they grow like carnivores but weigh less

The topic of vegetarian children has always posed questions about their health compared to those who eat meat: now a major study explains that they grow in the same waybut will probably weigh less, which they do it does not mean avoiding obesity.
Researchers at Unity Health Toronto’s St. Michael’s Hospital analyzed data on nearly 9,000 children and found that q.Those who follow a vegetarian diet have similar physical and growth measures as children who eat meat.
The study, published in Pediatrics, also revealed that children on a vegetarian diet have more likely to be underweight, Stresses the need for a balanced diet for children who do not eat meat.

Vegetarian children: They grow up as carnivores, but weigh less

The transition from the carnivorous diet to the vegetarian, or at least against a lower consumption of meat, it is an established fact.
“Over the last 20 years, we’ve seen an increasing popularity of plant-based diets and a changing food environment with greater access to plant-based alternatives,” explains Dr. Jonathan Maguire, lead author of the study and pediatrician at St. Michael’s Hospital of Unity Health Toronto,.
So far, however, there has been a lack of quantitative and qualitative research data that photographed the topic. Now, this study shows that Canadian children on vegetarian diets had similar growth, b similar biochemical targets for nutrition to those of children eating a non-vegetarian diet “.
Also read: Vegetarian diet and sports: How to replenish energy

Vegetarian and underweight diet

The researchers evaluated 8,907 children aged six months to eight years. The children were all participants in the TARGet Kids cohort survey! and data were collected between 2008 and 2019. Participants were classified into vegetarians and non-vegetarians.
The researchers found that children who ate a vegetarian diet had an average body mass index (BMI), height, iron, vitamin D and similar cholesterol levels to those who ate meat. But they also show that children on a vegetarian diet had almost twice the risk of being underweight – ie. below the third percentile for BMI.
Also read: 4 reasons to take children on adventures in nature

Warning: underweight does not mean obesity, but it is an indicator of malnutrition and it may be a sign that the quality of the baby’s diet does not meet the proper nutritional needs to support normal growth. It should be children who are on a vegetarian diet according to the researchers monitored in growth and must be educated from a food point of view to follow a balanced diet.

Vegetarian and vegan kids

It must also be said that the international guidelines on the vegetarian diet in childhood provide various recommendationsand previous studies evaluating the relationship between vegetarian diet and child growth have had mixed results.

“Plant-based dietary patterns are recognized as a healthy eating pattern due to the increased intake of fruits, vegetables, fiber, whole grains and saturated fat reduction; however, few studies have evaluated the effect of vegetarian diet on children’s growth and nutritional status. Vegetarian diet seems to be appropriate for most children, ”said Dr. Maguire.
Also read: 7 little diet rules to lose weight and get better

The study has a limit: the the quality of vegetarian diet, which come in many forms. The quality of the individual diet can be a very important factor for growth. The authors say more research is needed to examine the quality of vegetarian diets in childhood, as well as growth and nutritional outcomes among children on vegan diets.
Photo by Gustavo Fring, Pexels


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