Thursday, July 24, 2008

A 7 Year Old's Dilemma

One of the things that is very important to Rich and me is teaching our kids about proper nutrition and eating well. We want to teach our children how to make good, healthy choices in food.

We do bring the kids to McD's or let them have special "treats" from time to time. But it's the exception rather than the rule. Moderation is the key.

Lately, everything Sam eats he asks if it is "healthy." It hasn't seemed to deter him from wanting chicken nuggets or the processed macaroni and cheese... but at least he's asking the questions.

So last night at dinner Josh was very curious about different foods and trying to avoid eating his fish asking all sorts of questions. His teacher last year was a vegetarian so he was curious about what that meant and why some people are vegetarians and some aren't.

Rich explained that some people don't eat meat for a variety of reasons, among them religion, diet and that some people object to killing and eating animals.

Josh then said he didn't like to kill animals and that he liked fruits and vegetables so maybe he could be a vegetarian. We told him if he wanted to try and be a veggie, that would be fine with us.

So we agreed that on Friday we'd have a "meat free" day to test it out and see how he likes it.

We started to explain that there were many types of vegetarians -- some that don't eat any animal by-product like milk and cheese (he didn't want to explore that) and some that will eat fish and eggs.

We explained that there are some people that aren't totally vegetarian, but make decisions not to eat some kinds of meat due to how animals are treated (like veal or only eating free-range chickens, etc...)

We told him he had to make a decision about what was important to him and then decide what he was willing to give up for his beliefs.

Josh then said, "Well, one thing I know I don't like is chicken!" Then he pointed at his food.

I said, "Well, that's fish Josh. And you don't like chicken nuggets?"

The look on his face was priceless.

I continued, "... and no more hamburgers or hot dogs. You wouldn't be able to eat at McDonald's anymore."

He said, "Oh. Maybe not then."

Thus ended his attempt to talk his way out of eating his dinner.


  1. My sister and niece are both vegetarians, and both made the decision before they were 10. It's funny how kids think it all out, lol

  2. Classic! Makes me think of the Shel Silverstein poem "Sick". I love that you are promoting healthy eating and being open to different diets.

  3. Very good reasoning their mom. Kids crack me up.

  4. ah well - his vegetarianim lasted about one minute. still awesome! and good for you teaching them healthy eating :-)

  5. LOL, their arguments never quite go the way they want them to!

  6. That's really neat that his curiosity got the better of him and so asked questions relating to the issue. Very curious lil man! I love that he tried to get out of eating his dinner, sounds like what I used to do at his age! LOL

  7. That sounds like something my daughter would say. She likes to think some of her food choices are healthy because some of the ingredients are healthy.

    I have got to get her to eat more healthy!

  8. Nice try though! You have to give him credit!


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