What to Tell Grandparents, Teachers, Friends, Babysitters . . .

healthy vegetarian childrenThe saying, “Grandma knows best,” may not always apply when it comes to feeding your child. If her idea of a wholesome meal consists of meat, potatoes, and a boiled vegetable, it’s time to have a serious talk. It’s important to discuss with those who may, at some point, be involved with feeding your child. Try these tips:

  • Be specific about the foods your child does not eat—meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, gelatin, honey, and meat broth. Friends and family may be unaware of the “hidden” sources of animal products in foods. Providing them with information or a list of foods and snacks that your child eats will help to eliminate uncomfortable situations later.

  • Find common foods and dishes. Various dishes popular with omnivores and vegetarians alike are free of animal products—pasta with marinara sauce, peanut butter and jelly, and others.

  • Share recipes with family and friends. When your child attends a birthday party, offer to make a dish or dessert and pass along the recipe.

  • Give a gift subscription to a vegetarian publication or give a vegetarian cookbook. This will help others understand more about the diet and encourage them to try out some of the recipes.

  • When your child stays with a friend, send along a dish or brown bag meal that your child—and friend—can eat.

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