I Can't Win.

As some of you know, Josh is allergic to peanuts (among other things). Very early on in my pregnancy, I started doing research- Should I eat peanuts? Some said No! It will sensitize this already-genetically-prone-to-allergies kid to the food, and cause harm. Others said, Go ahead! It will desensitize the kid or have no effect, since you're not allergic and reacting. Everyone also says, Eat lots of protein! and I'm not a big meat eater, so nuts are my preferred way to get it many days. I had a dilemma


Based on my research, I settled on the fact that it was OK for me to eat peanuts- I'd not be doing any harm. My midwife thought it was more important that I was getting protein than the risk that eating peanuts was doing any harm- especially since allergies are about over-reaction of the immune system, and babies don't have a very developed immune system until 6 weeks- so it's fine while pregnant.

And then, TIME (which seems to come out with alarming pregnancy news weekly) today published an article, Can Pregnant Moms Give Their Babies a Peanut Allergy? Maybe..

Ugh. Because I don't already have enough to worry about.

According to the article, the American Academy of Pediatrics used to recommend avoiding allergens with a family history of food allergies (That'd be me, well, Josh's family) between 1998 and 2000, but then rescinded that recommendation in 2008 when British studies showed that the advice didn't seem to have an effect on allergy rates. So, I've been following the most recent recommendation. Yay!

This new study, however, shows higher reactions to peanuts in babies whose moms ate peanuts more than twice a week during pregnancy (That'd be me, too. By my calculations, I eat about 5 servings a week of nuts.) According to the researcher quoted in the article, these results aren't enough to change the current AAP recommendation- "I don't think we have enough evidence to tell families to do anything different than what they are already doing," he says, "but the study shows that maybe we should consider in utero exposure as a potential risk factor and study it more going forward." Is the door locked on eating peanuts? Not exactly, but this is making me more skeptical...

Try as I might to do my best research and make the most informed decisions possible, I can't win. Sigh. This making-the-best-choices-for-your-child thing is hard already, and he's not even on the outside yet.


jjeaton said...

Eat some meat. :)

Anonymous said...

How were babies born before Time magazine was invented?
If you follow all the advice from all the sources, you never would have time or energy to have a baby....Too much information!!
Do what makes sense to you and enjoy the remaining sixty three days!

Heather said...

I agree with Anonymous!


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