NUTRITION&FOOD Published March8, 2016 By Beatrice Asuncion

Scientists Suggest Odd Way to Prevent Peanut Allergies

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Roasted Peanuts
(Photo : Roasted Peanuts (JonSchelanderpugh))

One of the most common food that people are allergic to is peanuts. The statistics of peanut allergy is  so staggering that in the U.S alone the rate of people who experience life-threatening allergy attacks has risen more than 300 percent from  0.4 percent in 1997 to 1.4 percent in 2010. Up until now parents are still trying to figure out remedies on how they could lessen the effect of peanut allergy to no avail.

Thankfully, a group of British researchers recently made a study about the remedies to avoid peanut allergy. The study has since been published in New England Journal of Medicine. The researchers talked about their simple remedy which was to feed infants peanuts despite the fact that they potentially have high risk of developing an allergy from it. The researches stated that introducing peanut food to infants can reduce the risk that they will eventually go through allergies when they grow up.

Dr. Gideon Lack, head of the department of pediatric allergy at King's College London along with his team enrolled 500 infants on their study - half of the number of infants have been eating peanuts regularly and the other half are not given any peanut food at all. The researchers found out that at 6 years of age, there was only a slight increase in risk of peanut allergy in the children who had consumed peanuts during first study period, from 3.6 percent after five years to 4.8 percent after six years.

Study co-author Dr. George Du Toit, consultant in pediatric allergy at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust and King's College London has since explained in a recent interview the mechanics of his solution to peanut allergies.

"We need more research to better understand the mechanisms behind the development and prevention of allergic responses to peanut, and how this might translate to other food allergies. However, it is reassuring that the highly protective intervention demonstrated in LEAP was not only safe, nutritionally favorable and acceptable to participant families but also sustained even with cessation of peanut consumption for 12 months."

Even though the study presented promising results the researchers are still urging all parents to visit their pediatrician or allergist before introducing their infants with peanut allergy to peanut foods.

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