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Allergen Introduction Baby Food - What's the Best Option?

August 31, 2021 3 min read

While food allergies are nothing new, their prevalence over the last 15 years has increased significantly, which makes early and regular exposure to allergens in infancy more important than ever! But with most types of commercially available baby food on the market not including all the right ingredients, getting your child accustomed to the most common food allergens can be a challenging task.

“Science has shown us that delaying introduction of potentially allergenic foods may actually increase the risk of food allergies,” says Dr. Kari Nadeau, the co-founder of SpoonfulONE. “But introduction is only part of the story. Independent data shows that consistent inclusion of potential food allergens, not only peanuts, in the diet of infants and toddlers is key to educating the immune system.” 

We understand it can be confusing to choose the very best products for your baby, so here are topics to consider when choosing the right product:

Multi-Allergen Introduction vs Introducing Allergens One by One

Many allergen introduction products on the market only contain one or two common allergens, like egg, peanut, and milk. But with the FDA recognizing nine common allergens, that means that the harder ones, like cod, shrimp, and sesame, are not getting introduced as routinely.

New research has shown that it is safe to start many foods early in infancy, especially common allergens. This challenges the old method of waiting days in between introducing foods, and shows this guidance is out of sync with the latest approaches to food allergy introduction. Now we know that early and regular dietary exposure to these foods may actually help reduce the risk that infants and toddlers will develop food allergies in the future.

There are a number of commercially available products that can help busy parents maintain allergens in their baby's diet, but SpoonfulONE is the most complete. Every pack includes peanuts, milk, shrimp, almond, cashew, hazelnut, pecan, pistachio, walnut, egg, cod, salmon, wheat, oat, soy, and sesame, covering the food groups associated with over 90% of food allergies.

Commercially Available Baby Food

Though there are many commercially available baby food products that contain wheat or cow’s milk, the vast majority contain very low, if any, food allergen content. This means that for infants fed mostly commercial infant foods, they are unlikely to be exposed to sufficient amounts of the major food allergens on a regular basis. 

If a child’s diet includes commercially available foods, other meals must also be offered to meet USDA nutritional guidelines, including the introduction of common food allergens, diversity of flavors, and more complex textures.

Multi-Step Products that Grow with Your Baby

When food allergens are eaten on a regular basis within and beyond the first year of life, the immune cells in the stomach begin to recognize the most common food allergens as just food.

Many early allergen products on the market only come in one format, and aren’t designed to follow your child’s growth with and beyond their first year of life. 

SpoonfulONE is the only baby snack to grow with your little one in multiple age-friendly formats: Mix-insPuffs, Crunchy Puffs, and Oat Crackers.

Proprietary Studies

Research and new USDA guidelines have changed how pediatricians recommend feeding babies. But as the leader in early allergen feeding, we don't just use borrowed data from 3rd party research. 

Using landmark studies like LEAP and EAT as inspiration, SpoonfulONE’s founder Dr. Kari Nadeau, the Director of the Sean N. Parker Center for Allergy and Asthma Research at Stanford University, invested in and conducted her own proprietary research

This research showed that the diverse mix of ingredients in SpoonfulONE helped increase IgG4 (protective antibodies) in children after feeding SpoonfulONE for a year. That’s why we are proud of our higher standards and superior science.

Make Every Bite Count with SpoonfulONE

Successful training of your baby’s tummy takes consistent feeding from infancy through early childhood. Made from real, wholesome ingredients, SpoonfulONE’s delicious early allergen baby snacks make diet diversity a long term habit.

Not sure where to get started? Check out our Starter Kit, which includes 70 days worth of SpoonfulONE products and exclusive access and information from our medical team. And with the code STARTERKIT15, get 15% off on your first order!