Now a day, vegan food is all time favorite food for children. The First Question in Parents Mind about the vegan food “Is a Vegan Diet Healthy for Kids?” Yes, vegan diets can be safe for kids once parents are well informed about the key nutrients required for growth and development. However, parents must be extra cautious to ensure that they’re following a balanced diet.
Yes, with the right planning and knowledge, a child can get everything which they need to follow a vegan diet. The biggest concern with vegan diets in early childhood is nutritional inadequacy.
During the weaning:
Iron-fortified infant rice cereal is a great option as the first food due to a high source of iron. A variety of foods are to be encouraged when weaning including vegetables, tofu, potatoes, cereal foods, pulses (peas, beans and lentils), ground nuts, seeds and fruits. As long as the baby doesn’t have an allergy, nuts can be given for six months, but make sure they are finely ground.
When a child under five years old should not have whole nuts because of the risk of choking and inhalation. Naturally sweet fruits like apples or bananas and vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes or butternut squash can be used to sweeten foods rather than adding sugar. Never add artificial sweeteners to foods for infants.
Vegan diets tend to be more energy dense and children need to eat large quantities to get enough energy. We know that children typically have small appetites so achieving their daily calorie needs can be a challenge. Adding healthy oils to food, such as rapeseed or soya bean are key, as they add more calories to meals and encourage the production of fatty acids needed for brain development.
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Is a Vegan Diet Healthy for Kids?