The material provided below is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the diagnosis or treatment by a qualified healthcare professional. You should always seek medical advice before consuming any new medicines or supplements.
Digestive health is important for children to feel their best, and when it comes to children’s digestive systems, every child is unique. Factors like nutritional habits and even the surrounding environment can impact the state of a child’s gut health.1
Luckily, it’s easy to help the digestive system run as smoothly as possible during every stage of childhood by creating a digestive health routine that incorporates prebiotics and probiotics. Read on to learn more about what makes pre- and probiotics an asset to any child’s digestive health.
All About Probiotics:
Probiotics are one of the many types of good bacteria that can be found in our intestinal tract and they work to support digestive health and immune health.* Based on current scientific research, there are only a few strains of probiotics that can be safely recommended as having beneficial qualities.2 One such strain is Lactobacillus GG. Lactobacillus GG works by promoting the levels of good bacteria in your body,* which is one of the reasons it is used in probiotic products such as Culturelle® Kids Purely Probiotic Chewables, Culturelle® Kids Purely Probiotic Packets and new Culturelle® Kids Probiotic + Fiber Packets.
Another reason Lactobacillus GG is highly regarded is its ability to survive harsh stomach acids while being sticky enough to adhere to the intestinal walls.2
A few ways probiotics can have a positive impact on a child’s digestive system include assistance with:
- Occasional diarrhea*
- Occasional gas and bloating*
- Digestive system function*
- Occasional digestive upset*
Now we know probiotics can be beneficial to your child, but what about prebiotics? What are they? And more important, what role can they play in a child’s digestive health routine?
All About Prebiotics:
Simply put, prebiotics are non-digestible food ingredients that have been linked to promoting the growth of good bacteria in your gut.3 They can be found in foods such as bananas, onions, asparagus and soybeans,4 making them easy to incorporate into any child’s diet.
Some forms of fiber are also considered to be prebiotics since they can withstand the typical human digestive process in the small intestine.4
The digestive advantages of prebiotic fiber for children include:
- Helping the intestines move faster5*
- Assistance in cleaning the colon6*
- Helping to keep stool soft 6*
Prebiotics are beneficial on their own, but when taken with probiotics they can make a lasting impact.
Prebiotics and Probiotics Work Together
Probiotics work in the digestive system by restoring the natural balance of good bacteria in your intestines,* but much like other living organisms they must eat to survive.
Even probiotics have a preferred food source, just like your kids do. Prebiotics are one of probiotics’ preferred meals6 and they help the probiotics in your child’s digestive tract to keep growing and doing what they do best.
Remember to consider the benefits of prebiotics and probiotics in your child’s daily health and wellness routine, and reap the digestive health benefits.
1 The Impact of the Gut Microbiota on Human Health. http://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(12)00104-3
2 The Role of Cell Surface Architecture of Lactobacilli in Host-Microbe Interactions in the Gastrointestinal Tract. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/mi/2013/237921/
3 Prebiotics and Probiotics: Creating a Healthier You. http://www.eatright.org/resource/food/vitamins-and-supplements/nutrient-rich-foods/prebiotics-and-probiotics-the-dynamic-duo
4 About Dietary Fibre. http://www.prebiotic.ca/dietary_fibre.html
5 Why Fiber Is So Good for You. https://www.ucsfbenioffchildrens.org/education/why_fiber_is_so_good_for_you/
6 How Probiotics and Prebiotics Team up in Your Gut”. https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/how-probiotics-and-prebiotics-team-up-in-your-gut/2015/02/02/e9d6e79e-a573-11e4-a2b2-776095f393b2_story.html