Breast feeding reduces incidence of allergic rhinits in infants

Of 316 1–3-year-old african-American children in this study, 116 had allergic rhinitis (AR). It was found that prolonged breat feeding and lots of siblings in the home during infancy significantly reduced the risk of allergic rhinitis, that postiive skin prick test to food, tree pollen and house dust mite increased the risk of alelrgic rhinitis but that neither traffic pllution nor tobacco smoke had any effect on the risk of AR.


Infant predictors of early childhood allergic rhinitis (AR) are poorly understood.

We sought to identify environmental exposures and host factors during infancy that predict AR at age 3 years.

High-risk children from greater Cincinnati were followed annually from ages 1 to 3 years. AR was defined as sneezing, runny, or blocked nose in the prior 12 months and a positive skin prick test (SPT) response to 1 or more aeroallergens. Environmental and standardized medical questionnaires determined exposures and clinical outcomes. Primary activity area dust samples were analyzed for house dust endotoxin (HDE) and (1-3)-β-D-glucan. Fine particulate matter sampled at 27 monitoring stations was used to estimate personal elemental carbon attributable to traffic exposure by using a land-use regression model.

Of 361 children in this analysis, 116 had AR, and 245 were nonatopic and nonsymptomatic. Prolonged breast-feeding in African American children (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.8; 95% CI, 0.6-0.9) and multiple children in the home during infancy was protective against AR (aOR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2-0.8). Food SPT response positivity and tree SPT response positivity in infancy increased the risk of AR at age 3 years (aOR of 4.4 [95% CI, 2.1-9.2] and aOR of 6.8 [95% CI, 2.5-18.7], respectively). HDE exposure was associated with AR; the effect was dependent on exposure level. Elemental carbon attributable to traffic and environmental tobacco smoke exposure showed no effect on AR.

Prolonged breast-feeding in African American subjects and multiple children in the home during infancy reduced the risk of AR at age 3 years. SPT response positivity to food and tree allergens enhanced risk. The HDE effect on AR was related to exposure.

Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Volume 125, Issue 5, May 2010, Pages 1054-1060.e1

More research into rhinitis

First Published May 2010

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