mommas who are planning to breastfeed and looking for a targeted probiotic supplement.
Summary Of Probiotics During Pregnancy
- Generally, taking probiotics when pregnant is considered safe, however, one probiotic yeast, Saccharomyces boulardii, is lacking in clinical research in pregnant women.
- During pregnancy, four key areas of the body undergo microbial changes so taking a probiotic in pregnancy may help to bring balance.
- The benefits of taking probiotics in pregnancy are far reaching and can help to support vaginal health, mental wellbeing, general immunity, gestational diabetes, IBS and bloating, occasional constipation and even morning sickness.
- Different strains do different things, so, in terms of the best probiotics for pregnancy its a good idea to select a probiotic for pregnant women or one that has been studied for the health concern you are looking to address.
- Its ideal to start taking a pregnancy probiotic from conception or as early on as possible. You can continue to take certain strains right through till at least 6 months after birth, however, do check that the strains are suitable in pregnancy and breastfeeding.
This article forms part 3 in our educational resource, Early life microbiome series, where we take you on a journey through the development and support of the microbiome from conception through to young adulthood. The other articles in this series are:
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Management Of Multiple Comparisons
Whenever we encountered multiple, correlated comparisons we combined the intervention groups into a single group. In the subgroup analyses, if the different comparisons were in separate subgroups, the shared control group was split into two groups with half the sample size and events each, as per the Cochrane handbook .
Whenever we encountered multiple, independent comparisons we included both of them in the meta-analysis as if they were from different studies. In addition, in our sensitivity analyses we compared our results with the results of an alternative strategy in which the comparisons of the same study are first combined using a fixed-effects model and then the result is pooled with the rest of the studies in a random-effects meta-analysis .
Are There Side Effects From Probiotics
Just like anything, if youre taking a probiotic and breastfeeding or pregnant, you need to watch for side effects. Your body can react to anything. A few potential problems you could face include:
- Gastrointestinal Issues
You could experience bloating, diarrhea, or stomach cramps. If it continues, consider switching brands.
If you have a suppressed immunity, probiotics could lead to infections. This isnt common it mostly occurs in those with AIDS or on certain medications.
You should watch the ingredient list because supplements contain allergens, such as soy, lactose, or prebiotic fillers. These could cause severe reactions.
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Will It Be A Risk To Babies
Even if you are safe to consume probiotics, will it have any effects on your baby? If it is safe during pregnancy, what about after giving birth? Will you be able to breastfeed while on probiotics? Should you be concerned if your baby consumes probiotics? As mothers, your babys health is a top priority. Fortunately, studies have shown no adverse effects on babies either.
Probiotics are not absorbed because they are beneficial microorganisms that live in your gut. If you consume probiotics, they will not be absorbed and transferred to the milk you produce. In addition, studies have shown that infants get no side effects when they consume probiotics as well. These supplements are safe for both the mother and the child before, during, and after birth.
Should You Take Probiotics
The “good bacteria” may help healthy people but aren’t formally recommended.
Probiotics are “good” bacteria touted to help maintain digestive health and boost the immune system. You can take them in a dietary supplement or get them from food sources, such as yogurt. But should you? They can be helpful in some cases, but we still need more studies to tell us if and when they are safe and effective for older adults.
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The Best Probiotic Sources For Pregnant Women
You can consume probiotics through either food or dietary supplements. Foods that contain adequate amounts of probiotics include kimchi, kombucha and sauerkraut. But the probiotics you consume by eating do not often measure up to the richness of probiotic bacteria in dietary supplements.
Probiotic bacteria may provide many health-supporting benefits to the human body, including gut, digestive and immune functions.
There are multiple different strains of probiotic bacteria that serve unique purposes, and may be beneficial for pregnant women. Lactobacilli Bacteria primarily live in the small intestines and the most well-known is Acidophilus, which has been studied in areas like immune support. Bifidobacteria live primarily in the large intestines and have been studied in the area of support for challenges such as occasional irregularity.
With a doctors consent, mothers-to-be may be able to safely add probiotics to their daily regimen.
Prior to choosing a probiotic, look for ones that contain diverse probiotic blends like Probulins Womens Probiotic, Daily Care or Total Care Probiotic have easily printable labels on our website if youd like to print a copy to discuss with your physician.
Reduce The Risk Of Gestational Diabetes
Gestational Diabetes is often diagnosed during pregnancy and it increase the risk of birth injuries, increases the chances of cesarean section and causes low blood sugar levels in newborns.
Probiotics can reduce the risk of developing gestational diabetes by lowering fasting blood glucose levels in pregnant women .
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Is It Safe To Take Probiotics While Breastfeeding
Yes, probiotics are considered safe to take when breastfeeding, whether youre taking them orally or vaginally. Its believed that probiotics enhance your breast milk , offering more immune system benefits.
It would be best if you always talked to your doctor before taking probiotics. A lactation consultant should be able to offer suggestions for a solid probiotic.
Can You Take Probiotics In First Trimester
Unlike some supplements, probiotics are safe to take even in the first trimester. A 2010 study in the British Journal of Nutrition looked at the benefits of probiotics starting in the first trimester. The probiotic and healthy eating group had less gestational diabetes than the group that just ate healthy .
You dont have to wait until youre pregnant though to start taking probiotics! Building healthy gut and vaginal flora even before pregnancy has long term benefits.
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Should You Take Probiotics During Pregnancy
Pregnancy can be an exciting time full of new experiences and learnings, especially when it comes to diet and supplements.
However, if youre pregnant and feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information available, know that youre not alone.
Youve likely discovered that conflicting evidence abounds on health and wellness websites. Plus, many people friends, family, co-workers, or even strangers might feel warranted to give you their personal opinion on whats safe and whats not when youre pregnant.
Its understandable if this makes you wary about adding new foods and supplements to your diet, including probiotics.
This article breaks down the latest research on the safety of taking probiotics during pregnancy, enabling you to make an informed decision when choosing pregnancy supplements.
Taking certain amounts may offer health benefits like improved digestive health and reduced risk of heart disease .
Research has found most strains of probiotics, including Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, to be safe to take long term .
However, some researchers are exploring if the overuse of probiotic supplements could lead to the transfer of genes resistant to infectious pathogens, antibiotic resistance, and other negative health consequences .
Regardless, rest assured that studies have found that taking probiotic supplements during pregnancy is safe and not associated with adverse outcomes.
Data Synthesis And Visualisation
A Graphical Overview for Evidence Reviews diagram26 was created to visualise adverse effects reporting and to synthesize key data collected from studies, including timing of study outcome measurements and adverse effect measurements , the number of adverse effect-related incidents in intervention and non-intervention groups, risk ratio calculations, intervention type , strain type , study design , study timeline, primary outcome groups and risk of bias assessment scores. Heatmaps and a world map were created to represent the quality assessment scores, and the country of study, respectively, for all studies included in level 3. Alluvial diagrams were created to illustrate the relationships between the intervention types used, and the primary outcome groups of the studies. A bubble plot was created to represent the number of studies that reported a specific adverse effect stratified by intervention type. Finally, a funnel plot28 was created with the log risk ratio values for each of the reported adverse effects against standard error to represent potential publication bias of all studies included in the meta-analysis.
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Speed Up Postpartum Weight Loss
We know that our gut bacteria may also affect our weight , so as with possibly improving digestion, probiotics may also help pregnant women lose weight a little more quickly once theyve given birth.12
Boosting Your Immune System
Did you know that 80% of your immune system lives in your gut?
Did you also know that your immune system changes when youre pregnant?
Some parts get a boost, while others get left to the wayside its one of the reasons why your immune system doesnt mistake your implantation embryo as a threat.
If you have a healthy immune system that can help your baby to develop a healthy immune system, too.
Which leads us to
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Probiotics Decrease The Risk Of Baby Eczema
Another benefit of probiotics in pregnancy is that it will decrease the likelihood of the baby developing eczema in the first two years of life.
But only if mom is breastfeeding!
You see, if the mother took probiotics or ate foods with naturally occurring probiotics during pregnancy, and continued while breastfeeding, probiotics will make her breastmilk better!
When baby receives this probiotic boost through breastmilk, the risk of eczema is greatly reduced.
Pregnancy Increases The Need For Nutrients
During pregnancy, macronutrient intake needs grow significantly. Macronutrients include carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.
Youll want to be including protein in every meal and snack to meet your needs.
The requirement for micronutrients, which include vitamins, minerals, and trace elements, increases even more than the need for macronutrients.
While some people are able to meet this growing demand through a well-planned, nutrient-dense eating plan, it can be a challenge for others.
You may need to take vitamin and mineral supplements for various reasons, including:
- Nutrientdeficiencies: Some people may need a supplement after a blood test reveals a deficiency in a vitamin or mineral. Correcting deficiencies is critical, as a shortage of nutrients like folate has been linked to birth defects.
- Hyperemesisgravidarum: This pregnancy complication is characterized by severe nausea and vomiting. It can lead to weight loss and nutrient deficiencies.
- Dietaryrestrictions: Women who follow specific diets, including vegans and those with food intolerances and allergies, may need to supplement with vitamins and minerals to prevent micronutrient deficiencies
- Smoking: Although its critical for mothers to avoid cigarettes during pregnancy, those who continue to smoke have an
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Mary Ruths Liquid Probiotic
Why its great: This is the only probiotic on the list that can be given to the entire family. This liquid probiotic is unflavored but does have a slight earthy taste that doesnt tend to linger. The serving size is 3 ml, and there are 40 servings per bottle.
Just like Mary Ruths other products this liquid probiotic is non-GMO, gluten-free, plant-based, and vegan. If you are on a raw diet, this is a great option. This is also an excellent choice for people who struggle with swallowing pills.
Keep in mind: There is no listed CFU count on this product.
Good for: Mommas who are looking for a probiotic everyone in the family can take.
Article Screening And Data Collection
A 3-level screening process was performed by an independent reviewer. At level 1, 1185 articles were evaluated based on title and abstract, and articles were screened out if they were not in the English language, human studies, or one of the identified eligible study designs. The remaining 244 articles were carried forward for screening at level 2, where full texts were obtained. Articles were excluded if there was no full-text access and if probiotic/prebiotic/synbiotic supplementation was to the infant and not the mother, or to both mother and infant. Articles were further excluded if the population of interest was not pregnant or lactating people, if the information provided was insufficient for the requirements of this study, if supplementation was not probiotic, prebiotic or synbiotic-related, and if the article was not a primary research article, leaving 70 studies. Sample size and country of study information were extracted at this level. At level 3, data were extracted from the 70 studies to capture PICO information 25. We also noted the primary outcome of interest of the 70 studies under review, and categorized each study based on the primary outcome into 9 groups: pregnancy outcome , maternal metabolic health, maternal microbiome and gastrointestinal health, maternal breast health and breastmilk, maternal mental health, infant metabolic health, infant microbiome and gastrointestinal health, infant allergy and immune health, and infant growth and development .
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Probiotics Could Lower The Risk Of Pregnancy Complications
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A new study has found that taking probiotics during pregnancy could lower a womans risk of preterm birth and preeclampsia, a complication characterized by high blood pressure.
WATCH BELOW: Diet and fertility
, researchers analyzed data from over 70,000 births in Norway and found taking probiotics especially the period of time in the pregnancy when they were taken was beneficial. It was found that probiotic milk consumption in late pregnancy was associated with a 20-per-cent reduced risk of preeclampsia, while it accounted for an 11-per-cent lower risk of preterm birth when taken in early pregnancy and a 27-per-cent lowered risk when taken in late pregnancy.
The women studied consumed two different forms of probiotic-rich milk, both of which contained the Lactobacillus bacterium.
In Canada, nearly two-thirds of infant deaths are attributed to preterm birth, while preeclampsia occurs in almost 12 out of every 1,000 births.
While they did not determine exactly how probiotics reduced preterm birth and preeclampsia, researchers believe that they may contribute to reduced inflammation in the body.
This study serves to further the growing belief that a mothers diet can have a direct impact on her baby. Research has shown that what a woman consumes during pregnancy can have numerous effects on her and her baby, ranging from gestational diabetes and hypertension to asthma and depression.
Can You Take Probiotics While Pregnant
Ever wondered, Can I take a probiotic while pregnant? Weve got all you need to know.
Probiotics are touted as near-magical health supplements designed to treat a range of stomach, immunity, and vaginal issues.
But is it that simple?
So can probiotics help ease these dreaded pregnancy side effects? Weve got all you need to know on probiotics and pregnancy in our tell-all guide:
In this article:
- Are probiotics safe during pregnancy?
- When can you take probiotics during pregnancy?
- How do probiotics help pregnancy?
- Which probiotic is best during pregnancy?
- What supplements should be avoided during pregnancy?
- Probiotics and breastfeeding
- Probiotics when TTC
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How Do Probiotics During Pregnancy Work
Scientists arent exactly sure how probiotics work during pregnancy. We do know that good gut and vaginal health is important for a healthy pregnancy. Lots of research points to the fact that probiotics are key to nourishing the microbiome for a healthy baby.
Unlike earlier theories, experts now believe babys microbiome is established before theyre born .
Pink Stork Pro Prenatal Probiotic
Why its great: This supplement boasts a 5 billion CFUs proprietary blend of highly stable, spore-enhanced probiotics, as well as a proprietary blend of highly selective prebiotic nutrients. What this means for you is targeted relief from digestion issues ranging from constipation to nausea.
Another ultra-cool component of this supplement is how awesome the company itself is. Pink Stork is a woman-owned and run company that prides itself on creating products specifically designed for women. They also do a lot to give back, so you know your purchase not only helps you, but also others.
Keep in mind: Some mommas find these pills to be too big and hard to swallow.
Good for: Soon to be mommas who are experiencing stomach issues.