You’ve probably seen the yogurt ads on television that mention the benefits of probiotics and the good things they can do for your stomach; but are they safe to be eaten when you are pregnant?
What are probiotics?
Probiotics are a type of bacteria found in yogurt and drinks that enhance the bacteria already in your system. A healthy digestive system needs to maintain the balance of bacteria, both good and bad, to avoid issues such as constipation, infection, indigestion and bloating. This is where probiotics come in handy.
When you are pregnant, you need probiotics more than ever to ensure a healthy immune system and digestive system. And if you are getting the probiotics from a yogurt-based source, then the calcium, potassium, and zinc will be a bonus.
Probiotics can also be sourced from fermented food such as sauerkraut, miso, soy sauce and sourdough bread, although the amount varies depending on the production methods and brands.
Probiotic supplements can also be taken as an alternative although these tend to be more potent than a typical food source.
Are probiotics safe to take?
In a nutshell, yes. Benefiting both mom and child, daily probiotic intake can reduce the risk of preeclampsia, colic related issues, food allergies, and postpartum depression. While it is considered safe, even during the first trimester, it is always recommended that you check with your doctor or midwife first. No studies to date have confirmed that eating probiotics throughout the entire pregnancy can cause any harm to either yourself or your baby.