Unsafe food for babies: What food should you avoid during the first year?

Apps by Annie

Starting with solids is pretty exciting, right? Everything is new to your baby and their happiness is contagious. But not all foods are suited for babies younger than 12 months.

We’ve already busted some myths about feeding your baby in our previous article (4 myths about baby foods), and now we’ll take a look at what foods you should definitely not feed your baby before their one-year birthday party.

Cow milk

Cow milk as a substitute for breast milk is unsuitable. It doesn’t have enough iron and vitamin C and is also hard to digest for infants. By 8 months, doctors will give the green light to milk products such as yogurt, cottage cheese or curd. Once the baby hits the one-year mark, it’s okay for them to drink cow milk in moderation.

Hard raw vegetables and fruits

Hard raw vegetables and fruits such as carrots, celery, apples or grapes should always be cut into small pieces to avoid chances of choking. Once you cut them up, your baby is all clear to have a go at his greens.


Honey may contain the spores of Clostridium botulinum, a bacteria that can cause botulism in babies under 1 year old. This illness is rarely fatal but can still do damage if left untreated causing constipation, poor appetite and lethargy. So wait until your sweetie’s first birthday to serve him honey.

Caffeinated drinks

Caffeinated drinks such as soda, black tea or iced tea. If you want to hydrate your little one, breast milk or little bit of water is all it takes. The baby will keep you at night as it is, why help him with caffeine?


Fish high in mercury such as sharks, mackerel and tuna are dangerous in bigger quantities for adults as well as babies. Be careful if there are fish allergies in your family to introduce shellfish such as lobster, crab or shrimp gradually. Eating fish regularly after the first birthday will definitely be beneficial for your baby but until then just stick to the many varieties that are safe such as salmon, whitefish, haddock and many more.

When starting solids, remember to introduce a new flavor slowly, over the course of a week or so and always one at a time to get your baby acquainted with different tastes. They’ll reward you with the biggest smiles and that’s all that matters! What other food did you avoid during your baby’s first year? Tell us in the comments.