Diet and food allergy development during infancy: Birth cohort study findings using prospective food diary data

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 07/26/2013

Grimshaw KEC et al. – The authors sought to assess the relationship between infant dietary patterns in the first year of life and development of food allergy by age 2 years. An infant diet consisting of high levels of fruits, vegetables, and home–prepared foods is associated with less food allergy by the age of 2 years.

Methods

  • The authors performed a nested, case-control, within-cohort study. Mothers kept prospective food diaries for the first year of life, with resultant diet data coded in a unique manner to produce new variables, which were then analyzed by using principal component analysis to identify infant feeding patterns within the study subjects.

Results

  • Principal component analysis of diet diary data from 41 infants given a diagnosis of food allergy based on results of double-blind, placebo-controlled food challenges in the first 2 years of life and their 82 age-matched control subjects provided an early infant diet pattern and an ongoing diet pattern.
  • There was no difference between the study groups for the early infant diet pattern, but for the ongoing diet pattern, there was a significant difference between the groups (P = .001).
  • This ongoing dietary pattern was characterized by higher intake of fruits, vegetables, and home-prepared foods, with control infants having a significantly higher healthy infant diet dietary pattern score than children who had a food allergy.

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