Is there finally a cure for peanut allergies? According to a new study, it could be as simple as feeding babies peanuts as soon as they can eat.
“It's just scary,” said 13-year-old Alesha Anderson. “I can't really breath and my face is swollen and my lips are swollen.”
Anderson has been battling a severe peanut allergy for years. She is not alone. More than 3 million people in the U.S. are allergic to peanuts and other tree nuts and the number of children living with peanut allergies tripled between 1997 and 2008.
Now, a new study could completely change the way doctors treat kids dealing with this kind of allergy.
“We and other physicians have been telling parents to avoid certain allergenic foods until a certain age, depending on the food. Turns out to have been wrong,” said Dr. Jordan Abbott, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at National Jewish Health.
Researchers at King's College in London looked at kids who had a high risk of allergies. They say, by giving babies peanut paste often, before they turn one, the risk of developing peanut allergies at the age of five was cut by more than 80 percent.
And while more research needs to be done to determine just how much peanut paste needs to be given during that first year of life, doctors have already begun to change their recommendations.
Remember, you need to talk with your doctor before feeding your child anything they are allergic to.