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An updated clinical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) investigated whether breastfeeding could prevent certain allergies.
Published in Pediatrics, the AAP’s Committee on Nutrition and Section on Allergy and Immunology updated information from its 2008 clinical report on maternal and early infant diets in regard to the prevention of atopic disease in 2019.
The report includes clear evidence that exclusive breastfeeding for 3-4 months can decrease the risk of eczema in the first 2 years of an infant’s life.
The report notes that no other short- or long-term advantages to exclusive breastfeeding beyond 4 months of age were noted.
In an in-depth article that outlined the AAP’s updates, Contemporary Pediatrics wrote, “However, there is evidence that although breastfeeding for the first 4 months can be protective against wheezing in the first 2 years of a child’s life, a longer duration may even be protective against asthma even after age 5 years.”