Sustainable plant-based eating for children - the nutritional considerations

Added on
27 Jul 2020
Sustainable plant-based eating for children - the nutritional considerations

There is consensus amongst national and international leading health organisations that populations have to adopt more plant-based dietary patterns if we are to safeguard human and planetary health. 

What does this mean for children and adolescents whose nutritional needs are heightened during this life stage of critical growth and development?

Published 27th July 2020 & endorsed the British Dietetic Association: our 12-page fully referenced fact sheet presents the findings of our expert authors' investigation of the scientific evidence to ensure sustainable plant-based diets can meet the critical and heightened nutritional needs of children and adolescents. 

Find out all the facts and practical implications for when advising on children's and adolescents' diets to ensure they are both sustainable and nutritionally sound.

  • Sustainable plant-based diets encompass a spectrum of dietary patterns and do not necessarily exclude meat or dairy. 
  • Which sustainable plant-based dietary pattern is adopted will reflect on which nutrients in the diet will require more careful planning.
    • Plant-based sustainable dietary patterns as recommended by Public Health England's Eatwell guide and the British Dietetic Association's One Blue, do not exclude any food groups.
    • Vegan and vegetarian diets are also classified as plant-based and depending on the balance and quality of plant foods consumed, could also be sustainable.  For these dietary patterns, attention will be needed to ensure nutrients from the avoided animal-source foods are provided through plant foods. 
  • Take a deep dive into the scientific evidence and practical implications for meeting energy, protein, fat (including long-chain omega-3 and essential PUFAs), vitamins B12 and D as well as calcium, iron, zinc, iodine, and selenium.
    • When, which and how to recommend supplements.
  • Time to debunk common misconceptions around plant-based diets including protein quality and quantity, iron, vitamin D, and calcium.

Supporting Webinar: listen to our expert author present the evidence

Supporting Webinar: listen to our expert author present the evidence

The author of this fact sheet, Vanessa Clarkson BSc MSc, presented the evidence in a webinar to an audience of health professionals.  The free 1-hour webinar covers all the topics discussed within the fact sheet and more

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The science and advice for sustainable plant-based eating for the future health of our people and planet is rapidly evolving with new government policies soon to be put into play.

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