Cow's milk protein allergy (CMPA) is thought to affect one in 20 children under three and is the commonest food allergy in children. In brief, it is when the body's immune system responds inappropriately to the protein in cow's milk.
Thankfully, most children outgrow milk allergy by five years of age so true milk allergy in older children and adults is uncommon.
Can this allergy affect breast-fed babies too?
Yes, but it is less common. Exclusively breast-fed babies that are very sensitive can react to proteins that are passed on through their mother's milk, if she has been consuming dairy products. In this situation, healthcare professionals recommend that breast-feeding is continued due to its benefits and that the mother tries to eliminate cow's milk protein from her diet.
Read on to find out about CMPA symptoms.