By Abigail Carroll. Vegetarian Lifestyle. At Saturday, May 04th 2019, 22:15:15 PM.
Milk and yogurt are important sources of calcium. Vegetarians who are avoiding dairy products can get calcium from tofu, fortified soy milk, green leafy vegetables, and dried figs.It is particularly important for vegetarian children and teens to plan their nutrient intake, as their bodies are still developing. Calcium intake, for example, can affect bone health for the long term. Fortified soy milk and breakfast cereals can help in the synthesis of vitamin D, but exposure to sunlight is also necessary.
If your vegetarian preteen or teen would rather make his or her own school lunch or opts to buy lunch, keep in mind that your child's idea of a healthy vegetarian meal may be much different from yours (e.g., French fries and a soda). Talk to your child about the importance of eating right, especially when following a vegetarian diet.Also be wary if your child has self-imposed a very restrictive diet. A teen with an eating disorder may drastically reduce calories or cut out all fat or carbohydrates and call it "vegetarianism" because it has considered socially acceptable and healthy.Even if preteens or teens are approaching vegetarianism in a healthy way, it has still important for them to understand which nutrients might be missing in their diet. To support your child's dietary decision and promote awareness of the kinds of foods your preteen or teen should be eating, consider having the whole family eat a vegetarian meal at least one night a week.
People become vegetarians for many reasons, including health, religious convictions, concerns about animal welfare or the use of antibiotics and hormones in livestock, or a desire to eat in a way that avoids excessive use of environmental resources. Some people follow a largely vegetarian diet because they can not afford to eat meat. Becoming a vegetarian has become more appealing and accessible, thanks to the year-round availability of fresh produce, more vegetarian dining options, and the growing culinary influence of cultures with largely plant-based diets.