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Peanuts During Pregnancy- Should You Avoid Them?

As soon as you reveal that you are pregnant, your life becomes filled with do’s and don’ts, and nuts, especially peanuts, are just one food group that has come under fire. 

Can You Eat Peanuts While Pregnant?

The short answer to this question is yes, so long as you do not have a nut allergy. 


The confusion around whether you can eat peanuts or not stems from the American Academy of Pediatrics’s advice published in 2000. This advice told allergy-prone mums to avoid peanuts and other nuts during their pregnancy as it was believed that this would help to prevent their baby from developing a nut allergy. Over time, this warning was extended to include other common food allergens, including cow’s milk, eggs, and fish, and was even promoted to breastfeeding mothers after they had given birth. 


Eventually, more research was conducted on the subject, and ultimately, the advice was revoked. In fact, the incidence of food allergies in children actually increased while mothers were advised to stay away from nuts, dairy, eggs, and fish. 


Today, experts agree that pregnant mothers do not need to avoid allergic foods and, if anything, including them in their diet may be beneficial. One recent study conducted in 2014 found that non-allergic mothers who ate peanuts and tree nuts five times a week or more were less likely to have a baby with a nut allergy, prompting new thinking that introducing infants to foods early may help to build a tolerance to them. 

Who Should Avoid Peanuts And Nuts During Pregnancy?

Of course, if you have a food allergy to nuts, peanuts, or any other food, you must continue to avoid those foods during pregnancy.  It is also recommended that women with a strong family or personal history of allergies speak to their doctor or allergist to determine if their child may be high-risk. 

January 28, 2021 by Gillian Brady
Tags: pregnancy
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