Well Child Care

Introducing Peanut Products to Your Baby

  • Katrina Hinds

It can be confusing to know when to give peanut butter or peanut containing products to your baby.

New guidelines are out, after years of research, showing that the earlier we introduce infants to peanut products, the lower the rates of peanut allergies! An old recommendation to avoid peanuts until age 3 was shown to increase the overall peanut allergy rate.

The new guidelines are partially based on eczema, an allergic skin condition, which is strongly associated with food allergies. A history of allergy to other foods is also considered.

What to do:

Does your child have SEVERE ECZEMA skin rash, an EGG ALLERGY or has she had a reaction to another food already?

  • Further discussion with your Redbud Pediatrician is recommended for possible allergy testing before giving peanut products to your infant.
  • Does your child have mild or moderate eczema that you can control with a creams and gentle skin products?
  • No testing is generally recommended. Give your baby a tasting of peanut containing product at 6 months of age and if he does well you may progress to more over time. (In fact, giving regularly is recommend to reduce the chance of developing an allergy!) Consider having Benadryl on hand in case of an unlikely reaction.

If none of the above apply to your baby, you may introduce peanut containing products anytime between 4-6 months old. A small amount of peanut butter mixed in baby cereal or yogurt or a peanut butter cracker dissolved in formula or breast milk are some ways to introduce peanut products safely!

Find more helpful information at www.healthychildren.org or www.uptodate.com.

Katrina Hinds PA-C