A special form of bacteria called Bifidobacterium especially undergoes a growth in its population in the maternal gut say the researchers. This is usually prompted by the rise in progesterone levels in the mother’s blood. Bifidobacterium is known to be beneficial to new born babies.
The researchers explain that it is as if the gut bacteria can sense the fact that the woman is pregnant. Their study showed that during the late phase of the pregnancy there is a change in the composition of the bacteria especially Bifidobacterium.
These bacteria can help break down the healthy sugars in the breast milk for the babies and help them grow. If the mother has high numbers of these bacteria in their gut, they can benefit their new born babies finds the study. (Bifidobacterium is found in Lactomin and Lactokids + Probiotics )
In their study they noted an inflammatory response associated with rise in progesterone and in the mice Bifidobacterium was the significant bacteria that proliferated. When they administered progesterone to the mice from outside in controlled environments, they noted that the bacterial growth was similar to that seen during pregnancy.
The genera that increased most significantly in the 3rd versus 1st trimester were Bifidobacterium, Neisseria, Blautia, and Collinsella. To use or not to use probiotics in pregnant mothers Probiotics play a role in restoring normal gut microbiome.
A study by Maria Elisabetta Baldassarre and colleagues from Neonatology and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Department of Biomedical Science and Human Oncology, “Aldo Moro” University of Bari, Bari, Italy, looked at the usefulness of use of probiotics in pregnant women. The study titled, “Rationale of Probiotic Supplementation during Pregnancy and Neonatal Period,” was published in the journal Nutrients. The authors write about the useful effects of a healthy gut microbiome on immunity and development of the new born baby.
They write, “a normal intestinal microbiota takes part in the induction of the immune tolerance.. (and) Alterations of the microbiota are associated with the development of many pathological states like infantile colic, inflammatory bowel disease, necrotizing enterocolitis, asthma, atopic diseases, celiac disease, diabetes, mood disorders, and autism spectrum disorders.”
The team says that guidelines suggest use of probiotics in pregnant women. They write, “In 2015, the WAO guidelines on the prevention of allergies recommends using probiotics in: (a) pregnant women at high risk for having an allergic child; (b) women who breastfeed infants at high risk of developing allergies; and (c) infants at high risk of developing allergies.”