Feeding probiotic curd to your child on a daily basis is a great idea primarily because it contains good bacteria. If you want to understand more about how it can boost your child’s health, read on to learn about the health benefits of probiotic yoghurt.

Understanding the benefits of probiotic dahi

Curd is widely consumed by Indians along with meals or through other sources. It is a dairy product that provides animal protein along with nutrients like calcium, vitamin B-2, vitamin B-12, magnesium, and potassium. Yoghurt has bacteria called “Lactobacillus” which is considered good for the digestive system. However, to provide health benefits, it is important for these bacteria to survive the stomach acids and reach the intestine.

Probiotics are “friendly bacteria” that are an important component of our digestive system. They are beneficial microorganisms offering several health benefits. They outnumber the harmful microorganisms and maintain a healthy balance in the gut.

Here is why they are great for children -

Antibiotics are commonly used in children to treat infections. However, they can disturb the gut balance as they kill friendly bacteria along with the harmful ones. This can lead to gas, cramping or diarrhoea. Probiotics are effective in restoring the balance back to normal and promoting gut health.

Infants and toddlers need the right amount of nutrition to become strong during their growth phase. Probiotics help in breaking down the protein and fat from the foods and making it available for the body.

Infections during important developmental milestones can hamper the growth of the child. Probiotics can protect the gut against such infections.

What are active cultures?

Live and active cultures refer to yoghurts that contain Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophiles. These organisms facilitate the fermentation process and are believed to be responsible for the health benefits of yoghurt.

Despite some health benefits, yoghurt does not meet the definition of probiotics as it may not have the right amount of live bacterial strains.

Health benefits of probiotic dahi

Probiotic dahi (also known as probiotic curd or probiotic yoghurt) offers several health benefits:

  • It strengthens the immune system and reduces the risk of developing infections and various diseases.
  • It is effective in the treatment of several conditions like constipation, vaginal infections, candidiasis, rheumatoid arthritis, and urinary tract infections.
  • Probiotic yoghurt can help in the treatment of infectious diarrhoea and diarrhoea caused by antibiotic usage.
  • It is effective in reducing the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease.

Do probiotics survive the harsh stomach acids?

The stomach has a pH between 1.8 and 3.5. The acidic nature of the stomach is due to the release of hydrochloric acid by the cells lining the stomach. Stomach acids can kill both good and bad bacteria entering the system through food. However, it is proven that certain bacterial strains can pass through the stomach acids and reach the gut. It depends on the type of bacterial strain present in the probiotic.

Probiotics are generally considered safe and are beneficial for kids. So, the yoghurt you pick should contain one of the bacterial strains mentioned earlier, to be considered probiotic. We can thus safely conclude that probiotic dahi or probiotic curd offers several health benefits and should be part of your child’s diet.