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Feeding Infants Peanut Products Could Help Prevent Allergies

Feeding Infants Peanut Products Could Help Prevent Allergies


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A new study indicates feeding peanut products could prevent allergies

Wikimedia/Freestock.ca

A recent study says babies given peanut protein are less likely to develop peanut allergies.

Parents are frequently told not to feed infants peanut products and other potential allergens until they are at least a year old, but a new study indicates that babies considered to be high-risk for developing peanut allergies are much less likely to do so if they are fed peanut products before they are a year old.

According to the New York Times, a new study from London looked at about 530 infants between four and 11 months old that were considered at a high risk for developing peanut allergies but had not yet done so. Half the parents were told to keep their children away from peanuts and peanut products, while the other half were told to give their children at least six grams of peanut protein a week, which is about 24 peanuts worth, spread out over several meals.

Researchers watched the children until they were five years old, at which point they said that only 1.9 percent of the children given peanut products had developed a peanut allergy, while 13.7 percent of the children who were not given peanuts developed allergies.


Peanut Allergy: Early Exposure Is Key to Prevention

With peanut allergy on the rise in the United States, you’ve probably heard parents strategizing about ways to keep their kids from developing this potentially dangerous condition. But is it actually possible to prevent peanut allergy, and, if so, how do you go about doing it?

There’s an entirely new strategy emerging now! A group representing 26 professional organizations, advocacy groups, and federal agencies, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has just issued new clinical guidelines aimed at preventing peanut allergy [1]. The guidelines suggest that parents should introduce most babies to peanut-containing foods around the time they begin eating other solid foods, typically 4 to 6 months of age. While early introduction is especially important for kids at particular risk for developing allergies, it is also recommended that high-risk infants—those with a history of severe eczema and/or egg allergy—undergo a blood or skin-prick test before being given foods containing peanuts. The test results can help to determine how, or even if, peanuts should be introduced in the youngsters’ diets.

This recommendation is turning older guidelines on their head. In the past, pediatricians often advised parents to delay introducing peanuts and other common causes of food allergies into their kids’ diets. But in 2010, the thinking began shifting when a panel of food allergy experts concluded insufficient evidence existed to show that delaying the introduction of potentially problematic foods actually protected kids [2]. Still, there wasn’t a strategy waiting to help prevent peanut or other food allergies.

As highlighted in a previous blog entry, the breakthrough came in 2015 with evidence from the NIH-funded Learning Early about Peanut Allergy (LEAP) trial [3]. That trial, involving hundreds of babies under a year old at high risk for developing peanut allergy, established that kids could be protected by regularly eating a popular peanut butter-flavored Israeli snack called Bamba. A follow-up study later showed those kids remained allergy-free even after avoiding peanuts for a year [4].

Under the new recommendations, published simultaneously in six journals including the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, all infants who don’t already test positive for a peanut allergy are encouraged to eat peanut-enriched foods soon after they’ve tried a few other solid foods. The guidelines are the first to offer specific recommendations for allergy prevention based on a child’s risk for peanut allergy:

  • Infants at high risk for peanut allergy—based on severe eczema and/or egg allergy—are suggested to begin consuming peanut-enriched foods between 4 to 6 months of age, but only after parents check with their health care providers. Infants already showing signs of peanut sensitivity in blood and/or skin-prick tests should try peanuts for the first time under the supervision of their doctor or allergist. In some cases, test results indicating a strong reaction to peanut protein might lead a specialist to recommend that a particular child avoid peanuts.
  • Infants with mild to moderate eczema should incorporate peanut-containing foods into their diets by about 6 months of age. It’s generally OK for them to have those first bites of peanut at home and without prior testing.
  • Infants without eczema or any other food allergy aren’t likely to develop an allergy to peanuts. To be on the safe side, it’s still a good idea for them to start eating peanuts from an early age.

Once peanut-containing foods have been consumed safely, regular exposure is key to allergy prevention. The guidelines recommend that infants—and particularly those at the greatest risk of allergies—eat about 2 grams of peanut protein (the amount in 2 teaspoons of peanut butter) 3 times a week.

Of course, it’s never a good idea to give infants whole peanuts, which are a choking hazard. Infants should instead get their peanuts in prepared peanut-containing foods or by stirring peanut powder into other familiar foods. They might also try peanut butter spread on bread or crackers.

In recent years, peanut allergy in the U.S. has nearly quadrupled, making it the leading cause of death due to severe, food-related allergic reactions. The hope is that, with widespread implementation of these new guidelines, many new cases of peanut allergy can now be prevented.

[2] Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of food allergy in the United States: report of the NIAID-sponsored expert panel. NIAID-Sponsored Expert Panel., Boyce JA, Assa’ad A, Burks AW, Jones SM, Sampson HA, Wood RA, Plaut M, Cooper SF, Fenton MJ, Arshad SH, Bahna SL, Beck LA, Byrd-Bredbenner C, Camargo CA Jr, Eichenfield L, Furuta GT, Hanifin JM, Jones C, Kraft M, Levy BD, Lieberman P, Luccioli S, McCall KM, Schneider LC, Simon RA, Simons FE, Teach SJ, Yawn BP, Schwaninger JM. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2010 Dec126(6 Suppl):S1-58.

[3] Randomized Trial of Peanut Consumption in Infants at Risk for Peanut Allergy. Du Toit G, Roberts G, Sayre PH, Bahnson HT, Radulovic S, Santos AF, Brough HA, Phippard D, Basting M, Feeney M, Turcanu V, Sever ML, Gomez Lorenzo M, Plaut M, Lack G the LEAP Study Team. N Engl J Med. 2015 Feb 23.

[4] Effect of Avoidance on Peanut Allergy after Early Peanut Consumption. Du Toit G, Sayre PH, Roberts G, Sever ML, Lawson K, Bahnson HT, Brough HA, Santos AF, Harris KM, Radulovic S, Basting M, Turcanu V, Plaut M, Lack G Immune Tolerance Network LEAP-On Study Team..N Engl J Med. 2016 Apr 14374(15):1435-43.

Food Allergy (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/NIH)

NIH Support: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases


The Do’s and Don’ts of Preventing Peanut Allergies in Babies

Scientists say early and consistent feeding of peanuts can help prevent peanut allergies in children. A food allergy expert explains what parents should know.

Food allergies have grown in prevalence and severity, and until recently pediatricians have told parents to keep their babies away from peanuts, shellfish and other common allergenic foods.

New recommendations from food allergy experts, however, suggest parents should do exactly the opposite.

This month, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) outlined guidelines for introducing children to peanuts in the first four to six months of life based on each child’s risk level.

“We’ve shown in the past that parents don’t need to avoid peanuts to prevent their child from developing a peanut allergy,” says James Baker, M.D., director of the Mary H. Weiser Food Allergy Center at Michigan Medicine. “The new guidelines build on that foundation to demonstrate that early and consistent feeding of peanuts can significantly reduce the risk of your child developing a peanut allergy.”

The NIAID guidelines, which Baker co-authored, offer clear recommendations for parents of young children, including:

Low-risk babies: Offer peanut products freely alongside baby’s other first solids

If your baby does not have eczema or signs of other allergies, parents can confidently offer peanut products, such as diluted peanut butter, once the baby is able to tolerate solid foods. “This is a low-risk risk group. Parents don’t have to avoid peanut exposure and also shouldn’t feel extra stress about constantly exposing baby to peanut,” says Baker.

Medium-risk babies: Begin carefully offering peanut-containing foods around 6 months of age

Infants with mild eczema may benefit from early and consistent feeding of peanut products. Parents can introduce peanut products to their child at home to reduce the risk of developing a food allergy. “This is a group where the exposure to peanuts may go a long way towards preventing allergy, so parents should consider how to incorporate peanut consistently into their baby’s diet,” Baker says.

Baker also stresses that moms and dads should feel comfortable discussing any concerns they might have with a pediatrician before they start peanut feeding. “If you are concerned about your child’s eczema and the development of food allergy, your pediatrician can guide you on how and when to introduce peanut,” he says.

Higher-risk babies: Talk to your pediatrician

Parents of children with severe eczema or an egg allergy should begin incorporating peanut into the baby’s diet as early as 4 months to prevent peanut allergy — but only after meeting with a pediatrician and discussing the best way to proceed. Your doctor may first recommend an allergy blood or skin prick test. He or she may also provide additional guidance on safe peanut introduction and could recommend that your child’s first exposure be at an allergy office.


Study claims that feeding babies nuts could help prevent future allergies

There is a long list of foods that you should never give to a baby, and peanuts are often thought to be on it. However, new research contradicts the belief that giving an infant peanuts may trigger an allergy.

Last year, a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine stated that early exposure to peanut products could drastically reduce the risk of a child’s allergy later in life, and now new research conducted at King’s College London builds on these findings.

Using the same two groups of allergy-prone children from its 2015 study, half of whom had been fed only breast milk and the second half to whom had also been given peanut snacks, researchers made quite a remarkable discovery.

The children who took part in the study were considered peanut allergy prone because they had developed eczema as babies, which can be an early warning sign of allergies.

According to the researchers, children who are given peanuts within the first 11 months of their life could be at far less risk of developing a peanut allergy. By the age of 5, they can afford to stop eating the food entirely for a year and maintain no allergy.

“[The research] clearly demonstrates that the majority of infants did in fact remain protected and that the protection was long-lasting”, said lead author Professor Gideon Lack, adding that part of the problem is that we have a “culture of food fear” which in turn could cause more harm than good.

“I believe that this fear of food allergy has become a self-fulfilling prophecy, because the food is excluded from the diet and, as a result, the child fails to develop tolerance”, he added.

Professor Lack added that further studies were needed to see if the resistance could last longer than the 12-month abstinence period.

However, nuts can present a choking hazard, and children should never be fed whole nuts. Instead, researchers suggest smooth peanut butter or peanut snacks as an alternative.


Can you help prevent allergies in babies? 7 questions we have, answered.

The first year in a baby’s life is one of the most exciting times for parents – but it can also be worrying. For example, the potential for food allergies concerns many parents, and isn’t helped by the plethora of information available on the topic – when there are simply basic things one wants to know: 

How do you know if your child might be allergic to certain foods? Are there things you can do to help prevent allergies?

This is why the National Allergy Strategyਊs part of its Food Allergy Prevention Project, has launched the Nip Allergies in the Bubꃊmpaign, to inform parents about what they can do in that first year.

The main message to take away is this: Parents can help prevent food allergies in their babies by feeding them common allergy-causing foods before they are one.

Nip Allergies in the Bub provides parents easy-to-access information, including recipes and timelines, on common allergy-causing foods such as eggs, nuts and soy. It also offers an information line, advice for health professionals about current feeding recommendations, and managing eczema (a medical condition causing inflamed skin) to help prevent food allergy from developing (as research shows both conditions are closely linked).

Mum-of-one Rikki Dunstall has been using the Nip Allergies in the Bub site to walk her through introducing solids to her five-and-a-half-month-old, Toby, and she told us it&aposs been "really easy and helpful".

"I mixed rice cereal with breastmilk," Rikki told Mamamia. "I then added some apple or pear puree to the rice cereal, then moved on to sweet potato, carrot and apple puree then finally added in egg at five months. Smooth peanut paste  will be next."

Nip Allergies in the Bub helped Toby confidently start on solids. Image supplied. 


Utilizing infant feeding for food allergy prevention

Rachael Zimlich is a freelance writer in Cleveland, Ohio. She writes regularly for Contemporary Pediatrics, Managed Healthcare Executive, and Medical Economics.

Expert weighs in on adoption of early feeding guidelines for peanut allergy avoidance.

Evidence-based guidelines to prevent peanut allergies were released in 2017, but a new report shows that parents, time, and training are major barriers to the implementation of those recommendations, according to a leading researcher at the virtual 2020 American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference and Exhibition.

Ruchi S. Gupta, MD, MPH, professor of pediatrics at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and director of the Center for Food Allergy and Asthma Research at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, led a session titled, “Infant Feeding in the Prevention of Food Allergy.”

The goal of the session was to review a study Gupta and her colleagues conducted to better understand what recommendations pediatricians are making to parents about solid food introduction, and to summarize current pediatric implementation guidelines and the barriers to using them. Gupta started her session by reviewing the path pediatricians took to the current guidelines, beginning with the old recommendations to avoid peanuts altogether until age 3 years in order to avoid allergic reactions to peanuts.

“We were seeing peanut allergies increase dramatically,” Gupta notes.

In 2008, she says it was decided that there really wasn’t enough evidence to support avoidance of peanuts as a way to prevent allergies, so the guidelines were changed to a “do what you think is best,” approach of neither suggesting early feeding or delayed feeding of peanuts.

Most pediatricians responded to this non-recommendation by continuing to tell parents to avoid feeding infants peanuts, just to be safe, Gupta says. When the Learning Early about Peanut Allergy (LEAP) clinical trial was published in 2015, however, stakeholders had new data to craft evidence-based guidelines. Following the LEAP study, which supported the efficacy of early introduction to fight the development of peanut allergies, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) updated its recommendations in 2017 to include early peanut introduction as an allergy prevention strategy.

The study conducted by Gupta and her colleagues and published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, examined how pediatricians were doing when it came to enacting those recommendations. The AAP Section on Breastfeeding and Committee on Nutrition has recommended that introduction of solid foods beginning around 6 months of age, depending on the infant’s interest in food, head control, and ability to sit upright. Alongside that recommendation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests feeding infants 1 new food type at a time, observing them for reactions for a few days between. This study was the first to really look at how pediatricians were using the guidelines from these organizations, and the new data on allergy prevention.

“It’s really unclear what pediatricians are recommending for their patients,” Gupta says. “So we decided to ask pediatricians.”

The electronic survey was sent primarily to pediatricians, but also to medical residents and nurse practitioners that advise parents on infant feeding practices.

“More pediatricians recommended early introduction if they were not exclusively breastfed,” Gupta notes. “If they are exclusively breastfed, that reversed a bit.”

Gupta says this trend was interesting because it is a little different than the current recommendations.

“We also asked what food they typically recommend introducing first, and the majority—about 40%—said they don’t have a recommendation,” she says. Cereals and fruits were among the top recommendations for first foods when one was made, she adds.

Recommendations for early introduction of allergens and first food offerings differed when infants had older siblings with food allergies, a family history of food allergies, or eczema. In these cases, pediatricians would more frequently recommend waiting longer than 3 days to try different foods in children at a higher risk of developing food allergies, Gupta says. “It actually goes against what we know about food allergies,” she says.“By introducing them early [to children whose siblings have allergies], we have a higher chance of developing food allergies.”

The number of food allergy reactions pediatricians were seeing didn’t match their recommendations, either, Gupta adds. According to the study, 55% of pediatricians said they saw food allergy reactions in less than 5% of the infants they saw, compared to just 20% who saw food allergy reactions in 5% to 10% of their infant patient population.

“Very few infants are having these reactions to food,” Gupta notes, adding that when food reactions happen, they tend to happen quickly. “This whole idea of waiting 3 to 5 days between introduction of new foods is causing decreased diet diversity in these infants, and could increase their risk of developing food allergies.”

Gupta says given the results of the implementation study, she recommends bringing stakeholders back together to reassess and think about guidelines on feeding practices and wait times between new food introductions.

“There is no data showing 3 to 5 days is an ideal time. Diet diversity is increasingly being found to be important to preventing food allergies,” she says.

There is also some new evidence that oral exposure can prevent the development of allergies from skin—or subcuteanous—exposure to peanuts, Gupta adds. Children with severe eczema have the risk of being exposed to allergens through their skin before they are exposed orally, she says. The big push now is to expose those children to allergens through their gut to put them on the right immunity track and become immune to the allergen before skin exposure, Gupta adds.

In summary, the new guidelines tell clinicians to look for eczema, order an immunoglobulin E (IgE) test for peanut allergies if eczema is present, and advocate for feeding the infant peanut products if the IgE test is negative or there is no eczema. If the IgE test is positive, the clinicians should refer the infant to an allergist for skin prick test, and possibly an oral food challenge to peanuts, she says.

“The main thing pediatricians need to look out for is to identify kids with severe eczema early for a higher chance to prevent peanut allergies,” Gupta says.

For infants with mild or no eczema, pediatricians should encourage early peanut introduction around 6 months of age, after a few other foods have been introduced. Gupta recommends avoiding whole peanuts due to choking risk, and mixing peanut butter with a little water to help make the consistency less sticky. The key is not just introducing peanuts, but also keeping them in an infant’s diet, she adds. Feeding about 2 teaspoons per week fed 3 times each week is ideal, Gupta says.

Going forward, Gupta suggested there should be better support and educational material provided to pediatricians to help them—and parents—navigate these new recommendations.


Study finds peanut consumption in infancy prevents peanut allergy

NIH-funded trial compares consumption and avoidance of peanut.

Introduction of peanut products into the diets of infants at high risk of developing peanut allergy was safe and led to an 81 percent reduction in the subsequent development of the allergy, a clinical trial has found. The study was supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, and was conducted by the NIAID-funded Immune Tolerance Network (ITN) The results appear in the current online issue of the New England Journal of Medicine and were presented today at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

“The results have the potential to transform how we approach food allergy prevention.”

Anthony S. Fauci, M.D.
Director, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

Researchers led by Gideon Lack, M.D., of King’s College London, designed a study called Learning Early About Peanut Allergy (LEAP), based on observations that Israeli children have lower rates of peanut allergy compared to Jewish children of similar ancestry residing in the United Kingdom. Unlike children in the UK, Israeli children begin consuming peanut-containing foods early in life. The study tested the hypothesis that the very low rates of peanut allergy in Israeli children were a result of high levels of peanut consumption beginning in infancy.

“Food allergies are a growing concern, not just in the United States but around the world,” said NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D. “For a study to show a benefit of this magnitude in the prevention of peanut allergy is without precedent. The results have the potential to transform how we approach food allergy prevention.”

LEAP compared two strategies to prevent peanut allergy — consumption or avoidance of dietary peanut — in infants who were at high risk of developing peanut allergy because they already had egg allergy and/or severe eczema, an inflammatory skin disorder.

“The study also excluded infants showing early strong signs of having already developed peanut allergy. The safety and effectiveness of early peanut consumption in this group remains unknown and requires further study,” said Dr. Lack. “Parents of infants and young children with eczema or egg allergy should consult with an allergist, pediatrician, or their general practitioner prior to feeding them peanut products.”

More than 600 high-risk infants between 4 and 11 months of age were assigned randomly either to avoid peanut entirely or to regularly include at least 6 grams of peanut protein per week in their diets. The avoidance and consumption regimens were continued until 5 years of age. Participants were monitored throughout this period with recurring visits with health care professionals, in addition to completing dietary surveys by telephone.

The researchers assessed peanut allergy at 5 years of age with a supervised, oral food challenge with peanut. They found an overall 81 percent reduction of peanut allergy in children who began early, continuous consumption of peanut compared to those who avoided peanut.

“Prior to 2008, clinical practice guidelines recommended avoidance of potentially allergenic foods in the diets of young children at heightened risk for development of food allergies,” said Daniel Rotrosen, M.D., director of NIAID’s Division of Allergy, Immunology and Transplantation. “While recent studies showed no benefit from allergen avoidance, the LEAP study is the first to show that early introduction of dietary peanut is actually beneficial and identifies an effective approach to manage a serious public health problem.”

A follow-up study called LEAP-On will ask all LEAP study participants to avoid peanut consumption for one year. These results will determine whether continuous peanut consumption is required to maintain a child’s tolerance to peanut.

This work was funded in part by NIAID under award numbers NO1-AI-15416, UM1AI109565 and HHSN272200800029C. Other organizations providing support include Food Allergy and Research Education, the Asthma UK Centre, and the UK Department of Health. The study results can be found on , an open-access website that hosts studies conducted by the ITN. Additional details are available at http://ClinicalTrials.gov using the identifier NCT00329784 for LEAP and NCT01366846 for LEAP-On.

NIAID conducts and supports research — at NIH, throughout the United States, and worldwide — to study the causes of infectious and immune-mediated diseases, and to develop better means of preventing, diagnosing and treating these illnesses. News releases, fact sheets and other NIAID-related materials are available on the NIAID website at http://www.niaid.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

NIH&hellipTurning Discovery Into Health ®

Reference

Du Toit G et al. Randomized trial of peanut consumption in infants at risk of peanut allergy. New England Journal of Medicine DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1414850 (2015).


Should you use an allergy prevention product?

While, “the concept behind these products is based on sound evidence,” says Edmond Chan, head of the division of allergy and immunolo gy at Vancouver’s BC Children’s Hospital, “there are a lot of nuances, and devil-in-the-details issues,” that make the field of options confusing for the average parent. This is one reason that even experts are divided over whether to support the use of such supplements.

For starters, “some of my colleagues are quite against these commercial products,” Chan notes, because, “they feel it over-medicalizes the act of introducing new foods.” This could lead to unnecessary stress over this milestone. Another concern is cost, with the price of a one-month supply ranging from around $20 to $90 US (roughly $28 to $120 Canadian). “It’s a lot more expensive than buying a jar of peanut butter,” Chan observes.

Elissa Abrams, an assistant professor in the section of allergy and clinical immunology in the department of paediatrics at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, also worries about how healthy they actually are: A few contain ingredients such as added sugar (which the CPS recommends avoiding during baby’s first year) and palm oil, which some parents prefer to avoid due to environmental concerns.

And finally, some doctors worry consumers might confuse these early introduction products with a peanut allergy treatment called Palforzia, and use them for reducing an already-present allergy, which could be quite dangerous.


Should You Feed Your Baby Peanuts? The AAP Weighs In

In a consensus, the American Academy of Pediatrics and nine other medical professional organizations threw their weight behind a study recommending that peanut-containing products be introduced to babies.

Earlier this year, there was a collective gasp among parents over a study that suggested feeding babies some peanut products during the first year of life could help build up tolerance to and even prevent many nut allergies. It was the opposite of what we&aposd been taught and, frankly, seemed downright illogical. Give my infant the very thing that could cause a potentially dangerous allergic reaction? Yeah, right.

But wary parents, take note: In a consensus published online Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics, along with nine other medical professional organizations, threw their weight behind the study. The AAP&aposs endorsement read in part, "There is now scientific evidence that health care providers should recommend introducing peanut-containing products into the diets of &aposhigh-risk&apos infants early on in life (between 4 and 11 months of age) in countries where peanut allergy is prevalent because delaying the introduction of peanut can be associated with an increased risk of peanut allergy."

The study in question, conducted in England and published in February in the New England Journal of Medicine, involved 640 at-risk babies, ages 4-11 months. (Babies who develop severe eczema or an egg allergy in the first six months of life are considered high risk for a nut allergy.) One group of infants ate a small amount of peanut butter or peanut butter products, while a second group avoided it altogether. Fast forward five years, and the group that ate the nut products had 81 percent fewer nut allergies than the group that skipped peanut butter.

The AAP&aposs endorsement lends credibility to the study𠅊nd hopefully offers some comfort to parents of babies at risk for nut allergies. Make no mistake, the concern is very real: The number of children who develop a peanut allergy is on the rise, affecting between 1 percent and 3 percent of kids in many westernized countries. Here in the U.S., the number of kids affected may have tripled over the past 10 to 15 years, according to the statement. Allergic reactions run the gamut from itchy rashes, runny nose, and vomiting to anaphylaxis, where the blood pressure can drop and the child has difficulty breathing. (Yikes!)

It&aposs important to note that the AAP emphasized the importance of relying on your pediatrician for guidance before you introduce nuts, especially if your kiddo is considered high risk.

Does the AAP&aposs endorsement change the way you feel about introducing peanut products to your baby? Tell us! And don&apost forget to sign up to receive our free Parents Daily Baby newsletter.

Bonnie Gibbs Vengrow is a New York City-based writer and editor who traded in her Blackberry and Metro card for playdates and PB&J sandwiches𠅊nd the once-in-a-lifetime chance to watch her feisty, funny son grow up. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+.


Maybe babies should have food with peanuts after all

Introducing kids to foods with peanuts in them during their first months alive may help prevent peanut allergies.

The National Institutes of Health issued new guidelines last week that encourage early-life peanut exposure after a clinical trial found that doing so could reduce the risk of developing the potentially fatal allergy.

A panel of health experts issued three guidelines for introducing foods with peanuts:

• For kids with severe eczema, egg allergies or both, give them peanut-containing foods when they're between four and six months old. If your child has eczema or egg allergies, they're more likely to be allergic to peanuts too, so check with a doctor before feeding any peanut products.

• Infants with mild to moderate eczema should get foods containing peanuts when they're six months old or so.

• Kids with no eczema or food allergies can have peanut-containing foods in their diet at any age, as appropriate.

Of course, it's important to consult your health care provider before giving babies foods with peanuts, and to keep in mind your family's diet, the NIH says.

And don't feed infants or young children whole nuts — they're choking hazards.

Peanut allergies require constant vigilance from the person affected and those around them. There's no treatment or cure, and attacks can be deadly.

So, a possible new prevention method is big for the health world.

Dr. Jon Hallberg, MPR News' regular medical analyst, offered his take on the new guidelines.

To hear from Hallberg, use the audio player above.


Watch the video: Αντιμετώπιση Αλλεργιών HD (May 2022).


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