The method of delivery can have an impact on the health of babies. A baby born via a cesarean section is likely to have gut health issues, claimed Rashi Chowdhary, a nutritionist, on her Instagram page.
According to her, there is a connection between people with extremely sensitive gut issues, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Hashimoto’s etc., and their mom’s microbiome. “Whenever I ask my clients if they were delivered normally or through a cesarean section, I get the funniest looks. It is very important to know it as the way a person is born is connected with their gut health,” she said.
Agreed Dr Neha Gupta, Senior Consultant- Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Fortis Hospital. She said “Babies born through cesarean section are found to have more allergies, chronic immune disorders, and metabolic disorders as proven by various studies.”
“As early as three days post-delivery differences in microbial colonisation in the gut of neonates born via cesarean or vaginal route have been identified,” said Dr Neha.
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According to a study done by Prof. Paul Wilmes (University of Luxemburg, Luxembourg), it was seen that cesarean section delivery prevents the passage of specific microbial strains from the mother’s birth canal and gut to the neonate.
“This disrupts transmission linked functional repertoires and immune-stimulatory potential during a ‘critical window’ for neonatal immune system priming,” added Dr Neha.
She further revealed that babies born by cesarean lack exposure to bacterial triggers, which usually occurs during vaginal delivery. Such babies are also more likely to have wet lungs, which cause faster breathing (transient tachypnea of newborn).
“The baby’s gut bacteria is as strong as the mother’s microbiome. Children who are not born through the vaginal canal do not get exposure to the mothers’ vaginal flora which is actually the first thing the baby is supposed to ingest before breast milk,” wrote Rashi on her Instagram account.
Rashi, however, pointed out there are obviously a lot of other factors involved with gut issues and it does not necessarily mean that all C-section babies will have gut issues.