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Hi there, my son is almost 1 year and is in daycare. He can’t have dairy and we are trying to keep him as gluten free as possible. Do you have any ideas for daycare snacks and lunches? We have to send him with his own food and I’m running out of creative ideas. Anything helps!! Thank you so much.

NY Times had an op ed about this study today too. It was a small study but it was interesting. I think what the study shows, especially in the context of some other recent research, is that if you are going to eat gluten, especially if you are genetically predisposed to being gluten intolerant, having healthy gut bacteria is crucial. And, because breast milk provides probiotics (especially bifidobacterium, which seems to be the most important from a gluten intolerance perspective), if you’re going to introduce gluten to a baby, it’s better to do it while still breast feeding because of the probiotic advantage breastfeeding provides (this advantage is also dependent on the mother being healthy and not obese). But, the real take home is that a healthy gut is crucial for gluten tolerance. This study can’t make any strong conclusions about what happens when babies/kids grow up without gluten and then get exposed at some later time… but it does seem to imply that if the gut microbiota are normal and healthy, that that will protect the kid from gluten intolerance whenever gluten is introduced. So, if you are feeding your baby paleo, which is a very good diet for supporting gut microbiota, then it shouldn’t matter. Certainly, I don’t think this study provides any kind of rationale for giving a baby gluten early, unless you plan on feeding your baby gluten-containing foods on a regular basis throughout their upbringing.

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