More Info on Food Allergies and Children
Breastfeeding and Food AllergiesThere is no conclusive evidence that breastfeeding prevents allergies from developing later in your child's life. It does, however, delay the start of food allergies by delaying your infant's exposure to those foods that can prompt allergies.
Plus, it may avoid altogether the food allergy problems sometimes seen in infants. By delaying the introduction of solid foods until your baby is six months old or older, you can also prolong your baby's allergy-free period.
In addition, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends you delay adding eggs to your child's diet until he or she is two years old, and peanuts, tree nuts, and fish until he or she is three years old.
Allergy to cow's milk is particularly common in infants and young children. In addition to causing hives and asthma, it can lead to colic and sleeplessness, and perhaps blood in the stool or poor growth. Infants are thought to be particularly susceptible to this allergic syndrome because their immune and digestive systems are immature. Milk allergy can develop within days (and up to months) after birth.
If your baby is on cow's milk formula, your healthcare provider may suggest a change to soy formula or an elemental formula, if possible. Elemental formulas are produced from processed proteins with supplements added (basically sugars and amino acids). There are few, if any, allergens within these materials.
Healthcare providers sometimes prescribe glucocorticosteroid drugs to treat infants with very severe GI reactions to milk formulas. Fortunately, this food allergy tends to go away within the first few years of life.
One study by the Johns Hopkins Children's Center showed that simply washing your hands with soap and water will remove peanut allergens. Also, most household cleaners will remove them from surfaces such as food preparation areas at home as well as day care facilities and schools. These easy-to-follow measures will help prevent peanut allergy reactions in children and adults.