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  • Writer's pictureKim C

How To Naturally Stop Diarrhea In Children With Probiotics

Updated: Jul 17, 2023

We recently had a little family gathering and I overheard my sister in law telling one of her kids:

"Don't eat so much, remember you vomited this morning?"

My blood ran cold.

Sure enough… My girl caught a stomach bug the next day.

The poor thing had diarrhea for about a week, and I won’t get into details but it was a horror show.

After that episode, she had lingering diarrhea on and off, maybe once or twice a day.

Our GP gave her some generic probiotics after a course of antibiotics – but it didn’t seem to work.

It became very frustrating because her school sent her home, saying if a child has diarrhea, they are not allowed back until they’ve recovered.

So when I read that probiotics could help with loose stools, I decided to read up more myself.

I wanted a cure that would:

✅ Address the root cause of the loose stools

✅ Be safe to take

✅ Be fun and enjoyable for my child

Since starting her on this probiotic, her tummy pains improved, and within a week she finally started having normal, solid poops. She loves the probiotic so much, she even reminds me when I forget to give it to her in the morning!

When most parents think of probiotics, they think it’s just for treating constipation.

But in my quest, I stumbled upon a whole treasure trove of information about anti-diarrhea probiotics for children.

It’s not as simple as picking just any probiotic.

These are properly-researched strains of probiotics, backed by clinical tests to make sure they actually help with easing diarrhea.

These probiotics typically help with 3 issues:

3 Underlying Causes Of Diarrhea

  1. Not Enough Good Gut Bacteria

  2. Inflammation

  3. Damaged Gut Walls (Leaky Gut)

That’s why it’s important to have multiple strains that work together to tackle these three problems – but most probiotics in the market don’t!


The Amazing Connection Between Human Breast Milk & Lactic Acid Probiotics

As I dug deeper into the research, I also stumbled upon how breast milk is designed to feed probiotics to protect babies from developing diarrhea as they change to solid foods.

So when scientists studied breast milk, they discovered that it’s super high in a special type of probiotic:

Lactic acid bacteria.

These probiotics are known to boost immunity after antibiotics, fight gut infections and prevent and reduce the severity & frequency of diarrhea.

My research helped me narrow down these six anti-diarrhea probiotics clinically-tested to relieve diarrhea by encouraging the growth of good gut bacteria, bringing down inflammation & repairing gut walls.


Six Anti-Diarrhea Probiotics

  • Lactobacillus fermentum

Based on a study involving 236 babies, researchers added L. fermentum to milk and found that it reduced the incidence and duration of diarrhea. Another study found that this probiotic strain helped alleviate inflammation in the colon, and encouraged the growth of gut-healthy Lactobacilli bacteria.

  • Lactobacillus brevis

This strain, based on study findings on volunteers with IBS-D like symptoms, showed significant improvement in abdominal pain and stool frequency. This is linked to its ability to boost levels of anti-inflammatory compounds and Bifidobacterium, a beneficial gut bacteria – while reducing harmful toxins called Clostridium.

  • Lactobacillus reuteri

Researchers studied children at age 6 to 36 months taking L. reuteri for 3 months, and found a significant decrease in frequency and duration of diarrhea. It’s all due to a special compound, reuterin, produced by L. reuteri, which plays a key role in colonizing the gut and getting rid of harmful pathogens.

  • Lactobacillus rhamnosus

This special probiotic is best used early for best results. It helps with diarrhea by making it shorter and less frequent, by repairing damaged gut lining. It also fights rotavirus-induced diarrhea by influencing immune cells. Recent studies involving nearly 1,000 children have shown that L. rhamnosus can also decrease the length of children’s hospital stays.

  • Lactobacillus casei

Researchers found that children who consumed L. casei had shorter episodes of diarrhea, regardless of whether it was caused by rotavirus or not. This is because it helps good bacteria in the gut thrive, and dials down the gut inflammation. The study saw an increase in good bacteria like Bacteroides and Ruminoccus, and a decrease in harmful bacteria like Escherichia and Clostridium.

  • Lactobacillus plantarum

In one study, this amazing bacteria was able to repair damaged gut lining in just 5 hours! It also has the ability to bind to the intestinal lining, increasing the population of good bacteria in the gut. Studies have shown taking L. plantarum can lead to a decrease in pain and bloating in IBS, and is known for its anti-inflammatory properties.


Other Essential Qualities of Effective Probiotic

Protected From Stomach Acid

Ideally, a probiotic should be protected from stomach acid to ensure the strains reach the intestines alive and intact, in order to maximize their effectiveness. Delayed-release capsules are one example of how probiotics can be protected.

Has Prebiotics

Prebiotics are non-digestible fibers that serve as nourishment for probiotic bacteria, supporting their growth. They also help increase the bulk of stool for proper stool consistency, and encourage regular bowel movements.

Third-Party Tested

Many probiotics are sold as a dietary supplement, without FDA approval. For the safety of our children, I recommend looking for probiotics that have undergone quality and purity testing by independent labs.


A probiotic that comes in kid-friendly forms like chewables, melts, or drinks can make giving it to children a breeze. It helps ensure our kids actually take it, which is important for getting the full benefits. Plus, it adds a bit of enjoyment for the little ones!

10-20 Billion CFUs

A good probiotic should have around 10-20 billion CFUs, as research suggests this range is what’s effective. Taking more than necessary may not provide extra benefits and could affect those with weaker immune systems.


Analysis of Top 5 Children’s Probiotics

My research got me curious about the best-selling probiotics for children, so I decided to examine and rank the top five children’s probiotics here.

#1 (Top Recommended)

Daily Pre+Probiotics Melts by The Purest Co

6/6 Anti-diarrhea probiotic strains

✅ Protected from stomach acid

✅ Has prebiotics

✅ Third-party tested

✅ Child-friendly

✅ Sufficient CFUs

My top pick has to be this product. I discovered it by typing in the 6 strains of anti-diarrhea probiotics into my search bar, and this popped up. As far as I can tell, this is the only probiotic with all the anti-diarrhea strains I want.

It’s a light milky-sweet, melt-in-your-mouth probiotic, which my little girl thinks is ‘candy’! The tiny granules are protected from stomach acid by a patented coating technology, so the probiotic strains can reach the gut alive!

What I love is you’re not just getting a probiotic — you’re getting a holistic gut health supplement. It contains an anti-inflammatory enzyme Bromelain (with active 6DGU), and 2 types of prebiotics (FOS, polydextrose) – to help kids break down food into absorbable nutrients, while keeping things solid & moving along.

#2 Probiotics Organic Kids by Garden of Life

4/6 Anti-diarrhea probiotic strains

❌ Protected from stomach acid

✅ Has prebiotics

✅ Third-party tested

✅ Child-friendly

❌ Sufficient CFUs

This is a worthy contender to The Purest Co’s Daily Pre+Probiotic. Known for their safe, good quality and clean ingredients, as well as strenuous third-party testing, Garden of Life is widely popular among parents that only want the best for their kids.

This children’s probiotic is loaded with 14 different strains – and 4 are from my anti-diarrhea probiotic list. It also features prebiotics and Vitamins D & C, which are beneficial for digestion and immunity.

My only wish is that they formulate it with a capsule or delivery mechanism that protects the live probiotic strains from stomach acid. It will be a waste if they don’t survive the journey to the gut!

#3 Babies & Children Probiotic by Optibac

1/6 Anti-diarrhea probiotic strains

❌ Protected from stomach acid

✅ Has prebiotics

❌ Third-party tested

✅ Child-friendly

❌ Sufficient CFUs

This popular UK-based probiotic is formulated with two types of L. rhamnosus, which is one of the 6 anti-diarrhea strains, and a prebiotic called fructooligosaccharides. It is also enriched with Vitamin D, which is beneficial for leaky gut & healing the gut lining.

Like many children’s probiotics, it is delivered in powder form, which makes it incredibly versatile. Parents say they find it easy to mix it in their child’s drink without them noticing, which is a great plus!

I’m just concerned there’s no protection mechanism for the probiotics as they enter the stomach. I can’t find any information on how they prevent the live probiotics from being destroyed before even reaching the child’s gut.

#4 Ultimate Flora Kids Probiotics by Renew Life

1/6 Anti-diarrhea probiotic strains

❌ Protected from stomach acid

❌ Has prebiotics

❌ Third-party tested

✅ Child-friendly

❌ Sufficient CFUs

One of the most affordable options on this list, these chewable probiotic tablets are a great alternative to sugary gummies. Although, some parents report their children rejecting the taste of this probiotic.

For the price, it has a good variety of different strains. However only one – L. plantarum, – is of the anti-diarrhea probiotic strains I listed above. So I think this is more suitable as a general probiotic. For children who experience loose stools, I would suggest looking for a probiotic with at least 3 anti-diarrhea strains that manage inflammation, heal the gut lining, and encourage the growth of good bacteria.

#5 Kids Multi + Probiotic by OLLY

0/6 Anti-diarrhea probiotic strains

❌ Protected from stomach acid

❌ Has prebiotics

✅ Third-party tested

✅ Child-friendly

❌ Sufficient CFUs

Parents love these delicious multi+probiotic gummies for boosting their children’s immunity while taking care of their gut health. They contain essential vitamins like A, C, D, E, B and zinc, and are paired with probiotics. The NSF certification will also put your mind at ease that it’s safe and of the highest quality.

A closer look at their ingredients list though, shows it only has 1 probiotic strain, bacillus coagulans. This particular strain is more suitable for children struggling with constipation. There’s also just 500 million CFUs per daily serving – which is quite low for a probiotic.

Best Overall For Diarrhea

As a parent, The Purest Co's Daily Probiotic+Prebiotic Melts is my top choice for treating children's diarrhea.

It contains all six anti-diarrhea probiotic strains I’ve personally researched for effectiveness. The unique coating technology protects the strains from stomach acid, ensuring they reach the intestines intact – which most probiotics I reviewed do not do.

Moreover, it's affordable and includes prebiotics like FOS and polydextrose, which nourish the probiotics and Bromelain, an anti-inflammatory enzyme that smooths digestion.

Considering all these factors, The Purest Co's probiotic+prebiotic product has become my go-to choice for managing my child's diarrhea.

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