When my first-born started eating solids my husband was completely against feeding her meat. As she got older we eventually started to give her meat and she loved it. He wanted her to be healthier and not ingest all kinds of hormones and what not that comes with buying commercial meat. I am not sure that he himself really knew why – he just felt like it was a better decision.
I have occasionally entertained the idea of going meatless but never really had a reason to do so other than perhaps to just be healthier. I have never taken into consideration how raising animals that eventually become our dinner impacts the environment…it is absolutely crazy!
Meatless? A Fresh Look at What you Eat by Sarah Elton (thank you Owl Kids for sending over this book!) talks about it all in simple terms and is appropriate even for adults. Why people go vegetarian, the high cost of meat, and a fantastic sample chart of a meat-free week are some of the topics you will find in this book. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the power of plants. Did you know that by combining a legume with a grain creates a complete protein? (I totally didn’t!) My Favourite?… A fantastic chart on meat alternatives! Included in this chart are a variety of meat-free sources to finding minerals (iron, zinc, calcium), fats and fatty acids as well as Vitamin B12. This book is geared towards children in grades 4-8 but let me tell you, I have learned so much myself reading it!
My 3 year old is a little too young to understand the language in this book but she saw it on our coffee table the past couple days and kept begging me to read it to her. I finally gave in. While the book is written for children in grades 4-8, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it as an adult and learned quite a bit. I definitely had to simplify majority of it for her (and improvise on the parts that talked about animals dying- she would definitely cry) but she loved it and asked a million questions about every single page.
What to expect:
Here is a breakdown of the chapters:
Part One: A History of Meat-Eating (including a great section on religious rules- super interesting!)
Part Two: Why Go Vegetarian?
- Animal Welfare
- The High Cost of Meat
- Greenhouse Gases
- Enough Food for Everyone
Part Three: If Not Meat, Then What?
- Plant Power
- Faux Meat- Bon Appétit!
- A Meat-Free Week
- Telling Your Friends and Family
- Tips from Kid Vegetarians
Conclusion: Set the Table for Everyone
I really admire how the author does not try to convince you to be a vegetarian or puts down meat eaters but rather educates you. I am not quite ready to tell my little lady that the chicken she eats is actually a dead chicken. (yes Sweetie, the same ones you see at the farms.. yes like your cute little stuffy that is on your bed right now that you adore and talk to each night) I just don’t have the heart to and I do not feel she is mature enough, so I am making the choices for her right now. As a family we are meat eaters but we do limit our meat each week. As my daughter gets older, she will be making her own decisions and this book is perfect for educating her in all aspects. It is definitely a keeper!
A big thanks to Owl Kids Books for sending over a copy of Meatless? A Fresh Look at What You Eat by Sarah Elton in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions in this blog post are 100% my own!
**Note: This blog post was originally posted on Jun.20 but due to some technical glitches of changing the theme of my blog and making some revisions to my site, it was sadly erased along with a group of other posts so I have reposted it! 🙂