Choking Foods and Food Hazards
What You Need to Know
Once your little one starts to eat, they can eat almost anything! We need you to keep track of only a few foods to avoid or modify. That’s why we created this page to help you out and identify the choking foods and hazards you should avoid.
Why are some foods choking foods?
In this article we summarize the different types of no go foods. Further, you should know some foods you should avoid for health reasons while others you must avoid because they pose a risk of choking. Babies and toddlers are more at risk to choke than older kids for two reasons, they have not yet:
- chewing skills are not yet fully developed
- do not know how to clear their throats or cough on command.
For kids under 1 years old please avoid
First up, let’s take on kids 6 months to 1 years old. What foods are no-go foods? To summarize we have:
- Cow’s milk, goat’s milk, soy or other alternative milks are not appropriate for kids under 1. Cheese and yogurt are OK.
- Honey. Honey is not OK until at least 1 year old. This is due to a risk of botulism, a disease that can cause paralysis and breathing problems in kids.
- Juice. Dr. Maria recommends to parents that they try to avoid juice as long as possible. Juice is just empty calories. However, the AAP recommends that parents only give all children younger than 12 months old water, breastmilk and formula.
Let’s look at choking foods for kids under 1
When a baby starts to eat until she turns 1, you want to make sure all foods are either pureed or very soft. Think like you could mush it between your fingers.
For kids under 3 please avoid
Next, let’s look at kids under three years old like toddlers. In this case, foods that are choking foods include:
- Hard, raw fruits or vegetables, such as apples, green beans, celery, or carrots
- Round hard candies including jelly beans
- Seeds such as pumpkin or sunflower seeds. Small seeds like chia seeds or flaxseeds are ok.
- Popcorn (Little ones can choke on the kernels.)
Some foods you can modify for all kids under 3
Lastly, let’s look at some foods that on their own are choking foods, but you can modify them to be safe. For example, you can cut these foods in different ways or cook them and they are ok. In addition to the others, in this list we have:
- Hot dogs. You can cut them into quarters and then slice them
- Sticky foods such as peanut butter can get stuck in back of the mouth. Do spread nut butters on breads, crackers, etc
- Cherries: Remove the pits and cut in quarters
- Olives: Remove the pits and cut in quarters
- Whole grapes: Cut in quarters
- Whole cherry tomatoes: Cut in quarters
- Uncooked greens like arugula or spinach: Make sure they are soft, chopped up and easy to chew
Bottom line? Pay Attention
In conclusion, always pay attention to your little one when they eat. When in doubt, don’t feed it to your baby. Remember, you are not alone and you can talk to your pediatrician or a Fooblie coach to get some guidance. You’ve got this!