High risk foods to avoid
Now that your baby has mastered cereal and pureed food, you can safely progress to softer foods and finger foods. It can be a messy business, but allow your baby to feed themselves as much as possible - they love to explore the different types and textures of food. Include your baby at the table during family meal time, they will become interested in food if they see others eating.
You can begin to offer milk and milk alternatives after 9 months of age which are high in protein, calcium and vitamins (especially Vitamin D). Choose varieties that are higher in fat; this may include cheese or yogurt as well as cottage cheese. You can start offering whole milk at this time but place it in a cup for meal times only. Your baby still needs to breastfeed or have formula up to one year of age. Use whole milk until your baby is 2 years of age, they need the extra fat whole milk provides for brain development.
By 12 months of age, your child should be eating the same types of food that you are eating at each meal, as long as the foods don't contain too much sugar or salt.
The best way to avoid choking is to avoid at risk foods. Always give food to your baby when they are sitting down. No eating on the move or lying down. Always stay with your child when they are eating in case they do choke.
High Risk Foods
- Nuts, seeds
- Whole grapes or small round foods
- Weiners or sausages
- Raw vegetables
- Samll candies or gum
- Peanut butter
Start with single foods to make it easier to identify if your baby has allergies. Give the same food for 3-5 days before you try another food as your baby may need to eat a speciifc food several times before allergic symptoms occur. Signs of an allergy can occur quickly or up to hours after the food is eaten.
The most common signs of allergy are:
- Breathing difficulties
Stop feeding the food if you think that it may have casued any of these reactions.