Handy hints for feeding vegan children...

Breast milk or infant formula should be a major part of your child's nutrition until at least age one, but start introducing solid foods around

six months. Ensure your family doctor refers you to a registered dietitian if you have any concerns about healthy breast milk or infant formula feeding

Home-prepared cereals should be made as a thick porridge rather a thin gruel. Add a little vegetable oil to the cooked grains to increase their calorie content, and improve palatability by making them less glutinous as they cool

Spread breads with avocado, or seed/nut butters to increase calories

Low salt yeast extract is a good source of B vitamins for older children - check your brand is fortified with vitamin B12

Well-cooked and mashed pulses (e.g. lentils, mung beans and chick peas) provide energy and protein. It is important to strain them through a sieve to get rid of the skins, so that children can digest the legumes better.

Use black molasses to boost iron and calcium intakes

Choose calcium-fortified tofu (also rich in protein), which can be served mashed or as finger food

Make sure children have access to healthy sun exposure regularly; provide vitamin D supplements otherwise. Vitamin D2 is suitable for vegans. Vitamin D3 such as Vitashine is Vegan Trademark registered and suitable for vegans

Green vegetables are an excellent source of iron, calcium and antioxidants. Try blending them into a tomato-based pasta sauce if your child isn't keen on them. Or try adding them to juices with sweeter

vegtables such as carrot Without a shadow of a doubt, a plant-based diet can be affordable, nutritious and tasty: everything you need for Raising happy, healthy children.

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