A Closer Look at Raising Vegan Children

As healthier eating and organic food becomes more popular, the veganism lifestyle is always close behind. Essentially, a vegan diet consists of anything that isn’t an animal product. While vegetarians will often just avoid meat, vegans avoid all food that is derived from animals including eggs and dairy. This also applies to other aspects of animal products, such as fur or leather.

A vegan diet essentially contains all of the necessary vitamins and minerals that are important, as well as covering each food group. Although more with is initially required, the benefits of a vegan diet soon become apparent. In terms of veganism applying to a child’s diet, encouraging them to eat healthily can avoid a multitude of health issues in the future, as well as teaching them about caring for both the environment and their personal ethics. The main danger many people face when raising children is the mixed messages that come from the mass media. While some may believe that vegan diets can actually affect a child’s development, vegetables as well as products like soy offer more than enough vitamins such as calcium to ward off deficiencies.

In terms of food, vegan children who ate fruit and vegetables were more likely to do so in later life. Additionally, by placing children in a purely plant based diet, several immediate health benefits can be gained in adulthood. A vegan diet was shown to lower hypertension, cholesterol, cancer rates and even illness related to obesity. By encouraging this kind of diet in a child’s development phase, parents can ensure that the habits are carried on to later life.

When it comes to buying vegan ingredients, the rising popularity of these diets has meant that finding vegan food is much easier. It has come to a point where even local grocery stores stock healthy foods as well as substitutes specifically for vegans. Products like soymilk, tofu and dairy substitutes are much easier to find, especially if looking in a bigger store. If what you’re looking for is more specialized, it is always a good idea to look around natural or health food stores. These can be great places to find more specific ingredients such as seitan or other soy products, so be sure to check around the local area for health stores if you are looking to try a vegan diet. By encouraging these foods in a diet for vegan children, you can bypass having to break a child’s habit and start them off on vegan food.

Being a vegan isn’t just restricted to food however. Many vegans also focus on what they’re wearing, ensuring that nothing is made of animal products. Wool, for example, is something that most vegans try to avoid. Because some sheep are often specifically raised for wool production, vegans take their philosophy into what they’re wearing as well as eating. With this in mind, finding vegan clothing for vegan children can often take a little longer but can be equally as fashionable and affordable as other clothing products. As with food, always check the label of the clothing to determine the material, avoid things like wool and cashmere while looking out for animal friendly materials such as hemp, bamboo and manmade fibers.

Researching different clothing brands can also determine whether they have a special line of vegan clothing. Use the Internet or ask in store to find out exactly what they might have. Many stores pride themselves on selling only vegan products and a quick Internet search can often point customers in the right direction. Finally, do not assume that because the clothes are vegan, they are also expensive. Because of the difference in production, costs are often heavily reduced and thus vegan clothes end up being much cheaper. Discount stores or charity shops can often end up with a stock of vegan clothing that is not just “healthy” but also fashionable, something that is important for children in the present day.

Written by: Tom Hodson