This article is part of Pulmonology Advisor‘s coverage of the ACAAI 2019 meeting, taking place in Houston, TX. Our staff will report on medical research related to allergies, asthma, and more conducted by experts in the field. Check back regularly for more news from ACAAI 2019.


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.

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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.