Celiac
Answer Bank

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

Is gluten found in breast milk?

There is little to no human research about the effect of gliadin, which is the portion of gluten that passes through breast milk. However, in animal studies it has been shown to have a protective effect, or help the child build up a tolerance to gluten. We don’t know for certain, but the best evidence we have indicates that a child who is at risk for celiac disease being breastfed by a mother who eats a normal diet would not be harmed by this, and in fact, might be helped. Regardless, recent large prospective studies (September 2014) have provided new information on the role of breast feeding and on when it is best to introduce gluten into the at-risk child’s diet. It seems that breast feeding has no role in preventing the onset of celiac; and as for timing of gluten introduction, while introducing before 4 months of age remains a risk factor, there is no advantage in delaying its introduction after 6 months. July, 2015

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