Food allergies begin affecting toddlers and it is very important to know which kinds of foods to avoid in order to minimize the danger. According to official US statistics, approximately 4.6 percent of the children aged 18 or younger suffer from a food allergy.
Recognizing the symptoms of a food allergy is relatively simple. It can provoke a skin reaction like hives or it can cause swelling of the limbs and the face. Monitoring the reactions of a toddler is very important because swelling that affects the throat may be lethal.
Top Food Allergies among Toddlers
Some foods are more likely to cause a reaction than others. Parents should be aware of each danger and the most common types of food allergies among babies and toddlers.
Studies show that eight specific groups of food are responsible for nearly 90 percent of all the allergic reactions among children. These ‘dangerous’ foods include eggs, fish, shellfish, milk, soy, peanuts, wheat and tree nuts.
Some other foods may be connected to allergic and unpleasant reactions. Citrus fruits are one such example. They are very acidic and they may cause a rash. This, however, is not an allergic reaction. Strawberries, on the other hand, can result in a food allergy that may be life threatening for a toddler.
Delaying the introduction of some food for a later age is a good idea. These foods include honey, broccoli, all varieties of berries, corn, and grapes. Some of these may cause a reaction while others are difficult to digest.
Preventing Food Allergies in Toddlers
Now that you are familiar with the dangerous food groups, you should also get acquainted with the best ways to prevent the formation of food allergies in toddlers. Some very simple steps will produce exceptional results.
Talk to your pediatrician about your toddler’s eating habits. Once you begin reading about it, you will find out that the tips and recommendations are very different from one publication to another.
Some experts claim that peanuts and peanut butter may actually be beneficial for toddlers. Taking into consideration your little one’s medical records and history can help you handle problems and decide on the best foods. Your pediatrician or an allergy specialist will offer reliable and adequate advice.
Many young children exhibit symptoms of allergies to fruits and vegetables. Cooking these products breaks down the allergens and minimizes the dangers. Studies are also showing that the early introduction of such foods may increase the chance of allergy development in toddlers.
The timing of introduction of solid foods and the ‘risky’ food groups is also important. Fish and shellfish, for example, should be added to the menu of a toddler after the age of 36 months. Waiting and removing dangerous items from the meals of toddlers is the easiest way to overcome the problem of food allergies.
Some studies are also establishing a connection between the diet of a mother while she is pregnant or breastfeeding and child allergies. Although a solid connection is yet to be established, maintaining a healthy diet during pregnancy is certainly a smart choice.
The danger of food allergies among toddlers is often underestimated. Still, taking cautious measures is always a better option than trying to handle the problem afterwards. You should also examine your toddler for allergy symptoms. If anything troubles you, seek out a pediatrician immediately.
Jamie Highland writes about family and nutrition topics for My Baby Shower Favors, a site that offers baby shower favors and baby shower games. In this article, Jamie discusses how to prevent food allergies in toddlers.