Probiotics could be the answer to your colic baby prayers
London - Colic - unexplained crying in small babies, possibly caused by digestive difficulties - affects as many as one in five infants in their first three months.
It is the source of much anxiety for parents, the whole household sleepless due to incessant crying.
Despite gripe water and other old-fashioned remedies on the market, we have never had a convincingly effective treatment - until now.
Research has been published which shows that supplementing feeds with a probiotic reduces babies’ crying time by more than 50 percent. The independent study was carried out on breastfed babies with an average age of one month.
Half of the infants were given six drops of a probiotic containing Bifidobacterium lactis once daily, and half received a placebo for comparison.
By the end of the first week, crying was reduced in the group taking the probiotic, and the improvement continued. The crying improved in the placebo group, too, but to a lesser degree.
Probiotics are live bacteria - the word literally means "for life", as opposed to antibiotic, which means "against life".
The science here suggests this probiotic strain has a beneficial effect on immune mechanisms in the infant intestine, as the recipients showed an increase in anti-inflammatory markers in their stools and a decrease in levels of the inflammatory biomarker calprotectin.
The finding will, no doubt, bring a sense of hope to the parents of colicky babies.
The infant drops should be given only following a consultation with a GP or health visitor.Daily Mail