Before your baby turns 1, there are some foods you should avoid giving him or her. Some foods should be avoided because they could cause sickness or safety concerns, while other foods should be avoided because they are unhealthy.
Foods to avoid include:
- Cow’s milk: Drinking cow’s milk before age 1 may put your baby at risk for intestinal bleeding. Instead of cow’s milk use breast milk or infant formula before age 1.
- Alternative milks: Alternative milks like soy milk, almond milk, rice milk, oat milk, etc. should not substitute breast milk or formula in the first year.
- Honey: Honey (even as an ingredient) may cause a serious health problem called botulism. Your child can start to try honey and foods that contain honey only after he or she is 1-year-old.
- Sugary drinks: Sugary drinks like fruit juice (even 100% juice), soda, tea/coffee or horchata encourage babies to crave sugary foods and can cause cavities, even before your baby has all of his or her teeth.
- Salty foods: Foods that are high in salt, also known as sodium, should be avoided because babies’ kidneys can’t handle too much salt. Check food labels to find foods low in sodium.
- Choking hazards: Small, hard foods pose high risks of choking. Common foods that are most risky include nuts, popcorn, hot dogs and whole grapes. As a tip, you can cut grapes into small pieces and then serve them to your baby. And just remember, anything can be a choking hazard so be sure to watch your baby carefully as he or she eats.
By knowing the foods to avoid, you can keep your baby healthy and safe!
And remember, talk to your child’s pediatrician or health care provider about any questions or concerns.
To learn more, check out these additional resources related to this topic:
- More bite-sized videos about introducing first foods – 1,000 Days
- Foods to Limit – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Starting Solid Foods – American Academy of Pediatrics’ Healthy Children
- Choking Hazards – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)