Pediatrics

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.

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IBS may ease struggle to diagnose celiac disease

Diagnosing celiac disease can be a long and frustrating process as doctors and patients struggle to identify the various triggers to this condition that plague the immune system.

A recent Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics (JAMA) study linking celiac disease to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in children could ease that process. At the same time, probiotics containing bifidobacterium are promising for treating patients with these dual conditions.

This is good news for celiac sufferers as the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness reports that 83 percent of Americans with celiac disease are either undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. Many struggle for years with celiac-related health problems before understanding the root causes of their symptoms.

An immune reaction that damages the small intestine when certain people eat gluten — hence the growing interest in gluten-free foods — celiac disease can be difficult to treat because it affects everyone differently. Symptoms range from digestive problems to diarrhea, abdominal pain and even depression.

The study results

Based on blood tests taken by Italian researchers during the six-year study, 12 of 15 children who tested positive for celiac disease also suffered from IBS.

The benefits of this link between IBS and celiac disease are two-fold: Scientists suggest only IBS patients be tested for celiac disease rather than those suffering from functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDS), a cost-saving measure considering “screening tests are common, costs are substantial, and the yield is minimal.”

Another important benefit: Just like IBS sufferers, celiac patients may benefit from taking probiotics containing strains of bifidobacterium, according to a report in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology.

The benefits of bifidobacterium

In addition to following a strict gluten-free diet, a 2013 study concluded celiac patients experienced fewer problems with indigestion, constipation and reflux after being treated with bifidobacterium, demonstrating potential for improvement among untreated celiac patients.

Other findings have shown the presence of bifidobacteria in babies may affect the development of celiac disease later in life. For example, breast milk can stimulate the growth of bifidobacterial species in the guts of healthy infants.

Another study was conducted on infants who were related to at least one family member with celiac disease. It concluded that reduced amounts of bifidobacterium were found in patients who experienced an increased risk of developing celiac disease later in their lives.

Bifidobacteria has been used to treat numerous conditions:

  • Atopic eczema in babies
  • Flu-like symptoms in children
  • Hepatitis
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Lyme disease
  • Cancer

More good news: Bifidobacterium is one of the active strains of beneficial bacteria contained in EndoMune Advanced Probiotic and EndoMune Advanced Junior.

In addition to the multiple strains of beneficial bacteria, both EndoMune probiotics contain no dairy products, preservatives and artificial colorings and are gluten-free.

Probiotics and Flu Season

The temperature is dipping and you all know what that means – cold and flu season is upon us. No one wants to end up stuck in bed for a week with uncomfortable, draining flu symptoms. Happily, there are a few basic things you can do to prevent the onset of the flu:

  • Get the flu vaccine
  • Wash your hands religiously
  • Avoid crowds
  • Do not sneeze or cough into your hands
  • Drink lots of fluid
  • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables
  • Exercise regularly
  • Get at least 7 hours of sleep, per night

These recommendations are the typical prescription for prevention from most practiced care providers. However, there’s one more key step that could make the difference for you this flu season: taking a probiotic.

The Proof Is in the Research

Published health studies such as Probiotics Effects on Cold and Influenza-like Symptom Incidence and Duration in Children1 from the medical journal Pediatrics, demonstrate the validity of probiotics as a preventative health supplement.

For example, this particular study divided healthy children, ages 3-5, into three separate groups:

  • Those receiving a placebo (104 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus (110 participants)
  • Those receiving a probiotic containing Lactobacillus acidophilus & Bifidobacterium lactis (112 participants)

For the purposes of the study, each child received their supplement daily, for 6 months, under close cold and flu symptom scrutiny.

At the end of the study researches found that, when compared to the placebo groups, the other two participant groups had reduced flu-like symptoms, antibiotic use and days missed from school – a huge relief to parents and physicians alike.

 

What The Research Means for You

Studies in adults2, similar to the Pediatrics study, have been performed and the results indicate similar findings, particularly in cases of upper respiratory infections.

Scientific outcomes infer that this occurs because oral probiotic supplements can stimulate the immune system in the gastrointestinal tract. Once this occurs, the GI tract typically begins producing more immune cells. Those cells can then stop cold and flu inflammation before it becomes severe and attack viruses as they invade the lining of the respiratory tract3,4,5,6. Thus, the body eradicates viruses before they settle.

 

Take Home Message

Results like these highlight the importance of taking a daily, oral probiotic supplement during flu season – particularly one containing the potent bacteria strain combination of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in a serving size of 10 billion colonies or more.

Try a probiotic, like EndoMune Advanced Probiotic or EndoMune Junior Advanced Probiotic for your little ones, that meets these standards to help counter disastrous flu symptoms this autumn and winter.


1 Probiotic effects on cold and influenza-like symptom incidence and duration in children.Leyer GJ, Li S, Mubasher ME, Reifer C, Ouwehand AC; Pediatrics. 2009 Aug;124(2):e172-9. Epub 2009 Jul 27

2 Probiotics for the prevention of respiratory tract infections: a systematic review.Vouloumanou EK, Makris GC, Karageorgopoulos DE, Falagas ME; Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2009 Sep;34(3):197.e1-10. Epub 2009 Jan 28.
Probiotics in intestinal and non-intestinal infectious diseases–clinical evidence.
Hatakka K, Saxelin M; Curr Pharm Des. 2008;14(14):1351-67. Review.

3 Probiotic bacteria reduced duration and severity but not the incidence of common cold episodes in a double blind, randomized, controlled trial.de Vrese M, Winkler P, Rautenberg P, Harder T, Noah C, Laue C, Ott S, Hampe J, Schreiber S, Heller K, Schrezenmeir J; Vaccine. 2006 Nov 10;24(44-46):6670-4. Epub 2006 Jun 6.

Probiotics in intestinal and non-intestinal infectious diseases–clinical evidence. Hatakka K, Saxelin M; Curr Pharm Des. 2008;14(14):1351-67. Review.

5 Molecular and cellular basis of microflora-host interactions.Winkler P, Ghadimi D, Schrezenmeir J, Kraehenbuhl JP; J Nutr. 2007 Mar;137(3 Suppl 2):756S-72S. Review.

6 Probiotic and prebiotic influence beyond the intestinal tract. Lenoir-Wijnkoop I, Sanders ME, Cabana MD, Caglar E, Corthier G, Rayes N, Sherman PM, Timmerman HM, Vaneechoutte M, Van Loo J, Wolvers DA; Nutr Rev. 2007 Nov;65(11):469-89. Review

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