VeggieBoards banner
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I am a bit conflicted. My sister in law, who is 12, decided she wanted to go vegan after having stayed with myself and my husband for a week. I didn't get much chance to discuss the specifics with her when she was here, and honestly I didn't think she was very serious anyway...
Now she has been home for a week, and her mom just sent me a lengthy text telling me she hasn't eaten meat or milk since she's been home, and has been complaining about being hungry and having headaches.

I told her that from my knowledge, the headaches are a normal meat detox, and she's probably hungry because she removed meat from her diet and probably didn't replace it with another protein, like tofu, beans, quinoa...I also advised her to start taking a multivitamin and B12.

I also feel immensely guilty because my mother in law, who I love more than my own mother, told me she didn't want her to be vegetarian. But it wasn't my fault!
I didn't mean to!

Any advice for going vegan at this age? Am I missing anything really important I should be telling her? Can you recommend any videos she can watch that will better educate her on animal rights and health that are not too gory (I think Earthlings will wait a few years.)

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,272 Posts
Oh wow , that is what they say by living the way you are and live by example because those around you will pick up after you. I would get a kinder book for teens that explains more further what she is going through.
Best luck with the coming years.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,743 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

I also feel immensely guilty because my mother in law, who I love more than my own mother, told me she didn't want her to be vegetarian. But it wasn't my fault!
I didn't mean to!
I don't think you should have any guilt over this. It's the food animals we humans ought to feel guilty for, for betraying their innocence and helplessness, and destroying their entire lives. It's right to positively influence others to have compassion for animals.

Lots of younger people are becoming veg now due to social media. If the 12 year old already had it in her to be sensitive to animals, it was probably going to happen eventually anyway through the influence of her peers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,793 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

So I am a bit conflicted. My sister in law, who is 12, decided she wanted to go vegan after having stayed with myself and my husband for a week. I didn't get much chance to discuss the specifics with her when she was here, and honestly I didn't think she was very serious anyway...
Now she has been home for a week, and her mom just sent me a lengthy text telling me she hasn't eaten meat or milk since she's been home, and has been complaining about being hungry and having headaches.
You probably should've had that "sit down and talk" about the detoxing of her body, and what other sources of proteins there are (beans, quinoa, etc).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

I told her that from my knowledge, the headaches are a normal meat detox, and she's probably hungry because she removed meat from her diet and probably didn't replace it with another protein, like tofu, beans, quinoa...I also advised her to start taking a multivitamin and B12.

I also feel immensely guilty because my mother in law, who I love more than my own mother, told me she didn't want her to be vegetarian. But it wasn't my fault!
I didn't mean to!
I would'nt feel to guilty about it. It sounds like your SIL would've gone vegan whether or not you said anything. You might want to pass along some recipes for your MIL to fix for your SIL, or easy ones (like chili or enchiladas) for your SIL to make for the family. You also might want to direct them to this and any other (vegan) websites you like.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

Any advice for going vegan at this age? Am I missing anything really important I should be telling her? Can you recommend any videos she can watch that will better educate her on animal rights and health that are not too gory (I think Earthlings will wait a few years.)

Thanks
I can't think of any videos besides Meet Your Meat (too intense..I couldn't stand it after a few seconds) or Earthlings...You might want to loan her some of your cookbooks, or take her to the library so your SIL can find recipes (Vegan Planet and Appetite for Reductions, along with Isa Moskowitz's vegan cookies, cupcakes and pie books are a good start). Not what you're asking for, but they tend to have those kinds of info in them. Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,743 Posts

·
Not such a Beginner ;)
Joined
·
8,394 Posts
Good for your sister in law! My son was 10 when he went vegetarian and the next year, vegan. Long story, he is 18 now, but he brought my husband and I along for the ride.


It can be scary for the parents, worrying about nutrition, etc. I would get them a good easy vegan student type cookbook asap. If you live close by, invite them all over for dinner and have your SIL help prepare a simple but yummy vegan meal. Send the parents links on how she won't starve to death and how healthy this way of life is. Otherwise, they may try to pressure her out of this; some of my son's friends parents did this.

I love to hear about young vegan converts; it brings up memories of Z as a boy, printing out articles and sending links about veganism.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
331 Posts
I have a good friend who's daughters decided to go vegetarian when they were roughly 12-ish. That was 40 years ago. The lady whose daughters have been vegetarian all these years decided, after I went vegetarian, to go vegetarian. She says that when they went vegetarian she was concerned at first but, got over it after she realized their commitment. If this child wants to be vegan she will just get mad if her mom tries to stop her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
She's being a lot less resistant than I originally anticipated. Actually, it seems more likely that my sister in law was stretching the truth a bit on her 'not being allowed to not eat meat'
She is taking her to a nutritionist to get all the proper info. I sent along a few video recommendations and some book ideas.
Hopefully her mom gets some good ideas too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
331 Posts
My friend, former secretary, said that over the years she has realized how slowly her daughters have aged and how rapidly she has aged. Of course, she smoked for many years, that didn't help. Now she is going vegetarian and I have been sending her videos and such.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I am definitely hoping it will help me ward off wrinkles just a little while longer
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I just got texts from my mother in law that because of my sister in law's diet, she is now extremely iron deficient and has been passing out. (She just had blood tests done so it's not just a theory) They told her to take supplements and start eating red meat. This is so frustrating I want to rip my hair out. I want to give them advice but I've never dealt with iron deficiency before.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yep, from what I was told, supplements wouldn't be enough alone to help her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
388 Posts
There are plenty of other sources of iron besides red meat...in fact red meat isn't really that great of a source. I recommend checking out the book Vegan for Life. There's a whole chapter about iron and its relationship to other nutrients and how to get enough of it without eating meat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yes, from my knowledge, dark greens are the best source, aren't they? I will look into the book
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

Yes, from my knowledge, dark greens are the best source, aren't they? I will look into the book
From what I can recall- the iron in red meat is called 'haem iron' and iron found in plants/greens is called 'non-haem iron'; haem iron is more readily available to the body upon digestion, whereas with non-haem iron you only get about 50% (?) of the amount of iron that you could have obtained from the same amount in red meats.. So although there may be more iron in greens, you might not get as much out as with the red meat. :\\
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,793 Posts
One thing I heard was that iron was more easily absorbed into the blood stream when eaten with vitamin C. A couple of combinations are spinach with oranges and spinach with bell peppers. A cast iron skillet would be a good investment, too. Just go down to the thrift store and buy one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,712 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Limes View Post

Yep, from what I was told, supplements wouldn't be enough alone to help her.
Rubbish. That's just poor education on the part of the doctor, nurse, or nutritionist giving her advice.

Supplementation is necessary when iron levels are too low - I have a chronic iron deficiency anemia - but one need not eat meat in order to raise iron levels.

Some things to know about iron absorption.

#1 - Calcium can inhibit iron absorption. Iron rich foods and/or iron supplements should not be consumed with calcium rich foods.
#2 - Vitamin C enhances iron absorption. Iron rich foods and/or supplements should be consumed with foods or beverages high in Vitamin C.
#3 - While spinach is high in iron the oxalates in the spinach can hinder absorption.

While this is anecdotal "evidence" and not from a study - My iron levels are maintained better on a vegetarian diet than on an omnivorous diet. It is possible to correct iron deficiency and maintain healthy iron levels without meat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,793 Posts
Limes, I'm reading Vegetarian Cooking for Dummies right now, by Suzanna Havala, M.S., R.D. which has a lot of information about vitamins and nutrients including iron in it. Just read that too much tea can inhibit iron absorbtion.
Quote:
Tea contains tannic acid, a substance that inhibits your body's ability to
absorb dietary iron. If you drink more then a glass of hot or iced tea per day,
you may be markedly decreasing the amount of iron your body can absorb. If
you're an avid tea drinker, consider switching to herbal varieties, because
most of those don't have the same effect as regualr teas.
I checked this book out of the library. You may want to check it out (place a hold on it) and read it, too. Good luck with everything.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top