Stop those baby wipes to prevent food allergy in kids: Study

Monday, 9 April 2018 (17:57 IST)
Washington: Giving a jerk to millions of new parents, who rely heavily on soap-laced tissue papers or rather baby wipes for the cleaning process of their little bundles of joy, a study recently found that a host of factors leading to food allergy in children majorly included use of infant cleansing wipes that leave soap on the skin. 

According to Joan Cook-Mills, lead author of the study and professor of allergy-immunology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, 'The top skin layer is made of lipids (fats), and the soap in the wipes disrupts that barrier. Skin problems that occur with skin barrier mutations may not be visible until long after a food allergy has already started.

'Childhood food allergy is linked to a mix of environmental and genetic factors that must coexist to trigger the allergy. These include genetics that alter skin absorbency, use of infant cleansing wipes that leave soap on the skin, skin exposure to allergens in dust and skin exposure to food from those providing infant care.

'It's a major advance in our understanding of how food allergy starts early in life. This is a recipe for developing food allergy,' Science Daily quoted Dr Cook-Mills as saying.However, the factors leading to food allergy can be modified, by making small changes in home environment, Dr Cook-Mills said in the study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology on Friday.

'Reduce baby's skin exposure to the food allergens by washing your hands before handling the baby. Limit use of infant wipes that leave soap on the skin. Rinse soap off with water, like we used to do years ago,' he suggested.(UNI)

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