Probiotics: Implications for Paediatric Health

schedule 1 min read
Topic(s): Low Birth Weight Malnutrition Growth & Development
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The role of intestinal microbiota in health and disease conditions has become the focus of much attention. A Google search yields 867,000 entries. This interest constitutes a dramatic change in how physicians, scientists and the lay public look at intestinal bacteria, which, for a very long time, were considered solely as potential infectious agents. Today, we know that a large part of our lives can be controlled by factors such as our intestinal bacteria, our mother’s weight during pregnancy, the way we were born and what we were fed initially in life. All of these can determine the degree of bacterial diversity that we will have early in life, which in turn will affect our immune system and metabolism. This adds more reasons to pay particular attention to what happens in the first 1000 days of existence. As bacterial colonisation in the gut of an infant born by Caesarean section is quite different from that of babies born vaginally; Caesarean section-born babies are at a greater risk of developing certain immune-mediated illnesses.