Monday, March 13, 2023

Probiotics in formula milk.. Fighting harmful organisms that lead to infection and inflammation

Probiotics from live bacteria:

Probiotics (meaning "for life") is a word you might come across when buying formula for your baby. Some formula milks are fortified with these probiotics, which are types of live bacteria. Doctors may also recommend probiotic drops or powders for breastfed babies. They are good or "beneficial" bacteria that are already present at high levels in the digestive systems of breastfed babies.

Probiotics to promote the balance of bacteria in the baby's gut:

In formula-fed babies, introducing probiotics into formula milks is done to promote a balance of bacteria in your baby's intestines and offset the growth of harmful organisms that could lead to infection and inflammation.

Increasingly, moms and dads can find probiotic supplements outside of the formula, even for breastfed babies. Research on the benefits of probiotics is not yet conclusive, and some pediatricians are adopting their administration for babies delivered by C-section or those whose mothers receive antibiotics during labor.

Possible benefits of probiotics:

The most common types of probiotics are strains of small organisms called Bifidobacterium and Lactobacilli. Some research has shown that these probiotics can prevent or treat disorders such as infectious diarrhea and atopic dermatitis (eczema) in children. Other potential benefits are being studied, including whether or not they may reduce your child's risk of food-related allergies and asthma, prevent urinary tract infections, or improve symptoms of infantile colic.

More research studies are needed:

With many of these medical conditions, the evidence confirming any positive effects of probiotic use is limited and further study is necessary. At this time, it appears that the benefits of taking probiotics only occur while they are being consumed. Once your baby stops consuming probiotic-fortified formula, the bacteria in the intestines will return to their previous levels. This is different than what occurs in breastfed babies, as the bacteria in the gut that result from breastfeeding are more resistant and set the stage for healthier outcomes.


Before giving your child baby formula that is fortified with probiotics, discuss it with your pediatrician.