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Here are some health warnings that I have come across, if you know of others please do let me know:

Can I give honey to my baby?

Don't give honey to your baby until he or she is one year old. This is because, very occasionally, honey can contain a type of bacteria that can produce toxins in a baby's intestines. This can cause serious illness (infant botulism). After a baby is a year old, the intestine has matured and the bacteria can't grow.

It isn't possible to remove the bacteria from honey by processing, without caramelising the honey. The British Honey Importers and Packers Association has advised its members to say on honey labels that honey should not be given to babies under 12 months. But this is not compulsory.

Remember, you should also avoid adding sugar to food or drinks you give your baby. This is because this could encourage a sweet tooth and lead to tooth decay when your baby's first teeth start to come through. If you give your baby stewed sour fruit, such as rhubarb, you could sweeten it with mashed banana, or breast or formula milk. Because honey is a type of sugar, you should still limit the amount you give to your baby once he or she is one year old.

Does the advice to eat at least five portions of fruit and veg apply to young children?

Adults and children aged five and above are recommended to eat at least five portions of fruit and veg a day. Between the ages of two and five you can gradually start giving children fruit and veg, working up to five portions a day.

By the time your child is two years old, it's important to start introducing a variety of foods, including fruit and veg. Research shows that the more frequently different food is offered to children, the more likely they are to eat a varied diet later on. So don't be put off if your child doesn't eat a new food the first time you offer it. Try again several times.

Vegetarian Babies

Make sure you give two servings a day of pulses (such as red lentils, beans or chickpeas), or tofu to make sure they get all the energy and nutrients they need. The vitamin C in fruit and vegetables helps our bodies absorb iron, so remember to give your baby fruit and vegetables at mealtimes.

Take care to avoid the following foods for babies:


Babies up to 6 months old should have less than 1g salt a day. From 7 months to a year old they should have a maximum of 1g salt a day.

If you're breastfeeding, your baby will be getting the right amount of salt. And infant formula contains a similar amount of salt to breast milk.

When you start introducing solid foods, remember the following:

* Don't add salt to any foods you give to babies because their kidneys can't cope with it. The baby foods you'll find on sale aren't allowed to contain salt.

* Remember to limit how much you let your baby eat of foods that are high in salt, such as cheese, bacon and sausages.

* Avoid giving your baby any processed foods that aren't made specifically for babies such as pasta sauces and breakfast cereals, because these can be high in salt.


Avoid adding sugar to the food or drinks you give your baby. Sugar could encourage a sweet tooth and lead to tooth decay when your baby's first teeth start to come through. If you give your baby stewed sour fruit, such as rhubarb, you could sweeten it with mashed banana, breast or formula milk.

Peanut butter:

Peanuts are highly allergenic. Rather than risk a violent allergic reaction, wait until your child is at least a year old before introducing peanut butter. (If you or your mate has peanut allergies, wait until your child is at least 3.) Another reason to hold off on peanut butter is its sticky consistency, which can make it tough for a young child to swallow safely.

Wheat or wheat products:

Most babies can handle wheat — found in many cereals and breads — when they're about 6 to 8 months old. Wheat is the most common grain allergen, though, so if you're concerned about allergies, it might be a good idea to wait until your baby is 1.

Can I give baby:

Spicy Foods:

"There's no hard-and-fast rule about this, but 24 months is a good benchmark," says Susan Moores, a registered dietician in St. Paul, Minnesota, and a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. By her second birthday, your child will be accustomed to eating a wide variety of foods, and her intestinal system will be more developed and better equipped to digest spicy meals. When deciding whether to introduce curry, chilli pepper, or other strong flavours into your child's diet, think about how she typically reacts to new and exotic foods. You may have raised your child's tolerance for the hot stuff if you ate a lot of curries, chilli, and other five-alarm dishes while breastfeeding because you pass trace flavours and substances through your breast milk. If your child has an iron-clad stomach, or if you ate spicy foods while nursing, you may be able to offer small servings of spicy foods before she is 24 months old. But don't even consider it until your baby is at least 12 months old. Children under 1 are just becoming accustomed to basic foods, and they're particularly prone to food reactions and sensitivities.

When introducing spicy foods, start with small amounts and offer them in foods you know are "safe" for your child. That way, if she gets an upset tummy, you'll be able to identify the culprit -- and know not to serve it to her in the future.

If your child's sensitive to new foods, stick to blander fare for several more years. Though they rarely trigger food allergies, spicy foods can irritate the digestive system.

Tip: If your child takes a bite of something spicy and complains that her mouth is burning, offer her a glass of milk or a some yogurt. Studies show that milk proteins help wash away the fire-producing molecules in some hot spices.

Shellfish: Because it can be highly allergenic, experts recommend excluding shellfish from your baby's diet until his first birthday. (If you suspect he's susceptible to allergies, wait until he's between 3 and 4 years old.)

Tree nuts (like pecans and walnuts): If you think your baby is at risk for allergies, you might want to wait until he's 3 or 4 before giving him nuts. Otherwise he can probably handle them when he's 1, as long as they're pureed in food or in nut butters. (Whole nuts and pieces of nuts pose a choking hazard.)

Warning signs of an allergic reaction

Signs of an allergic or bad reaction to food include vomiting, diarrhoea, rash, swelling, abdominal pain, cough, crankiness, excessive gas, hives, itching, runny nose, shortness of breath, stomach bloating, and wheezing. Symptoms most often show up within a few hours of eating. Call your doctor right away if you think your child may be reacting badly to something he ate.

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