Ready, Set, Food! Review: Do Food Allergy Prevention Systems Work?

Introducing allergenic foods is scary, but Ready, Set, Food! makes it easy and safe. Learn why it works, read about my experience, and even snag a discount.

Introducing allergenic foods is scary, but Ready, Set, Food! makes it easy and safe. Learn why it works, read about my experience, and even snag a discount.

When I was pregnant with my first child, I was told to avoid eating peanuts. Fast forward eight years later, when I was pregnant with my third child, I was told to intentionally eat peanuts. This sudden about-face left me with a lot of questions about food allergies in babies. That’s when I discovered a program called Ready, Set, Food! that demystifies all of this.

Read on to find out:

Why Are Allergy Prevention Programs So Important?

But first let’s go back to those conflicting guidelines. Researchers found that when pregnant women avoided allergenic foods, instances of food allergies in babies actually increased by 50 percent. (source) As a result, experts were forced to reexamine these guidelines.

What they found was that early and sustained introduction of potentially allergenic foods can reduce food allergies by up to 80 percent. Some of the most eye-opening stats include:

  1. At-risk babies are 80 percent less likely to develop a peanut allergy when peanuts are introduced before 11 months.
  2. Early introduction combined with extended breastfeeding reduces the risk of developing an allergy.
  3. Early introduction of hen’s eggs reduces allergies by 79 percent.

This reversal has caused a lot of confusion. And because so many kids have food allergies—experts estimate 5.6 million American children have food allergies! (source)—it’s understandable that we, as parents, are wary of introducing potentially allergenic foods.

That’s why I was interested in Ready, Set, Food!’s allergy prevention program—they offer a safe and effective way to help introduce and prevent food allergies. 

What is Ready, Set, Food!?

Ready, Set, Food! is a great allergy prevention program created by an allergist to help you gently introduce allergens to your baby—as early as four months old (although I recommend waiting till 6 months to introducing solids)

The program allows you to introduce top allergens—cow’s milk, eggs, and peanuts—via an organic powder that easily dissolves in breastmilk or formula. Through this special formula, you can take steps to protect your baby from food allergies by introducing these foods to baby before they can even eat solid food.

Ready Set Food!

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Why I Don’t Agree With the 4 Month Introduction Plan…

Although babies as young as four months can safely get started on the Ready, Set, Food! program, I suggest waiting until 6 months to introduce solids of any kind (including Ready, Set, Food!). Here are two of the most compelling reasons:

  1. Both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend exclusive breastfeeding until baby is 6 months old.
  2. Babies are born with very immature digestive systems, and introducing anything but breastmilk can permanently alter baby’s gut microbiota, potentially causing problems like necrotizing enterocolitis, diarrheal disease, and allergies. (source, source)

How to Use Ready, Set, Food!

Before you begin the Ready, Set, Food! program, you’ll have to choose your plan: Stage 1 or Stage 2.

If you’re new to allergen introduction, you’ll choose Stage 1. Ready, Set, Food! says this phase is ideal for babies between the age of 4 and 11 months old. (But don’t forget: I recommend 6 months.)

The basic premise is this:

  1. Take the numbered packet (start with Day 1) and mix the pre-measured packet into baby’s food (it’s best to use a puree or a smoothie for this). Note: If you prefer, you can mix the pre-measured packed into a bottle of breast milk or formula.
  2. Repeat this process for each day for the remaining 14 days. Each packet contains slightly more egg, peanut, milk to introduce allergens one at a time and in a gentle manner.
Ready, Set, Food! Stage 1 Packets

Once you’ve completed Stage 1, you’ll move on to the maintenance stage, or Stage 2. This stage is only for babies who have already been exposed to the allergens in Stage 1. Because you should immediately enter Stage 2 once you’ve finished Stage 1, you can begin Stage 2 about halfway through baby’s sixth month. During Stage 2, you will:

  • Continue to administer the daily packet via your baby’s puree. Again, you may mix each packet into baby’s bottle of breast milk or formula instead.
  • Repeat for six months, or until your baby eats these allergenic foods at least 3-5 times per week without issue. (Note: Stage 2 comes with 30 daily packets, so you’ll need to buy about six boxes to complete the program.)

Tip: Don’t stop the program after completing Stage 1. Stage 2 is vital, because the key to preventing allergies is early and consistent exposure.

Ready, Set, Food! Stage 2 Packets

How Much Does Ready, Set, Food! Cost?

You can order Ready, Set, Food! as a one-month supply, three-month supply, or six-month supply, with the six-month supply costing the least at $33 per month, or around a dollar a day.

As a special bonus to Mama Natural readers, the brand was kind enough to extend a special savings offer.

Save $10 on Ready, Set, Food!

Click the button below for a special $10 savings offer when you try Ready, Set, Food! You won’t believe how easy it is.

Why I Trust Ready, Set, Food!

If you are going to go with an allergy prevention program, I think Ready, Set, Food! is the best on the market.

  • The company was founded by parents and healthcare professionals: Ready, Set, Food! was born of two doctor’s love for their children: Dr. Andy Leitner, MD, and Dr. Katie Marks-Cogan, MD, founded Ready, Set, Food! as a way to help parents introduce potential allergens to their children in an easy and safe way, based on the concrete evidence in the studies listed above.
  • The company has an extensive advisory board: Ready, Set, Food! employs an entire team of allergists, pediatricians, and pediatric gastroenterologists to ensure their product is both safe and effective.

What Pediatricians Say About Ready, Set, Food!

When it comes to testimonials from seasoned pediatricians, there is no shortage. Here’s a sneak peek at what real pediatricians have to say about Ready, Set, Food!:

  • “I recommend Ready, Set, Food! starting at 4 months. I like how they make it easy to sustain exposure, how they follow AAP guidelines by introducing one food at a time, and how they maximize safety by starting with a low dose before gradually increasing.” — board-certified pediatrician Dr. Noel H. Sayler
  • “I recommend Ready, Set, Food! to every patient at their 4 month well check.” — Board-certified pediatrician Dr. Robert Hamilton, MD

Why I Chose Ready, Set, Food!

The science behind it

I chose Ready, Set, Food!, because it’s rooted in science—I love that there’s so much data to back up this program and how it helps inform the immune system. And I want to help my children’s immune systems as best as I can by exposing their guts to a wide range of foods early on.

And even though food allergies don’t run in our family, I learned that most children who suffer from food allergies don’t have direct family members with a food allergy. (source)

The biggest risk factor for food allergies is actually baby eczema.

In fact, up to 30 percent of children under five with eczema may also have a food allergy. (source)

The convenience

The program is really easy for busy moms. I can just mix each packet into my baby’s food and be good to go—no careful planning required.

The ingredients

I like that the ingredients Ready, Set, Food! uses are simple, organic, and non-GMO.

The price

Ready, Set, Food! is a reasonable cost, with plans as low as $33 per month.

Save $10 on Ready, Set, Food!

Click the button below for a special $10 savings offer when you try Ready, Set, Food! You won’t believe how easy it is.

The Peanut Problem

While I considered a more DIY approach to introducing allergens, taking peanuts into your own hands can be tricky for several reasons. Peanuts are one of the most highly-allergenic foods (hello, Epipen!), but they’re also one of the biggest choking hazards for baby. This makes it super complicated to introduce peanuts (or even peanut butter) safely.

I looked into peanut butter powder but it’s hard to find organic versions or ones that don’t contain sugar or fillers. It’s also difficult to verify how many peanuts are in a serving.

This conundrum is what made me want to try Ready, Set, Food! because everything is pre-measured and in powdered form—no choking hazard and no guesswork about how much to use.

An Exciting Update for 2020: Mark Cuban Invests in Ready, Set, Food!

Ready, Set, Food! appeared on Shark Tank in January. The sharks battled it out, with Ready, Set, Food! getting three separate offers. In the end, the company made a deal with Mark Cuban. I love it when a mission-based, baby-friendly company breaks through like this! I think we’ll be seeing a lot more of this company in the future (and hopefully fewer food allergies).

Genevieve Howland

About the Author

Genevieve Howland is a childbirth educator and breastfeeding advocate. She is the bestselling author of The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth and creator of the Mama Natural Birth Course. A mother of three, graduate of the University of Colorado, and YouTuber with over 85,000,000 views, she helps mothers and moms-to-be lead healthier and more natural lives.

7 Comments

  1. Can you introduce new foods while on the program? Or should you wait until the baby has tried all 3 allergens?

  2. My four month old has been diagnosed with a milk protein allergy and acid reflux and is on ellcare baby formula and takes medicine for the acid reflux. Would this be safe for a baby who is already allergic to cows milk protein?

    • Hello Grace, Ready, Set, Food! team here to answer this question. Our system is intended for babies who have yet to develop a food allergy. If your baby has a confirmed food allergy to milk, you should not use our product for your baby as it contains milk as one of the 3 ingredients.

    • As a pediatrician and advocate for the early introduction of allergenic foods (full disclosure—I have written a book called Eat The Eight and am medical advisor for a company that makes a peanut butter puff for infants) let me add that you can and should introduce the other allergens using the actual foods.

  3. Honestly, if these doctors cared so much about stopping allergies in babies they should make the program affordable. Seeing something like this with such an outrageous price make me suspicious that these doctors are only out to make $$$

    • We have been using Ready Set Food for our little one for 4 months now. Kiddo has had no food allergies, even though my husband has a few. Very happy customer here! Not sure what some people consider “affordable”, but we pay about a dollar a day for the packets. That cost works for us, especially because it’s a lot less compared to how much it would cost to treat those allergies if our kid ended up with one.

    • I totally get it Danielle; as a new parent I’m noticing how outrageous so many baby products cost. I have a background in product development and believe that the price for new products is often high to offset the costs of developing and launching them. I imagine the price will level off as they start to gain economies of scale and can produce everything for less.


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