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Thread: Non (or new ) vegans with children

  1. #1
    amberguy
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    Default Non (or new ) vegans with children

    I just found out today that my son, who is 14 months old, is allergic to a whole lot of foods. The list includes dairy, soy, peanuts, and eggs. Now I have always made his own food and know the importance of getting enough calcium and good fats and such. My family is not vegan yet, but certainly heading in that direction, and I am actually excited to begin that lifestyle change. If you have started your baby vegan, what kinds of foods do you prepare to ensure proper nutrition? I am just scared that I will leave something out. I want to do the best things for my family and for our health, so any tips, advices, recipes....anything would be so greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Maisiepaisie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    THIS is meant to be a really good book. That link is in the UK but you can by it from amazon.com HERE
    The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well

  3. #3

  4. #4
    Fuhzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    Also for a good book that will be helpful to your whole family, I would recommend Becoming Vegan by Brenda Davis and Vesanta Melina. It covers general vegan health, kids, pregnancy, things to watch out for, etc. Really useful book!

  5. #5
    Ex-admin Korn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?
    We have!
    Check out the subforum for vegan parents.... here!

  6. #6
    amberguy
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    Thank you all for the helpful info !! I will be getting that book and the page with all the links is sooo helpful. I have to say, in the last 3 days now, I have learned more about food than I have in quite a long time. I totally never realized how much dairy my family was eating. It has only been 2 days since we have stopped, but my son is already doing better and I actually feel better too! I honestly cannot say thank you enough!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    Both my kids (now aged 1.5 and 3.5+) have been vegan long before birth, through infancy, and now into toddlerhood.

    They didn't have any restrictions on diet other than the simplest of the vegan restrictions (no honey, eggs, milk products, gelatin, yellow #5, etc).

    They've grown like weeds.
    context is everything

  8. #8
    Fuhzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    I always hear about how kids don't grow enough on a vegan diet, but I think it really just requires them to get enough fat, protein, and calories...

  9. #9
    amberguy
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    That is the only thing I am concerned about is enough fat intake....I know that enough fat, and of of coarse the right kind of fat, is very important in proper brain development. One of the links that Happy Vegan posted had some awesome info on flaxseed oil, but I don't know if that is enough of a source. What kind of foods did you all give your kids for their fatty intake?

  10. #10

    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    My kids eat whatever the like, as long as it's vegan. When they need fats, they crave peanut butter, flax oil, olive oil, vegan margerines (Earth Balance), and fatty foods such as vegan cookies.
    context is everything

  11. #11
    Fuhzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    Flaxseed oil is a must because it helps with the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6. Also if you can't stand the taste you can buy flaxseeds and grind them up (or buy them ground) and sprinkle them on salads, etc.

    Nuts are a great source of fat in addition to what xrodolfox mentioned. Olive oil is also a great source of fat in the diet.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Has anyone started their infants on a vegan diet?

    I can't believe that I forgot to mention that my kids love avocado.

    Basically, we don't worry about it too much. We just let them eat as much as they want, of basically healthy foods, but we let them learn on their own what they are hungry for and what they desire. Even though they love sweets, they've managed to eat healthier than most adults who also have access to sweets.

    The kids just eat until they are no longer hungry, and they happen to eat lots of fats and fruits and grains and veggies. Most of all they like grains (like pasta) and fats, which I think is pretty darn good.
    context is everything

  13. #13
    daisukem
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    Unhappy My partner is pregnant.. needs some advice

    Hi! I'm male, and my partner is 6 weeks pregnant!!! :happydance:

    well we went up to see her parents in the Easter, and 4~5 hours drive caused her to throw up a few times. Now we are back at home, but she is not feeling well.(she says she feels as if she has car sickness)

    She has not been eating well lately.. mainly water or bites of snacks(crackers and chips).. she has a decent figure but i think she is starting to lose weight because she is not eating enough.

    Please advice.

    Thank you.

  14. #14
    cobweb
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    i hope she's seeing a doctor?

    i know the advice is to eat a small dry biscuit before rising from bed in the mornings, and to keep trying to nibble small amounts of food through the day. weak ginger tea is good for nausea, too. hopefully it will pass after the first 3 months but she really has to try and eat as much as she can manage. apparently nausea is a sign of strong pregnancy hormones indicating a good healthy pregnancy!.

  15. #15
    daisukem
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    thank you! I have been reading some threads in this forum that may help!

  16. #16
    treaclemine
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Sandra Hood, a qualified dietician who advises The Vegan Society, gives a page of advice on morning sickness in her book, Feeding your Vegan Infant with Confidence http://www.vegansociety.com/html/pub...gan_infant.php
    including:

    1) Try frequent, small snacks of starchy carbohydrates

    2) Avoid fatty, oily or greasy foods.

    3) Ginger may help.

    4) Try sipping carbonated water.

    5) Get plenty of fresh air and ventilate your rooms.

    6) Move slowly after meals and on awakening.

    7) Keep dry snacks to hand e.g. crackers.

    Your baby should not be affected, as long as you're eating a balanced diet. Do talk to your health advisor.

  17. #17
    Ex-admin Korn's Avatar
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Hi daisukem,
    and congratulations!

    Both vegans and non-vegans need to make sure they get the nutrients they need when they're pregnant, and while this won't help with feeling sick. it's important for the child's development - especially if the mother isn't eating well. Folate and B12 is very important.

    Here are some links that may be useful:
    Vegan Nutrition in Pregnancy and Childhood
    Pregnancy and the Vegan Diet

    Both non-vegans and vegans are regularly low in some nutrients, eg. vegans often have lower B12 levels than non-vegans, and non-vegans often have lower folate levels than vegans. To some degree, the functions of B12 and folate overlap each other, but high folate levels can't replace B12. One study in India found that high folate intakes in vitamin B12-deficient mothers could increase the risk of type 2 diabetes in the offspring... Both folate, B12 and other nutrients are important for the baby and the mother for a number of reasons, so supplements may be necessary / very useful for pregnant women!

    Good luck!


  18. #18
    Beagle Hugger scarlett's Avatar
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Congratulations

    My advice, having gone through this, is make sure that she is eating proper healthy food, lots of small meals are good. Crackers etc... are good to nibble on inbetween but make sure she is eating a properly balanced diet.

    When I was pregnant I was sick constantly for more than 7 months I couldn't even get in a car as it made me sick, I threw up pretty much every thing I ate. I lost a load of weight, at around 6 months pregnant I actually weighed 2 stone less than before I was pregnant. All I wanted to eat was crackers.

    But ... my husband made me dinner every day and got me to eat it, I knew it wouldn't stay down for long but I did it and some of the nutrients must have got through to the baby because she came out at nearly 8lbs and very healthy. I did have to have iron supplements as I was very anaemic (but I normally am anyway!) - iron is very important

    Make sure you talk to the doctor if you're worried though, I'm sure there is lots they can suggest that will be helpful.

  19. #19
    missbettie's Avatar
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Quote scarlett View Post

    But ... my husband made me dinner every day and got me to eat it, I knew it wouldn't stay down for long but I did it and some of the nutrients must have got through to the baby because she came out at nearly 8lbs and very healthy. I did have to have iron supplements as I was very anaemic (but I normally am anyway!) - iron is very important
    .
    Aw how nice!! Scarlett!

    Congrats daisukem! I can't wait until me and mine are in the position to have a baby! Very exciting!
    "i'm rejecting my reflection, cause i hate the way it judges me."

  20. #20
    daisukem
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Thank you thank you everyone :')

  21. #21
    daisukem
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    Default Re: My partner is pregnant.. needs some advices.

    Hi everyone. I read that b12 is an important vitamin to intake while pregnancy.. how are everyone here getting this B12?

    I found this article.
    http://www.vegansociety.com/html/food/nutrition/b12/
    • take one B12 supplement daily providing at least 10 micrograms or
    • take a weekly B12 supplement providing at least 2000 micrograms.
    10 a day or 2000 weekly..??? If it is 10mg a day then shouldnt it be 70mg for one week?

  22. #22
    serendippyty
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    Default Supporting a vegan child

    Hi and I hope it is ok for me to post this as a non vegan but I am looking for some advice to support my child.

    My eldest child is 11 and has been vegetarian for a long time now. She was never a fan of meat and gave up eating for ethical reasons also.

    She is very opinionated and has recently stated she wishes to be vegan. I am totally willing to support her in this but want to be certain she gets all the nutrients she requires as a child going through puberty.

    Can anyone point me in the direction of some helpful books maybe? I'm quite conscious that she has always been underweight and would be anxious were she to start losing weight through diet.

    Thanks if anyone can help.

  23. #23
    RubyDuby
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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    sure. At the top of the forum there are links to "not a vegan yet" among others which will point you to a lot of information.

    There is no reason she should lose weight if she eats adequate calories from carbs (breads, potatoes, pasta, etc), proteins (beans, nuts, soy, etc), fats (oils, nuts, nut betters, etc), fruits and veg.

    There is a growing number of websites, book and recipes dedicated to vegans. Google is your friend. Or go to amazon.com and do a search for "vegan kids" There you will find books with information and recipes to help you support your daughter.
    Each snowflake in an avalanche pleads not guilty.

  24. #24
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    Hello - thanks for supporting your child in this. There are quite a few vegan families represented on here so I expect you will hear from some of them.

    Meanwhile this page may help:

    http://www.vegansociety.com/people/l...egan_children/

    There are also pages there about individual nutrients such as iron and calcium (which all young girls need to keey an eye on, not just vegan ones). You could contact the society and ask them for information, I'm sure they would be happy to send you some. I thought they'd have some books in their shop but I can't see anything about children, only "infants" and I don't think your daughter qualifies

    Fortunately or unfortunately, it is easy to put on weight as a vegan so I don't think you need have any worries about that. Things like nuts and nut butters might be good things to include in the menu to ensure your daughter gets enough calories, but again others will have more suggestions for you.

  25. #25
    Cake Fairy Cherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    I think it's brilliant that you are supporting your daughter like this

    Don't worry about her losing weight. I would expect that if she is eating what she wants to that she'll put weight on. That's what happened to me, anyway. I was underweight and labelled 'a fussy eater', because I'd leave my meat and pick at some boiled potatoes. When I started eating huge platefuls of lentil curry and rice I was fine

    The information sheets on the Vegetarian Society Website might be helpful:

    Vitamin b12
    Iron

    Lots of veg, and fortified soya milk, pure margarine and other things with calcium and iron and vitamin b12 and omega 3 & 6 and you can't really go wrong.

  26. #26

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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    Try this site: http://www.vegfamily.com/ It might have book recommendations (or articles to help you)

  27. #27

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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    Try http://www.vegfamily.com/ There might be book recommendations &/or articles to help you.

  28. #28
    veganmatters sparklingsights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    I'm sure others will have more information or better advice, from parents to a parent. However, a great starting point for you would be a book like Becoming Vegan - but there are a lot of various online/free sources for nutrition information, including this forum!

    Congratulations for being a supportive parent, and to your daughter for making such a responsible decision.
    The problem with your gene pool is that there's no lifeguard.

  29. #29
    cedartree cedarblue's Avatar
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    Default Re: Supporting a vegan child

    hi there

    have you been in touch with the uk vegan society? i'm sure they would have some good reading suggestions for you or perhaps some leaflets on transition or something.

    one simple idea you could do yourself is to identify the main food constituents eg. protein, calcium, iron, zinc....and vitamins and minerals...and maybe just google 'vegan sources of protein' and run through the whole list like that? you'd feel you were being pro-active with the research too!

    good luck with it

  30. #30
    Gec
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    Question Sample menu for a one year old?

    Hi friends,

    I have a question for parents who raise their children on a vegan diet.

    Can anybody please share a sample weekly menu for a 1-year-old? I realize this is a lot of work - if there's already such a thread, I couldn't find it.

    This would be very helpful, for me and hopefully other parents.

    Thanks,
    Gec

  31. #31
    Gec
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    Default Re: Sample menu for a one year old?

    Or even a daily menu?

  32. #32
    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample menu for a one year old?

    I've never had to feed an infant fortunately but like you say, it is a lot of work to write up a sample menu, especially as it would likely be scrutinised by others. You might get a response but to be honest these kind of requests rarely do, even for adults.

    It would be better to ask specific nutritional questions, e.g. "how do you make sure your one year old gets enough b12?".
    "I don't want to live on this planet any more" - Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

  33. #33
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sample menu for a one year old?

    There are some ideas online, e.g. here: http://www.vegansociety.com/lifestyl...up-a-baby.aspx

  34. #34

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    Hi Gec,

    My daughter is 9 months and her menu is pretty much this

    Booooooooooooooooobs
    A bit off mummy's plate
    Booooooooooooobs
    Some yoghurt with a little tahini in it
    Booooooooooooooobs
    Bit of hummus sucked off a carrot stick, which is then chucked at the cat
    Boooooooobs
    Bit of tofu from mummy's sandwich

    And so on... So mostly boobs

    The WHO recommend all children are breastfed (with complimentary foods) up to two years and beyond for as long as mutually desirable. It meets a whopping portion of their protein, calcium and calorie intake, and really helps.

    The book 'feeding your vegan infant with confidence' has good examples of foods, but not an exact menu. I think 'Raising Vegetarian Children' (which is actually a vegan book) has sample menus? I'll check when I get a moment.

    We do baby led weaning in the house so DD mostly eats what we have with some additional fats etc which she needs, such as adding calcium and calorie rich tahini to her foods and the odd bit of avocado.
    Quitting something because it's hard is wrong, and quitting something because it's wrong is hard. One takes cowardice, the other bravery.

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