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8 Best Probiotic Foods for Kids

July 29, 2022
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Sometimes, it can feel like a straight-up miracle to find foods your child will actually eat consistently. And when you try throwing probiotics into the mix for your child’s gut health, it narrows things down even more.

But there’s no need to stress! We’ve dedicated this post to providing you with the absolute best probiotic foods for kids. Even if your child or toddler’s the pickiest eater on Planet Earth, they won’t be able to resist these delicious and kid-friendly probiotic foods.

What Are Probiotics?

Probiotics are known as the “good bacteria” in your gut, and they’re a key player when it comes to gut health. They help keep our digestive system in working order, drive out bad microbes in the gut, provide immune system support, and aid in overall health.

What Can Probiotics Do for Your Kids?

Here are some of the more common issues or problems children face that probiotics can help with:

  • Constipation
  • Recurring upset stomach
  • High levels of fatigue
  • Getting sick a lot
  • Crying in infants with colic
  • Mental health issues like anxiety
  • Hard time focusing
  • Behavior issues (like throwing frequent fits or acting out)
  • Specific conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, or ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
  • Skin issues like eczema

To sum things up, probiotics add good bacteria to the gut, which provides your kiddo with support to improve not just their gut health, but overall health too.

Best Probiotic Foods for Kids

Now to the fun part—going over foods that can serve as natural probiotics for your kids!

1. Yogurt

Yogurt is a delicious treat that comes with plenty of probiotics and good bacteria. If plain yogurt won’t get the job done for your kid’s taste buds, try mixing in some honey (probiotic booster) and some high prebiotic fruits like apples or bananas to make things a little sweeter.

Just make sure your children’s probiotic yogurt has live cultures (active probiotic strains) in it, as some yogurts don’t include these. And also be on the lookout for added sugars in some yogurt brands.

If your child is lactose intolerant, then traditional dairy yogurt might be out. But good news is, there are plenty of non-dairy options out there jam-packed full of probiotics for a healthy gut!

2. Kefir

Made from fermented cow or goat milk, kefir is a probiotic drink for kids that’ll satisfy even the most stubborn eaters. It’s a bonus that fermented foods in general have been shown to support a healthy gut.

Some may say kefir has a bit of a sour taste to it, but if you head over to the dairy aisle at your local grocery store, you’re likely to see a ton of unique flavors like blueberry, mango, strawberry, and vanilla to get your kids on board. You can also get kefir soda/water.

When it comes to the best probiotic foods for kids, it’s worth noting that kefir offers a wider range of probiotics than regular yogurt. What’s even better about kefir is that it doesn’t seem to upset the stomachs of those with lactose intolerance.

3. Kombucha

Kombucha is another fermented drink that often resembles a sweet version of green of black tea. Not only is this drink pleasant on the taste buds but it’ll give your kids a probiotic boost!

4. Pickles

Pickles are a great hack for sneaking probiotics into your kid’s diet. They go easily on sandwiches or wraps for school lunches. But pickles on the store shelf won’t get the job done.

To make it on the list of best probiotic foods for kids, you need pickles that are soaked in salt water and not vinegar (which slows down the growth of good bacteria). These will probably come from brands in the refrigerated section at the grocery store. Look for something on the label that says the pickles have been naturally fermented.

5. Olives

Similar to pickles, olives brined and fermented in saltwater pack a lot of probiotics. Cheese slices and olives make for a great mid-afternoon snack to munch on for your kids.

6. Cheese

Calling all cheese enthusiasts! We have good news for you—not only does cheese taste absolutely delicious (which duh, you already knew that!) but it’s also super high in probiotics. Swiss, provolone, Gouda, cheddar, parmesan cheese, and cottage cheese are all filled to the brim with healthy bacteria. To be sure your favorite cheese has probiotics, you can always check the label for live and active cultures.

Persuading your kids to eat this food probably won’t be an issue either. It’s easy and convenient to pack in sandwiches with their school lunch, in wraps, or toss it on top of salad for some extra flavor and probiotics. For cottage cheese, you can make a quick breakfast bowl mixed together with some delicious fruit for a protein and probiotic bonanza!

7. Tempeh

Want some plant-based probiotic foods for kids? Give tempeh a try. Made from fermented soybeans, it’s a meat substitute that’s high in protein, calcium, and probiotics. That’s a triple-whammy in terms of health!

Also, the fermentation that happens when making tempeh reduces its phytic acid, which enables important minerals like iron and its close cousin zinc to be better absorbed by the body.

For the not-so-picky kids, you can give kimchi (a Korean side dish made up of salted and fermented cabbage) and sauerkraut a try!

8. Tepache

Like the other beverages on this list, tepache is a fermented drink made from pineapple peels and rinds. Typically, this tea gets sweetened with brown sugar and cinnamon, which makes for a tasty probiotic drink for your kids.

Wrapping Things Up on Kid-Friendly Probiotic Foods

If you struggle finding gut-healthy foods for your child to eat, refer back to this list for some inspiration on probiotic foods for kids! Foods like yogurt, kefir, pickles, cheese, and tepache not only taste great but are also super high in probiotics and support a healthy gut.

We understand that getting enough probiotics from food alone might be a tall task. That’s why a kids probiotic supplement can be a real ace card up your sleeve for improving your child’s gut health.

Here at Sun Genomics, we offer probiotic supplements for children of all ages to help with digestive issues, food allergies, and just improving overall gut health.

Our customized probiotics come in just one easy to digest scoop a day that mixes well with your child’s favorite drink or formula. 100% natural, gluten-free, non-GMO, and absolutely no artificial preservatives. We also have vegan options too!

Check out our probiotic supplements for kids below:

About the Author:

Chad Richardson is a freelance writer from Cincinnati, OH. When he’s not behind his computer, you can find Chad at the gym doing his best Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonation, scrolling through Netflix trying to find a new binge-worthy show, or out at a game rooting on his hometown sports teams.

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