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Monday, March 16, 2009

What Do Vegan Kids Eat?

Written by Tena Moore

Statistics show that nearly one in every 200 kids is vegetarian. Although that number is decreasing with time, it is still quite high. As vegetarians, kids should be able to get more than enough protein through dairy and eggs, but what if they are vegan? Vegan children do not eat any animal products whatsoever; that means no dairy and no eggs, two of the highest forms of protein other than meat.

A report published by the Associated Press gave suggested substitutions for vegan kids trying to get the protein and other needed vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B-12, iron, zinc and linolenic acid. The report suggested kids drink fortified soy milk, and eat various nuts. It also suggested soybeans, flax seed, and nutritional yeast. These substitutions might sound foreign to some, but they are very high in recommended nutrients and animal-product-free.

Nutritional yeast has a cheese-like flavor and can be sprinkled on nearly anything, from pasta to salads. Flaxseed has a nutty-like flavor and can be ground and sprinkled on hot cereals and soups. Flaxseed oil is a very nutritious oil high in omega-3’s and can be used in place of butter.

While many are still afraid that vegan children cannot possibly get the recommended daily amount of vitamins and minerals, there are many substitutions on the market; it just takes a little bit of education.




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