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Pregnant? Eating Peanuts Might Help Prevent Food Allergies for your Baby

With food allergies seemingly on the rise, and the most publicized life-threatening reactions linked to nut allergies, most moms would do anything possible to prevent food allergies in children. A new study published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics suggests that women who regularly eat nuts during their pregnancies were less likely to have children with nut allergies.

The study included roughly 11,000 mothers and children, and looked at the records from birth through their teens. Previous suggestions from the American Academy of Pediatrics encouraged pregnant women to avoid eating nuts, as well as delaying introducing nuts to children’s diets until age three. It seems that avoiding nuts possibly increased the likelihood of childhood nut allergies.

One in 13 kids have a food allergy, and 40% of kids with food allergies have had a severe or life-threatening reaction. While some experts are arguing that the current study doesn’t prove that eating nuts will help reduce these numbers in the future, we do know that eating nuts while pregnant won’t hurt your baby. In fact, nuts are high in protein and folic acid, both key elements of a healthy pregnancy diet.

By Rodney M Johnson, MD, Atlanta ENT Allergy Specialist

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