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Allergens, Breastfeeding, Hypersensitivity, Infant.



  1. List, Betsy A. MPH, RN, IBCLC
  2. Vonderhaar, Karen J. MSN, RN


Questions about maternal diet in lactation are common in clinical nursing practice, for nurses often work with breastfeeding women who are concerned about allergies, or who associate infant symptoms of crying or irritability to something they themselves have eaten. Can exposure to food proteins in a woman's diet actually cause food allergy in her breastfed child? Are special diets effective in managing infant allergic symptoms or gastrointestinal distress? The purpose of this article is to review the evidence related to diet for new breastfeeding mothers and make recommendations to guide clinical practice; seven such practice recommendations were developed after a thorough literature review. Nurses can use this literature summary to provide care based upon the best available research evidence.