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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2016 May;137(5):1477-1486.e8. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2015.12.1322. Epub 2016 Feb 17.

Enquiring About Tolerance (EAT) study: Feasibility of an early allergenic food introduction regimen.

Author information

1
Population Health Research Institute, St George's, University of London, London, United Kingdom; Department Paediatric Allergy, Division of Asthma, Allergy and Lung Biology, King's College London, London, United Kingdom.
2
Department Paediatric Allergy, Division of Asthma, Allergy and Lung Biology, King's College London, London, United Kingdom.
3
Department Paediatric Allergy, Division of Asthma, Allergy and Lung Biology, King's College London, London, United Kingdom; St John's Institute of Dermatology, Guy' and St Thomas' Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, United Kingdom.
4
Department Paediatric Allergy, Division of Asthma, Allergy and Lung Biology, King's College London, London, United Kingdom. Electronic address: gideon.lack@kcl.ac.uk.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The influence of early exposure to allergenic foods on the subsequent development of food allergy remains uncertain.

OBJECTIVE:

We sought to determine the feasibility of the early introduction of multiple allergenic foods to exclusively breast-fed infants from 3 months of age and the effect on breastfeeding performance.

METHODS:

We performed a randomized controlled trial. The early introduction group (EIG) continued breastfeeding with sequential introduction of 6 allergenic foods: cow's milk, peanut, hard-boiled hen's egg, sesame, whitefish (cod), and wheat; the standard introduction group followed the UK infant feeding recommendations of exclusive breastfeeding for around 6 months with no introduction of allergenic foods before 6 months of age.

RESULTS:

One thousand three hundred three infants were enrolled. By 5 months of age, the median frequency of consumption of all 6 foods was 2 to 3 times per week for every food in the EIG and no consumption for every food in the standard introduction group (P < .001 for every comparison). By 6 months of age, nonintroduction of the allergenic foods in the EIG was less than 5% for each of the 6 foods. Achievement of the stringent per-protocol consumption target for the EIG proved more difficult (42% of evaluable EIG participants). Breastfeeding rates in both groups significantly exceeded UK government data for equivalent mothers (P < .001 at 6 and at 9 months of age).

CONCLUSION:

Early introduction, before 6 months of age, of at least some amount of multiple allergenic foods appears achievable and did not affect breastfeeding. This has important implications for the evaluation of food allergy prevention strategies.

KEYWORDS:

Food allergy; allergens; breastfeeding; diet; infancy

PMID:
26896232
PMCID:
PMC4852987
DOI:
10.1016/j.jaci.2015.12.1322
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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