I am wondering if there is some ‘master list’ you can refer me to that says ‘do’s and don’ts’ of what solids are safe to feed toddlers and twos. I know there are some obvious things such as grapes and popcorn that are “no no’s.” Recently I have seen centers feeding blueberries, hard raw carrots, chicken on the bone, and some other things that are questionable in my opinion. I would like to know “for sure” what is considered OK and not OK in terms of safety for our younger little ones that have teeth.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, hot dogs are the food most commonly associated with fatal choking among children. Other high risk foods include hard candy, peanuts, nuts, seeds, whole grapes, cherry tomatoes, raw carrots, apples, popcorn, chunks of peanut butter, marshmallows, chewing gum and sausages.
In my opinion, small blueberries should be OK, but could be halved for small children. Raw carrots should be quartered lengthwise, then cut into small pieces. Chicken on the bone may be a risk for some children depending on the cut and cooking method of the chicken, so I would advise that adults remove the chicken from the bone and chop it into small pieces.
To avoid choking, it is important that all foods are chopped into small pieces, and that children are not allowed to eat while running or walking around.
For more information, visit http://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/injuries-emergencies/pages/Choking-Prevention.aspx.
This post was written by Monica Griffin, MS, RD, LD.