Foods to Avoid Before Year One

While parents might choose to hold off on some foods due to allergy fears, there is a short list
of foods that all babies should avoid for the first year because they pose serious health risks.
Honey: Honey may contain spores of Clostridium botulinum, which causes botulism. While an
adult’s intestinal tract can handle these spores in small amounts, in babies, the spores can grow
and produce fatal toxins.
Cow’s milk: According to the American academy of Pediatrics’ Committee on Nutrition (“The
Use of Cow’s Milk in Infancy”), the consumption of cow’s milk under one year of age can lead
to allergies and/or iron-deficient anemia. For these reasons, you should stick to breast milk or
formula for at least the first year.

Low-fat dairy products: Unlike grown-ups, children under the age of two need the fat from
dairy products for healthy brain development, according to the University of Minnesota’s
Academic Health Center. When you introduce dairy to your baby, make sure it’s full fat, even
if you typically opt for a lower-fat version for yourself. Just be mindful that although dairy as a
category shouldn’t be avoided before your baby turns one, cow’s milk should.
Undercooked meat and eggs: Babies are more vulnerable than adults to bacteria such as
salmonella, which can be present in raw and rare meat, poultry, and eggs. Make sure to cook
meat and eggs well before serving them to babies.