Do traditional fermented foods protect against infantile atopic dermatitis

Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2019 Aug;30(5):540-546. doi: 10.1111/pai.13045. Epub 2019 Mar 31.


Background: Environmental and dietary factors during pregnancy may affect development of infantile atopic dermatitis (AD). This study analyzed whether maternal consumption of selected Turkish fermented foods (FF) and other factors during pregnancy affect the development of AD during the first 2 years of life.

Methods: Eighty-four children with physician-diagnosed AD (aged between 2 and 24 months) and mothers, and 56 similarly aged, healthy children and mothers were studied. Physician-administered questionnaires retrospectively surveyed maternal consumption of FF during pregnancy. The intake frequency of 8 selected Turkish FF was classified as either (1) daily or (2) less than daily. Other possible demographic and environmental risk factors were also analyzed.

Results: Daily maternal consumption of yogurt, fermented olive, and cheese in the control group was significantly higher than the AD group (P < 0.001, P = 0.017, and P = 0.011, respectively). Exposure to environmental tobacco smoking (ETS) was more common in the AD group than the control group (P = 0.025). In multivariate logistic regression analysis, maternal ETS exposure during pregnancy was associated with increased risk of infantile AD, and daily consumption of yogurt was associated with a reduced risk (odds ratio [OR]: 2.60, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.11-6.1, and OR: 0.22, CI: 0.09-0.54, respectively). The diversity of consumed FF during pregnancy was found to have a protective effect against infantile AD (OR: 0.27, CI: 0.14-0.53).

Conclusions: Daily maternal intake of yogurt and diversity of consumed Turkish FF during pregnancy may reduce the risk of AD. Maternal tobacco smoke exposure is associated with increased risk of infantile AD.

Keywords: atopic dermatitis; environmental tobacco smoking; fermented foods; probiotics; yogurt.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cultured Milk Products*
  • Dermatitis, Atopic / epidemiology*
  • Eating
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Maternal Exposure
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects / epidemiology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Tobacco Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Turkey / epidemiology