Recently, there have been an increasing number of cases of children receiving emergency care due to food-borne complications. Therefore, choosing food for children is an extremely important job and requires knowledge of parents.
Food is harmful to young children for many reasons, such as children who have not yet developed the skills to chew and swallow fully, children have lost some of their teeth needed for chewing, foods that cause allergies, Contains harmful microorganisms …
Many foods cause choking
Because young children do not have the full development of chewing and swallowing skills, hard and round foods should be avoided as they can get stuck in the throat. These foods include whole grapes, raisins, raw carrots, apples, pears, popcorn nuggets, and hard candies; either thick foods like peanut butter or some cereal flour. Carrots, apples and the like can be given to children provided they are cooked or pureed. Cereal flours must be mixed with plenty of water or milk to make the water more dilute. When young children eat, never let them eat alone because even food that is considered safe can cause suffocation. Do not let children run, play, and eat at the same time.
Many foods cause allergies for children
Children whose immune systems have not been strengthened can easily get allergic to food. There are many young children, once allergic to a certain food, sometimes it will last a lifetime, even though the immune system is completed later. Foods that are prone to allergies for children include:
Children 8 months: meat, egg yolks, soy products.
Children 9 months: cheese, milk, legumes.
Children 1 year old: egg whites, fish, tomatoes, citrus fruits (such as lemon, mandarin, orange, grapefruit), strawberries …
In particular, foods such as chocolate, seafood, honey, peanuts and peanut products need to wait until children are old enough to be fed as these are foods that can lead to severe allergic reactions. If there is a family history of people allergic to these foods, extreme caution should be exercised. Particularly honey absolutely never give to children under 1 year old because it will be poisoned with clostridium botulinum. Before 1 year of age, the digestive system of children is not mature enough to inhibit the growth of clostridium botulinum bacteria. Not only pure honey, but all foods containing honey should never be given to children under 1 year of age.
Food and beverages are high in nitrates
Nitrates in food can be converted to nitrites if the conditions for storage, transport and distribution are inadequate. The “most notorious” foods include beets, carrots, amaranth, some broccoli … or foods that are processed with high nitrates water. Nitrites in food will scramble with oxygen in the blood, causing methemoglobinemia to make a child’s skin turn pale, if not treated in time, it can be fatal.
Nitrates and nitrites are hemoglobin oxidizing agents. Children under 3 months of age have very low levels of the enzyme NADH-cytochrome b5 reductase. This enzyme is used to convert methemoglobin back into hemoglobin, so children under 3 months of age are very susceptible to methemoglobin.
Foods that are left too long will increase nitrites levels, which are also prone to causing methemoglobinemia.
In order to protect children from methemoglobinemia, it is necessary to ensure that the water source used to process food for the child does not have too much nitrates, should not use vegetable broth to mix powder and milk for children. Do not keep food for too long. Frozen baby foods sold from supermarkets, after opening the lid for use, must be kept in the freezer and must not be left for more than 24 hours. For foods prepared at home, children need to be eaten immediately and should not be kept for more than 12 hours.