New research findings are said to be supporting the idea that early childhood exposure to peanuts and related products can help reduce the probability of allergies by 80%.
The peanut allergy theory proposes that the early consumption of peanuts and related products reduce the occurrence of allergies pertaining to the legume. The earliest work to support the idea came from the research and publications of the King’s College in London in 2015.
This new study builds on the same research and examined the results in the very 550 children who participated in the earlier study and were considered to be at risk of developing signs of peanut allergy such as eczema. In the 2015 study, half of the children were given small amounts of peanut snacks, while the other half were fed with breast milk.
Published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the new findings have successfully established that children can be prevented from the adverse allergic reactions with long-lasting results if they are exposed to the food item within the first 11 months of their life. The approach is said to work effectively even if they stop consuming peanuts and related products later in life.
The authors of the study confirmed that no statistical increase was noted in terms of peanut allergies among the children exposed to peanut snacks during the 2015 trial. Prof. Gideon Lack, the lead author of the study, pointed out that the “culture of food fear” was the part of the problem in addressing the condition while speaking to the BBC. Lack maintains that removing potentially allergenic food items from the diet contributed to the failure of the development of tolerance among children.
Prof. Barry Kay of Imperial College London has termed the study significant in pointing a completely new direction of how tolerance could play a role in treating infants at risk of food allergies.
No less than 20,000 babies are diagnosed with peanut allergies in the UK and the United States every year. With the new discovery, significant advances are expected in the understanding of this troubling condition.