BABY’S FIRST TASTE
Doctors and dietitians recommend that babies
be breast or formula-fed with no solid foods
for the first 6 months of life.
When there is a family history of any food
allergy, it is best to ask a doctor or an allergist
when to introduce eggs to the baby’s diet.
If there is no family history of food allergies,
introduce cooked egg yolk at 8 to 9 months of
age and cooked egg white at about 12 months.
This timing takes into account the development
of the infant’s immune system. Start with 1 small
spoon of cooked egg yolk per day. Increase slowly
to 3 egg yolks per week. Baby’s first birthday is a
good time to introduce the whole egg.
If a breast-fed baby is found to have an allergy
to eggs, the mother may be advised to stop
eating eggs for as long as she breast-feeds.
When eating out or buying bakery products, ask
if eggs were used in any part of the preparation.
BE CAUTIOUS! You may not always be given the
Tell everyone who may have contact with an
allergic child about the allergy. Be sure daycare
centre staff and babysitters understand the
importance of isolating the child from contact with
eggs and know what to do if a reaction occurs.
Teach an allergic child not to share foods.
Avoid eating from buffets and at restaurants
where foods with egg batter are deep-fried in oil
that is reused for other foods.
GIVING EGGS ANOTHER CHANCE
Allergy to eggs is one of the few food allergies
that can last a lifetime. Sometimes when the
allergy is mild, the doctor may suggest giving the
child a very small amount, perhaps in a cooked
food which contains eggs, such as a cookie. If
this is tolerated, the amount can be slowly and
gradually increased starting with a small quantity
of hard-cooked egg yolk and later adding egg
white (e.g., omelette). Be sure to check with an
allergist before trying this.
Fortunately, most children outgrow their allergy
to egg by age 5 to 7 years but when it is severe,
it can last a lifetime.
Allergy to eggs is caused by the immune