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Safeguarding Children’s Health

If your little ones started smoking, you’d be horrified. But what most of them eat is just as damaging to their health in the long run. And it’s in childhood that the habit starts – so now’s the time to begin safeguarding your children’s health

Feeding your children a vegetarian diet is the safest way to provide all the nutrients they need. By establishing it early on, the effects will be felt throughout life. It’s the way to cut the risk of killer diseases and improve your kids’ chances of a long and healthy future.

You are what you eat – and so are your children

More than three-quarters of young people aged between four and 18 have a terrible diet – guzzling away on white bread, savoury snacks, biscuits, chips and chocolate confectionery – according to a recent national nutritional survey. They are eating too much sugar, salt, fat and animal protein. They are not eating enough fibre, fruit and vegetables. Many lack iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium and vital vitamins such as beta-carotene, B2 and folate. Even cholesterol levels are too high in one in ten and, to top it all, about a third don’t even poo regularly.

Does it really matter?
You bet it does! More than at any other time in history, young people are basing their diet around meat, dairy products and junk processed foods and many lack the vital vitamins and minerals needed to help combat disease. Today’s adults are facing epidemics of heart disease (it kills one in three men and one in four women) and cancer (it kills one in four of both sexes and is getting worse). Diabetes, obesity, strokes, high blood pressure, gallstones... there is a long list of diseases that simply won’t go away. The seeds are sown in childhood and today’s children are eating an even worse diet than their parents did when they were young. So their prospects when they grow up are grim indeed. Their risk of developing these devastating diseases is even higher than today’s adults. Scarier still – kids are developing ‘adult’ diseases earlier on in life.

Take control – provide the cure
It’s no good waiting for someone else to provide a ‘cure’ – it isn’t going to happen. You can improve your children’s chances of a healthy life right now by what you give them to eat. The younger you start, the sooner healthy eating habits will be developed. And a child who eats healthily is likely to grow into an adult who eats healthily.

What the experts say about a veggie diet:

“It reduces the risk of obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and some types of cancers... ”

“It lowers morbidity and mortality rates ...” (you get less disease and live longer).

“Vegetarian diets offer disease protection benefits because of lower saturated fat, cholesterol and animal protein and often higher levels of folate, antioxidants and plant nutrients...”

“Successful in arresting heart disease.”

American Dietetic Association.


How a veggie diet improves children’s health

Arresting Allergies
One of the major causes of childhood allergies is whole cow’s milk. Vegan diets avoid milk.

Foiling Food Poisoning
Children are at high risk. Animal products are responsible for 95 per cent of all cases.

Healing Hearts
Heart disease begins in childhood. Vegetarians have a 25 per cent lower risk of dying from heart disease.

Tackling Toxins
Half of under-five’s may be exceeding safety limits for toxins in food – and it is meat, dairy, eggs and fish which are the worst affected.

Watching Weight
One in ten kids are overweight – but veggies are leaner than meat-eaters.

And when they grow up…

Building Bones
Losing calcium from the body is a major cause of fragile bones (osteoporosis). Vegetarians lose up to 50 per cent less than meat-eaters.

Challenging Cancer
Vegetarians have an up to 40 per cent lower risk of dying from cancer than meat-eaters.

Dodging Diabetes
A vegetarian diet can reduce the risk and improve control of diabetes.

Helping Hypertension
A meat-free diet reduces the risk and can lower blood pressure for those who suffer.

Living Longer
Vegetarians have a 20 per cent less chance of dying prematurely.


Well-balanced veggie nosh

What it’s got
protein, fibre, complex carbohydrates, ‘good’ fats, disease-busting vitamins C, E and beta-carotene, B-vitamins, calcium, iron, zinc and fruit and veg.

What it’s not got
animal fat, animal protein, cholesterol.

What it can cause
Your very good health!


A typical modern kid’s dinner

What it’s got
animal fat, excessive protein, cholesterol, salt, sugar (also iron, B-vitamins, zinc).

What it’s not got
fibre, complex carbohydrates, ‘good’ fats, plentyful disease-busting vitamins E and beta-carotene and fruit and veg.

What it can cause
heart disease, cancer, obesity, diabetes and other diseases.


These are the types of foods that leading health advisers say we should be eating more of:


What other experts say:

“A diet free of meat, fish, milk and eggs is by far the safest and one that I highly recommend.”
Emanuel Goldman, Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at NJMS.

“The avoidance of meat is likely to reduce the risk of heart disease and impart health advantages.”
Dr WC Willett, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School.

“The best move for those who feel inspired to ‘go the whole way’ is to eliminate animal products from the diet altogether.”
Cancer Specialist, Dr Rosy Daniel.

“Children who grow up getting their nutrition from plant foods rather than meats have a tremendous advantage. They are less likely to develop weight problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, and some forms of cancer.”
Dr Benjamin Spock (1904-1998), Paediatrician and world renowned child health expert.

“The closer one approaches a total plant food diet, the greater the health benefit...”
Colin Campbell, Professor of Nutritional Biochemistry, Cornell University, Long-time senior science advisor to the world cancer research fund.


If you want good health – don’t eat animal products.

The Vegetarian & Vegan Foundation is dedicated to scientifically investigating vegetarian health and nutrition and can provide you with all the help you need to get your family eating healthily, ensuring they get every single nutrient their bodies need. Send for any or all of the following:

Easy-to read, parents’ guide – Kids Go Veggie (£1.50).
Kitchen inspiration for adults – Easy Veggie Recipes (£1.50).
Recipe guide for teenagers – No Sweat Veggie Cooking (£1.50).
For those with tiny tots – Vegetarian & Vegan Mother & Baby Guide (£1.90).
An essential guide for new veggies – The L-Plate Vegetarian (£1.50).
The guide for new vegans – The L-Plate Vegan (£1.50).
VVF’s full scientific report – Safeguarding Children’s Health: Defeating Disease Through Vegetarian/Vegan Diets: (£10).

Prices include p&p (UK only). Please send your order, name and address with cheque (payable to VVF) to: VVF, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH. Or order by credit card/Switch on tel 0117 970 5190 (Mon to Fri, 9am-6pm). Thanks for your support.

 
 

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