There’s no question obesity rates are growing sharply across all age groups of Americans.
So far, nearly 40 percent of all adults age 20 and older have lost the battle with obesity, based on statistics collected by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).
As with many health problems, however, problems with obesity start very early. According to the NCHS, some 14 percent of young children as early as age 2 may already be obese, and the numbers keep climbing to 20.6 percent by the time kids reach young adulthood.
These statistics appear to be pretty close to the mark, if not a little low, according to data collected by Harvard University that we cited recently.
What could trigger that slide to obesity so quickly?
Exposure to antibiotics and heartburn drugs in the gut may be the culprits, according to a recent report appearing the journal Gut.
Too many “helpful” drugs?
Researchers examined the records of more than 330,000 children enrolled in the U.S. Department of Defense’s TRICARE health system, looking specifically for antibiotic and heartburn drugs (H2 blockers and PPIs) prescribed to kids during the first two years of their lives.
Nearly every child in the study had been prescribed at least one round of antibiotics (72.5 percent) or a heartburn drug (15 percent), and nearly 6,000 kids were prescribed at least one round of all three drugs.
Roughly 37,000 of the 47,000 of children who became obese over the eight-year study were prescribed a heartburn drug or antibiotic. A single round of prescribed antibiotics elevated a child’s obesity risks by 26 percent.
Another gut-related factor to childhood obesity discovered by scientists — C-section births — was a difference-maker, too.
The good news about this study: health providers are becoming more aware by the day about the damage common “helpful” drugs like heartburn meds and antibiotics can do to the bodies of our little ones (and their parents too), often through harming their gut health.
My probiotic protocol
There are times your children just can’t avoid taking an antibiotic or heartburn drug.
My best recommendation to protect the health of your kids and yourself safely and effective: Follow my simple protocol for taking a probiotic, ideally with multiple strains of beneficial bacteria.
One more thing to remember about taking a probiotic: Give your child’s body at least a two-hour break between taking an antibiotic or heartburn drug and a probiotic to allow those beneficial bacteria to do their work to protect his/her gut.
Just a reminder that EndoMune Junior Advanced Probiotic contains four key strains of helpful bacteria and a prebiotic (FOS) that helps feed the good bugs in their gut.