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Toddlers and Hot Dogs: What I Never Knew

Is that ketchup?

You learn something new every day, right? No one parent knows everything, especially with all the research developments that occur each day to make our kids just a little bit safer.

Almost 4 years after becoming a mother, I learned that hot dogs are apparently pretty dangerous for toddlers to be eating. Yup!  See! Bet you are pretty surprised too, huh?

I was talking to my pediatrician about it and she revealed how much of a choking hazard hot dogs truly are. My boys love them, but I won’t be sad to see them go until they are older.  And, actually, hot dogs are the only food that agitate my 4 month old when I’m breastfeeding, so I guess it is a win-win for me. 

It’s not like they are the healthiest food on the market either!  Even some of the best brands out there are still chock full of fats and sodium.

Day late and a dollar short, I found an article in USA Today (from February of 2010) in which pediatricians from around the country were calling on hot dog manufactures to actually make hot dogs which are safe for toddlers to eat.

The article states:

Now, the American Academy of Pediatrics wants foods like hot dogs to come with a warning label — not because of their nutritional risks but because they pose a choking hazard to babies and children.

Better yet, the academy would like to see foods such as hot dogs “redesigned” so their size, shape and texture make them less likely to lodge in a youngster’s throat. More than 10,000 children under 14 go to the emergency room each year after choking on food, and up to 77 die, says the new policy statement, published online today in Pediatrics. About 17% of food-related asphyxiations are caused by hot dogs.

That is scary!

Another great article by Liz Szabo who I adore!

Some more foods considered unfit for your toddler include grapes, bananas, carrots, popcorn, nuts, pineapple chunks, basically anything that is big enough to block your toddler’s airway.   Sure these foods are acceptable if you cut them into small pieces, minus the nuts and popcorn.

Be mindful of the size of the foods, and the foods in general you are feeding your little one, it could prevent a very scary choking incident.

 

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