Have you ever wondered if babies are allowed to have honey?
If you’ve bought honey from us, you may have noticed that on the label it was stated:
‘Not for infants under 12 months old’
Seems unfair right?
Babies are people too.
Why can’t they enjoy one of natures finest treats?!
The reason for this is that honey poses a health risk for these little humans.
If you take away nothing further from this article, then just know that you should not feed honey to any baby under 12 months old.
If you’d like to find out why, read on!
Why can’t babies have honey?
The reason babies cannot have honey is due to the risk of bacteria within the honey causing botulism. If a baby ingests honey, the spores of bacteria within the honey can induce botulism.
The bacteria in question is Clostridium botulinum. This is found in soil as well as honey products, both raw honey and pasteurized honey.
Spores from this bacteria develop into bacteria within the babies digestive systems and lead to the release of harmful neurotoxins.
This leads to serious health implications for the baby and most require significant medical treatment.
The fatality rate is low, however, this is not something that any baby should be subjected to.
Bacteria in honey?
Now you might wonder whether honey is safe for anyone to eat if it contains such nasty bacteria. Well, luckily, these bacteria are harmless for children over 12 months old and adults.
The reason babies are at risk is because their digestive and immune systems have not yet developed to handle these bacterias.
Not all bacteria is bad for you. In fact, lots of the bacteria in honey is actually really good for you!
There are numerous health benefits of eating honey, and while the thought of ‘bacteria’ may be gross to some, they are actually an important part of staying healthy.
Honey is certainly one of the nicer tasting raw foods that you can get beneficial bacteria from, so for those who’ve had their first birthday, eat as much as you’d like!
Is pasteurized honey okay for babies?
Unlike raw honey, pasteurized honey has been heat-treated and a lot of the bacterias (good and bad) removed from the honey.
This does not mean that infants under 12 months of age are allowed to consume this honey.
There is still a risk that the honey may contain the harmful bacteria spores and pose a risk to babies.
It is advised that babies do not have any honey at all.