Probiotics for Babies: A Helping Hand!

Probiotics for Babies: A Helping Hand!

  • Kids' Health

  • By Jef L’Ecuyer, Registered Dietitian

    Our intestine shelters billions of beneficial bacteria, but this tremendous colony did not appear overnight! From birth until the age of two, the intestinal flora goes through development phases. During this period, many factors can put significant strain on the good bacteria that live inside a baby’s digestive system. Can probiotics offer some help?

    Giving Your Baby Probiotics: A Weapon Against Diarrhea

    Antibiotics, viruses, and pathogenic bacteria: these are strong factors that cause and can weaken the intestinal microbiota. But since an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, giving your baby probiotics can be an effective way to decrease the risk of diarrhea. An ally for your little one, probiotics include, among others, lactic bacteria: Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus casei, and Lactobacillus reuteri.

    However, if your child is prone to diarrhea, first and foremost, focus on proper. Following this essential step, the best probiotic for babies in this situation is one that contains the Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain, which can help treat the diarrhea caused by a virus. Administering probiotics to babies during an episode of diarrhea can reduce its length… and help calm the baby!

    Benefits of Probiotics for Babies Born Prematurely or with Low Birth Weight

    Premature babies, or those born with a low weight, constitute a fragile population, and their risk of suffering from gastrointestinal complications is high. Some serious diseases, such as necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), can affect an infant’s intestine during their first days of life.

    Multiple studies have revealed that supplementation of probiotics in premature babies effectively reduces severe NEC and all-cause mortality. By preventing the migration of bacteria throughout the mucus membrane, probiotics fight pathogenic bacteria and help the baby’s immune system.

    Whether due to an infection, or the use of antibiotics, kids’ health needs differ from child to child. This is why it’s essential to consult a paediatrician or your family doctor before giving your baby probiotics. The advice of a health professional can help you determine which is the best probiotic for babies so that your little one can reap the most benefits!


    Evidence-based guidelines for use of probiotics in preterm neonates - PMC (

    Probiotics for the Management of Infantile Colic in Breastfed Infants - PMC (

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    Jef L’Ecuyer Registered Dietitian
    About the author
    After her nutrition training at McGill University, Jef specialized in gastrointestinal health with a special interest in the microbiota and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. With Bio-K+, she continues on this path by making the world of probiotics more accessible to all.
    View all articles by Jef L’Ecuyer
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