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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been struggling with a handful of pediatricians lately with my decision to have my family go vegetarian and eventually vegan. I get "looks" and "advice" and they address my son's weight issues and need for milk and meat.
I have kept asking to see another Dr in my group, and have seen 2 others in a couple months. I got an appointment with the last one available at the group yesterday for their checkup, I wanted to give her a try.
She was amazing! And so open to my diet ideas! And guess what- my son finally made it on the weight chart! She actually took the time to talk through their diet with me and thinks that he is finally gaining weight because he never liked meat before, and now that he is vegetarian, he is eating more protein alternatives - which makes his vegetarian diet the cause for his weight gain!
I thought I would never hear such beautiful smart words- its what I have been trying to get across to the rest of them.
She talked about how wonderful it was that I was paying so much attention to their diets and that they would live to be very healthy children, talked about lowered risk for disease and obesity, diabetes, etc...

I think I found a match made in heaven. She is so cool!


Now to figure out how I can also hang with her socially.....
 

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I'm happy for you.


I just went to a new doc, who, after finding out I was vegetarian, looked stressed and asked the protein question, then asked if I was at least eating plenty of yogurt, milk and cheese and when I said no that I was vegan, she said, "But you need calcium!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
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Originally Posted by delicioso View Post

I'm happy for you.


I just went to a new doc, who, after finding out I was vegetarian, looked stressed and asked the protein question, then asked if I was at least eating plenty of yogurt, milk and cheese and when I said no that I was vegan, she said, "But you need calcium!"
See- this is why I looked for a new doc- I am confused why they have medical degrees and not enough background in nutrition enough to know where protein and calcium comes from.
 

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Hey that's awesome! My pediatrician is pretty much the same way. I haven't even mentioned the vegetarian thing because I'm seriously scared she will accuse me of neglect or something. We don't have a very large selection of doctors where I'm located. I take my kids in when they need shots. They haven't been sick in a while so we haven't actually been in quite a while. I try to stay away from doctors whenever I can.

Congrats on finding a good one!!! :)
 

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That is awesome mollycakes! I must admit to being a bit worried about the judgmental stuff from doctors, etc. Fortunately, our GP seems completely fine with me having been vegan through pregnancy, so hopefully that will continue.
 

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Having a girlfriend who is a vegetarian nutritionist is pretty useful in these situations. She can tell them they're full of it and has the credentials to back it up lol.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollycakes View Post

See- this is why I looked for a new doc- I am confused why they have medical degrees and not enough background in nutrition enough to know where protein and calcium comes from.
yeah, that's the funny thing! Apparently, learning medicine and learning nutrition are vastly different things. I even read that doctors have only about 1 or 2 weeks' worth of nutrition lessons in their many years of studying...I guess that's why "doctor" and "nutritionist" are separate jobs
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
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Originally Posted by AKTF View Post

yeah, that's the funny thing! Apparently, learning medicine and learning nutrition are vastly different things. I even read that doctors have only about 1 or 2 weeks' worth of nutrition lessons in their many years of studying...I guess that's why "doctor" and "nutritionist" are separate jobs
It really bothers me that they have at least 3-4 semesters of pharmacology and this small of a background in nutrition. Shouldn't they be one in the same?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKTF View Post

yeah, that's the funny thing! Apparently, learning medicine and learning nutrition are vastly different things. I even read that doctors have only about 1 or 2 weeks' worth of nutrition lessons in their many years of studying...I guess that's why "doctor" and "nutritionist" are separate jobs
I believe it's "hours" here in the states....truly pathetic.

The Academic Medicine study found in 2009 that medical students averaged 19.6 hours of nutrition instruction throughout medical school, down from 22.3 hours in 2004 (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20736683/).
 

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Speaking as a Dietician, it's meant to be our job to fill in where the doctor's knowledge drops off the cliff regarding nutrition but this usually only works out if you're a patient in a hospital. Those seeing family doctors/GPs could potentially be subjected to any old nutrition advice that the doc has lifted from the newspapers at the weekend. They can't be expected to know everything I suppose but a little bit of sensible knowledge wouldn't go amiss. Having said that, mentioning 'veganism' to a Dietician is likely to produce the same response as the docs...."whaaaa??! How on earth will you get enough calcium, iron, B12, protein yadda yadda yadda??!!"
You gotta laugh, thank goodness us veg*ns know what's what!!
 

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An actual good GP! That's a rare find! Congratulations


To the others, if you're not up for arguing with the doctor, I'd say take a tape recorder into the room if you have one.

If it's a one party state, you could even keep it hidden; but otherwise mention to the doctor you're recording it, if he or she asks why you can imply it's so you'll remember it, like "for later". The doctor shouldn't disagree.

If the doctor then says something incorrect about veganism, you can then ask him or her, "Is this your medical advice?" and, "Are you qualified to give this kind of nutritional advice?".

Then if the doctor doesn't recant it and refer you to a nutritionist, take it to your state medical ethics board (free!).

Not to be a jerk, you could drop the ethics complaint when the doctor agrees to actually learn something about vegan nutrition instead of speaking out of his or her... you know. It might be important to mention anecdotes of moral junk-food eating vegans who have actually died because they refused to follow a doctor's ignorant advice of, "eat meat" instead of having received good advice on B12 and nutrition which does not disregard their morals (or having in the least been referred to a qualified nutritionist).

Could do some good for those who follow, maybe?
 
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