The first few months of a baby’s life are a crucial period for its growth and development. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months as breast milk contains antibodies which will increase your baby’s passively acquired immunity and protect it against certain infections. Normally babies will not develop allergic symptoms while being exclusively breastfed.
If my baby has CMA - do I have to stop breastfeeding?
Although breastfeeding is best for most children, very sensitive babies can have immunological reactions. This does not mean that they are allergic to breast milk itself. What happens is that they react to the small amounts of cow’s milk proteins (e.g. from milk or dairy products eaten) that pass from mother to baby in the breast milk. Should this happen, you will have to eliminate cow’s milk, dairy products, and all products containing cow’s milk from your diet. The guide “Where is cow’s milk” will help you chose the right foods. Please talk to a dietitian when trying an elimination diet in order to be sure you are getting all the vital nutrients you need to stay healthy.
When your child shows allergic symptoms despite being exclusively breast-fed, the ideal solution is to avoid foods containing cow's milk proteins but still carry on breastfeeding. You should be able to manage this by eliminating any foods containing cow’s milk protein (cow’s milk and dairy products) from your diet.
If you have any questions or concerns please consult your health care professional.