Right now we have 4 kids at home. Two boys ages 8 years and 11 years, and two girls ages 13, and 17 years old.
I think like most parents I wanted to make sure that they were getting a properly balanced diet. I was also concerned about making sure that they had enough protein and calcium in their diet.
I did not have a lot of criticism from my family for feeding my children this way but I have a lot of doubters in my family that do not want to try the foods that I am making.
After talking with my older children and husband we decided to go head first into the E2 diet.
We stopped immediately consuming meat and dairy products.
The day before we started our E2 “diet”, my 8 year old went around chanting,” I will not be VEGAN,” now he will be the first to tell you that you are not healthy if you do not eat vegan. He will also tell you all the things his mom can do now that we have gone plant strong, such as dance with him, race him and even go on lengthy bike rides. My girls have really enjoyed our new change to a plant strong diet.
My biggest challenge was my 8 year old who does not like change. I had to find some snack food that was not processed that he could munch on. I think the other challenge was to stay in our budget. It is sad that it is cheaper to feed my children food that is not healthy compared to healthy food.
My youngest son loves the Black Bean Spread, I always have to make a big batch just so everyone can enjoy some along with him. My 11 year old son’s favorite meal is the Bar-B-Q pizza made on our home made vegan pizza crust. My 17 year old enjoys our new way of making spaghetti, we have our whole wheat noodles and spaghetti sauce but we also cook squash, zucchini, red peppers, yellow peppers, onions and mushrooms in the oven together and then add that to the sauce. My 13 year old loves all of the meals with the exception of the mushroom burgers.
We are a homeschool family so most of our meals are eaten at home. When they have gone over to their grandma’s I have them plan their meals that they would like to take over there. When we have events that there will be snacks served I try to find out what snack will be served and try to bring a healthy version of that snack or let them choose a snack that they would like to bring.
Even though my children were far from being over weight each one lost a little weight in the beginning. They are also more energetic. My 8 year old, who is a little high strung, is able to be more focused on his school work.
My advice would be, let the kids have a meal that they get to decide what they would like and ask them to help make it. Also talk with your kids, ask their opinions as to what they did or didn’t like about the meal. I have found that cutting up some of the vegetables really small in some dishes help. Don’t get into a power struggle over food. Encourage and praise them to try a bite of a new meal at least 3 different times before ruling out that they won’t eat it. Try to find healthy versions of what they like to eat. Talk to them about why you are eating a plant strong diet. If they are old enough have them watch Forks Over Knives.