Allergies or intolerance can develop in people of any age, for various reasons. But, during early childhood, the nutrition a child receives can affect how likely he is to develop certain types of allergies.
Cow’s milk protein is the leading cause of food allergy in a child’s first 3 years of life. Rates vary by region but it is estimated that cow’s milk protein allergy affects 2-3% of young children worldwide.
“Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended as one of the best ways to reduce the chances of your child developing an allergy to cow’s milk protein,” explains Laura Czerkies, MS, RD, Clinical Sciences Manager and Nutritionist at Nestlé Infant Nutrition. “The protective effect of breastfeeding for young children with a family history of allergy appears particularly strong.”
If you suspect your child might be allergic to cow’s milk protein, ask your healthcare provider for advice.
Agostoni C, Braegger C, Decsi T et al. Breast-feeding: A commentary by the ESPGHAN Committee on Nutrition. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr 2009; 49(1):112–25.
Fleischer DM, Spergel JM, Assa’ad AH et al. Primary prevention of allergic disease through nutritional interventions. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract 2013; 1(1):29-36.
Last revised: December, 2016
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