My husband, two kids and I have been vegan for over a year and we are doing a great job at it. Living and eating as vegans isn’t really hard at all–when you’re at home. It’s a challenge when you walk out your front door. We aren’t perfect and we’ve had many slip ups, some completely by accident, some by mistake, and some because are choices were so limited there was nothing else to do.
Traveling with small children anywhere for more than an hour requires lots of preparation and in my recent podcast, “The Best Diet For Your Health” I offer lot’s of tips for raising a family on a plant based diet and how to make this a smooth transition. The best tip I can offer you is exposure.
If You Feed Them They Will Eat
How many of us feel that our kids only like cookies, chips and candy? Yes, they do like these things, don’t you? But if you give your kids bananas, strawberries, broccoli, sweet potato, pinto beans, and brown rice they will eat it. My kids, Joel and Elle, eat lots of fruit and vegetables daily. It’s now to the point where they associate their hunger with snacking on fruit. Nothing warms my heart more then when I ask “Does anyone want a banana?” and they both scream “ME!”
We do allow them to eat vegan macaroni and cheese, vegan nuggets and vegan burgers with french fries on occasion. It’s all about balance.Your children follow your example, not your advice. Eat healthy and they will too. Click To Tweet
What If They Don’t Want To Be Vegan Anymore?
My husband and I didn’t find veganism until last year. So I don’t think it’s right to hold a gun to my children’s heads about being a vegan all their lives when at age 31 I’ve only been vegan 1 of those years. In the video above, I share more in depth my feelings on how I will feel if my children decided they wanted to eat meat, but honestly, all we can do is offer them the tools they need to eat as vegans in the world because when they are home they will be fine. When they are out with their friends finding vegan options will be limited, but we can teach them how to navigate the world as vegans and how to make the best choices.
Right now we visit lots of restaurants to practice “veganizing” a standard menu. In my healthy living workbook I share a list of 9 restaurants we frequently visit as a family because they offer options that are vegan friendly even though they aren’t vegan restaurants. What I want to teach my children is, if your friends are suggesting you go to a Fried Chicken spot, suggest a Chinese restaurant because your friends can get their fried chicken with fries while my kids can get vegetable lo mein or general tso tofu and everyones happy and my children don’t have to feel uncomfortable like they would sitting in a Kentucky Fried Chicken. You know?