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Weaning a vegan baby?

(118 Posts)
MoreSnowPlease Tue 12-Mar-13 15:11:32

Anyone else vegan?
We are newly vegan and DS is 8.5 mo. I am just looking for ideas of finger foods as the general ones seem to be cheese, ham etc...

He will have veg sticks but want to make sure he gets more than this, he used to have what we were eating just pureed but hates being fed now and wants to do it himself...hence the struggle!

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 13:13:46

showtunes yes I know this, thanks

pinkyredrose Wed 27-Mar-13 13:13:48

Oh come on OP you start off saying you're vegan and you're sure your DS has a better diet than his contemporaries and then say you're now eating fish because you're worried about being vegan?

Make your mind up!

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 13:17:42

Because a non vegan has never met a vegan or a baby, or indeed, a doctor, dietician, or health visiter, obviously. Neither are they capable of reading anything with regards to infant nutrition. Because that's how meat works, it makes you blind and stupid.

Several people have pointed out why an unsupplemented vegan diet isn't appropriate, myself included. Since then, you are apparently not a vegetarian at all and neither is your baby. So any advice I gave you then isn't relevant to a pescatarian diet.

Kindly don't criticise me for not being a vegan, you aren't a vegan either.

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 13:17:42

Look, please don't bother answering if you just want to point out that I am not vegan.

when I started this thread I was vegan

It has changed....

I really don't need to be told that eating fish is not vegan, I am fully aware of this, thank you for your concern in teaching me.

All I want is ideas for vegan snacks/finger foods for babies....really doesn't even matter whether I am vegan or not!

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 13:20:46

Furthermore, I am aware that I have never been a vegan and therefore I would not attempt to give my children a vegan diet without the consultation and advice of a doctor.

I am guessing you have been a vegan since the horse eat scandal. Have you consulted with a doctor with regards to your sons diet? Have you sought any advice, from anyone? Have you contacted the vegan society?

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 13:21:07

I didn't criticise you for not being a vegan? I couldn't care less what you eat.

I am not a vegan...does that make you feel better?!

Still...if you want to offer up why the diet I am giving my baby is bad for him please do, if not, stop wasting your time.

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 13:23:29

It has nothing to do with the horse meat scandal...i have consulted a doctor, and have been on the vegan society website, and many other websites, books, discussions with vegans and non vegans etc....seriously, you are very presumptuous!

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 13:23:36

Well. In answer to your op, yes it does matter if you are a vegan or not because you are relying on your breastmilk to make up the shortfall in your baby's EFA and vitamin and mineral levels, because unless you are supplementing yourself, your breast milk will not contain enough, unlike someone who eats meat. And fifteen days later, you are eating animals again, so it's not relevant.

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 13:28:33

I had not just turned a vegan when I started this thread so the 15 day thing is irrelevant.

I am not relying on my breastmilk to make up a shortfall, my breastmilk is my babies diet at the moment, any additional solids are purely for learning about food/taste/texture etc... Not for nutrition at this stage at all. I don't need to supplement myself in order to provide what my baby needs through breastmilk.

pianomama Wed 27-Mar-13 13:40:13

I think you are right about being worried.
I would be worried making such restrictions to my baby's diet.
Babies do need more fat and good quality protein.

Dairy intolerance is a serious matter - has he been actually diagnosed with it?One of my many DC was lactose intolerant meaning he could not digest milk at all. He actually had meat instead from the age of 4 month to compensate for the lack of proteins. He grew out of this by the age of 1 and now (coming up to 30) if fine with dairy. I was dead against soy "milk" as it is highly processed, sweetened and full of phyto-estrogens not something I would like to feed a little boy with.
Eggs are really important to babies diet as well as they are rich in fatty acids and magnesium - really important for brain/heart/nervous system development. You would need to feed him a lot of nuts to provide similar nutrients.
You can supplement with B12 etc however it is well known that most of the supplements are nowhere near as good as receiving it from balanced diet.
Babies are robust and will survive and adapt to quite a lot but why experiment by depriving him food which is natural to our species and easily available?

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 13:50:38

You ou do need to supplement yourself if you are a vegan. Whilst you have been a vegan, have you been supplementing yourself?

As you can see from the reliable breast feeding advice sources above, a vegan breast feeder will not be providing b12 in her breastmilk unless she supplements. So if all your baby has ever had is your vegan breastmilk, he is likely to be b12 deficient. I would strongly recommend you get him screened, because much as you are irritated with me for pointing this out, b12 deficiency is serious and must be guarded against, and I am genuinely concerned that you haven't thought this through properly.

lottiegarbanzo Wed 27-Mar-13 13:54:01

You keep on saying 'vegan who eats fish' is the best way to describe your diet, ignoring the facts that this is both nonsensical and, offensive to people who are vegan for ethical reasons (most vegans). I suggested a perfectly good, brief, descriptive phrase up thread. Why would you not use something like that, rather than going about stomping on the sensibilities of the very vegans you are asking to help you (then swearing and getting arsey about it?).

I've made some suggestions already and it's because of your arseyness, not your dietary choices that I'm off now. People are trying to help you here. They need accurate information to work with and, the mutual supportiveness works both ways.

RemindMeWhatSleepIs Wed 27-Mar-13 13:59:10

Come over to the allergies board, you'll find lots of helpful advice there. My 11 month old DS is allergic to cows milk and soya.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Wed 27-Mar-13 14:12:59

Another vote for supplementing yourself and baby.

If you are deficient then there is a good chance your milk will be too. As col ditz said, b12 is a biggie for vegans, I would also worry about vitd (be aware vit d3 usually isn't vegan)

Being vegan is a pretty restrictive diet, and I say that being vegan. I do eat pretty healthily but I also taken the full spectrum of vitamins and minerals,plus an omega supplement, iron and calcium.

showtunesgirl Wed 27-Mar-13 14:38:05

Yes, you need to be aware of Vitamin D and B12 deficiency.

I am not a vegan but my grandmother-in-law was one of the founding members of the Vegan Society of GB and my mother-in-law is vegan.

duchesse Wed 27-Mar-13 14:51:00

Plenty of fats. It is virtually impossible for a young child to get enough of the right kind of fats from a vegan diet. The more food he eats, the less milk he will take from your and well, if you're not eating enough fat and don't have fat stores I doubt your milk will be proving enough either. fwiw I think you are very sensible to start to include fish in both your diets. At this age a child is more milk-fed than solid-fed usually anyway, so you need to make sure your diet is fully up to snuff. And heed the advice below re vitamin supplementation, both for you and for him.

MoreSnowPlease Wed 27-Mar-13 20:54:17

pianomama yes he is definitely dairy intolerant diagnosed by paediatrician, he doesn't have soy either (also intolerant and the oestrogens issue which I'm not happy about). I am not experimenting with his diet, I am trying to give him the best diet I know how to. By depriving him of meat and dairy I am depriving him of the antibiotics, and meat protein link to cancer. He eats fortified foods and as previously mentioned is only 9 months, primarily breastfed. Any other infant this age would probably be on minimal solid food nutrition as well.

colditz thanks for the link, I had read another on kellymom which stated that there was no need for supplementation, however it seems b12 may be a cause for concern. I will be checking this to make sure there are no deficiencies and I'm not irritated with you for pointing it out, just your general tone and name calling which I thought was un called for.

lottie haven't meant to offend you apologies for that (if you're still reading) I would have not been offended at hearing someone call themselves a vegan who eats fish even if I was one for ethical reasons (which is part of the reason anyway) and I guess that's why I called myself that once? I don't really think it's that big a deal to be honest, like I said many times my diet changed over the course of the thread an so that's maybe why it looks so strange to you?

Thanks remindme I think I may well venture over there, hopefully it's not as hate filled as the weaning area!

fine Going to look at the b12 issue, think we are ok on vit d as get a lot of sunlight and certain things are fortified with it. I'm not so sure that supplements work as well as natural sources so am wary of relying on them.

duchesse the fish and vegan sources of good fats are covering the fat issue and I don't think that meat/dairy type fat us beneficial when compared against these, eggs possibly, but I think we're covered without them.

Thanks for advice folks, and the nasty comments too, they were especially helpful for a severely sleep deprived new mum [sceptical]

pianomama Wed 27-Mar-13 21:16:42

MoreSnowPlease - just sharing my experience not judging.. If he is dairy intolerant - do you know if it is milk protein or lactose? My DS was literally dying many years ago until this was established. He was loosing weight, was lifeless couldn't even cry. Meat was his solution and it saved him because it was lactose he could not digest. Eggs can cause allergy as well but if they don't - they are precious in nutritional value. Quail eggs are even better.Goat's milk works quite well in some cases.
Just in case you don't already know - honey is not suitable for under 1 year olds..

showtunesgirl Wed 27-Mar-13 21:35:46

Honey would be off the menu as well as it's not considered vegan.

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 22:59:37

I have not called you names, pescatarian is not an insult. I have not once called you anything more insulting than "not a vegan", I have given you some time consuming research resources, and some information that is important to the health of you and your child. I apologise deeply for this.

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 23:02:10

In fact - nobody has called you anything at all.

Um, are you perhaps thinking of a different thread?

SatsukiKusukabe Wed 27-Mar-13 23:12:10

it is very annoying time vegetarians to have pescatarians refer to themselves as such. It means they have to explain themselves whenever they eat out. why would you start a vegan website when you don't even know the definition?

ReallyTired Wed 27-Mar-13 23:15:26

I have to admit that I have not read the entire thread. In the first year a baby's diet should predominately be breastmilk whether the plan is to be vegan, omivore or carnivore. Between 6 months and year food is for play rather than nutititian. Full term breastfeeding is until at least 2 years old, but I think the OP is pretty knowledgable already.

A vegan mother who is breastfeeding will produce excellent milk. Even straving women produce excellent milk. If you breastfeeding with a poor diet then your own health suffers.

I suggest you contact La Leche League where they are a little bit more open minded about people's feeding choices. La Leche League groups often have have a fanastic library of books on diet. LLL could put you in contact with a vegan mother for support.

colditz Wed 27-Mar-13 23:18:56

La leche league themselves advise a b12 supplement for vegan mothers.

SatsukiKusukabe Wed 27-Mar-13 23:26:50

sorry not to harp on about this but why the need to give your self a label even if it's the wrong one? and can you not see that when people do this they confuse the issue for real vegetarians and vegans and that's why we get pissed off about it?

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