Current research is investigating the health benefits of human milk and its preventative role in allergy. Based on numerous studies, food allergy affects up to 10% of children in developed countries and is one of the most common diseases in childhood, with evidence indicating an increase in prevalence. Thus, effective primary allergy prevention strategies are important steps to influence positively the infant’s 'early window of opportunity'.
Among others, breastfeeding has been suggested as an optimal tool to prevent allergy although evidence is inconsistent. Nutritional and non-nutritional interventions can be used for primary prevention of allergic diseases. For instance, farm life has been shown to effectively protect children. Imbalances in the microbiome profiles are believed to impair the immune system maturation and thereby increase the risk of allergic diseases. These changes may occur as a result of environmental factors typical of the western lifestyle or different food components which are thought to be responsible for the pandemic of allergic diseases, like food allergy.
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Insert in "Monatsschrift Kinderheilkunde" Volume 168, Issue 8, Aug 2020