Food allergies in children
You hear about food allergies in children more and more. School lunches need to be peanut-free, birthday parties are gluten-free, and no nuts can be found anywhere on children’s menus. In fact, 1 child out of every 13 now has food allergies! An allergic reaction happens when the body’s immune system thinks a certain food is harmful, and the person becomes sick whenever the food is eaten. The most common food allergies are milk, egg, peanut, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish, and shellfish. There are a couple of reasons that more and more children are allergic to certain foods. First, we have a more industrialized diet in which foods are modified through factory farming, processing, and mass distribution. We’re also too clean. We sanitize everything. Our children are just not exposed to as much anymore as earlier generations were.
So what can we as parents do about this? An allergic reaction can be life-threatening! All food-allergic children should carry epinephrine at all times. We would rather see our children enjoy themselves without having to think about every bite they take! Luckily, there is a way to help your children never get these allergies at all!
Avoid food allergies by introducing allergenic foods early and often
In 2019, the Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) released recommendations for the early introduction of allergenic foods to infants, as this can be effective in preventing food allergies. The guidance is to actively offer non-choking forms of foods containing common allergens (e.g. peanuts, egg) at around 6 months of age.
Here are the official recommendations to introduce allergenic foods to prevent the development of food allergies in children:
- Your baby must be developmentally ready for solid foods. They should be able to sit up well without support, and able and willing to chew.
- Feed your baby one food at a time in the beginning to gauge reaction. A mixture of these foods (e.g. mixed tree nut butter) can be given after the first feed.
- The food should have a smooth consistency. This helps to make sure your baby isn’t at risk of choking.
- Feed your baby, rather than having them self-feed (baby-led weaning). This is because food smeared on a baby’s skin may cause skin irritation that can be mistaken for allergy.
- Give your baby allergenic foods for the first time at home. Make sure it is a time when they will be awake for two hours afterward in case allergy symptoms develop.
- Feeding allergenic foods for the first time in most infants is safe. It rarely causes a serious allergic reaction.
- Once your baby has eaten the food, and if there is no allergic reaction, it’s very important to keep feeding that food to your baby about 2-3 times/week to help prevent the development of a food allergy.
So, how do you go about introducing food allergens before allergies start? And do this in a safe and easy way?
First introduction to allergens
For the first introduction of one allergen at a time, we can advise using Lil Mixins.
Lil Mixins offers the most common food allergens in a powder form you can mix into your children’s milk or first solids. For only $40.49 you get a 1 month’s supply of a daily dose of each of the seven most common allergenic foods. Peanut, Egg, Cashew, Walnut, Almond, Sesame, and Soy can be introduced in a safe and convenient way. If you get a subscription, you can save 10%.
We love how easy the Lil Mixins system is. The slow buildup of the seven most comment allergens follows the philosophy of “Early and Often” advised by the FDA and the American and Canadian governments. It is quick and easy. You can add it to any food or drink your child is already used to. You also know immediately which product your child is reacting to, and you can slowly build up their immune system by ordering more of that allergen alone. For example, you can get a 4-month supply of the Tree Nut Powder for $34.99.
Once your child is no longer a newborn, and the very first allergens have been introduced, it is very important to keep feeding your baby allergens to prevent the development of a food allergy.
SpoonfulOne offers a great system you can keep using! They have mix-ins, puffs, crunchy snacks, and even oat crackers! With a tasty and healthy snack, children also get a dose of 16 foods that are associated with over 90% of all food allergies! These amazing kits from SpoonfulOne are there to help you avoid the development of food allergies.
I love the fact that the SpoonfulOne system is easy on the go. Just add some puffs or crackers in your diaper bag, and whenever your child is peckish, you can also build their immune system! It is easy and practical.
They have plenty of snacks in a range of flavors, so you can find something even the pickiest of eaters will love. So even if you have children who are picky eaters, you can introduce the allergens to them and avoid food allergies. Even if your kid would not touch shrimp with a 20-foot pole, you can get it in their system and make sure they will not get a shellfish allergy!
Almond, Cashew, Cod, Egg, Hazelnut, Milk, Oat, Peanut, Pecan, Pistachio, Salmon, Sesame, Shrimp, Soy, Walnut, and Wheat. SpoonfulOne teaches the immune system that these 16 foods are just foods, not allergens!