A.I. asks from Sacramento, CA on March 23, 2008
When Is It Okay to Introduce Nuts, Eggs, Berries, Honey, Etc...
My husband and I have been very careful to not introduce high allergy-prone foods to our son. He was breast fed until 12 months. We started introducing some solids after six months. Now, at 14 months, I would like to introduce some foods such as berries and eggs, but am concerned that it might be too soon. Looking for advice or resource referrals from moms who have read up on food allergies. Thanks in advance!
L.C. answers from Sacramento on March 24, 2008
Strawberries and Peanut Butter are usually after 2 years old. Some say you should wait on the peanut butter until 3. Feeding to young can cause them to have an alergic reaction, when normally they would not.
As for the other nuts, not until they are able to chew well because if they swallow it whole they can easily choke.
The eggs, as long as they are cooked well, I feed my children after they were a year old. As for the honey, it can give food poisoning to young children.
J.M. answers from Sacramento on March 24, 2008
Hi A.- Just so you know, as a Dietitan who works with families of small children, I think it sounds like you've done a great job minimizing allergy development with your son. If you have food allergies in your family, I would recommend asking an allergist about specifics to your situation (your pediatric md could refer). Generally, in families with low rik of food allergies, after one year old most children can be slowly introduced to almost any food, including most of the ones you listed. Good luck...food is so much fun!
E.B. answers from Sacramento on March 24, 2008
Our pediatrician recommended waiting on peanut butter,honey and nuts until 24 months. Remember, try not to introduce too many foods at once. If you introduce a food, try to wait a few days before introducing another. That way, if there is a food allergy, you will know what it is. Good luck.
C.L. answers from Fresno on March 25, 2008
My daughter just turned a year old and she has had eggs (yolks & whites) and strawberries. We still are waiting on Nuts and Honey, but my doctor said we don't need to. We don't have any allergies in our family, and will probably try peanut butter soon.
K.L. answers from San Francisco on March 24, 2008
If there is a history of nut or egg allergy in your family, you've already gotten past the 12 month mark that most pediatricians recommend to wait. If there is no history of allergies such as these and your son has show no sensitivity to food at this point, it is more than safe to introduce him to these foods. In fact, a great majority of the food product you buy in stores has both nut and egg in them (or they are made on and in the same machines that process other foods with nuts and eggs) -- and unless you have only been feeding your child the very few types of foods sold in stores that SPECIFICALLY state there are no nuts or eggs, he's already been exposed to them many, MANY times. You would be very surprised at how many MANY foods contain nut or egg just from being made in the same factories or processed in the same way as like food products with those with those specific ingredients. If he has been eating ANY food from a store at all (and unless you are making all of your own food yourself with only organic fresh fruits and vegies) and has had no allergies, he is fine. If he were sensitive, he would have had a reaction already.
There are no guidelines for feeding children berries - there are not a typical food to be allergic too, so you do not have to wait to feed them berries. Now, at 14 months old, it is safe to offer your child any food (besides honey, and that is because of the risk of botulism) as long as he has shown no sensitivity.
Why are you so concerned with food allergies? If they do not run in your family, you really don't have much to worry about. Feed your child a normal, well balanced diet - at 14 months, he should be eating almost all table food at this point (unless he is one of those children that still has very few teeth and physically can't chew well yet) and drinking his milk from a sippy cup.
I am a special ed teacher, and MANY of my students have had life threatening food allergies (to the point where, if one of my students even TOUCHED milk, she would go into anaphalactic shock) so Im very well versed in what ingredients are actually in foods. If food allergies aren't an issue in your family, relax a little. As long as he is eating a healthy, well balanced diet with all the food groups present and offered, don't freak out about the allergies. There are so many other things to be concerned about!
J.M. answers from Modesto on March 28, 2008
This is from babycenter. Heres a link; http://www.babycenter.com/0_age-by-age-guide-to-feeding-y...
Age: 12 to 18 months
Signs of readiness for self-feeding
• Can start to use a spoon himself (though proficiency will take a while!)
What to feed
• Whole milk
• Other dairy (soft pasteurized cheese, full-fat yogurt and cottage cheese)
• Same food as family, mashed or chopped into bite-size pieces
• Iron-fortified cereals (rice, barley, wheat, oats, mixed cereals)
• Other grains (whole wheat bread, pasta, rice)
• New fruits: melon, papaya, apricot, grapefruit (citrus is now okay)
• New vegetables: broccoli and cauliflower "trees"
• Protein (eggs; cut-up or ground meat, poultry, boneless fish; tofu; beans; thinly spread smooth peanut butter)
• Citrus and non-citrus juice
• Honey is now okay How much per day
• 2 to 3 servings dairy (1 serving = ½ cup milk, ½ to 1 oz. cheese, 1/3 to ½ cup yogurt or cottage cheese)
• 4 to 6 servings cereals and other grains (1 serving = ¼ to 1/3 cup cereal, ¼ cup pasta or rice, ¼ to ½ slice bread or bagel)
• ¼ to ½ cup fruit
• ¼ to ½ cup vegetables
• 2 servings protein (1 serving = 2 tablespoons ground or two 1-inch cubes meat, poultry, or fish; 1 egg; ¼ cup tofu or cooked beans; 1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter)
• 3 to 4 oz. juice
• Introduce new foods one at a time, with at least three days in between to make sure your child's not allergic.
• Choking hazards are still a danger. Learn more about foods to watch out for
C.G. answers from San Francisco on March 24, 2008
We have a 17.5 mo old daughter who is a big eater and very healthy. Our pediatrician advised us to start introducing nuts around 2 years old. This is only to play safe. But if there's no family history of allergies, you can start earlier. We gave our baby egg yolk and strawberries at about 8 months. It is recommended to give them honey and egg white at 12 months.
But there's no strict rules to everything so long we keep a common sense. Introduce variety of food early (but space it out from one to another), you'll find your baby less likely to be picky on food. Your son is 14 months, he is capable of using a much bigger menu now as long as the good stuffs are made available to him.
M.M. answers from Fresno on March 24, 2008
I was told to wait until one year old for eggs, peanut butter, and honey. I chose to wait a little bit longer for all. For nuts, I have heard to wait as long as you can. The later you introduce nuts, the better. My son is now 3 and has had a few. Definitely just wait at least a week before trying the next new food to be able to watch for any reactions.
N.S. answers from Sacramento on March 24, 2008
We started giving our daughter (now 10 months) egg yolks only scrambled, a couple of strawberries and blueberries and she loves them. Our pediatrician said it was ok to start introducing at her 9 month appt. No egg whites until after 1 year, and I don't do any blackberries, raspberries or anything with small seeds yet, I even gave her some mandrin orange slices and she loved them :) Hope this helps - good luck!