Parents and children know the phrase “Eat Your Vegetables” and “Drink Your Milk”, but how many of us actually understand the importance of nutrition and what it actually does for our gut? What is gut health?
The gut is a group of organs that are a part of the digestive system. This includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines, gallbladder, liver, pancreas and rectum. Gut health is important in all of these areas. Gut health involves digestion of food and healthy bacteria along the lining of the digestive tract. Studies are now focusing on how good gut health can positively impact chronic health conditions and even improve cognitive ability. Two big ingredients that positively impact gut health are fiber, prebiotics. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber helps bring water into the gut, therefore softens the stool. Examples of this in food include apples, carrots, oats/barley, berries and pears. Insoluble fiber helps move the contents of the large intestine along more quickly. Foods high in insoluble fiber include whole grains, broccoli, cauliflower and green beans.
Fiber plays a major role in digestion. It keeps your our children’s digestive track moving by adding weight and making stools softer which allows stools to pass more easily. Some studies are taking this a step further and equating a healthy gut to other positive physical and physiological to the children. The physical benefits may be fairly obvious such as a reduction in pain due to constipation and reduction in potty accidents as discussed in another post. While many foods provide natural sources of fiber, 9/10 children do not get enough fiber in their diets. Adults don’t either! A child between the ages of 1-3 should should receive 19 grams of fiber a day and children ages 4-8 should get 25 grams of fiber a day. That is about the same amount as an adult woman should have in one day as well. This is the equivalent of 8 bananas, or 7 cups of blueberries, or 5 large oranges… you get the picture. It is hard for all of us to get in that healthy fiber on a daily basis. The first recommendation for treatment of constipation is increasing daily fiber intake. It can be an uphill battle to obtain that goal, particularly with small children. Not to mention trends in dietary habits of western nations….thanks to the convince of fast food, microwaves, and junk food. Or more accurately, ‘No Thanks’, but that’s the reality of today’s society.
PREBIOTICS AND HEALTHY GUT BACTERIA
Bacteria influence the environment of the gut. About 100 trillion bacteria, both good and bad, live inside your digestive system! Prebiotics and probiotics are available in foods and in health care aisles to help support gut bacteria, but there are important differences between the two. Prebiotics act like food for the growth of good bacteria in our body. Probiotics are living strains of bacteria that add to the population of the good bacteria.
According to the U.S. Health and Human Services Department , probiotics might help your body maintain a healthy community of microorganisms or help your body’s community of microorganisms and return to a health condition after being disturbed. They may produce substances that have desirable effects, and may influence your body’s immune response as. Probiotics are considered by the FDA as a dietary supplement, and are not regulated. There is little to no oversight into what probiotics are actually in probiotic supplements. Further research is needed to fully understand how to use this supplement for specific causes. If you are interested in learning more about largely unregulated probiotic market, check out this article from Science Direct.
So why does HyFiber for kids contain prebiotics instead?
Prebiotics are plant fibers that feed the healthy bacteria in our gut and help them grow.
HyFiber for Kids focuses on using FOS (Fructooligosaccharide) prebiotics to help support existing strains of good bacteria in our body. It does not introduce any new strains of bacteria, and only supports the good bacteria already there in your body. HyFiber for Kids is considered a medical food and is approved for use in hospitals and health care facilities in the U.S and numerous countries.
HyFiber for Kids contains important fiber that can help reduce constipation. It comes in a small volume of citrus flavored liquid (a slight orange taste) that can be consumed by itself, with another beverage, and even food! HyFiber for Kids doesn’t only contain fiber like many other products out there. FOS prebiotics are also included to support the healthy bacteria in the gut to promote sustainable, healthy gut environment.
If you are looking for a great article on fiber and prebiotics check out this article published in the National Library of Medicine.
Want to add a good source of fiber to your child’s diet? Order HyFiber today.
- Can Gut Bacteria Improve Your Health?(Hardvard.edu)https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/can-gut-bacteria-improve-your-health
- Dietary fiber is positively associated with cognitive control is prepubertal children (Journal of Nutrition) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4264019/
- Prebiotics Regulation https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1542356518300843
- Probiotics What you need know knowhttps://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/probiotics-what-you-need-to-know