We have all heard about probiotics; they can be in everything from yogurt to chewing gum.  It may seem like probiotics have popped up overnight but the truth is, the benefits of probiotics have been known for some time now.  Probiotics are the “good bugs” that keep our digestive tract happy and healthy.  More and more we are hearing about how important these probiotics are for children’s health. 
Probiotics can:
Improve digestion
Ease constipation and/or diarrhea
Improve strength of immune system
Rebalance the gut after antibiotics use
It is important to keep a balance of good bacteria in our bodies; however, many things can easily upset this equilibrium.  Medications, poor diet, and nutrient deficiencies can decrease the population of probiotics in our bodies.  Drugs such as broad-spectrum antibiotics not only kill the bad bacteria we want to get rid of, but also the good bacteria in the digestive tract.  So many children are on course after course of antibiotics for ear infections and the like; it is vitally important to replenish the bacteria balance with probiotics after antibiotic use.  Children who are on steroid inhalers for asthma should also take probiotics as steroids kill off friendly bacteria.
As most of us know, children tend to have less than favourable hygiene habits, and supporting their immune systems with probiotics is important.  They also tend to have less than ideal diets so supporting their digestive health is critical.  Many children eat a lot of yogurt but the amount of probiotics in standard yogurt is not enough to have a health benefit.  Renew Life has two probiotic products designed specifically for a child:
FloraBEAR is a 1 billion culture, 4-strain probiotic specifically formulated for the intestinal tract and colon of children.  FloraBEAR is a chewable tablet with a citrus flavour from real orange and orange peel for a taste that children will enjoy.  These are for children aged four and up. 
FloraBABY is a 4 billion, 5-strain formula specifically formulated for the intestinal tract and colon of infants and children.  Do not let the name fool you; FloraBABY is good for older children as well.  It is a flavourless powder, which can easily be mixed into warm or cool drinks such as infant formula, water, juice and milk, or soft foods such as yogurt and applesauce.  This allows parents to provide probiotics to children who do not like, or have a difficult time, taking supplements.  It can be taken from the age of 12 months. 
Children do not need a large amount of probiotic bacteria; the key is consistency.  Start young and try to give it to them daily just as you would a multivitamin.  The simple addition of a daily probiotic is one way to ensure a healthy gut and a healthy child.