Veganism: babies/children

mrvegan

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My wife and I have a 3 month old boy (we're both vegans of 3.5 years) and would like to raise him vegan but there is so much conflicting info out there. Some are for it and some are very against (doctors I mean). I contacted a local doctor (pediatrician) here in the Czech Republic (he's not a vegan) where we live and asked for his advice. Here is what he wrote:

There is no proof that veganism is healthy and the best option for any child. also there is no proof that it is very dangerous.
It is just a decision you made and you need to embrace it with every possible risk - e.g. micro and macronutrient deficiencies.
In my opinion the best option to diminish some risks and profit from "veganism" is something we cal flexetarianism - meat once per week, animal product of other origin every day and the rest "vegan" diet. I would never write down a statement that being vegan is ok for children. sorry for that. What you could do:
mom supplements during breastfeeding
b12 - 250 ug/ day
d - 600 UI/ day
Iodine - 250 ug/ day
Opti 3 - 2 pills a day
any supplements for vegans with iron and calcium are welcome.
After you start with complementary food supplement in children ! strictly at 6 months !
b 12 86,5 ug/ day
D - 400-600 UI/day
Opti 3 - 1 pill day


Is there any evidence out there that raising a baby/child vegan is safe? If done the correct way of course. Are there any studies on this topic? I cant seem to find any info on this. Again, just seems most pediatricians are totally against it and some are ok with it and feel it is safe. Any thoughts on this whole topic: Veganism and babies/children.
 
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Nutrition is a soft science. Most studies on people require people to self -report which is not very accurate. And there is only so much that can be extrapolated from rats.

anyone who tells you that the vegan diet is totally safe is lying. No one really knows. But a lot of stuff we do is based on even scantier knowledge.

The thing that drives me a little crazy is that people (including Doctors) will throw shade on vegans but not jump on the negative effects of the non-vegan diet, i.e, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

the supplements the Dr. recommends are some good choices. but I don't know what Opti is. I'm assuming it is a multi. I think a complete list of supplements should include Omega 3. The requirements for calcium and iron could be satisfied with diet alone.

One reason doctors are reluctant to endorse a strict vegetarian diet is that there are still unknowns. Although we think all the vitamins have been discovered, there are still plenty of things that are just now coming to light. The role of omega 3 is still being determined. And they are still discovering phytonutrients.

like everything else there are unknowns, risks, and benefits. All must be evaluated. Its up to you to weigh the risks vs the benefits. And make your decision based on the knowledge you do have.
 
Nutrition is a soft science. Most studies on people require people to self -report which is not very accurate. And there is only so much that can be extrapolated from rats.

anyone who tells you that the vegan diet is totally safe is lying. No one really knows. But a lot of stuff we do is based on even scantier knowledge.

The thing that drives me a little crazy is that people (including Doctors) will throw shade on vegans but not jump on the negative effects of the non-vegan diet, i.e, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

the supplements the Dr. recommends are some good choices. but I don't know what Opti is. I'm assuming it is a multi. I think a complete list of supplements should include Omega 3. The requirements for calcium and iron could be satisfied with diet alone.

One reason doctors are reluctant to endorse a strict vegetarian diet is that there are still unknowns. Although we think all the vitamins have been discovered, there are still plenty of things that are just now coming to light. The role of omega 3 is still being determined. And they are still discovering phytonutrients.

like everything else there are unknowns, risks, and benefits. All must be evaluated. Its up to you to weigh the risks vs the benefits. And make your decision based on the knowledge you do have.
Thank you for your input!
 
Vegan really is all about ethics, the diet excludes animals that is all.
It would not be honest to say an omnivore diet is totally safe as there is no research anywhere that animal products magically change anything.

That physicians advice certainly isn't bad. Eating animal products has been the basis, and nutritional standard, for ---ever really. Being omnivore means you can eat whatever is available, so it just isn't an honest comparison to compare vegan with omni. It doesn't indicate what is being compared. Will meat somehow negate other deficiencies? Remove toxins? Is there anything in flesh, egg or mammal milk that makes you healthier-what is it? These are the real question to be addressed.
Plant based diets have been discouraged mostly because they threaten so much of the economy, the politics, the healthcare.

Key is not to use the term vegan, but start using 'Plant based" or Whole Food Plant Based'

There is so much well documented and proven research that have shown plant based diets can be even more healthful than those that include animals.

The reality is that children are failed nutritionally regardless of diet type. Parents who want to raise their child on a healthy diet get ridiculed for not allowing the sugars, processed flours, processed deli meats and cheeses. They're really treated the same way as vegan parents, but without actually removing animals it isn't as wide a condemnation.
Think about how much candy, sodas, cereals, snacks are pushed at children. Parents who don't want their kids to have them are usually treated as monsters who are denying their kids a rite of passage.


It's sad that that question always comes with the disclaimer of 'with a few modifications'. Shows just how ignorant people are assumed to be about nutrition, and also proves how little most MD's know. People assume their doctor would be the best person to discuss diet, but they don't have much nutrition training at ALL
Pediatricians need to be concerned with childrens diet as a whole and not be blinded by the catagory
 
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I would ask the doctor what nutrients would come from 'meat' once per week and from the other recommended 'animal products' that are not available in a plant-based diet? If he really is a 'plant-based doctor' then he should be able to provide answers to those questions.

Emma JC
Find your vegan soulmate or just a friend. www.spiritualmatchmaking.com
 
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My wife and I have a 3 month old boy (we're both vegans of 3.5 years) and would like to raise him vegan but there is so much conflicting info out there. Some are for it and some are very against (doctors I mean). I contacted a local doctor (pediatrician) here in the Czech Republic (he's not a vegan) where we live and asked for his advice. Here is what he wrote:

There is no proof that veganism is healthy and the best option for any child. also there is no proof that it is very dangerous.
It is just a decision you made and you need to embrace it with every possible risk - e.g. micro and macronutrient deficiencies.
In my opinion the best option to diminish some risks and profit from "veganism" is something we cal flexetarianism - meat once per week, animal product of other origin every day and the rest "vegan" diet. I would never write down a statement that being vegan is ok for children. sorry for that. What you could do:
mom supplements during breastfeeding
b12 - 250 ug/ day
d - 600 UI/ day
Iodine - 250 ug/ day
Opti 3 - 2 pills a day
any supplements for vegans with iron and calcium are welcome.
After you start with complementary food supplement in children ! strictly at 6 months !
b 12 86,5 ug/ day
D - 400-600 UI/day
Opti 3 - 1 pill day


Is there any evidence out there that raising a baby/child vegan is safe? If done the correct way of course. Are there any studies on this topic? I cant seem to find any info on this. Again, just seems most pediatricians are totally against it and some are ok with it and feel it is safe. Any thoughts on this whole topic: Veganism and babies/children.
.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (the world's largest association of Registered Dietitians) makes this statement regarding vegan diets:

"It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that appropriately planned vegetarian, including vegan, diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits for the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. These diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, older adulthood, and for athletes. "

Link: https://www.eatrightpro.org/-/media...ce-papers/position-papers/vegetarian-diet.pdf


Because infancy and early childhood are such critical growth periods, it makes sense to plan your child's diet with the help of a Registered Dietitian. In the Czech Republic, you can find a local RD by contacting your local representative of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: cr-czechrepublic@iaand.org
 
Dr McDougall has a lot of interesting stories, on his website about people that have used his Starch Solution lifestyle to become healthy and today's email was interesting for anyone who is pregnant and concerned about being vegan or plant-based...

Emma JC
Find your vegan soulmate or just a friend. www.spiritualmatchmaking.com

 
A non-vegan diet is unsafe & causes health issues.

My perspective is this:

Enslaved animals are fed plants to acquire the nutrients they need to grow & live.
Humans murder & eat the flesh of those animals to acquire those nutrients.

'We' are getting those nutrients 'second-hand'.
I find it more logical to think that it is more beneficial, to consume those nutrients 'first-hand'.



I recommend watching a somewhat entertaining documentary called 'Game Changers'.
It is available on Netflix. Though there may be other ways to watch it.
 
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'We' are getting those nutrients 'second-hand'.
I find it more logical to think that it is more beneficial, to consume those nutrients 'first-hand'.

yes that is logical.
Unfortunately there are other factors involved. And those factors need to be considered.
 
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