Link between breastfeeding & baby eczema

According to the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, March 2010, babies who breast feed for longer periods may actually be more likely to develop eczema.

According to an article in Reuters:

“The study followed 321 infants who were at increased risk of allergies because their mothers had a history of asthma. Researchers found that among those who were breastfed exclusively for more than six months, 55 percent developed eczema by age 2.”

But before moms start to swear off breastfeeding forever. The link between breastfeeding and asthma and eczema are still fuzzy, and as the article continues:

“Breast milk is considered the best, most balanced form of nutrition for infants, and experts generally recommend that babies be breastfed exclusively for the first six months of life.”

But in the interests of seeing both sides of the story, I also came across the following study from the US National Library of Medicine that says:

“Exclusive breast-feeding for more than 4 months reduced the risk for eczema at the age of 4 years… irrespective of combination with asthma, sensitization to common allergens, or parental allergic disease.”

What do you think?

I personally have exclusively breastfed my elder son for 5 months, and continued supplementing for 1 year. My current baby, I’ve breastfed 90% till 9 months of age. Both boys do not have eczema thankfully. I personally feel that breastmilk is the best for a baby till 6 months of age and mummies have to eat a good range of food while breastfeeding to ensure the baby is introduced to every food indirectly even when drinking mummy’s milk.

Image:

Baby Kai by Jon Ovington

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