Vegetarian Children – To improve their health and well-being, many people choose to be vegetarian instead of becoming a meat-eater to get rid of heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Some people become vegetarians for environmental, religious, cultural or ethical reasons. Do you need a vegetarian diet for young children who do not know how to choose? Is a vegetarian diet suitable for children?
What is a vegetarian diet?
Vegetarian options can be divided into the following 3 types depending on the type of diet they consume:
This type of vegetarians do not eat fish, meat and poultry. Their source of protein, includes milk, yogurt, cheese, eggs, beans, nuts and vegetables.
Lacto-vegetarians are those who do not eat fish, meat, poultry and eggs, their protein comes from milk, yogurt, cheese, beans and nuts.
Vegans do not eat fish, meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products. They get protein from beans, nuts and soybean products. A vegan diet can lead to severe malnutrition and is not suitable for developing growing children who need a lot of protein.
5 Essentials for Vegetarian Children
Infants under the age of 1 must drink milk continuously.
Discuss with your doctor the appropriate time to add solid foods in the child’s diet.
Pay attention to the amount of fiber intake. Having too much fiber can hinder the absorption of minerals such as zinc, iron or calcium. Cellulose keeps your child feeling full for a long time, so they don’t feel hungry and eat less than the amount of food that they need to grow and develop.
Fruits and vegetables
Try to diversify fruits and vegetables, and eat a few more. It is recommended to eat 2 small servings of fruit, and 3 small servings of vegetables a day.
Soybean oil and mustard seed oil are good oils, they are rich in linolenic acid, and are good for brain and nervous tissue development. Oil is also a source of energy vitality.
Diet for vegetarian children
As long as the diet plan contains enough essential nutrients, even children can become vegetarians. The contents of the diet must include the following:
- Protein substitutes for growth from dairy products, nuts, eggs, cereals or soybean products.
- Fats, from alternative sources other than meat fats.
- Basic calories required for daily activities.
- Vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin B12, vitamin D and enough calcium.
- Iron is also needed to prevent blood diseases such as anemia.
- The proper combination of food, without the right balance, the nutrients in the food cannot be fully absorbed.
Finally, when giving your child a veggie meal, keep in mind the following points:
- Understand the nutrient alternatives
- Provide a wide variety of food for children to enjoy
- Add nuts, avocado or dairy products to their snacks to provide a good source of growth energy
- Do not have such strict control of your young children’s diet
- Take nutritional supplements according to their needs or as directed by their physician