The Benefits Of Probiotics And Prebiotics
Your child’s health and wellbeing are at the top of your list of priorities and providing nutritious food are one of the best ways to start. Breast milk and baby formula are the first meals an infant will consume, so it makes sense that you will want to provide the best available.
European infant formulas are made with organic ingredients and enriched with essential vitamins and minerals that support healthy development. Many European infant milk brands also include healthy additives such as DHA, probiotics, and prebiotics to their infant formulas as well.
What are Probiotics and Prebiotics?
Prebiotics and probiotics are helpful bacteria that help your body maintain an efficient digestive system. They also help to aid digest in both infants and adults. Prebiotics are found in a lot of different foods such as whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and other fiber-rich food.
Probiotics are found in food that has been fermented such as tempeh, sauerkraut, and yogurt. Both feed healthy gut bacteria and support an environment where good microorganisms flourish.
How Probiotics Support Infant Health
Probiotics can often be found in common foods such as yogurt, for infants who are not on solids, infant formula that contains probiotics are equally healthy. They have been proven to help support digestive health and in the case of infants, help to support the development of a healthy gut. They have also proven to help reduce the risk of diarrhea by as much as 50%. Recent trials also resulting in the discovery that probiotics are effective in the prevention of necrotizing enterocolitis in preterm babies. This disease is life-threatening, and for parents who are battling this disease with their child, infant formula with probiotics can help.
Some preliminary studies show a link between brain health and gut health. Infants that consume formula enriched with probiotics tend to have less fussiness during the day. On the same note, they also support healthy gut function which is essential for infants who suffer from GERD or any other type of reflux condition.
A healthy gut promotes a strong immune system which is critical for infants during their early months and years. Infant formula infused with probiotics may reduce the need for antibiotics and has been proven to help ward off certain types of yeast infections. Probiotics are also effective in reducing the chances of catching the common cold and may help reduce eczema.
How Prebiotics Support Infant Health
Most older children and adults will get an ample amount of prebiotics from their regular diet. Though prebiotics is available as a supplement, they are not required when consuming a balanced diet. Infants due to their limited diets which is mainly made up of breast milk or infant formula are unable to glean prebiotics from their food. Many European infant brands include prebiotics in their infant formulas to helps support a healthy gut and boost early development.
Prebiotics come from some parts of food that are not digestible in the body. Their purpose is to feed beneficial organisms and good bacteria in the gut. Similar to probiotics, prebiotics also helps support digestive health and may reduce other antibiotic-related health problems. Some studies show that prebiotics help to improve the absorption of calcium, which is critical for proper infant bone and joint development.
They are also known to improve the efficiency of carbohydrates being processed in the body, which can reduce the chances of childhood obesity. On the same note, they have been linked to a boosted metabolism and enhanced digestion in most who consume them.
Do They Interact?
You can find a lot of infant formulas and even regular food items that have added probiotics, but it is not common to find prebiotics on its own. Both support healthy digestion, but prebiotics further work to improve the way probiotics function. Prebiotics fuel probiotics which help them to work more efficiently. Breastfed babies get both good bacteria through their mother’s milk while those who are formula-fed must rely on what is included in the formula itself. Not all brands use both, though many at lease use probiotics.
Probiotics and Prebiotics in Infant Formula
Probiotics and prebiotics are two words that have the world abuzz. When searching for high-quality infant formula for your child, chances are you have run across these at least once. Many infant formulas are enriched with vitamins and minerals, and the majority of European infant formulas also include probiotics and prebiotics in their offerings.
Both are forms of good bacteria found in high concentrations in infants who are breastfed. European infant formula brands pride themselves on creating a product that mimics breast milk, so it is no surprise that they would also add these healthy gut helpers.
For infants who supplement with formula or who are exclusively fed infant formula, probiotics and prebiotics are extremely helpful. They encourage a balance between good and bad bacteria in the intestines and they also help to reduce the growth of bad organisms that may cause inflammation or infection. In addition, some studies show that probiotics may reduce the chance of a child developing food allergies in the future. They have been linked to a reduction in the development of asthma as well. Many babies will suffer colic at least once in their early years, probiotics can help ease the symptoms in addition to preventing urinary tract infections.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to choosing what is best for your child, it is always good to start by arming yourself with the right information. Of course, always speak with your pediatrician when considering a change from your current infant formula to one that contains probiotics or prebiotics. These helpful bacteria have been proven as safe and effective for consumption in both older children, adults, and infants.
Mommy Formula is always here to help when you need more information regarding infant feeding or about European infant formula brands. We offer a range of healthy, organic, and enriched infant formulas from brands such as HiPP, Nanny Care, Kabrita, and many others.