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Can Babies Get Allergies - Is Your Baby Allergic to These Foods?
When a mom feeds her growing baby table food, not only does she want to know she's feeding her baby the right amount, she wants the food to be nutritious and tasty. But when it comes to allergies, mothers must learn which foods do not agree with their babies. While people suffer from allergies to many types of foods, there are eight common types of food allergens. Mothers can start by refraining from introducing these foods amongst the baby's first foods, and as the baby's food tolerance acclimates to other vegetables, fruits and whole grains, these foods can then be introduced, one at a time, under the recommendation and supervision of the baby's healthcare provider. For those parents who have a heightened concern about a particular allergen, request an allergy test from the pediatrician or healthcare provider prior to introducing the new food.
As a highly allergic food, it is surprising that cow's milk is often introduced to children under age 1. The proteins in the milk are too large for the human body to digest, and as Dr. Kathleen Stassen Berger, in her book, “The Developing Person Through the Life Span” commented, it is possible that at one time in history all people were lactose-intolerant. So keep in mind when introducing milk into a child's diet that, although it possesses valuable nutrients, it is the natural nourishment for calves – not humans – who will grow into 500-pound cows. Perhaps monitoring and moderation may be the solution for those who have a low tolerance, but non-allergic, reaction to milk and milk products.
Wheat is everywhere, and so it is surprising that a highly allergic food is in so many food products. Wheat is also high in gluten, and as some in natural medicine have related, it is the number one tumor feeder. Wheat enters the body as a starch, but before it even leaves the mouth, the salivary amylase enzyme in the saliva transforms it into a sugar. Perhaps other whole grains, such as barley, oatmeal, quinoa and teff will offer an enjoyable alternative to a baby or child's diet to avoid the risk of developing an allergy to wheat, and its consequences.
Another common allergen whose introduction to a baby or child's diet should be delayed until his digestive system matures and is able to handle and process the nutrients and fibers of nuts. Tree nuts include almonds, walnuts and pecans. Avoid introducing these too early, and perhaps allergies to them will not develop.
Well, peanuts are actually beans, and they were not included in the tree nut section because they grow close to the ground. Known as “fool Sudanee” in Arabic, its name means “bean of the Sudan.” While every young child does not develop allergies to peanuts, like milk and tree nuts, it may be that some people are genetically tolerant to some food allergens over others, just because of where they originate in the world. But a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich is as common as apple pie and chocolate chip cookies – but avoid giving all of these to a child under one years old to allow their digestive systems time to mature and develop.
Fish, Shellfish, Eggs and Soy
What do these four foods have in common besides also being four of the top food allergens – nothing unless you're making a specialty seafood recipe of soy floured fish and shellfish dipped in egg. But these are serious allergens to avoid for your baby and young children. Each food puts a digestive strain on a young person's system, and three of the four are prone to high bacterial counts – another compromise to the child's immune system. Soy has long been a natural substitute to milk-based formulas for lactose-intolerant babies and children, but its allergen properties along with its hormone-altering characteristics raises a lot of concern as a source of nourishment for a young child.
These are the most common allergens, but pay attention to your baby as you introduce a new food in their first years. Many other foods cause allergic reactions in babies and young children, including bananas, watermelon, tomatoes, mangoes, raspberries and even rice. Space out the introduction of each food to make it easy to identify an adverse reaction once it happens. In general, feed your baby gentle, natural, simple foods that are easy on her sensitive, immature digestive tract, and this may help prevent your baby from developing food allergies.
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