no more vegan babies

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by OutThere, Feb 21, 2005.

  1. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

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    #1
    Studies have shown that children raised from before birth on an entirely vegan diet are at a strong disadavantage, and often mentally and physically retarded due to their lack of meat/animal products. Interesting stuff, makes you think about the reasons that people raise their babies on a vegan diet.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4282257.stm
     
  2. Lacero macrumors 604

    Lacero

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    #2
    Do vegan mothers breast feed their babies? Obviously, babies need the protein and fat present in milk to grow and develop. It only becomes a matter of logic that as humans, we need to both consume meat as well as plant matter. People have been eating fish and grazing animals for hundreds and thousands of years.
     
  3. Leareth macrumors 68000

    Leareth

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    #3
    believe it or not there are some idiot vegan parents that claim any milk whether human, cow or goat is bad for babies and try to raise their kids on a vegan diet, instead of milk they use fruit juice and nut "milks", the up side to this is kids raised this way will be too stupid and messed up to breed and produce more idiot vegan parents. I can understand going vegan when you are an adult, but in the growing years kids need more fat and protein than a vegan diet can provide as well studies show that kids even on a vegetarian diet do not get enough nutrients due to the bulking up effect of the vegetarian diet, so they feel full but in reality haven't consummed enough calories and nutrients to keep them healthy.
     
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #4
    Well, I doubt there are many who know about this and accept that this applies to them and still go out and do it.

    The fact that there are no confirmatory studies that are performed naturalistically on vegans by choice in developed countries is problematic though...the study in Africa only proves that it is *possible* to malnourish your child if you raise it vegan from birth. I would submit it's quite possible to do that if you're omnivorous too....

    FWIW, I'm vegetarian, but not vegan. I was raised in young childhood vegetarian (and my people have been doing that for hundreds of, if not a thousand or more, years...). I have gone through phases of eating meat, but at current, I do eat dairy products, eggs rarely, and meat once in a great, great while, to humor a friend (like once a yearish). But otherwise I'm vegetarian....
     
  5. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #5
    The problem with the vegan diet is that it is first and formost an ethical statement or religious/cultural tradition, not a health choice.

    It may be a loaded term, but I will go so far as to say that it is an unnatural diet. Of course, most of us have an unnatural diet in the sense that we eat processed foods, but any "unnatural" diet is unhealthy without supplement. Atkins, anyone?

    In the case of developing children I will say that everything I have seen in the healthcare industry and in college has suggested to me that breastfeeding, when possible, is by far the best option. Anything else has proven to be nutritionally inferior, including other animal milk. A good deal of statisitcal work has been done (available on PubMed) detailing this.

    Adults are much more resistant to nutritional distress; A weaning child's immune system is highly sensitive to malnutrition, especially in the first two years of life. Malnutrition during this period has been incontrovertably proven to cause lifelong defects and developmental issues. I belive the study is accurate, and suitable for extrapolation to vegans by choice. The UK Vegan Society's response that a vegan diet is "bursting with goodness" sounds like marketing speak, not exactly the most stunning rebuttal. The only differences are that "first world" vegans have access to state of the-art-healthcare and supplement pills. But pills are only good if you intake the proper amounts, which varies a lot between individuals. Even then, pathologies can alter your dietary needs significantly without you knowing it.

    As for me, I love cheese, so I could never be a "strict" vegetarian or vegan, but being onmivorous there is a lot of latitude in what it is helathy to consume - to a point. Sorry if it's a long post, but I just got into a discussion with somebody about this and it's fresh in my mind. :D
     
  6. Brize macrumors 6502a

    Brize

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    #6
    I wish that people would approach such research findings critically, rather than simply accepting them as truth. Any research that claims to have established something unequivocally should always be approached with caution. It's also somewhat alarming that the researcher herself has used inflammatory rhetoric in the presentation of her research findings. This alone indicates a lack of objectivity.

    If we look at the design and methodology of this experiment, it immediately becomes clear that there is no basis upon which to generalise these findings:

    The 544 children studied had been raised on diets chiefly consisting of starchy, low-nutrition corn and bean staples.​

    And guess what? When those children were fed meat and milk, their physical and cognitive development advanced dramatically. No sh*t! How many vegans do you know that live primarily on low-nutrition corn and bean staples? Nope, me neither.

    In addition, the researcher, Lindsay Allen, works for the US Agricultural Research Service, who are responsible for 'ensuring profitability for farmers and processors', according to their website. Now there's a surprise.
     
  7. Brize macrumors 6502a

    Brize

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    #7
    Err…that's actually completely illogical. There are millions of vegetarians in the world, so we clearly don't need to consume meat.
     
  8. MacAztec macrumors 68040

    MacAztec

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    #8
    Where to vegetarians get their protein? Soy beans? Tofu? I will stick to my steak/salad menu, it is way healthier then the vegan stuff. I think once you go vegan, you are just trying to make a statement. you WANT to tell everyone "hey look at me, I am in no way affiliated with the consumption/killing of animals". Animals have been used for THOUSANDS of years as a food, and a resource. Humans were MADE to eat meat. Look at our teeth. We can chew anything.
     
  9. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #9
    That's insane. Babies need milk. Preferably human breast milk.

    Children do need a lot of protein and probably far more fat than adults.

    There is one of the B vitamins (b12 I think) which isn't produced by plants or people but is needed by the human body. The amount needed is fairly small and a normal diet for the first couple of decades gives almost a life-time supply of it. There are a few other non animal sources but quantities of it are hit and miss.
     
  10. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #10
    B12? Brewers Yeast + all the Amino Acids.
     
  11. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #11
    You make some good points, but before you pass out the conspiracy hats remember that the small amount of meat given during the study was intended to function as a supplement without providing a huge caloric increase. 2oz per day is a very small amount in caloric terms, but can function very effectively as a dietary supplement, which was the point of her study. If she were giving them a prime rib dinner instead I'd be suspicious. :rolleyes:

    I would never rule out bias altogether (it is impossible and silly to do so), but I still think that the study is a useful piece of basic research that can be further developed. More importantly, I don't belive that a vegan diet is appropriate for a developing child, for reasons that I stated previously.
     
  12. Brize macrumors 6502a

    Brize

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    #12
    What's important is the amount of protein per calorie. Quorn--which is a popular meat substitute in the UK--contains 14g of protein per 100 kcal. Steak generally has about 17g of protein per 100 kcal, so they're pretty comparable.

    The idea that humans are 'made' to eat meat doesn't really stand up to scrutiny. Unlike carnivorous animals, our digestive tracts are very long, and far more conducive to processing vegetation than meat. Vegetarians and Vegans generally have far better digestive health; they rarely get stomach cramps, food poisoning, colon cancer, etc. The way in which we process meat is surprisingly inefficient; traces have reportedly been found in people who haven't eaten meat for 15 years plus.

    Then again, if God didn't want us to eat animals, why would he have made them out of meat? :D
     
  13. virividox macrumors 601

    virividox

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    #13
    amen to that, preach it brother!!!
    quorn is nasty

    i say give the kid the proper nutrition during their formative years, and let make their diet choice later in life when they can understand why they have to eat certain things
     
  14. unfaded macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Alright, did anyone actually read this?

    To some groups they gave meat, which is known to have certain vitamins, and to another group they gave a VITAMINLESS ALTERNATIVE.

    Why is this surprising then that those babies were lacking in those vitamins?

    I currently eat meat, but have been a vegan and a vegetarian in my life, and this is the stupidest study I have ever seen in my life. A vegan diet is perfectly fine when supplemented with B12 (and, as recent studies have shown, supplementing a vegan diet with creatine, which is found very abundantly in meat as its stored in muscle, also helps).

    Worst. Study. Ever. Almost makes me pissed off enough to go back.
     
  15. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

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    #15
  16. jayscheuerle macrumors 68020

    jayscheuerle

    #16
    Actually, our digestive systems have a lot more in common with dogs than sheep.

    comparison

    or an alternative view .

    Any agendas here?
     
  17. codycartoon macrumors regular

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    #17
    Don't get vegan diets confused with vegetarian diets guys. A huge misconception is how much protein a person needs, Americans generally have waaayyy to much protein in their diets, it turns in to fat. There are plenty of other places to get protein; Beans and Nuts for example. And yes Milk, Cheese, Eggs, and other dairy products. Most vegetarians eat these products. As far as child birth goes, there have been many books written about the subject that says a vegetarian diet for an infant is perfectly all-right, as long as he or she gets the right amount of nutrients.

    I have been vegetarian for about a year and a half. It truly is wonderful, it's much easier than I thought it was(Once I discovered the veggie burrito at Chipotle). I have more energy and generally feel better. I'm not doing this for the animals either, honestly screw the animals, especially cattle. I'm doing it because it's a better more fulfilling lifestyle choice.

    There is a lot of arrogance on this subject. I can't tell you how many times I have been asked where I get my protein or how "unnatural" is it.

    All I ask is think about what you are putting in your mouths guys.

    You are what you eat.

    -cody
     
  18. Brize macrumors 6502a

    Brize

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    #18
    Lord Blackadder: The issue here is that this researcher is making a concrete assertion based on research that has absolutely no relevance to that assertion.

    All she's managed to establish is that corn and bean staples (a wholly inadequate diet by anyone's standards) is less conducive to healthy development than the same diet supplemented by small amounts of meat or milk. I'm sure we could all have come to that conclusion by ourselves.

    The researcher has stated that it's unethical to raise children on a vegan diet. Did she, during the course of her experiment, raise any children on a typical vegan diet? No, she didn't, and she therefore has no empircal evidence to support her claim. (None that we're aware of, anyway.)

    It's analogous to establishing that a G5 is faster than a Xeon, and then inferring that it's also faster than an Opteron, because they're both x86 chips.

    I imagine this experiment was simply designed to establish whether the health of young African children could be vastly improved by a relatively inexpensive dietary supplement. The research seems to indicate that it can, and this has positive implications that have so far been overlooked, both on the BBC site, and in this thread.
     
  19. Lacero macrumors 604

    Lacero

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    #19
    So are you saying a strictly vegan diet without supplements is unhealthy? I'd rather chew on a chicken drumstick then pop pills.
     
  20. Peterkro macrumors 68020

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    #20
    He said supplemented not supplements most vegans use Brewers yeast , see my post ^ there.
     
  21. VincentVega macrumors regular

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    #21
    I've been a vegetarian for 15 years or so. I don't eat meat, fish but eat dairy products (milk, cheese). I'm considering becoming a vegan, but haven't committed to it yet.

    Countless studies have shown that breastfeeding a baby is the best approach. Even if you are a vegan, is it really worth compromising your baby's health in that way? I have no qualms with breastfeeding. It's important to give your young child a balanced diet: if this means feeding them milk, then so be it. Once they're older, then you can confine them to a vegetarian diet.

    Reading the article, it seems to me as if they've gone for the most "extreme" vegans they can find and used fairly ridiculous arugments. If you feed a child a diet based on "starchy, low-nutrition corn and bean staples" that lack essential vitamins, then of course they're going to be unhealthy! Duh. If you fed them nothing but Big Macs or 12oz steaks, they'd be just as unhealthy.

    Fact is, vegetarian and vegan diets, if you watch what you eat and try and maintain a balanced diet, are good for you. I certainly suffer no side effects having been a vegetarian for 15 years. I don't miss meat at all. For me, it was an ethical and health-based decision.

    Just a general point (not targetted at anyone here in particular), I find that my and others' vegetarianism and veganism often arouse strong feelings of contempt and displays of intolerance by meat eaters. Certainly, I get mocked for being a vegetarian by 250lb guys who eat a lot of meat (I'm around 170lb). However, I *never* raise objections to them eating meat. I wonder why they fail to show consideration towards me. Ignorance? A lack of respect? Plain bad manners? The mind boggles.
     
  22. Littleodie914 macrumors 68000

    Littleodie914

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    #22
    Amen to the subject of no more vegan babies... Seems like a really bad idea if you ask me. Little dudes need all the protein and beefy stuff they can get. In my personal opinion, I could never go vegan... People were meant to be beefy! Eating greens all my life would wither me down to a twig and no doubt have a negative effect on my energy. Plus, who can deny a nice T-Bone with a bottle of A1? :D ;)
     
  23. Apple Hobo macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    Millions of years of eating meat can't be wrong. :D

    Now on the subject...

    A local 5-month-old child was killed, and the parents were arrested for feeding the malnourished child a raw diet. The parents' defense is trying to say a genetic disorder is the cause of death, but that was recently ruled out. The case is still under trial, but I think the parents will charged with neglecting their child.

    I also have my doubts over people putting their carnivore pets on a vegan diet. :rolleyes:
     
  24. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #24
    Yeah, that's pretty messed up both scientifically and in just common sense. "We fed these kids an unhealthy diet, and they didn't do well. Give them better nutrition, and they do." Yeah, we needed a scientific study on real humans to figure that out.

    Personally, I'll eat just about anything (certainly a lot of stuff most Americans would never even touch--raw horsemeat, dried squid leather, fish eyes, slime-molded soybeans with raw egg, etc). But, even if humans are obviously omnivorous I have no issue with people who choose, for ethical or health reasons (though the latter is based on shaky assumptions) to eat healthy vegitarian or vegan diets. Why the animosity? It's their choice, and we can live just as well on vegtables as a dog can live on kibble.

    Now, stupid vegitarians/vegans are a whole 'nother matter, and REALLY annoying. As with any diet, you've got to balance it to stay healthy, and it takes more thought to do so if you're not eating meat. Just eating salad every day is NOT a health concious decision, it's as dumb as eating nothing but steak every day--both will eventually kill you from malnutrition (seen the former nearly happen do dumb vegan kids, and the latter to an uncle on a crazy fad diet).

    Not feeding your kid breast milk is flat-out wrong; gee, perhaps we're, I don't know, DESIGNED to develop drinking that stuff? Not like we evolved for that to be the perfect source of infant nutrition... no, wait, we did. Just as sick as the people who formula-feed their babies because they're too lazy to nurse them.

    Still, you can be quite healthy if you eat a carefully balanced vegitarian, or even vegan, diet, so don't give the smart eaters a hard time just because they eat different from you.
     
  25. Littleodie914 macrumors 68000

    Littleodie914

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    #25
    Hear hear :cool:
     

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