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Probiotics for Infants: Everything You Need to Know

You probably know that what you feed your baby is important. From breastfeeding to starting solids, to getting them to eat vegetables, you’re making sure baby is healthy from day one. But in some cases, we may need to do more. Probiotics for infants, whether in food or supplement form, just might be one of the best things you can give baby to support his health.

Digestive issues

Without the proper balance of gut bacteria, baby may have colic, acid reflux, constipation, diarrhea, or develop more serious digestive issues like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or Crohn’s Disease. A studyfound that fecal transplant in adults (placing a bit of “healthy” poo into the colon of an unhealthy person) cured 91-93% of patients with digestive issues. This supports the idea that good gut flora can treat and prevent many digestive issues—and why we may want to use probiotics for infants.

Immune system issues

Eighty percent of our immune system resides in our gut, so it makes sense that sub-optimal gut flora would cause an ill functioning immune system. When gut bacteria isn’t optimal, baby’s immune system is not going to be optimal. That means baby will be more likely to catch colds, flus, and other illnesses. We can ward off some of these issues with the use of probiotics for babies.

Weight problems

Probiotics for infants may even impact your baby’s weight. (Strange as it sounds!) One study found that mice with a TLR5 deficiency (a protein that keeps gut flora balanced) had excessive weight gain, insulin resistance, diabetes, and fatty liver disease. What was really interesting is that the researchers transplanted some fecal matter from the overweight mice to skinny mice and the skinny mice started eating more, gaining weight, and eventually developed the metabolic issues of the TLR5 deficient mice. Long story short, the weight and metabolic issues of these mice were a direct result of bad gut bacteria.

 

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