Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of bmjThe BMJ
BMJ. 1989 July 22; 299(6693): 228–230.
PMCID: PMC1836914

This article has been retractedRetraction in: BMJ. 2015 October 28; 351: h5682    See also: PMC Retraction Policy

Influence of maternal diet during lactation and use of formula feeds on development of atopic eczema in high risk infants.


OBJECTIVE--To examine the effects of maternal diet during lactation and the use of formula feeds on the development of atopic eczema in infants at risk. DESIGN--Mothers who planned to breast feed exclusively were randomly allocated to either a restricted diet (avoiding milk and other dairy products, eggs, fish, peanuts, and soybeans) or a diet without restrictions. Mothers who did not plan to breast feed were randomly allocated to using one of three formula feeds. SETTING--Child health centre in Canada. SUBJECTS--97 Mothers who chose to breast feed and 124 mothers who did not. INTERVENTIONS--Restricted diet for 49 mothers who breast fed. Casein hydrolysate formula, soy milk formula, or cows' milk formula for infants not breast fed. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE--Development of eczema in babies. RESULTS--Infants were followed up over 18 months and examined for eczema. Eczema was less common and milder in babies who were breast fed and whose mothers were on a restricted diet (11/49 (22%) v 21/48 (48%)). In infants fed casein hydrolysate, soy milk, or cows' milk 9/43 (21%), 26/41 (63%), and 28/40 (70%), respectively, developed atopic eczema. CONCLUSIONS--In families with a history of atopic disease [corrected] mothers who breast feed should avoid common allergenic foods during lactation. If they choose not to breast feed a hydrolysate formula should be used.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Atherton DJ. Diet and atopic eczema. Clin Allergy. 1988 May;18(3):215–228. [PubMed]
  • Bock SA. The natural history of food sensitivity. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1982 Feb;69(2):173–177. [PubMed]
  • Chandra RK. Immunological aspects of human milk. Nutr Rev. 1978 Sep;36(9):265–272. [PubMed]
  • Saarinen UM. Prophylaxis for atopic disease: role of infant feeding. Clin Rev Allergy. 1984 May;2(2):151–167. [PubMed]
  • Chandra RK, Puri S, Cheema PS. Predictive value of cord blood IgE in the development of atopic disease and role of breast-feeding in its prevention. Clin Allergy. 1985 Nov;15(6):517–522. [PubMed]
  • Cant AJ, Bailes JA, Marsden RA, Hewitt D. Effect of maternal dietary exclusion on breast fed infants with eczema: two controlled studies. Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1986 Jul 26;293(6541):231–233. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Matthew DJ, Taylor B, Norman AP, Turner MW. Prevention of eczema. Lancet. 1977 Feb 12;1(8007):321–324. [PubMed]
  • Miskelly FG, Burr ML, Vaughan-Williams E, Fehily AM, Butland BK, Merrett TG. Infant feeding and allergy. Arch Dis Child. 1988 Apr;63(4):388–393. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from The BMJ are provided here courtesy of BMJ Publishing Group