T Nation

Kids and Protein Powder?

My coworker’s niece is vegetarian ( raised Buddhist) and she seems tired and rather weak ( I know she’s only 6 , but she’s weak even for that) and I recommended protein powder.
Is that a good idea?

Tell him they should stop killing their kid; a strict vege diet is not for a child that age…

I know it…but she’s Taiwanese and being raised Buddhist. So I think protein powder may be the only way.

Is she allowed eggs? Milk? Explain to the co-worker that the kid looks unhealthy and weak, ask which is more important to the kid, health or religion. There may be other reasons the kid looks weak other than lack of protein, get the kid to a doctor and find out for sure if it’s caused by lack of protein.

You can raise a healthy child on a vegetarian diet, but it takes more work than the average person is willing to commit to.

Protein powder is probably good advice. They’re not going to abandon their religion because a relative’s coworker suggested it.
Hopefully though, they’ll try to supplement the girl’s diet if it’s lacking.

Redgladiator has a point too, if she looks weak it’s probably a good idea to visit a doctor. I hate to sound like an alarmist but I had a cousin who started looking weak and acting sluggish in kindergarten, and it ended up being leukemia. It could be something much more serious than diet.

I hate to make this addition, because I think they taste nasty, but, Soya beans, Soya meat substitures, Tofu, Milled Flax. There’s loads of other stuff, cheese (especially mozzarella).

I’m not sure if protein powders are suitable for kids.

LR

Protein powders are just food. In an ideal world the kid would get all of his or her protein needs from whole foods, but in reality a lot of kids get half their daily calories from soft-drinks. I’m sure protein powders are safe for people of any age.

The formula my sister used for her baby had whey in it. Along with EPA and DHA. I was jealous the little tyke got to take it and not me =[.

Actual powders should be fine, provided they don’t come from china with the reported toxins in it. Those are most harmful to kids.

EDIT: I reread my post and didn’t make the point I wanted. Kids need WHOLE foods, milk, eggs, meat, etc. Those are first options, if they absolutely refuse all of those, then powders could be depended on.

Protein powder is a supplement and meant to be supplemented into a decent diet… it’s not meant to be a primary source of protein.

[quote]Nards wrote:
My coworker’s niece is vegetarian ( raised Buddhist) and she seems tired and rather weak ( I know she’s only 6 , but she’s weak even for that) and I recommended protein powder.
Is that a good idea?[/quote]
It’s not your kid. It’s not your co-worker’s kid. So this is third generation (or fourth, if you count us chiming in here) advice. That’s a big game of telephone, and really, I wouldn’t give a half-second’s thought to changing my child’s diet based on something my sister’s co-worker suggested.

How long were you around this little kid to “diagnose” her being tired and weak? A week, a day, a few hours? Maybe she was getting over a flu bug. Maybe just she missed her afternoon nap. I’m just saying, there’s a chance that your good intentions are unnecessary in the first place.

[quote]tw0scoops2 wrote:
Protein powder is a supplement and meant to be supplemented into a decent diet… it’s not meant to be a primary source of protein.[/quote]
Very much agree. In the case of little, little kids, I very, very, very much agree.

While there’s nothing “wrong” with including the occasional scoop of protein in an active kid’s diet, I don’t think it’s called for in this situation.

And in any case, even if she is “tired and weak”, protein in and of itself wouldn’t necessarily be the answer. It could be as simple as getting the kiddo more calories overall. Give the kid an avocado or two each day… problem solved. :wink: But again, we’re absolutely just guessing.

I don’t think protein powder is at all the answer - go with other whole food protein sources such as eggs or milk.

That way in case she’s missing some other nutrients then she’ll be more likely to get them…protein powder is great for building muscle and such but it’s not exactly a well-rounded nutritious food in general which is what it sounds more like she needs.

TELL YOUR COWORKER ABOUT QUORN PRODUCTS! they are made out of fungus and provide pretty good protein in the form of mycoprotein. I love the chikn cutlets and they dont taste half bad.

i get it at the bread and garden market here in iowa city… idk if you have one of those by you but its a place that selles organic foods, fresh veggies, etc.etc… its a really nice grocery store…