If you are a parent who wants to switch to raw food for your children are going to be a question for you.
- Do you want your children to follow a raw food diet?
- How will you get them to eat it?
- How will you deal with opposition from others?
- And most importantly, is a raw food diet safe for kids?
If you believe that raw is the healthiest possible diet out there, then you probably would like your children to join you in it. You want what is best for them and a high raw diet is certainly healthy. But 100% raw can be another matter.
How To Make Sure Raw Food Is Healthy For Your Kids
Kids have different dietary needs than adults. They require more calcium, in particular, in order to grow strong bones. It is hard for raw food children to get enough calcium on a raw vegan diet. Therefore, if you want your kids to be 100% raw, you should consider including raw (i.e. unpasteurized) milk, cheese and yogurt in their diet.
Raw milk products have their own risks, including the possibility of carrying salmonella and other food poisons. Remember there is a reason why pasteurization is carried out.
You may also find that it is not possible to buy unpasteurized dairy products in your area, because it is illegal to sell them in some jurisdictions. You may still be able to buy direct from the farm.
If you cannot buy raw milk products or if you decide against them for safety, you will need to consider giving your kids some non-raw items whether those are pasteurized milk products or calcium supplements. The result of inadequate calcium in childhood can be very serious, including stunted growth and rickets.
Special Considerations For Kids Nutrient Needs
With children under 5, you will also need to consider the size of their stomachs. Small kids cannot eat as much fiber as adults, which is probably one of the reasons that kids often refuse a lot of vegetables. They need higher calorie foods including a certain amount of fat. Fruit alone would likely not contain enough minerals and other nutrients. Again dairy products can help out, as can nut milks and nut butters.
Kids don’t like sudden changes and your best option will be to have them transition slowly from a cooked diet.
You can begin with offering more of the raw foods that they like, such as bananas, and adding slices of finger foods like cucumber, celery and peppers to their plates. They may enjoy helping you prepare the food, creating interesting shapes when cutting.
Smoothies are a popular raw food for your children and can be the basis of many meals and snacks. You can add green vegetables to a fruit smoothie and they will probably still like the taste but you may have to serve in a cup with a lid so they don’t see the color.
Prepare for Resistance – Not From The Kids – From Everyone Else
You will almost certainly find that most people will think you are crazy or cruel for trying to raise raw food children, unless your kids are seriously over, when people may be more sympathetic because they will assume you are doing it for the loss aspect. But most people think of raw food as a stupid fad.
This will probably include the children’s grandparents, other family members and possibly their other parent. So be prepared for some opposition, and be sure to have plenty of facts and figures to use in your defence.
We are not medically qualified and every individual has different nutritional needs. Before encouraging your kids to go raw, you should speak with their doctor and check that it is safe medically, because it is great nutritionally to feed raw food for your children.
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