Jan. 29, 2013
Herbie 101 Series: Pregnancy, Kids, and Bodily Functions
Is plant-based OK during pregnancy?
Yes. Absolutely. For more information, links and resources, please see my post "Plant-Based (Vegan) Pregnancy.
Can children be vegan/plant-based?
Yes. Absolutely. It is the official position of the American and Canadian Dietetic Associations that a plant-based diet is suitable for all stages of life. As long as your children are eating a diet with a variety of whole foods, they should get all the nutrients they need. Also note that eating animal products doesn’t mean they are any more likely to get everything they need, and many of today’s kids aren’t getting all the nutrients they need because of the standard American Diet. Nevertheless, you should to have your pediatrician check just to make sure your kids are thriving and meeting their needs (though this is true for all kids, not just plant-based ones). We also have a parents' group on Facebook, called Herbie Parents.
You can also read Disease Proof Your Child by Dr. Fuhrman.
I've got a picky kid, and she don't eat much as it is. Any suggestions for kid meals?
Kids in general are picky and what works for one child doesn't always work for all. I find there is no one-size-fits-all with kids. In talking to parents, most say that they give their child a few choices — say 3. They have to pick one. They find the child does better with options to choose from, rather than just one option. Many parents also swear by the one-bite rule.
As an aside, most of my testers have children and grandchildren of all ages, and their kids eat my recipes :)
I also can't recommend our family meal plans enough. We have kids (and lunch boxes!) in mind.
How long will the flatulence last?
Toot! Toot! Many people, when they first adopt a plant-based diet, experience an increase in flatulence (gas). That's normal. How long it lasts varies from person to person and some people are always gassy. For more information, see my Flatulence post.
How to deal with constipation in a natural way, please.
If you eat a plant-based diet, you will not have constipation. (All the fiber in plant foods is great about keeping you regular). Eat more plant-based foods. If you continue to have chronic constipation, please see a doctor. Everyone I know that has dealt with constipation, cured it with a plant-based diet. For example, read Kate's interview. For more information, see my Elimination post.
Since going vegan, I am so gassy! Lol — is there something I can add to my diet to help?
It should get better over time, but there are some things you can do, like soaking beans. See my Flatulence post for tips.
Now that I am totally vegan, I experience extreme bloating, gas pains, and am extremely uncomfortable.
As previously mentioned, sometimes gas occurs when you first switch — but it should not be extreme. You may have a food allergy, and if this continues, you need to be tested (and start a food journal). Your body also may not like some food combinations, which a food journal will also help you discover. For example, I can eat bananas. I can also eat oranges. I CANNOT eat oranges and bananas at the same time.