Breastfed Babies With Colic Need Probiotics Too

There’s little doubt, colic is one of the most frustrating and upsetting problems Moms face with their newborns.

Although colic is a short-term problem that typically goes away by month 4 of an infant’s life, this knowledge provides little comfort to new Moms trying and failing to calm down their tearful babies after hours of non-stop crying.

Several health factors – food allergies, acid reflux, milk intolerance and gas – may contribute to colic, but no one really knows what triggers this alarming condition.

Over the years, probiotics have slowly emerged as a safe, cost-effective way to treat colic in previous reports we’ve cited here.

There’s even more evidence of such benefits for breastfed babies in a recent international study featured in Pediatrics that has attracted lots of attention.

A study of data collected from four double-blind trials conducted on three continents and 345 babies concluded that a proprietary strain of Lactobacillus reuteri reduced colic-induced crying after three weeks for children who are exclusively breastfed.

Breastfed babies treated with a probiotic were twice as likely to experience a 50 percent reduction in colic symptoms by day 21, says Dr. Valerie Sung, lead author of the study and Honorary Fellow at the University of Melbourne.

That’s a great step toward treating colic, but only for breastfed babies. Unfortunately, formula-fed infants weren’t included in this study, and there’s plenty of health-related reasons why some new Moms should breastfeed their babies.

Medical resources like the Cleveland Clinic and WebMD offer a variety of methods for treating colic ranging from the sensible (calming your baby) to the unproven and possibly unsafe (using herbal remedies).

Here are some safe, simple steps you can take to relieve your baby’s colic:

  • Cutting back on certain foods if you’re breastfeeding.
  • Introducing a pacifier.
  • Diverting your baby’s attention by playing soft music or rocking him/her.
  • Decreasing your baby’s exposure to outside stimulation.

Giving your baby a probiotic with four strains of beneficial bacteria and a prebiotic that feeds the good guys in his/her gut like EndoMune Junior could make a difference in your infant’s colicky symptoms and help you get a good night’s sleep too.

If you’re a new Mom and your baby’s colicky crying persists even after these simple and safe treatments, we urge you to schedule an appointment with your pediatrician for guidance.

Moms: Stressing out may affect your new baby’s brain, gut health

A number of variables affect the health of newborn babies, from preeclampsia to caesarean (C-section) births, which have a direct connection to a mother’s gut health.

The vaginal microbiota of an expectant mom experiencing stress may be affected during her first trimester. Some emotions could trigger changes in the way her baby’s gut health and brain develop, according to a recent study appearing in the medical journal Endocrinology.

“As the [newborn’s] gut is initially populated by the maternal vaginal microbiota, changes produced by maternal stress can alter this initial microbial population as well as determine many aspects of the host’s immune system that are also established during this early period,” says Dr. Tracy Bale, senior author of the study and a professor of neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine and its School of Veterinary Medicine, via a press release.

Researchers tested their theory by exposing pregnant mice to various stressors, including unique noises, odors of established predators and restraints, during the animal’s equivalent of their first trimester.

Shortly after giving birth, scientists examined the vaginal microbiota of the mothers along with the gut microbiota from their offspring. Additionally, they examined how amino acids travel in the brains of pups to measure development and metabolism.

Exposure to stressors had lasting effects on the vaginal microbiota of pregnant mice that were observed, not only in the gut microbiota, but in the metabolism and neurodevelopment of their babies too.

Neurodevelopment issues were most pronounced among males, a finding Dr. Bale and her colleagues discovered in a prior study. These alterations could be a sign of serious neurological disorders to come like schizophrenia and autism, conditions that affect males far more often.

Scientists also conducted a supplemental experiment that showed how important it is for moms to deliver their babies vaginally. Baby mice born via C-section had their gut microbiomes restored to those of vaginally-delivered offspring only after receiving transplants from the vaginal microbiomes of female mice.

Despite the challenges new moms face by delivering their babies via C-section, there’s growing evidence that giving newborns a probiotic could enhance their developing gut health and lessen problems with colic.

When shopping for the right probiotic for your young child, consider EndoMune Junior, which contains important building blocks such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.

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