What is Cow’s Milk Allergy (CMA)?
A: Cow’s Milk Allergy is due to a child’s immune system over responding to proteins in cow’s milk but also in breast milk and other food products with the proteins such as baby formula and solid foods. 

How many are affected by Cow’s Milk Allergy?
A: About 2.5% of babies worldwide develop CMA in the first year of life.

What are common signs and symptoms of Cow’s Milk Allergy?
A: Signs and symptoms are: 

  1. Skin problems namely hives (red, itchy bumps) and Eczema (dry, itchy skin)
  2. Swollen lips, tongue, eyes, face
  3. Vomiting, diarrhea, blood in stool
  4. Constipation, crying and other colicky symptoms


How can Cow’s Milk Allergy be managed?
A: Managing CMA should be done with healthcare provider’s consultation. Possible strategies are:
1. Safely breastfeeding only
2. Hypoallergenic Formula-feed only
3. Breastfeeding with specialized infant formula supplement.
In breastfeeding, medical providers may suggest a milk-free diet with calcium and other nutrient supplements for mothers to ensure a healthy diet. 

What are common foods that may contain milk?
A: Common foods that usually contain milk are:

  1. Cheese, soy-based cheeses, curds
  2. Pasta sauces
  3. Packaged foods, processed meats, canned tuna, instant mashed potatoes, instant gravy
  4. Custards
  5. Butter, butter fat, margarine, ghee
  6. Flavorings, non-dairy creamers
  7. Sour cream, cream, yogurt
  8. Milk chocolates, spreads
  9. Mayo, salad dressings
  10. Cereals, breakfast cereals, baby cereals
  11. Cake, biscuit mixes, Breads, crackers, granola, snack bars


How to spot foods that contain milk protein when it is not obvious?
A: Food labels often include “Contains Milk” or “May Contain Milk”. You can look for these names in ingredient lists: Casein, caseinate, diacetyle, lactoglobulin, lactalbumin, lactoferrin, lactose, rennet, whey

Do children grow out of Cow’s Milk Allergy?
A: Most people grow out of milk allergy early in life rather than later but it is not predictable whether a child will outgrow Cow’s Milk Allergy.

Does Cow’s Milk Allergy affect child development?
A: Working with healthcare provider to find a nutrition plan to manage cow’s milk allergy while receiving necessary nutrients can enable children with Cow’s Milk Allergy to achieve optimal child growth and development.

If you think your child has Cow’s Milk Allergy or have questions, please contact us at 309-452-0995 or 217-717-4404 to schedule an appointment with healthcare providers specialized in food allergy in children.

Information source: anhi.org