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You're Feeding Your Baby WHAT?! 20 Controversial Baby Foods

By brooklynsupper |

Judging what other people feed their kids combines two of the great pastimes of our age — obsessing over who eats what and overreacting to minor differences in parenting philosophies. While parents used to have a simple solution for feeding their babies called baby food (the name is so simple, it’s food and it’s for babies, done and done), now they face a bewildering array of choices and beliefs that are bound up in conflicting ideas about health, the environment, ethics, and class. With so much emotion driving debates about what’s healthy and appropriate for babies to eat, it can be hard to get the simple facts.

To help, we’re going to roll up our sleeves and get down to the basics when it comes to 20 controversial baby foods.

Please note that we are food bloggers and not physicians, and you should always discuss your baby’s diet with your pediatrician, especially where allergenic foods are concerned.

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Contested First Foods: The 20 Most Controversial Baby Foods

Peanut Butter

As with other allergens, the thinking on peanuts has changed a great deal in recent years as evidence has arisen that early introduction of peanuts leads to a reduced likelihood allergy, so feeding babies peanut products is likely not as dangerous as had been assumed. If you have a history of food allergies in your family, consult with your pediatrician first. If you do plan to feed your baby peanut butter, remember that, owing to its gooey texture, it is still considered a choking hazard and should be fed to baby in very small bites.

Make your own peanut butter
Image: Julie Van Rosendaal

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About brooklynsupper



Elizabeth Stark and Brian Campbell write the blog Brooklyn Supper, dedicated to seasonal ingredients and wholesome home cooking. Read bio and latest posts → Read Elizabeth's latest posts →

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9 thoughts on “You're Feeding Your Baby WHAT?! 20 Controversial Baby Foods

  1. Tracy says:

    It’s possible that the babies you’re seeing that appear to have soda in their bottles actually have prune juice in their bottles. My daughter has chronic constipation & takes a prescription medicine daily to combat it. Every now & then I give her diluted prune/apple juice to help & somebody ALWAYS assumes that I’m giving her Coke.

  2. autw says:

    so, basically, all i can give my daughter is bottled water from a bpa-free bottle, and wheat bread?

  3. brooklynsupper says:

    Hi AUTW, I don’t think that’s the case at all. In fact, with many of the slides we’re suggesting that foods that had previously been considered off-limits for babies are now thought to be just fine.

  4. betz says:

    am i the only one that think this article is weird? i can only agree on BPA and raw milk.

  5. Kaite says:

    How about non-well tap water? Does it need to be boiled? There’s a controversial one!

  6. brooklynsupper says:

    Hi Kaite, Oh boy–you’re right. The short answer is, it depends on where you live. I found this Baby Center article to be helpful: Here in NYC we can have our water tested for lead, and public records on the frequently tested water supply are easily available. I hope that’s the case where you live too!

  7. Listymama says:

    totally agree on the juice thing…we now just squeeze our juices and its a treat.

  8. Monica says:

    Just thought you might like to know that the BPA article you are linked to is outdated. Dr. Brown’s bottles are all BPA free now ( as are all Avent bottles ( Similarly, Similac containers are all BPA free ( Those are the only brands I researched because those are the ones I use with my daughter but every time I read an article about BPA in bottles, formula, etc. I freak out and do the research only to find out it’s another article with outdated sources.

  9. brooklynsupper says:

    Hi Monica, Sorry–I included the “minimizing exposure link” because I thought it would be helpful, but maybe it leads to more confusion. I’ll pull it.

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