How Infant Probiotics Build A Strong Microbiome For Your Baby
As I mentioned, your microbiome is made up of trillions of bacteria and other organisms, and the good bacteria are called probiotics.
Probiotics promote healthy bacterial and yeast balance to keep your babys gut lining in check, so that the bad bacteria dont grow out of control and cause your gut to become leaky. They also support a strong immune system in order to prevent and fight off infections, and can help reduce the risk of allergies, eczema, and other inflammatory conditions.
Probiotics are naturally found in your babys gut, especially if you took the steps mentioned above to build a healthy microbiome from conception. However, thanks to our toxic environment, the overuse of antibiotics , and the state of our food supply, the unfortunate truth is that our natural good bacteria simply arent enough to defend us from infections, toxins, and chronic illness.
Also, studies show that our children are not being exposed to the microbial diversity that our parents and grandparents were exposed to because we dont spend nearly as much time outside, playing in the dirt and the grass, where we would naturally encounter a wider diversity of bacteria to build a healthy microbiome.
Dosage Recommendations For Babies Ages 0 To 3
Given their importance for cellular and developmental health, a number of health organizations provide recommendations for daily omega-3 fatty acid intake.32 The majority of these recommendations tend to err on the conservative side with lower doses, despite research indicating that: 1) current recommendations are too low to increase omega-3 status for all individuals,28,29 2) larger doses are safe and often more effective than smaller doses,28,29 and 3) doses as high as 5,000 mg are well-tolerated by children and adults alike.33,34
Breastfed Infants and Toddlers:
- Direct supplementation is not required if mother has appropriate levels
Non-breastfed Infants and Toddlers:
- 0 months-1 year : 500 mg EPA+DHA per day
- 1-3 years : 800 mg EPA+DHA per day
Why Babies Benefit From Probiotics
Probiotics for babiesexplained!
Parenthood may be one of the most challenging times of your lifeespecially in your babys early months, when both of you are trying to figure out and navigate your new worlds. Youre on a day-to-day learning curve. And, Google may have become your best friend during late night feedings. Yet, while its helpful to have so much information at your fingertips, you can easily get bombarded with the amount of online opinions about which trends you should try. Case in point: infant probiotics. Theyve gained significant traction and praise in recent years. But, how do you even know if theyre actually worth giving a shot? To help you decide, were here to dig into probiotics for babies.
Keep reading to learn what probiotics are, potential probiotics benefits, and how incorporating infant probiotics into your daily routine may help promote your babys health. After all, no one likes the feeling of an upset stomachand understanding babies tummy troubles is our specialty.
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Probiotic Supplementation Is Associated With Higher Bifidobacterium At One Week Of Age
Beta diversity assessment of microbial communities over a 6-month period of probiotics and no probiotics exposed infants. PCoA plots based on the Bray-Curtis dissimilarity distance show no distinct clustering of microbial communities at any age except for at 1 week. Table summary of PERMANOVA results ran on the Bray-Curtis dissimilarity, and weighted and unweighted UniFrac distances between the two groups. The values at the intersect of a blue cell and an orange cell show the estimated P value of the corresponding time points.
Differences in the abundance of taxa between the groups were assessed using two complimentary approaches at each time-point. Differences in the relative abundance of Bifidobacterium spp. in the probiotics group at one week of age was detected as significantly different using ANCOM . LEfSe results showing significantly different taxa between fecal samples between probiotics and no probiotics infants at one week of age. The cladogram reports the taxa showing different abundance values according to LEfSe. Colors indicate the lineages that are encoded within corresponding samples. Higher taxa abundance in the probiotics group is colored blue whereas higher taxa abundance in the no probiotics group is colored orange. Infants directly supplemented with BioGaia according to the manufacturers recommendations show similar results to . P< 0.05.
Treatment Of Chronic Ulcerative Colitis
Data from RCTs of probiotics for the treatment of adults with CUC are encouraging.,, The administration of probiotics to adults with mild-to-moderate CUC disease activity has comparable efficacy when compared with treatment with anti-inflammatory drugs used to treat CUC, such as mesalamine, as reported in a recently published Cochrane review. The same is true in adult patients with ileoanal pouchitis after colectomy surgery for CUC. Most of these studies use the probiotic mixture VSL#3 , which is a combination of S thermophilus, Bifidobacterium species, and Lactobacillus species. The probiotic E coli Nissle 1917 has also been used successfully to treat mild-to-moderate pouchitis or CUC in adults. One RCT in which 29 children with newly diagnosed CUC were randomly assigned to receive either VSL#3 or a placebo for 1 year had promising results. All study patients were also given standard corticosteroid induction therapy combined with mesalamine maintenance therapy. Remission occurred in 13 patients in the VSL#3 group and 4 patients in the placebo group . Relapse occurred in 3 of 13 patients in the VSL#3 group versus 11 of 15 in the placebo group within the 1-year study period . Although these results are promising, more studies are needed in larger numbers of children to substantiate the benefit of probiotics in managing children with mild-to-moderate CUC. Thus, probiotics for CUC cannot be generally recommended at this time without further confirmatory research.
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Prebiotics In Your Babys Diet
How to make sure baby gets enough prebiotics to sustain healthy gut bacteria? Heres how to incorporate prebiotics into your babys diet.
Prebiotics in breastmilk
In addition to countless other benefits for your baby, breastmilk contains both prebiotics and probiotics. This means that breastmilk both helps build up good bacteria in babys gut and provides plenty of the nutrients needed to sustain the good bacteria. In fact, prebiotics are actually the third-largest component in breastmilk. Prebiotic and probiotic levels in breastmilk vary depending on the mother, and depending on the babys lactation needs.
Prebiotics in formula
Many formulas already contain probiotics, to mimic breastmilk and help build up good bacteria in babys gut. And to replicate the benefits of breastmilk even further, and give the healthy gut bacteria the nutrients it needs to survive, some formulas also contain prebiotics. No formula exactly replicates the prebiotics in breastmilk, but formulas with prebiotics still help sustain the gut bacteria effectively.
If you plan to select a formula with probiotics and prebiotics, read the label carefully, because not all formulas are enriched with them. If you choose a different type of formula that doesnt contain them, another option is to use infant drops that contain probiotics and prebiotics.
Prebiotics in food
These are some prebiotic-rich foods that you could feed to baby:
A Very Big Very Small Revolution In Babies Health
Every day I tell patients that we are living through the fourth great revolution in medicine. The first three revolutions had to do with killing the fairly small number of viruses, fungi, and bacteria that harm us . In 1796 Dr. Edward Jenner tested the first ever vaccine against smallpox, learning that our own immune systems could be taught to destroy deadly invaders. Second, in 1865 Joseph Lister found that carbolic acid could prevent bacteria from causing deadly wound infections, opening the door to modern surgery. Finally, in 1928 Alexander Fleming isolated penicillin, discovering that previously life-threatening infections could be treated with a natural compound.
The fourth revolution, however, is just starting, and it has to do with how we interact with the trillions of microorganisms that live within us and help keep us healthy. It turns out that our bodies contain 3 times as many bacterial cells as human ones! These bacteria, along with fungi, viruses, and other types of microorganisms help digest our food, strengthen our immune systems, and compete with pathogens for space and nutrients. Thats why I was so excited to partner with Evivo to help parents understand how they are on the forefront of this revolution.
Breastfeeding And Protection Against Diseases
In developing countries, one of the main causes of death in the paediatric age group is the infectious disease, specially gastroenterocolitis and respiratory infections. Newborns who have not been breastfed show a 17-fold higher risk of being hospitalised due to pneumonia than those who exclusively received human milkReference Cesar, Victoria and Barros8. Similarly, the risk of death due to diarrhoea increases 14.2-fold in weaned infantsReference Victoria, Smiyh and Vaughan9. Breastfeeding has also been related to a lower incidence of acute otitis mediaReference Duncan, Ey, Holberg, Wright, Martinez and Taussing10, urinary tract infectionReference Pisacane, Graziano, Mazzarella, Scarpellino and Zona11 and meningitis caused by Haemophilus influenzaeReference Silfverdal and Olcen12.
Besides its anti-infective properties, it has been demonstrated that human milk modulates the immune system of the newbornReference Grazioso, Werner and Alling13. Although an anti-inflammatory activity has not yet been demonstrated in vivo, several epidemiologic studies suggest that breast-fed children are protected against infections without the observation of evident lesion of the intestinal or respiratory mucosa due to an inflammatory responseReference Garofalo and Goldman14. This is probably the result of an anti-inflammatory system better regulated by bioactive components of human milk.
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Intestinal Microbes And Pediatric Diseases
Infants immune system health is highly dependent on the equilibrium of theirintestinal microflora . Dysbiosis is a term that refers to a disruption caused by an imbalance in the microflora wherein harmful microbes become over populous. Dysbiosis is known to contribute to health complications such as:
Abnormal gut function
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Should Children Eat Probiotic Foods
Some studies suggest that probiotics may be good for children. One study found that children who were given probiotics every day for 3 months were less likely to have respiratory problems and diarrhea than children who were given a placebo.
And while more research is needed, probiotics may reduce childrens risk of developing certain conditions like autoimmune diseases, allergies and asthma.
On the other hand, some researchers note that probiotics may not have much effect on children. Because their microbiome isnt fully developed, probiotics may simply be passed as normal waste.
Probiotics are considered safe for kids with some exceptions, notes Dr. Drass. You should avoid giving your child probiotics if they have a compromised immune system or cancer, or if they are a premature infant. In these cases, probiotics can put them at risk for infections.
In general, its better for kids to get probiotics through foods instead of supplements unless their pediatrician recommends otherwise. Talk to your childs doctor if youre thinking about using probiotics to help your childs digestion because keeping your child safe and healthy is their prime concern.
What Are The Benefits Of Probiotics
Pop quiz: Did you know that around 80% of the immune system is located in the gut? Not only does your babys digestive system contribute to fighting off infection with a healthy immune system, it practically calls the shots! But thats just the tip of the probiotics benefits iceberg. When taken daily, probiotics can help rebalance healthy bacteria that may be lost after taking antibiotics, as well as promote good digestive health. Theyre effectiveness is even being studied for specific immune system issues, like preventing eczema.
The term probiotic literally means life-promoting, from the Latin for pro and bios . Out of the more than 400 probiotic strains present in our bodies, only about 20 account for 75% of all of them.
One of the most documented strains, Bifidobacteria animalis subsp. lactis, is the probiotic in our Infants Mylicon Daily Probiotic Drops. Its been described in over 300 publications and evaluated in more than 180 clinical studies. In one recent study, it was shown to reduce crying and fussiness in colicky babies after two weeks of use. Unlike the babies who received a placebo, a greater percentage of babies who were given our probiotic experienced a 50% or more reduction in daily crying.
Healthy Bacterial Balance With An Infant Probiotic
In fact, a leading theory for why children today are so much more likely to develop conditions such as asthma, eczema, and allergies is because they arent exposed to a healthy range of bacteria during childhood.
This is why I generally recommend supporting healthy bacterial balance with proper supplementation which will provide you with an extra dose of good bacteria to maintain a healthy microbiome balance.
Its particularly important for your baby to take an infant probiotic that contains the specific strains of bacteria that are critical for her developing microbiome at ages 0 through 2 years.
So What Do Probiotics Have To Do With All Of This
Probiotics are an easy way to combat the bacterial imbalances created by C-section deliveries. As the studies noted above demonstrate, these imbalances can extend well beyond the initial year of infancy. Bacterial imbalances in the gut can lead to major health risks through a childs life. In fact, studies have shown that C-section babies are much more at risk for conditions like asthma, allergic rhinitis, Celiac Disease, Diabetes Mellitus , and Gastroenteritis than babies that were delivered vaginally.3
If youve delivered a C-section baby or have a planned C-section, probiotic supplementation can work to begin rebalancing the microbiota balance right after delivery. Give your baby the best chance for good gut health from the moment theyre born!
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Diversity Of Bacteria The Baby Biome
Babies should have lots of friendly bacteria in their microbiome, especially Bifidobacteria. Many species of Bifidobacteria help to train the immune system and teach it to respond appropriately. Bifidobacteria work to create a healthy gut environment and encourage other good bacteria to grow, increasing the overall diversity.
When Bifidobacteria numbers drop, pathogens such as E. coli or Klebsiella species might take advantage. With extra space and nutrients available, they flourish. This can cause symptoms such as colic, infections, allergies and digestive issues2,3. Read more about the microbiome and colic here.
Bifidobacterium breve, Bifidobacterium infantis, Bifidobacterium bifidum and Bifidobacterium longum are associated with good health and are commonly found in breastfed babies’ guts4. So, its about having the right types of Bifidobacteria, as well as just having lots of them.
Lots of babies could benefit from probiotics. Many factors reduce the levels of Bifidobacteria and other friendly microbes, and in the early years, this can be detrimental. Lets take a look at some of these factors…
Are Daily Probiotics Beneficial For Baby
Chances are youve been hearing about the benefits of probiotics for a while now. You may even take one yourself every daygood for you! Wondering if your baby could also benefit from taking a daily probiotic? Weve gone through the latest research and the good news is yes! Here are just a few of the ways your baby could benefit.
GAS AND COLIC
Probiotics are natural microorganisms similar to those found in healthy digestive tracts. By adding them to your babys routine, you can help to build up good bacteria in the gut leading to less tummy troubles like gas or colic. In fact, a 2007 study in the journal Pediatrics found that giving probiotics helped to keep the bacteria in the gut balanced which resulted in less intestinal inflammation, which is a major cause of gas and colic in infants. A 2011 study in European Journal of Clinical Investigation found that probiotics can also help food to move through the digestive system more easily, leading to less frequent spitting up.
Giving probiotics can help restore the balance of good bacteria in babys bowels and can help with digestive upset. A great daily option to build up babys gut microbiome is Mommys Bliss Probiotic Drops- Everyday. If you are looking to build up babys gut health quickly try Mommys Bliss Probiotic Drops- 15 Day Boost.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PROBIOTICS FOR C-SECTION BABIES
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Evivo Is Simple And Easy To Use
I know that all of this info about infant gut health can be overwhelming. There are SO many choices to make as parents, especially in the first few years of life!
Luckily, giving your baby Evivo daily is very simple!
When you place your first order, you will receive a starter kit. This kit has everything you need to give your baby Evivo including your first month supply and instructions.
You always want to give baby Evivo with the feeding syringe mixed with fresh breastmilk. Be sure to never mix Evivo in babys bottle.
After mixing the Evivo Probiotic with breastmilk in the small bowl provided by Evivo, fill the syringe and feed it to your baby! It is that simple!
I hope that this blog post has educated you about infant probiotics and that you are ready to make your own choice about Evivo! While this post is now sponsored by Evivo, the content and opinions expressed here are my own. We had been using Evivo Probiotic for two months before my partnership with Evivo began.
Be sure to keep your babys Doctor in the loop when starting something like Evivo. Evivo has great customer service, you can call or submit a ticket and they will be happy to answer any of your questions! If you would like to further connect, please find me on and send me a DM!
Side Effects Of Probiotics For Newborns
Infant probiotics are not suitable for newborns who are seriously or chronically ill, especially those who are immuno-compromised. It is always advisable to seek medical assistance if you want to try an infant probiotic for your baby.
Probiotics are yeast or bacteria-based, so there is a potential risk of gut infection or immune system infection if given to your baby incorrectly. Probiotics are not a regulated medication.
Thats why when administered incorrectly, it may lead to allergic reactions, diarrhea, stomach pain, and bloating.
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