breastfeeding and peanut allergy. is there a link? - Peanut Allergy Information

breastfeeding and peanut allergy. is there a link?

Author:
Publish date:

For those with a PA child , did you breastfeed or formula feed or combination? For all, when did you first introduce solids? When did you introduce peanuts? Im so curious! Some sites are saying theres a link between breastfeeding and development of pa in kids :(. Ive even read that the protein can show up in breast milk?

By survivingfood on Oct 22, 2013

There is a stronger link between eating PB and being pregnant. All the children that I know with PA had their moms eat PB while pregnant. The correlation has many variables though and is not an exact science.

By jenlil on Oct 23, 2013

My first child had a dairy allergy until 3 yrs. I was told not by my pediatrician to stop consuming dairy while breast feeding, but an allergist. My son was 10 months old at the time so I stopped breast feeding because I could not not eat dairy. When I was pregnant with my second child I did not eat any nuts or shellfish even while breast feeding for one year. I did not introduce solids until 6 months I think. I did not introduce peanuts until 3.5. She had a total aversion to nuts smell and all. eventually telling me it makes her throat feel weird. We had her blood tested and she was in the middle of the scale. We repeated twice in the last 3.5 yrs and it has gradually gotten worse. I have read that vaccines can contain peanut oil???? We have been very diligent keeping her away from nuts.

By drgnflie1102 on Oct 24, 2013

- My PA child and my non PA child were both formula fed. - I ate peanut butter during both pregnancies, but I definitely had more during my PA child pregnancy because I was craving it. - Introduced solids around 6 months and peanut butter after a year for both children. (My PA child is my youngest)

By ewalters14 on Oct 24, 2013

I ate so much PB with my peanut daughter because I craved it so much when I was pregnant with her! I have always wondered if there was a correlation? She was breastfed for about 6 mths. We tried a peanut at about 2 and she a projectile vomiting! Then at about 3 1/2 she was at day care and had a chocolate chip granola bar and we had to give the epi-pen.

By PeanutAllergy.com on Oct 24, 2013

Question of the Week: Answered!

Every week, PeanutAllergy.com is answering one of the questions posted in our community.

Our Answer:

The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology recommends exclusively breastfeeding your child for at least four to six months and then introduce solid foods, including allergenic ones. Introduce one new food every three to five days.

In the past, allergists have advised not introducing peanuts to children until they are 3 years old. Now research suggests that introducing allergens to children between the ages of 5 and 12 months may actually prevent food allergies.

If you eat peanuts while breastfeeding, your breast milk will contain small amounts of the peanut protein. However, there is no evidence to suggest that these small traces of protein will increase your baby’s risk of developing a peanut allergy.

Ultimately, you should consult your pediatrician or pediatric allergist for testing and guidance.

We asked our Facebook fans for their advice and you can read what they had to say by clicking here.

By jenken1998 on Oct 24, 2013

I adore PB. When I was pregnant if I ate it I got deathly ill. Once I delivered my PA son I could eat it again. Now he is allergic. I did breastfeed and did eat PB after he was born. I have always wondered connections?

By TiffanyW on Oct 27, 2013

I breastfed my DD until she was 2. She showed signs of food allergy at an early age. I would eat peanuts when I was breastfeeding and it passed through my breastmilk causing her to break out in hives and have black and blood tinged stools. It wasn't until she was 8 months old and got a hold of my son's PB sandwich that I actually found out she was allergic. She also was allergic to dairy but out grew that. She is severely allergic to peanuts though.

By roygirl22 on Oct 27, 2013

I breastfeed my PA son til he was 19m. He really did not eat solids until he was 1. He got ahold of something with peanut butter by accident around 13m and had swelling of the eyes and hives around his mouth.

On the other hand I am still bf my 2yr old son and he is not allergic to anything at all. He has been tested.

By TiffanyW on Oct 27, 2013

Definitely agree with you! Especially with the GMO's!

By cass5292 on Oct 27, 2013

I ate peanuts during both of my pregnancies and while breast-feeding with my two children, (I breastfed almost exclusively until they were one on the advise of my sister who is a NICU nurse and a LACHE instructor). I did not introduce peanuts to them until they were 3 years old on the advice of an allergist. My daughter (first-born) is highly allergic to peanuts, several tree nuts and shellfish. My son has no allergies. Go figure. I have done so much research but there seems to be no pattern. I truly believe a lot of it has to do with your DNA, (my daughter is so much like my husband and he has severe seasonal allergies) and my son is so much like me and I have no allergies. Also, I believe that GMO's (genetically modified foods) has messed us up. Our bodies no longer recognize food the way God made it to be.

By samsmommy99 on Oct 27, 2013

I ate tons of peanut butter when I was pregnant....I couldn't get enough of the gooey stuff!! My mother warned me not to eat so much, but I told her she was overreacting and I didn't know anyone with a kid who had a peanut allergy. Fast forward to Sam at 8 months old.....he had always had eczema and digestion issues that we chalked up to dairy, little did I know this was a sign of things were becoming a problem. I was feeding him at his high hair while eating peanut butter and apples and thought I would be interesting to see what he thought of the texture, so I gave him a pencil eraser size taste of peanut butter...nothing happened....so I thought......I had put him down for a nap and he had started getting fussy and crying so I went up to get him and he was covered in huge hives! I called the dr right away and they said to give Benadryl...I did, and he vomited projectile vomit within 5 minutes, I called 911 and watched as my baby started to go limp in my arms and his lips started turning blue....the ambulance arrived and they gave him epinephrine and took us to the hospital....we have avoided peanuts ever since, and he is now 14 and we have never had a second incident due to being vigilant. Peanuts suck, and as soon as the desensitizing is available I am doing it....Sam is also non verbal and autistic and won't always have me to protect him, so for me, it's a no brainer to do it.

By Sunshine5 on Oct 27, 2013

I was told by my doctor not to eat any peanuts when pregnant because of a possible connection to peanut allergies. So I had none. I formula fed my daughter and started her on baby food when she was about 5 months old. She had her first taste of peanuts just after her third birthday and went into immediate anaphylaxis. She is highly allergic to peanuts and many tree nuts and has a mild allergy to soy. I have always wondered if I had eaten nuts or breastfed if she would be allergic now. I know it's not my fault but I can't help but feel guilty somehow. But after reading these posts I see so many people who have breastfed and eaten peanuts while pregnant and still have allergic children. Who knows?

By jap on Oct 27, 2013

Ok get this In the uk food packets will actually have warnings on saying not suitable for pregnant women, contains peanuts + same for breastfeeding.

Why do i mention this ?? , you have to think outside of the box, all the comments regards the American society or Pediatric society, why don't you investigate what other world countries recommend ? I will tell you that the usa is far behind when it comes to peanut in most aspects, Canada has a much more restaurant friendly allergy program. Bottom line if you are pregnant or breastfeeding how bad do you really need that peanut.? Maybe coincident but are daughter is greater than 100 out of 100 for peanut allergy , coincidentally my wife ate a peanut butter sandwich almost daily while pregnant ??? , food for thought.So do some research on what they are recommending in the uk and other countries you might be surprised.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Okay, I just learnt that cheerios is now manufacturing peanut cheerios. They used to be a healthy snack for kids and children carried them in cartoons as travel snacks. Obviously kids will accidentally be exposed to them as toddlers will share and the color is almost the same. Sooner or later somebody will die from this accident waiting to happen. Poptarts have numerous flavors, and they are smart enough not to have a peanut flavor. The American Peds does not recommend peanut under age of 4. So much for the healthy company, not to mention the salt and fat. I urge you to call the cheerios company as I did and voice your concern, get friends and relatives all over to the usa and maybe enough complaints will change their mind, tell them you will boycott their brand. Number is 1-800-248-7310 between (7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. CT, weekdays) Say cherio to Cherios, Cherio off to eat a bowl of Corn Flakes. Julian

By thekilij on Oct 27, 2013

My daughter has a severe peanut and tree nut allergy, and has a "mild" allergy to dairy.

I do not recall every peanut product I may have had during my pregnancy, but I do distinctly remember eating a Snickers Bar on a daily basis for a short time while pregnant due to cravings.

I breastfed my daughter exclusively until she stopped at 14 months. At about 2 months, I removed all highly allergenic foods from my diet due to her colic and a bloody stool.

I began introducing generally non-allergenic foods when she was about 6 months old. I never got a chance to purposely introduce peanuts to her. At about the stage of sitting up and crawling, she picked up and placed in her mouth a peanut she found on her father's office floor. I noticed her messing around with something in her mouth and got it out. She had no reaction to it. A long time thereafter, I introduced her to cashews in a dinner dish, and her throat started to close on her. We gave her Benadryl and at her next visit with the pediatrician, requested a panel be done to test for allergies. After the results came back showing allergies to dogs, milk, cashews and peanuts, we saw an allergist. Despite the allergist suspecting my daughter was not allergic to anything at all, her scratch test verified the blood tests, showing the worst reaction with the peanuts. Now my daughter cannot even come into physical contact with peanut products without a reaction.

Personally, I am of the opinion that dairy during pregnancy, breastfeeding, or direct feeding initiates food allergies in addition to other health issues. And I hope to see a lot more research investigating this.

People who spend their entire lives researching these things do not have an answer, so how can you be expected to know exactly what to do? Please do not feel guilty about your child's allergies. That you are taking the time engaging on a site like this is a clear indicator that you are a good, thoughtful, active parent.

By Mrsdocrse on Oct 27, 2013

My son was born in 2000 formula fed and I ate tons of PB while pg. Ate it every day. I introduced solid at about 4 months old? can't remember exactly. Gave him a taste of my english muffin with PB on it at about age 2.5 . Had an almost instant reaction. ;0(

He also had mild milk and egg while allergy that he outgrew fairly early.

I have read that Peanut protein can show up in breast milk. I would check with the Dr. now to see when to introduce foods... and PB. I have heard that they don't recommend restricting PB anymore... I don't think anyone knows. I felt guilty for a long time for not breast feeding and for giving him the peanut butter..... can't change the past!

By Heatherk5424 on Oct 27, 2013

I breastfed both girls for 12 months, exclusively until 6 months when I began solids with rice cereal. I will note that I did have to supplement with formula (milk based similar) for the first month. I don't really eat peanut butter but had been eating snack bars with peanuts while pregnant and nursing. At four months my second daughter began hiving up after feedings and waking from naps screaming, covered in hives, face and eyes red and swollen. She also had always present excema. Not once did the pediatrician ever suggest food allergies or even something I was eating and passing along. But this was obviously the case, as she was only consuming breast milk for the first two months of symptom presentation. This persisted until her diagnosis at age 1 after we nearly lost her to her first and last PB sandwhich. It was a double insult because we learned she is also allergic to wheat, although not celiac disease. Her peanut IgE value is 8.1 where it should be less than 0.03.

The ironic thing is I drank milk by the gallon, literally, while pregnant yet she has no dairy allergies. I have my personal doubts about pregnancy diet as a factor. With my first child I did eat plenty of PB and she has no food allergies. There are also no known food allergies anywhere in our families.

By BeckettsMom on Oct 27, 2013

I don't like peanuts or peanut butter, so I did not eat them during my pregnancy. When my son was 5 months old, I ate chicken with a little Thai peanut sauce. After I nursed him that night, he broke out in hives and his face swelled up. His allergy was diagnosed right after that. No one in my family or my husband's family has a peanut allergy. Crazy!

By LMT480 on Oct 27, 2013

I exclusively breastfed my daughter for 1 year (no formula) and introduced solids at 5 months. Yes, I did eat peanut butter while pregnant and breast feeding. My daughter's allergy started when she was 15 months old and had a bite of my peanut butter toast. At the time I was told her allergy was probably because of what I ate while I was pregnant, just a little maternal guilt. Of course years later I read that you should eat peanuts when pregnant so the developing fetus will recognize the protein! The experts really don't know for sure. There really isn't a way to randomize pregnant women into a study, its not really ethical. The literature has changed many times in the 14 years since my daughter's diagnosis.

By Trish0406 on Oct 27, 2013

I breast fed exclusively until my son was 18 months. We introduced him to solids at 6 months and peanut butter at 1 year. He showed no interest in eating the peanut butter so I spread a small amount on a Cheerio, forced it into his mouth, he spat it out, and minutes later covered in hives and barely breathing we were on an ambulance ride to the hospital where we discovered that he is deathly allergic to peanuts and allergy tests confirm that he is also severely allergic to tree nuts as well. As we were heading out of the country, my family doctor as well as the travel clinic suggested we wait until he turned 1 to introduce peanuts prior to the trip but our allergist said to wait until 3 years at the earliest. Prior to the peanut butter incident he showed no signs of an allergy to all nut or food or from breast milk but he did have some hives when a family member thought it was funny to let him lick pistachios when he was about 2 months old. He is deathly allergic to peanuts, pistachios and cashews, has had 3 reactions of hiving from being around nuts at weddings or gathering without ingesting. I did eat peanuts and peanut butter when I was pregnant and breast feeding. It's hard not to feel guilty that I did something to cause his allergy. Taking him to football and hockey games or gatherings gets me so stressed out and worried as I fear he will die from his allergy. He doesn't seem to have any other allergies or asthma or eczema as I have been told these can go along with the PA.

By lyssiecat on Oct 28, 2013

I am a peanut butter fan. I ate a PB&J sandwich every single day of my pregnancy. No one in my family has ever had a peanut allergy. I breastfed my son until he was 10 1/2 months old exclusively with introduction of solids at 6 months old. Around that same time, I breastfed him after having eaten a PB&J sandwich. Within minutes, his entire body broke out in hives. I contacted his pediatrician who told me that it was possible he had developed an allergy to either peanuts or strawberries (both were on my sandwich) and to avoid all products containing these ingredients until my son reached the age of 3. At 2 1/2 years old, my parents took him to a buffet while I was working. He had a quarter of an unmarked peanut butter cookie and within 20 seconds of ingesting it, he was projectile vomiting, had broken out in hives and was beginning to have difficulty breathing. Because my son's allergy had not been "officially" diagnosed, we did not have life saving interventions available such as an epi-pen. My parents rushed him to the hospital, which was thankfully only a few minutes away from where they were, and he was able to get the necessary medical attention to save him. He was later diagnosed as having a severe peanut allergy, along with all other legumes, and soy. Fortunately, my son was not lost that day. It could have been far worse. Good luck.

By cass5292 on Oct 28, 2013

In my comment earlier, I forgot to mention that my daughter never had a peanut or peanut butter. She had eczema since she was a baby which we could just never get under control. Finally when she was almost three and out of she frustration, I pressed my doctor to have her tested for food allergies since I my research told me that eczema and food allergies (and asthma, which she has) tend to go hand and hand. Sure enough, my instincts where right. The doctor called me and said the blood test shows that she is highly allergic to peanuts, several tree nuts, shellfish. I would encourage any parent who has a child with bad eczeman to talk to their pediatrican about testing for food allergies. Mothers, please try not to blame yourself. I have been there and still struggle with it, but the evidence is so inconclusive. Why does China and India, Thailand have such a low rate of peanut allergies when most of their foods contain some sort of peanut protein? Why does my daughter have food allergies and by son none, even though I ate the same foods while pregnant? As a matter of fact, I know one Mom whose first son has a peanut allergy and she DID eat peanuts while pregnant with him. During her second pregnancy she avoided ALL NUTS and any cross contamination. Her second son was born with a peanut allergy, too. Go figure.

By samsmommy99 on Oct 28, 2013

I forgot to add in my earlier post that I attempted to breast feed, but could not produce enough milk, so he was on formula after about a week, solids were introduced at about 4 months, which at the time, with my pediatrician was a normal time.....Sam was also 16 lbs at 4 months and was constantly hungry, so the dr said it would help keep his tummy more full.

By Hsmith6165 on Oct 28, 2013

I breastfeed for several months then added formula. During the day he will take 4 oz of soy formula mixed with 2 oz of breast milk. Then at night I will breastfeed. We introduce solids at 6 months. He was diagnosed PA at 4 months. I don't like peanut butter or peanuts so didn't eat them while I was pregnant. I will occasionally eat a bar with peanuts/tree nuts mixed in. This is how we discovered the PA. He broke out in hives after I had eaten a bar with peanuts/tree nuts in it. I had to eliminate all peanut/tree nut from my diet. My daughter is also PA and the same with her while I was pregnant. But she developed her allergy around the age of 2 1/2. She was introduced to peanuts around 2. Ate them fine for about 6 months, then one day had a reaction after eating peanut butter. She also has an egg allergy which we discovered on her 1 year bday from cupcakes. I think it is strange that I don't like peanuts and rarely eat them, and both of my kids have this allergy, while I was pregnant with my daughter eggs would make me sick to my stomach, and she has this allergy. I had never had trouble with eggs before and haven't since. I wonder sometimes if the allergies have to do with a lack of exposure from me while I was pregnant. We have enviromental allergies, but not food allergies in the family.

By Dorys on Oct 29, 2013

Good morning. I have a 6 year old daughter that is highly allergic to all type of nuts and mild allergies to eggs and milk. I did not BF her because when born she had severe reflux and colics and honestly was not very informed on the situation. She drank extreme sensitive formula. And yes I consumed nuts when pregnant with her, specifically Almond milk. We found out my daughter had food allergies when we moved to the States. She kept having eczema and Nobody could tell me why. I switched Pediatricians about 6 times until finally met our current Dr, she immediately ordered a blood test and we found out all of her allergies, we modified all of our eating habits and learned how to live with it. I stopped consuming anything with nuts the minute my daughter was diagnosed. When I got pregnant with my son I thought to expand my diet and see what happens. I stopped eating eggs (only some food containing eggs), and limited my dairy and wheat consumption. I am still BF (he is 13 months) he got tested recently. Only allergies are extremely mild wheat sensitivity and dust mite and cockroach. Is it a coincidence, I don't know? We have tried on 2 separate occasions to give him regular milk but he had a bit of eczema (even though he tested completely negative to milk allergies). I will continue BF and see what happens. Good luck to us all!

By Dorys on Oct 29, 2013

Forgot to add... I introduced solids at 6 months but he was not interested at all. He started eating more after 10 months. Haven't introduced peanuts and don't think I will for many years to come. And I just kept taking my prenatals and my other vitamins (had to supplement due to diets). But before I took anything I checked with my doctor and La Leche League. So far so good... God willing he remains food allergy free :) and hopefully one day there's a cure for the nuts allergies so I could help my daughter as well.

Related