probiotics for babies?

PROBIOTICS FOR BABIES?
WHY NOT?

Babies Probiotics

Mskathrynne – K – Philippines – Pixabay

“Infantile colic is a common functional gastrointestinal disorder of early infancy. …Infantile colic has a substantial deleterious impact on society by negatively affecting parental health, resulting in decreased family functioning years later…. The immediate impact on the infant is unknown; they certainly do not seem happy. Ten years later, these infants with colic become children who have an 11-fold increased risk for developing recurrent abdominal pain, as well as an increased risk for allergic diseases and psychological disorders.”  – Bruno P. Chumpitazi, MD, MPH and Robert J. Shulman, MD from their recent editorial in JAMA Pediatrics called Five Probiotic Drops a Day to Keep Infantile Colic Away?  Shulman is a Professor of Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine.

“Chiropractors are rarely qualified to diagnose a baby’s ailment. A baby who cries inconsolably may have colic, or he may have constipation, acid reflux or a milk allergy” – Victor Turow, M.D., a pediatrician at North Shore University Hospital in Great Neck, New York from a 2011 post of mine called COLIC & CHIROPRACTIC.

COLIC, REFLUX, Constipation, and ALLERGIES / SENSITIVITES.  These common GI problems are frequently found in infants.  What’s the standard medical treatment for such maladies?  Unfortunately, for most of you who have not read DR. MENDELSOHN’S BOOK yet, the answer is all to frequently ‘drugs’.  As amazing at it seems, I have seen several infants in the one-month-old range on the very same ACID BLOCKING DRUGS used for adults.  Furthermore, the authors of the above quote tell us that INFANTILE COLIC leads to dramatically greater chances of developing things like Allergies (GLUTEN SENSITIVITY), RECURRENT ABDOMINAL PAIN, or PSYCHOLOGICAL DISORDERS later in life.  Should we be surprised?  Only if you have not been following this blog (follow the links to see what I am talking about)!

Not only do we know that virtually all drugs have wide ranging and nasty side effects, we should be aware of the lack of scientific validity for most of them (HERE).  It all leads us to wonder what in the world we should do for our newborn’s health?  If you have been reading our posts on GUT HEALTH (particularly the one on NEWBORNS), you already know the answer to this one.  Avoid ANTIBIOTICS as if your life depends on it, and do whatever it takes to RESTORE AND MAINTAIN GOOD BACTERIA.  Although I used to be vilified as a quack for telling my patients these kinds of things, the medical community is finally starting to come around. 

Case in point; the brand new study from Italy’s Dr. Flavia Indrio and a dozen other medical doctors (Prophylactic Use of a Probiotic in the Prevention of Colic, Regurgitation, and Functional Constipation).  The latest issue of JAMA Pediatrics published his group’s study of nearly 600 infants that were randomly divided into two groups.  They wanted to know if a “uni-bug” PROBIOTIC (Lactobacillus Reuteri) given prophylactically over the infant’s first three months of life would make a difference in the following categories.

  • Episodes of regurgitation / reflux
  • Duration of inconsolable crying (minutes per day)
  • Number of bowel movements per day
  • Feeding changes
  • Number of visits to pediatricians
  • Number of visits to a pediatric emergency department for a perceived health emergency
  • Hospitalizations
  • Pharmacological interventions
  • Loss of parental working days
The conclusions of the study are as follows. “Prophylactic use of L Reuteri during the first 3 months of life reduced the onset of functional gastrointestinal disorders and reduced private and public costs for the management of this condition.”  In other words, when babies were simply given the single bacteria probiotic L. Reuteri (5 drops orally) during their first three months after being born, they had far fewer health problems, required less medical intervention, and did not put as much financial strain on their caregivers or the government (as is the case in most of Europe, Italy’s healthcare system is socialized / nationalized).  The cost savings per child averaged out to just under $260.00 over the course of the three months.  Let me firstly say that this is really cool stuff.  Let me secondly say that it could have been better. 

Although Lactobacillus Reuteri — an organism widely considered to be “universal” in animals — has dozens of scientifically proven benefits (inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria, infections, E. Coli, H. PYLORI, yeasts, fungi, and protozoa; boosting immune system function; resolves diarrhea-causing ailments, including INFLAMMATORY BOWEL PROBLEMS; prevents tooth decay; helps the body absorb nutrients better; and promotes overall health).  But again, like the probiotic Acidophilus, L Reuteri is only one organism.  What can be done to see that your baby gets a plethora of beneficial bacteria into their systems?

Not only is supplementing your children proving to be popular and effective, you need to take care of your own Gut Health.  Avoid the Antibiotics, stop feeding the bad bacteria their food of choice — SUGAR; and eat more fermented foods.  Oh; several studies on Probiotics have also shown we are often times too clean (HERE and HERE are what I am talking about).  But the number one thing you can do for your baby is to Breast Feed them.  This is not rocket science, and there are dozens upon dozens of studies dealing with this particular issue, and the way it helps to maintain their proper gut flora.
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