Raising your children vegan is becoming increasingly popular, but is it a healthy decision for your child?
Veganism has seen a boom over the years and more and more people have adopted the lifestyle. The plant-based diet, which some call a “trend”, is even followed by children, but there is some speculation as to whether the diet is safe for them.
We met Katie Ormerod – MAHAAH Clinic Nutritionist and Registered Healthcare Professional with 10 years of experience in the NHS and the private health sector as a Paramedic and Advanced – to find out if a vegan diet is suitable for children.
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As a nutritionist, Katie says that as a child, the plant-based diet encouraged her to follow natural whole foods that avoid processed and fatty foods. She said, “Children can eat a wide variety of vegetables, legumes, fruits, and seeds, which will give them good habits for life.”
The vegan diet is growing in popularity with kids after parents see the benefits, notes Katie. “We are finding parents are choosing a plant-based diet as more health information supports a plant-based diet to help prevent chronic diseases like high blood pressure or diabetes,” she said. “In addition, people are increasingly affected by the damage caused by the meat and fish industries and their negative effects on the planet.”
A vegan diet will teach children “good habits for a lifetime,” said nutritionist Katie Ormerod
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Despite the increase in the number of children following a vegan diet, many parents may have concerns about consuming a wide variety of amino acids, as protein is needed for optimal health. “You may be concerned about how to ensure adequate protein intake for adequate growth,” said Katie, noting, “It can also be difficult to get enough vitamin B12, folic acid, and omega-3s in a vegan diet However, taking guidance from a nutritionist can help people learn how to best meet their nutritional needs with a plant-based diet. “
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Marina Koseleva is the director and founder of FIT (Food I Trust) and the mother of three boys who are all vegans. Marina started FIT, a healthy meal delivery company, because she “wanted to provide a service that [she] couldn’t find anything anywhere that would help people eat healthily “.
Marina and her youngest son
She decided to raise her children vegan as she believes it will be beneficial in the long term. Speak with HELLO!, she explained, “I wanted my children to be exposed to a much wider variety of foods from the start and to become strong and healthy.”
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She added that she didn’t have much trouble making her decision other than educating loved ones about the importance of veganism. “The same is with school meals and school friends,” she said. “They often offered non-vegan options and I had to explain to our boys why they eat different meals and why it is important to them.”
Marina is raising her three boys to be vegan
Her three boys like to try out new vegan kitchens, because their meals are colorful and therefore pleasing to the eye. “I also explained to my kids that by eating vegan they are making a huge difference to the world and it makes them very proud,” she said.
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