A new study finds that children fed peanut products between the ages of four and six months have a reduced risk of developing peanut allergy.
published in magazine Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the study explains that, in a decade, the prevalence of peanut allergy in children in the West has doubled. Gideon Lack, professor of pediatric allergy at King’s College London and one of the authors of the research, said, according to The Guardian, that for many years several countries have asked parents to avoid giving peanut products to very young babies, then introduce these products gradually.
This practice, however, may be precisely one of the contributing causes of the increase in peanut allergy. Other factors that could lead to a peanut allergy are increased eczema in children and exposure to peanut environments through the consumption of others.
We believe that peanut allergy develops from exposure to peanut products in the home through the skin,” explained Gideon Lack.
According to the study, the introduction of foods with peanuts, starting at four months of age, the babies with eczema reduces the likelihood that they will develop allergies to these products. In babies who do not have eczema, the introduction of these foods should be done from six months of age. The introduction of peanut products in these age groups can lead to about a 77% reduction in the likelihood of having allergies. However, if the products are only introduced after one year of age, the reduction in the probability of developing allergies drops to 33%, says the BBC.
Another research author and researcher at King’s College London, Mary Feeney, believes that while breastfeeding should remain during the introduction of solid foods, parents should try introducing a teaspoon of peanut butter three times a week. Products should not be solid, such as chopped peanuts, and parents should opt for products such as peanut butter.