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Parent’s Guide: How To Introduce Peanuts To Baby

November 03, 2020 3 min read

An allergy to peanuts is one of the most common food allergies in children with 1 in 50 children being diagnosed every year. And this number has only been on the rise. 

For infants and toddlers who develop peanut allergies, the reactions most commonly are hives and vomiting but can range from itchiness on the skin to swelling of the throat and rarely, potentially even life-threatening situations.

The good news for parents is that as food allergies continue to rise, new groundbreaking research demonstrates measures that parents can take to greatly reduce the risk of your child developing peanut allergies. 

Early introduction and repeated feeding, starting as young as four months old, is the key to safely introducing the most common allergenic foods to children.

With landmark studies like EAT and LEAP leading the way, new research shows that introducing peanut at a young age can help guide the immune system by training it to recognize this potentially allergenic food as safe and known.

Before You Feed Your Baby Peanuts

Introducing your baby to peanuts does not have to be a big event, but you will be best served by doing this early in their development, and by doing it at home. In the safety of your home, you will be able to personally monitor how your baby responds to the protein. 

Next, make sure your child is healthy before giving them any peanut products. If they are experiencing symptoms of a cold, fever, or other illness, do not give them any peanut products until these symptoms are gone. Then you will be able to accurately measure your child’s response to these food products. 

Lastly, you may want to check with your pediatrician to make sure your baby isn’t at a higher risk of developing food allergies. Babies with severe eczema in the form of dry, itchy skin and rashes, or who have already developed other food allergies are considered high risk.

How To Introduce Peanuts Products To Your Baby

Once your baby has reached at least 4 months of age, there are several ways you can start introducing peanuts to your baby:

  • Homemade Recipes with peanut butter 
    • There are a few different ways you can introduce peanut butter into your child’s diet. You don’t ever want to give a whole peanut to your child as it can be a choking hazard. Also, due to the thick consistency of peanut butter, it should not be fed to your baby straight from the jar.
    • Instead, you can start by mixing the peanut butter with water, formula, or breastmilk for babies who are not regularly consuming solids.
    • If they have started consuming solids, you can also mix peanut butter into purees, cereal, applesauce, or yogurt.

    How Often Do I Feed My Baby Peanut Products?

    Depending on a babies risk of developing allergies, there are different guidelines to follow according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP):
    • For babies with no signs of eczema or known food allergies, guidelines recommend introducing peanut allergen foods with other solid foods as often as you would like and in accordance with family preferences.
    • For babies with mild to moderate eczema, feeding them small amounts of baby-friendly peanut foods should be done at least three times a week.
    • For high-risk infants with severe eczema or other food allergies, after consulting with your pediatrician, the guidelines advise feeding 2g of baby-friendly peanut foods at least three times per week.