Allergy research to focus on mothers' diet

A West Australian study into the impact of a pregnant mothers diet on the development of food allergies in infants has been awarded federal funding.

A trial examining pregnant mothers' diets and the development of food allergies in babies has been awarded $3.6 million in federal funding.

It is one of 37 West Australian medical research projects to share in a package of more than $33 million from the National Health and Medical Research Council.

University of WA researcher Debra Palmer is conducting a trial on about 2000 expectant mothers to determine if eating more eggs and peanuts during pregnancy can reduce the risk of infants developing an allergy.

Food allergies affect more than one in 10 children.

Federal WA minister Ken Wyatt said research had found the risk of developing a food allergy began before babies even ate solid food.

He said a lot of mothers would breathe a sigh of relief not having to worry about "one-eighth of a peanut" risking their child's life.

Professor Palmer said she hopes her research will lead to guidelines for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers on how many eggs and peanuts to consume to reduce allergy development.

"And hopefully to make a huge reduction in the food allergy epidemic we're having in Australia at the moment," she told reporters.

Source AAP

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch