Peanuts are an important part of a healthy diet plan for infants. They are very nutrient-rich and contain proteins, unsaturated fatty acids, minerals, vitamins and phytonutrients that help to strengthen the immune system. Peanut allergies in humans are relatively rare but can still occur, which can be life-threatening for some infants who may not always be able to tolerate them. Therefore, Peanuts are an important part of a child’s diet, and research has shown that the introduction of peanuts early in life can help prevent peanut allergies.
When Should I Introduce Peanuts to My Child?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children consume foods containing peanuts between four and eleven months. The risk of developing peanut allergies is lower if your child eats a peanut-containing food before the age of one year when he or she might be most prone to developing allergies. Sometimes people think that peanuts are not healthy for children under two, but this is not true. The nuts themselves are very nutritious and may be eaten in large amounts. It is just that the symptoms of a peanut allergy usually show up later on, usually between the ages of 4 and 11 months. If a child is at the highest risk for having an allergy, it is best to avoid introducing peanuts until after one year.
How Should I Introduce Peanuts to My Infant?
The easiest way to introduce infants to peanuts is by giving the child some small pieces of peanut-containing food and making sure the baby doesn’t eat too much at once to avoid choking. Although some people think that young children are more likely to have a bad reaction to peanuts, experts believe that a reaction occurs in just one in 500 infants. Introducing the peanut to your infant in this way is recommended by most pediatricians because the peanut is so tiny that it does not pose any threat.
How Many Times During the Day Can I Give My Infant Peanuts?
It is best only to give a small number of peanuts at a time until you know how your child interacts with them. Do not give large amounts, such as 1/2 of a whole peanut at a time. It is not safe and can potentially cause choking or upset stomachs. A good amount of peanuts would be about one-eighth of a peanut at a time or roughly two peanuts. You can give your infant as many servings from this small amount as possible, but you should not go overboard. There are no long-term health benefits to giving more than two servings of peanuts per day to infants.
What Should I Look Out for If I Introduce My Infant to Peanuts?
It would be best if you keep an eye on your child after he or she eats peanuts. Most likely, your infant will not have an allergic reaction to peanuts after eating two servings in 24 hours. But if your infant has any allergy-like symptoms in just one meal, you should call your pediatrician. Examples of these symptoms include a rash on the child, a stuffy nose, or sore gums. However, it is essential to note that a certain population of peanut eaters should never introduce this food to their infants. This group includes a family history of allergy to peanuts, eczema, or respiratory illnesses. These individuals should avoid eating peanuts themselves and may want to avoid exposing their children to the allergens found in peanut dust as well.
Does My Child Need to Avoid All Peanut Products?
It is always best to see a doctor for further testing and advice about products that your child might be allergic to or sensitive to when introducing peanuts. However, a peanut allergy in a child usually shows up between the ages of 4 and 11 months. If your child has been having reactions to peanuts at this age, he or she might not be able to tolerate more than two servings of peanuts per day.
How Can I Tell If My Infant Has Had Too Much Peanut?
One way to tell if your infant has had too many peanuts is if they have stopped eating and sleeping. Signs of too much peanut to your child include:
- Thirst naps and constantly needing to be fed
- Sore or red gums or mouth.
- Drowsiness and irritability, especially if the child is a fussy baby or infant.
- Anxious moods include not wanting to be held, crying, or acting depressed.
- Restlessness and fussiness.
- Difficulty sleeping, possibly waking up multiple times each night.
- Lower back pain or developing a rash on the legs.
- Skin rash, especially on feet and hands.
In this case, you can schedule your appointment immediately with a Philadelphia-based ENT doctor to help relieve your child from suffering from the above disorders, such as sleep disorder resulting from peanut allergy.
What Rules Should I Keep in Mind to Help Prevent Peanut Allergy to My Baby?
- Do not give your baby anything with peanut oil or butter until the age of 4-5 months.
- Avoid giving your baby any baby food containing peanut powder until he or she is at least 3-4 months old.
- Do not let your baby play with any peanut butter sachets, balls of peanut butter, or other peanut products until he or she is 4-5 months old.
- Do not give your child any prepared baby food with a peanut butter base until he or she is 4-5 months old.
- Do not give any foods that contain nut butter until your child is at least 4-5 months old.
Peanuts, which are among the best sources of protein globally, are now recommended as a food that can be given to infants. However, like all plant-derived foods, peanuts must be prepared so that they do not have any added flavors or sweeteners. Once these preparations have been made, you can confidently use them to feed your baby.