Vegan, Vegetarian, Or Keto? How To Talk To Your Kids About Diet Choices

Do you eat vegan, vegeterian, keto, or just generally healthy? Here's how to talk to your kids about diet decisions in a productive way

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December 6, 2019
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Today’s parents make better informed eating decisions. In the pursuit of better health, many parents are forsaking the traditional American diet for alternatives such as veganism, vegetarianism and keto.

As diagnoses of obesity and chronic illnesses rise, more people are growing interested in alternative diets. You can start your journey toward better eating by learning a few things about alternative dieting.

Why People Choose Alternative Diets

Some parents choose an alternative diet simply because they want to take better care of their family. Others change family eating habits because their children have allergies to certain foods.

Food allergy symptoms can range from a stomachache to a dangerous anaphylactic reaction. Most individuals that physicians diagnose with food allergies are allergic to peanuts, soy, tree nuts and wheat, while a smaller number of people are allergic to citrus fruits and coconut.

In recent years, physicians have diagnosed an increasing number of people with food allergies. The increasing diagnoses have raised awareness about the threat.

For example, a growing number of people are learning how to enjoy the pleasures of cuisine by substituting foods that are safe for their consumption.

Approximately 1% of the population is allergic to wheat, prompting alternative dieters to replace many ingredients with tapioca or rice flour. People who physicians diagnose with citrus allergies, may replace citrus ingredients with apples, strawberries or raspberries, while individuals who are allergic to dairy products may seek out coconut alternatives.

People may choose pumpkin and hemp ingredients if they’re allergic to peanuts. For those who are allergic to tree nuts, sunflower seeds are a viable option, while those who are allergic to soy must seek out soy-free alternatives.

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Vegan, Vegetarian and Keto Explained

In addition to finding food substitutes, people have other reasons for choosing and alternative diet.

The Vegan Diet

The vegan diet can help you improve your blood sugar control and trim your waistline. However, it’s an exclusively plant-based diet, which can decrease your nutritional intake if you’re not careful. Veganism is a lifestyle that excludes all animal exploitation and cruelty, whether for food or clothing.

Vegetarianism

Researchers estimate that approximately 18% of the population conforms to a vegetarian diet. Vegetarians reduce their risk of contracting a chronic disease and exhibiting weight gain by choosing this dietary alternative.

Vegetarians do not eat meat, fish or poultry. Some people become vegetarians for religious reasons, while others do it to support animal rights.

The Keto Diet

The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat eating alternative that can help people lose weight and improve their overall health. It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake by replacing it with fat. By drastically reducing their carbon intake, they induce a metabolic state called ketosis.

Are Alternative Diets Safe for Kids

Anyone who drastically alters their diet should consult with a physician – and kids are no exception. A pediatrician can help you address issues such as ensuring that your child consumes sufficient vitamins and calories.

Just as a vegan diet can improve health for adults, however, it can also work wonders for kids. A registered dietitian can help you plan healthy alternative meals for your family. This type of consultation is especially pragmatic if your child is an infant or toddler.

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The Emotional Benefits of Healthy Eating for Kids

Around the world, 18% of the population – including children – experiences symptoms of anxiety and depression. One way to lessen the effect of these conditions is by making healthy diet choices, such as limiting alcohol and caffeine.

Also, when we consume sufficient complex carbohydrates, our bodies metabolize food more slowly, resulting in a calmer demeanor.  Alternatively, skipping meals altogether can result in a rapid drop in blood sugar, which can lead to feeling jittery or experiencing increased anxiety.

A growing number of health-conscious individuals seek out alternative diets that address both their physical and emotional needs. For instance, some individuals choose the keto diet because it doesn’t deprive them of food like some weight loss programs.

Conclusion

However, you must do what’s right for you. If you desire, you can follow the trend of many people by becoming a “flexitarian” – where you can make healthy food choices that are modified to match your personal preferences.