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Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2016 Dec;25(4):652-675. doi: 10.6133/apjcn.092016.02.

Fructans in the first 1000 days of life and beyond, and for pregnancy.

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Universitas Indonesia, Department of Child Health, Faculty of Medicine, Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, Jakarta, Indonesia.
Mahidol University, Division of Nutrition, Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodi Hospital, Bangkok, Thailand.
SEAMEO Regional Center for Food and Nutrition, Jakarta, Indonesia.
Ministry of Health, Department of Science Technology and Training, Hanoi, Vietnam.
College of Agriculture, Academic Institute, Shizuoka University, Shizuoka City, Japan.
Mahidol University, Thailand/ Former Director Nutrition and Consumer Protection, FAO, Rome, Italy.
Ministry of Health, National Institute of Nutrition, Hanoi, Vietnam.
Children's Hospital of Fudan University, Shanghai, P.R. China.
Nutricia Research, Singapore.
Lighthouse Training and Consultancy, Pantai Kok, Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia.
Friesland Campina Development Center AMEA, Singapore.
Nutrition and Health Wageningen University, the Netherlands.
Sensus (Royal Cosun), Roosendaal, the Netherlands.
Sensus (Royal Cosun), Roosendaal, the Netherlands.


in English, Chinese

Inulin-based prebiotics are non-digestible polysaccharides that influence the composition of the gut microbiota in infants and children, notably eliciting a bifidogenic effect with high short chain fatty acid levels. Inulin, a generic term that comprises β-(2,1)-linked linear fructans, is typically isolated from the chicory plant root, and derivatives such as oligofructose and long chain inulin appear to have different physiological properties. The first 1000 days of a child's life are increasingly recognized as a critical timeframe for health also into adulthood, whereby nutrition plays a key role. There is an ever increasing association between nutrition and gut microbiota composition and development, with life health status of an individual. This review summarizes the latest knowledge in the infant gut microbiota from preterms to healthy newborns, as well as in malnourished children in developing countries. The impact of inulin or mixtures thereof on infants, toddlers and young children with respect to intestinal function and immunity in general, is reviewed. Possible benefits of prebiotics to support the gut microbiome of malnourished infants and children, especially those with infections in the developing world, are considered, as well as for the pregnant mothers health. Importantly, novel insights in metabolic programming are covered, which are being increasing recognized for remarkable impact on long term offspring health, and eventual potential beneficial role of prebiotic inulins. Overall increasing findings prompt the potential for gut microbiota-based therapy to support health or prevent the development of certain diseases from conception to adulthood where inulin prebiotics may play a role.

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