For the last two decades, there has been a significant rise on allergy incidents among children. Infants are even more susceptible to allergic reactions. As such, parents need to be vigilant about their children’s health and diet, in order to deal with allergies appropriately.
Here are several precautionary measures to take to protect your new born against allergies and further complications.
• Breastfeed your newborn. The American Academy of Pediatrics has been long advocates for mothers to breast feed their children in order to provide them with essential antibodies that work against any form of allergic reactions.
• Slowly introduce a single solid food, one at a time. If breastfeeding your newborn needs to be stopped at an early stage, mothers should slowly introduce one single solid food a time. This is for better food identification purposes, should there be an allergic reaction.
• Know the right time to introduce solid foods. Studies have shown that cow’s milk and solid foods bring certain health problems when given to 12 month old infants. Experts have identified several food that can only be given to the child at specific ages. Dairy food and cow’s milk should be consumed only after 12 months old. Also, eggs should be given after 24 months, peanuts after 36th months. Fish and selfish should only be introduced after the child has turned 3.
• Know the right type of solid food to give. Not all solid foods are appropriate for your child. Consider factors such as nutritional values, food preparation hygiene and low allergy potential.
• Fruits and vegetables can be allergenic (any substance capable of causing an allergy), especially when served raw. The cooking process helps in breaking down the allergen contents of raw fruits and vegetables. It is recommended that these should be cooked before introducing to the child. However, celery could also still be allergenic, even after cooking.
• Avoid feeding raw food to children. Pediatricians have suggested cooking anything before allowing the child to ingest the food.
Just remember to carefully analyze the food first before feeding it to your child. When in doubt, do not hesitate to consult your pediatrician.