Aside from the choking risk of feeding solid foods to babies less than 6 months old, here are foods that can be poisonous to babies:
- Peanut butter – no risk in most children, but highly elevated risk if history of allergy in the family. American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no peanut butter until age 3. For more on peanut butter, click here.
- Honey – Never give honey to a baby under 1 year old. Honey may contain bacterial spores that can cause infant botulism, a rare but serious disease that affects the nervous system of young babies. For more on why honey is dangerous despite its benefits.
- Alcohol – Babies and children are much more sensitive to the toxic effects of alcohol than adults. Alcohol can cause a child’s blood sugar to plunge to a dangerously low level, which can lead to seizures, coma and even death in a young child.
- Fava beans – Most other beans are fine for kids but there is a strong risk with Fava beans since some people deficient in a certain enzymei are unable to process fava-bean toxins, which begin destroying red blood cells. In babies, this can be fatal.
Obviously, many, many other household products from common table salt to toothpaste to antifreeze can also be lethal to children, but especially the first two items are often thought of as kids’ food and might be offered to babies without thinking.