Probiotics and your little one.

What are probiotics and what are they used for?

Probiotics is an umbrella term that is given to good bacteria needed for the wellbeing of the intestinal tract. Probiotics are naturally occurring and can be found in foods such as sauerkraut, pickles and yogurt.

In our intestinal tract we have something called the gut microbiome which is a collection of microorganisms, including bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses, that in a healthy person live in symbiosis and are able to stimulate the immune system, assist in digestion, protect the body against toxic food compounds, and synthesize vitamins and amino acids.

However, this symbiotic relationship can easily get out of balance due to stress, diet, illness and medication such as antibiotics. This leads to feelings of discomfort associated with constipation and bloating. Research also suggests that an imbalanced gut can affect the immune system and mental health.

As a result, there is ongoing investigations on the benefits of probiotics in both adults and infants. Some common strains of probiotics are: lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and saccharomyces boulardii.

Supplementing with probiotics will assist in balancing the ratio of good and bad bacteria in the gut. This can ease symptoms of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and constipation as well as improve your overall health.

What are some benefits of probiotics in children

The most common type of probiotic strain in supplements for children is lactobacilli. Research has shown that this may prevent or treat disorders such as infectious diarrhoea​ and atopic dermatitis (eczema) in children. Other possible health benefits are currently being studied, including the possibility of reduced risk of food-related allergies and asthma, prevention of urinary tract infections, and relief of symptoms of infant colic​.

What is Colic?

“Colic is defined as three or more hours of crying per day on three or more days of the week for a period of three weeks in an otherwise healthy, well-fed infant.” This is a big source of concern for parents and this can happen to breast-fed infants or formula fed infants. Colic affects up to 28% of young children.

Colic has been discussed by doctors and health care practitioners for some time and up till now treatment thereof has been elusive.

However, in recent years there has been some extraordinary findings for the treatment of colic:

This study increases our evidence-based armamentarium for treating colic, and family physicians should consider prescribing probiotics for healthy breastfed infants with colic.”

Consequently, the benefits of probiotics in young children are being recommended by doctors in order to assist in their wellbeing and balance their intestinal flora. This is particularly useful if children have finished a round of antibiotics.

This is why Zinplex Junior has created the new Probiotic drops with Zinc. This may alleviate the symptoms of colic, assist in the treatment and prevention of diarrhoea and support the immune system.

Overall, “when ingested on a regular basis, probiotics should improve or normalise the microbial balance in the intestines and thereby improve the functioning of the digestive tract.”