HOUSTON — A diverse maternal diet during pregnancy was associated with lower rates of eczema and/or food allergies in infant offspring, particularly in instances when mothers have a history of allergic disease, according to research presented at the 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology, held November 7 to 11, in Houston, Texas.

Investigators of the Healthy Start Study examined the association between diversity in maternal diet during pregnancy and maternal history of allergies with offspring food allergy and/or eczema. Maternal diet diversity was reported via food propensity questionnaires completed during pregnancy; maternal history of allergic disease was assessed via International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) questions; and food allergy and/or eczema in offspring was categorized as physician-verified cases occurring before 2 years of age. Associations, interactions, and log odds of offspring allergy and/or eczema were assessed using logistic regression.

Event rates differed (Wald X²=6.65; df=1; P =.01) between offspring of mothers who had poor diet diversity and maternal history of allergic disease (33%. 26 of 78) and offspring of mothers with poor diet and no maternal history of allergic disease (26%; 46 of 180), good diet diversity and no history of allergic disease (20%, 134 of 682), good diet and maternal history of allergic disease (21%, 77 of 375), which did not significantly differ from each other (Wald X²=3.02; df=2; P =.22). Offspring of mothers with both a history of allergic disease and poor diet diversity were more likely to develop food allergy and/or eczema (odds ratio, 1.91; 95% CI, 1.17-3.11; P =.01). No interaction was observed between maternal diversity in diet and history of allergic disease (P =.67).

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The researchers concluded that a diverse maternal diet during pregnancy was associated with lower rates of food allergy and/or eczema in offspring, particularly if the mother has had a history of allergic disease.

Reference

Venter C, Palumbo M, Glueck D, et al. Maternal diet diversity during pregnancy and eczema and food allergy in offspring: Healthy Start Study. Presented at: American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting 2019; November 7-11, 2019; Houston, TX. Abstract A306.

This article originally appeared on Pulmonology Advisor