There are many things you need to be aware of when feeding children meals and snacks. Safe feeding practices include:
- Be sure you and any children you are watching wash hands before eating or preparing food.
- Be aware of choking hazards and practice good habits during mealtime. For example, don’t play games at mealtime because a child may giggle and choke on a mouthful of food. In addition, don’t serve smooth, round food that can slide down into the airway like hot dogs or grapes to children under the age of five. Don’t give hard food like hard candy to children under the age of five either.
- Be aware of food allergies, and only give food that has been approved by the child’s parent.
- Be safe when preparing meals. Avoid using the stove to prepare food, and if using a microwave, let the food cool in the microwave a few minutes before you take it out. Test the temperature of all food to be sure it’s not too hot.
Healthy snack or meal ideas include:
- Cheese and crackers
- Hummus with crackers or pita bread
- Cottage cheese with pineapple slices
- Whole grain cereal with berries and milk