The word “bacteria” often sends parents into protective mode when it comes to their children, but not all bacteria are harmful.
Within the gut microbiome resides the friendly bacteria that humans, especially children, need as they support critical functions that determine the state of our health.
Your child’s gut health also greatly impacts their ability to explore, play or learn as a leaky gut can lead to food intolerance, stomach discomfort, irregular bowel movements, constipation and mood swings, among other issues.
Research also suggests that poor balance of gut bacteria in early childhood can lead to allergies including asthma or eczema1.
This is where probiotics come to the rescue. Probiotics are known as beneficial bacteria that help your child’s gut flora thrive and gives them the ability to self-regulate their digestive tract, strengthen the immune system and most importantly, absorb all the essential nutrients.
The gut soaks in most of our nutrients and a weakened gut may thwart this from happening. To ensure the probiotics, or the good bacteria, function properly in the intestinal system, you will need to nourish them to encourage their growth and support their vital functions.
Besides that, a healthy intestinal system can help your child poop better and give you a peace of mind! There are ways you can improve their gut health, but there are also certain factors that could potentially put their gut microbiota at risk.
What can potentially harm your child’s gut health?
1. Artificial food colouring
The discussion on food colouring has stemmed over the years, with many side effects found upon consumption – especially in children with existing behavioural problems2.
Artificial food colouring integrates into proteins within foods when added and our digestive enzymes are unable to break down or absorb these proteins because of the bond. This, in turn, can potentially lead to intestinal inflammation, which is one of the causes of a leaky gut3.
Food items with artificial colouring include certain candies, snacks, beverages and cereals. So, pay close attention to food labels when grocery shopping.
2. Artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners, also known as sugar substitutes4, are present in various food products and soft drinks, as well as items such as toothpaste. These sweeteners are made to replace sugar.
The gut microbiome reacts differently to artificial sweeteners simply because it is harder to breakdown the sugars with increased consumption of artificial sweeteners5 – this could pose health risks as it can alter the amount of nutrients the body can extract out of the food your child consumes.
3. Lack of prebiotics
Prebiotics act as the “food” for probiotics. Prebiotics are fibres that cannot be digested but instead, they support the growth and survival of probiotics in your gut such as Lactobacillus that can help reduce diarrhea.
So, when children lack prebiotics, this can deter the growth of these crucial beneficial bacteria.
Prebiotics are naturally present within various foods that are high in fibre such as bananas, beans and vegetables such as broccoli.
How can you improve your child’s gut health?
In summary, we know that probiotics are good bacteria and prebiotics are their support system in ensuring the vital bodily functions are carried out properly.
There is much evidence that unveils childhood health will have a large impact on how your child grows up and this of course, includes the state of their gut health. Without a healthy gut, your child will not be able to absorb the nutrients provided, regardless of how much your focus is on feeding them with “healthy” foods.
Symptoms of leaky gut6 include a weak immune system (constantly getting sick or ear infections), diarrhoea, asthma, food allergies or intolerance, skin conditions, behavioural issues and more. If your child is suffering from these symptoms, you will need to steer your focus on their gut health with the right nutrition.
These days, there are various alternatives in securing prebiotics into your child’s system. One easy way to do that is to opt for a formula that is loaded with prebiotics such as Mamil® D-GestPro+.
Mamil® D-GestPro+ is specifically formulated to maintain a good intestinal environment to support nutrient absorption within your child.
Mamil® D-GestPro+’s formulation contains:
- A unique prebiotic mixture: It is formulated with a unique Oligosaccharide mixture that (GOS/lcFOS) that increases good bacteria and helps maintain a healthy gut flora.
- Milk from grass-fed cows: It is sourced from cows that are predominantly grass fed, which means it is high in protein, calcium and vitamin D.
- DHA*: This is a key component found abundantly within the brain and is essential for a child’s growth.
*Mamil® Step 3 contains 96mg DHA content based 3 servings per day
It is also sucrose-free and is marked at an affordable price point! However, if the leaky gut symptoms persist further, it is best you seek medical attention.
With that, one of the most important takeaways of child gut health is that it can determine their development and their ability to explore their surroundings or learn new things.
So, strengthen their gut health today with Mamil® D-GestPro+ (besides having a good meal) and visit Dumex Mamil’s website for more information.
1 (n.d.). The Importance of Good Gut Health in Children | Only … – OAC. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://www.oac.edu.au/news-views/the-importance-of-good-gut-health-in-children/
2 (n.d.). The Dirt Cure: Healthy Food, Healthy Gut, Happy Child – Maya …. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://books.google.com/books/about/The_Dirt_Cure.html?id=J1UjBQAAQBAJ
3 (n.d.). Artificial food colorings: What you don’t know can make you …. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://drflannery.com/artificial-food-coloring/
4 (2020, February 6). Are Sugar Substitutes Toxic for Your Gut? – Healthy Balance. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://blog.uvahealth.com/2020/02/06/sugar-substitutes-toxic-gut/
5 (2019, March 29). Trick or Treat? How Artificial Sweeteners Affect the Brain and …. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/412920
6 (2019, October 5). Symptoms of leaky gut in kids — Nutrition For Kids. Retrieved October 7, 2020, from https://www.nutritionforkids.com.au/learn/symptoms-leaky-gut