Lettuce And Mushrooms In A Bowl

Should Your Child be a Vegetarian?

Dear Sara,

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

Dear Katrina,

This phase isn’t too unusual for teens. They are starting to see things in the world that aren’t fair. She may or may not give it up after a while. I hope she likes most vegetables. Try to offer her things like spinach, kale, eggs and raisins which are good sources of iron.

You might start with a visit to her M.D. 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 thing that are good for and that she doesn’t just fill up on junk food.

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