Is a health se­cret hid­ing in your in­fant’s diapers?

The Borneo Post - Nature and health - - Diet Parenting -

A NEW study sug­gests that might be the case. An anal­y­sis of fae­cal sam­ples col­lected from the diapers of 34 healthy in­fants iden­ti­fied 10 strains of gut bac­te­ria that may boost the body’s pro­duc­tion of short-chain fatty acids.

“Short-chain fatty acids are a key com­po­nent of good gut health,” ex­plained lead in­ves­ti­ga­tor Har­iom Ya­dav. He’s an as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor of molec­u­lar medicine at Wake For­est School of Medicine in Win­ston-Salem, North Carolina.

“Peo­ple with di­a­betes, obe­sity, au­toim­mune dis­or­ders and can­cers fre­quently have fewer short-chain fatty acids. In­creas­ing them may be help­ful in main­tain­ing or even restor­ing a nor­mal gut en­vi­ron­ment and, hope­fully, im­prov­ing health,” Ya­dav added in a univer­sity news re­lease. “Ba­bies are usu­ally pretty healthy and clearly do not suf­fer from age-re­lated dis­eases, such as di­a­betes and cancer,” Ya­dav noted. “And, of course, their poop is read­ily avail­able.” The re­searchers used 10 strains of gut bac­te­ria from the in­fants to cre­ate a “pro­bi­otic cock­tail” and found that it in­creased pro­duc­tion of short-chain fatty acids in hu­man fe­ces and in mice.

The find­ings sug­gest that such pro­bi­otics could be used to treat de­creased short-chain fatty acid pro­duc­tion and im­bal­ances in gut bac­te­ria pop­u­la­tions, ac­cord­ing to Ya­dav. The study was pub­lished on­line in the jour­nal Sci­en­tific Reports.

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