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Former Real Housewives Of New York star and food conversationalist Bethenny Frankel has revealed she’s raising her fifteen month old daughter as a vegetarian. The forty year old founder of Skinnygirl took to her blog today to write an exhaustive post explaining what the little girl’s diet consists of, how she prepares her meals and the course of action she might take if Bryn decides to try meat when she’s old enough to decide for herself. Had this entry been written sixty years ago, Frankel would likely have been summarily ostracized from society, but since this sort of nonsense is en vogue now, the whole thing seems to have gone over pretty well, at least with a small societal subgroup it was aimed at.
As for me, I find this entire blog post both well-intentioned and unintentionally hilarious. Parents have every right to raise their children how they see fit, provided their actions don’t damage the child, but pretending as if cutting meat out of a baby’s diet is somehow more moral, natural or the epitome of healthy is flat out ludicrous. Yes, large quantities of meat can be detrimental to one’s health, but having a normal portion within the confines of a sensible diet is the most balanced approach. Apparently, Bethenny disagrees with me though because this is her idea of balance…
Early on, I made the choice to go all organic for Bryn. Don’t get me wrong, if we are in a Mexican restaurant where I know the guacamole isn’t organic, it’s OK. Obsession isn’t the point here.
This is what happens when you’re too far inside the monkey house for too long. Frankel seems to think she’s bending over backwards to raise her daughter with an open-minded approach, but the fact that she feels the need to justify her fifteen month old kid not being a vegan tells you all you need to know.
I chose not to have her be vegan because I believe she needs the fat and protein in milk, and sometimes I need her to fill up on organic cheese. Her health comes first. Also, if she didn’t eat so many beans and good proteins, I might change this approach.
Estimates vary based on the specific research but most polls seem to indicate more than five percent and less than ten percent of Americans follow a strict vegetarian diet. Almost all agree that number will continue to steadily grow, but those who cut out meat are still in the overwhelming minority. Chances are baby Bryn will grow into an omnivore, but worry not, Bethenny is prepared for that day when it comes.
As far as raising Bryn as a vegetarian, that was a personal choice. If Bryn is older and wants something at a party that isn’t vegetarian, I don’t want her to feel ostracized. She’ll find her way.
While growing up in a house where one can’t ask her mother to make sloppy joes is no doubt a burden I wouldn’t want to place on anyone, it still is worth noting that finicky, over-parenting, even when I disagree with it, is still better than under-parenting. The fact that Bethenny wrote thousands of words on trying to incorporate avocados into Bryn’s diet is a testament that she does care, foolish and misguided as that effort might be. Here’s one last great quote for the road…
Juices are treats, but I buy high calorie smoothies to give her on occasion to gain weight.