20 Sep Can I Give My Child Peanuts?
A lot of kids (and adults) out there struggle with food allergies. While allergies are unfortunately common, they can be quite serious, especially if these allergies come out of the blue. One of the most famous and common allergy that can impact children is, of course, the peanut allergy. If you are worried about your child having a peanut allergy, you may have heard about the approach of giving your child peanuts and peanut-based foods early on.
So, can you give your child peanuts, especially if you aren’t sure if they are allergic?
The answer is more complicated than a generic “yes” or “no.” However, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has a lot to say about peanut-based foods and maternal and infant nutrition—and how it impacts infant allergies. The AAP has been looking at research on the best ways to prevent allergies in children. This organization has found a growing amount of evidence that supports introducing peanut-based foods to prevent peanut allergies in children.
Peanuts, along with tree nuts, are some of the most common food allergies and must be declared on U.S. product labels, making it easy for parents to find foods with peanuts in them that they can safely give their children.
The AAP’s official statement is that there is no reason to delay giving your baby foods that are considered to be “allergens” such as peanut foods, or eggs and fish. AAP states that these foods can be added to your baby’s diet early on, just like any other common food such as fruits, veggies or rice. Remember, there is NO evidence to support that mothers should have a restrictive diet during pregnancy, or while they are breastfeeding, as a way to prevent allergies for forming.
If you are looking for ways to introduce peanuts to your child’s diet, make sure that you use infant, safe forms of food and start introducing these to your baby as early as six months. There are plenty of baby foods that are soft, safe for your infant and still have peanuts in them, such as baby food that has peanuts as an ingredient or adding slightly watered down smooth peanut butter or PB2 powder to infant cereals or purees. If you have questions about peanut allergies or other ways that you can help prevent food allergies in your baby, Continuum Pediatrics can help. Just call us to make an appointment at 817-617-8600 today.