Child Turned Vegetarian

Dear Sara,

My fifteen year old daughter has decided she wants to be a vegetarian. She feels sorry for the animals that are killed. I can’t make her eat meat and I don’t feel she is getting proper nutrition especially iron. How should I handle this?
-Katrina




Dear Katrina,

This phase isn’t too unusual for teens. She may or may not give it up after a while. I hope she likes most vegetables. Spinach and kale are good sources of iron as well as eggs and raisins.

You might start with a visit to her MD and make sure her overall health is good. Your next step is to see a specialist in nutrition to work out a healthy diet of things she likes.

A vegetarian diet won’t hurt her, just make sure she eats things that are good for her and she doesn’t fill up on junk food. Let her know that you will support her diet but that you want her to follow a good nutritionally balanced diet.

Good luck.
-Sara

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