Feeding infants allergy-causing food in their initial years of life Essay
Feeding infants allergy-causing food in their initial years of life, 478 words essay example
Evidence is increasingly accumulating that allergies in babies might be halted by introducing eggs and peanuts to babies at early ages. Scientists have reported that feeding infants allergy-causing food in their initial years of life prevents allergic reactions (Davis, 2016). This is contrary to the world Health Organization's recommendation that infants be fed only breast milk. The new finding upends the conventional wisdom advising to desist from introducing eggs and peanuts until babies are older.
Funded by the Food Standards Agency, the study found that babies who were feed egg-white proteins and peanuts as early as three months of their life had low probability of suffering food allergies compared to those exclusively feed on allergy-causing food at 6 months old (Davis, 2016). But the result is achievable if and only if the recommended amount of allergy-causing food is consumed. For instance, the researchers discovered that weekly intake of one boiled egg and one teaspoon of peanut better would result in the prevention of egg and peanut allergies.
The study compared those babies who consumed allergy-causing foods at age of 3 months with children who were fed allergic foods after six months of breastfeeding. The findings suggest that introducing allergy-causing foods to babies early does help prevent allergic reactions, provided the recommended feeding regimen is followed (Davis, 2016). The findings from the study prompts a change in professional's approach to reducing food allergies in children at the age of 18 and below.
However, the study left some unanswered question. The first question is whether babies who are fed on peanuts and eggs from an early age still remain allergy-free if they discontinue taking them. Additional longitudinal study is required to answer the raised questions. I
Another fundamental question that needs to be answered is whether this early feeding method applies to other allergy-causing foods, as well as to babies at normal risk. The study did not address this question as it focused exclusively at high risk children and eggs and peanuts. Moreover, examining only children who feed the egg and peanut would be overstating the technique's efficacy. Parents would like to know if it is safe to introduce all children to allergic foods at age of three months. Therefore, additional research is required on the same.
One limitation of this study was that a large number of babies who participated in this study failed to follow the food regimen while some parents discontinued feeding their babies after they noticed symptoms of allergy.
The subject of food allergy is a concern for clinicians and parents caring for infants. Allergies to food are potentially severe and even deadly. It affects about 10 percent of children globally (Goldman, 2014). Previous recommendations about food timing included delaying allergy-causing foods like peanuts until three years and eggs until one year of age (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2000). Early introduction of allergic foods was believed to cause sensitization leading to development of food allergy.