Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving

Low-carb kids?!

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I came across this article recently detailing how to raise kids on low-carb diets and I honestly can’t even. It’s one thing for adults to choose to follow low-carb diets. It’s a whole other kettle of fish to inflict them on children.

The post is written by a pharmacist. I’m sorry, when did pharmacists become keepers of nutritional expertise? Has this woman never heard of scope of practice? You don’t see me running around telling people to start popping pills for various ailments. This is because I’m a dietitian, I know about food and nutrition. Medications I leave to doctors, NPs, and pharmacists.

Okay, so why is this pharmacist advocating for a low-carb diet for kiddos? The opening statement reads: “Childhood obesity is a huge problem today. Lots of parents are wondering – how do you raise kids without feeding them excessive carbs?” 

Are they? Parents, can you confirm this? It frightens me to think that this may be true.

The article makes a disingenuous comparison between two packed lunches and essentially equates low-carb to “junk food” free and, as far as I can tell, low/no grain. Trotting out that erronous message that modern wheat is different from ancient wheat and therefore the food of the devil.

Does the author bother to mention that grains contain nutrients that are important for growth and development in children? Nope. No mention of ensuring that alternative sources of B vitamins, fibre, vitamin E, certain proteins, and so on must be found for children to be healthy on such a diet. Certainly no mention that this type of diet may be setting up children for a lifetime of disordered eating.

There are other ways to prevent childhood obesity and to promote healthy eating habits in children. Forced orthorexia and elimination of food groups is not one of them. Instead, focus on providing your children with nutritious options. Involve them in food prep. Allow them to have occasional treats. Model healthy eating habits and a positive relationship with food. Eat together as a family as often as possible. Carbs are not the enemy.

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Author: Diana

I'm a registered dietitian from Nova Scotia, living and working in Ontario, Canada. My goal is to help people relearn how to have a healthy relationship with food.

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