Good Nutrition for Kids and 3 Benefits of Probiotics

girl_w_tomatoesNowadays teaching our children about good nutrition is more important than ever, especially since many kids fall short when it comes to getting the essential nutrients their growing bodies need. Several recent studies about kids’ health have warned parents about the dangers of too much sugar and not enough fiber in the diet, pointing out that such eating habits can significantly impact their health in the long run.

Up to 80% of the immune system is found in and around the digestive tract, but a high-sugar, low-fiber diet can deplete the amount of good bacteria in your child’s gut. This can lead to occasional tummy upset, poor digestion, and a decrease in healthy immune function. Probiotic supplements for kids are a safe and gentle way to help replenish the balance of good bacteria in the digestive tract and support the developing immune system.‡ Below are three key benefits of adding a daily probiotic to your child’s diet:

  1. Healthy Immune Function‡ Added beneficial bacteria support a healthy digestive balance and help teach the immune system to respond appropriately to outside challenges.‡
  2. Regular Bowel Movements‡ Regular elimination needs a healthy balance of good bacteria in the gut. Daily probiotics have been shown to help support that balance, which in turn promotes regularity and helps prevent the occasional upset tummy.‡
  3. Healthy Digestion‡ In addition to producing vitamins—including important B vitamins—probiotics produce digestive enzymes and support regular, balanced digestion.‡

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Are Toxins Lurking in Your “Green” Cleaning Products?

spraybottleFrom your kitchen cleaner to your bathroom air fresheners, you probably think going green means making a healthier choice for you and your family, but a new study from the University of Melbourne in Australia reveals the truth about natural household cleaners and other products: that they give off just as many hazardous air pollutants as the regular ones.

A team of researchers looked at nearly 40 different products ranging from laundry supplies to personal care products—many of which were labeled ‘non-toxic’ and ‘organic’—and discovered that all of them are potentially harmful to human health because of the volatile organic compounds (or VOCs) they release into the air, regardless of whether or not they were fragranced.

In all, they determined that more than 500 volatile ingredients (and over 150 VOCs, including hazardous terpenes) were released by the products in the study, and over 40 of those ingredients are currently classified as toxic or hazardous in the United States. However, fewer than 3% percent of were actually listed on the label, say study authors.

A big concern, according to lead author Anne Steinemann, is that indoor air exposure is such a significant source of pollutants, but most people are unaware of the dangers in their household environments. Not only that, but consumers often choose green or natural products because they think they’re safer, when really “…those claims are largely untested.” Steinemann is among the foremost experts on environmental pollutants and their effects on air quality and human health.

Click here for quick and easy recipes to make your own household cleaners and personal care products!

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