While breastfeeding infants has been found to come with a number of health benefits, researchers at Australian National University reveal that exclusively breastfeeding babies in their first six months may increase the risk of developing nut allergy.
The researchers observed more than 15,000 children in ACT to check whether breastfeeding played a role in nut allergy and found that those who were exclusively breastfed during the first six months were 1.5 times more likely to develop nut allergy compared to those who were also given other fluid food items.
However the findings have been rejected by Australian Breastfeeding Association who claimed that there is no direct evidence that exclusive breastfeeding increased nut allergy risk. "We have yet to see a body of significant research to change our view - most research, actually does recommend that breastfeeding is still best. In fact most studies suggest breastfeeding can actually reduce allergies the longer babies are breastfed", ABA spokeswoman Meredith Laverty said.
The study has been published in the International Journal of Pediatrics.