No peanuts please. That's the recommendation now to new moms who are breast feeding their babies, if the woman has a family history of food allergies. Research in the New England Journal of Medicine shows nursing mothers may pass peanut proteins in breast milk to their infants, which could put their babies more at risk of developing a peanut allergy. Food induced allergies are blamed for about 30,000 trips to emergency rooms every year, and about 200 deaths.
Specifically the report says if either parent has a history of Asthma, Eczema, food allergy or any allergy-based disease, those babies are more at risk of a peanut allergy, and that breast feeding moms who eat peanuts are boosting the risk even more.
Food allergy experts say pregnant women should take a look at their family health history to see if they need to put the peanuts away when baby arrives. Food allergy experts say a nursing mother may also want to consider avoiding other foods that a baby is allergic to, which most commonly are eggs and cows' milk.
Approximately 6% of children may develop a food allergy by the age of two, and studies suggest infants with a family history of allergy may be two to three times more likely to develop an allergy. Exclusive breast-feeding of infants for the first 6 to 12 months of life is often recommended to prevent the development of milk or soy allergies during infancy.
The studies mentioned in the story are taken from the April 2002 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine and the April 2001 Journal of the American Medical Association.