What does it mean to be a born-again breastfeeder, you might ask? Well, after the struggles I had with my first pregnancy, I was a skeptic when it came to breastfeeding Charlotte. Would this baby be able to latch, or would she have the same issues with it that Garrett had? Would she take to it right away, or would I be up strategizing with a lactation consultant in the wee hours of the night again? Would I produce enough milk, or would I need to be prepared to supplement like I did with Garrett? Would the pain be so unbearable those first few weeks (I still physically cringe just thinking about it), and would I be able to get through it? Would she be colicky like her big bro and send me into a spiral of anxiety and guilt over it?…All of these questions swirled around in my mind on and off for the better part of 9 months (ok, ok, 10 months if we’re being technical), and a funny thing happened. She was born, and mama was born-again.
Just like everyone says – every baby is different, and you live and learn from each child to the next. One thing I knew for sure was that this time around, I wanted to start Charlotte on a probiotic early on to help support her gut health and ultimately set her up for a healthy, long life. After doing some research, I came across Evivo – the only probiotic that is clinically proven to:
- Restore a baby’s gut microbiome 100 percent of the time with the good bacteria B. infantis
- Transform special carbohydrates found in breast milk to promote the growth of B. infantis
- Defend from potentially harmful bacteria linked to colic, eczema, allergies, diabetes and obesity.
But we all know that’s only half the battle – you have to actually get your baby to breast feed first. I can honestly say that being a worry wart was all for nothing, because my breastfeeding experience with Charlotte could not have been any less like her brother’s. She latched like a pro from day one, and I never once felt the need for a lactation consultant – or even nurse Google for that matter. I also never ended up needing that stash of formula, nor did I have to pump at all. Thank the Lord on that last one – cuz if there’s anything I loathe more on this earth, it’s pumping. The pain, well, let’s just say the wincing definitely occurred on and off for weeks. Oh and then there was the lovely mastitis threat that had me curled up in the fetal position all night, but luckily cleared up on its own after some tricks I learned from fellow mamas of the internet that shall not be divulged here (let’s just say there was an electric toothbrush involved).
Yet after dodging all those bullets, the one thing I was still so deathly afraid of was that five letter word every mom knows – COLIC. I still have flashbacks and night sweats (ok, not really, but you get the idea) of those first few months with Garrett who was so inconsolable. We tried everything our pediatrician said, and yet the one thing I wish we’d tried was introducing a probiotic. So I was gonna make for darn sure I didn’t make the same mistake again with Charlotte. As luck would have it, Evivo launched this past summer right around the time she was born. The Evivo study below marks a major milestone in gut health, as it’s the first ever to demonstrate that a probiotic can substantially and beneficially remodel and protect a baby’s gut.
- 80% reduction in potentially harmful bacteria such as E. coli, clostridia, Staph and Strep; those babies who did not receive Evivo had more than 4 times the level of these potentially harmful bacteria versus the babies given Evivo
Historically, bifidobacteria, particularly B. infantis (a good bacteria), created a protective environment by dominating the infant gut, and continues to do so today in many developing countries. However, modern medical practices such as antibiotic use and C-section deliveries have led to the near-total loss of this good bacteria (B. infantis) in infants in developed countries, including the U.S.
We’re now starting to understand that colic, eczema, allergies, diabetes and obesity are related to how well the gut microbiome (i.e. collection of good and bad bacteria in the gut) developed within the first few months of life. When more good bacteria is present in the gut, it crowds out the bad bacteria. Unfortunately, today, more and more babies are experiencing a disruption in their gut, causing more bad bacteria to thrive.
Evivo significantly reduces the presence of bad bacteria by restoring B. infantis, a specific strainof beneficial bacteria that’s historically been responsible for much of the programming of the immune system and metabolism, but today, it’s missing in 9 out of 10 babies. Its absence is the cause for the disruption and it’s not always symptomatic or seen from the outside.
Consequences of a Disrupted Gut
- There are at least two children with food allergies in almost every kindergarten classroom (FARE)
- Over one million children in the U.S. have type 1 diabetes (American Diabetes Association)
- The rate of obesity doubles as children grow from toddlers to teens (CDC)
- 9.6 million children under the age of 18 have eczema; of this total, 3.2 million children (33%) have moderate to severe cases (National Eczema Org)
Overall, I have to say that starting Charlotte on a probiotic has been a great decision. I’d spoken to a few friends who had done the same with their babies to help prevent and soothe colic, so I already knew how beneficial it was. I was so excited to try Evivo, and although Charlotte was not a fan of the flavor – she looked at me like “Seriously, what did you put in my breast milk??” 🙂 But after the initial shock she came around, and it has actually been a life saver already when it comes to helping with her occasional constipation. In fact, the first time we tried Evivo, she had been constipated all day, and I kid you not – she literally pooed five minutes after I gave her the first dose. Starting solids can be tricky, because you never know which foods are going to sit well with their tummies, and there’s always the worry of allergies. I can rest assured now knowing that I’m taking what measures I can to help support her gut health throughout her life with Evivo.
So if you’re expecting, or just had a baby like me, check out Evivo to learn more about its benefits, and how B. infantis mixed with breast milk is used to create the foundation for life-long health. Cuz dang it feels good to be #SmartAsAMother 😉 Use code BLOG5141 for $10 off a Starter Kit of 4 weeks or more. Or, use code BLOG5142 to receive $20 off a 12, 20, or 24-week Starter Kit. These Evivo coupon codes are only redeemable by the first 50 readers, and after that they expire.