"Young bamboo bends, old bamboo breaks.” This saying from Indian yoga philosophy illustrates how our behaviors and attitudes are more flexible in our youth than in our old age. That's why it's important that we begin teaching children how to eat healthy while they're young. Experts at the World Health Organization agree that the healthiest diet is a low-fat, plant-based diet that includes plenty of whole grains, fruits and vegetables in their natural, unprocessed state.

Children are especially vulnerable to bad eating habits. They need food that is rich in nutrients to help support their growing bodies. Too often, however, snacks and fast food marketed to children are high in salt, sugar and fat but low in the vitamins, minerals, enzymes and phytonutrients that support healthy growth and development.

Besides physical growth, healthy eating has a positive effect on many aspects of children’s lives. Studies show that eating a healthy breakfast is associated with better memory, clearer thinking, improved mood and more frequent attendance at school.

School is a time for young minds to devour new books, digest big ideas and absorb a greater understanding of the world around them. This mental activity places a lot of demand on their young brains. A healthy body makes it work better. If we want our children to succeed in school, one of the most important steps we can take is to educate them about the importance of rejecting junk food in favor of choices that support their good health.

Teaching children to making healthy choices is especially important because the habits they form in childhood will likely be with them for the rest of their lives. For this reason, we should educate children about healthy choices from the beginning of their lives. They should not wait until they grow up to try to undo the bad habits they learned when they were younger. Healthy vegetarian diets support a lifetime of good health and provide protection against numerous diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and strokes, while helping to reverse diabetes, obesity and a host of other diet-related illnesses.

So, teach your children how to enter adulthood and old age in an excellent state of health by showing them how to appreciate a plant-based diet. There are plenty of tasty recipes from traditional eastern diets that have served generations well for centuries. They'll love it!

At Down to Earth, we believe that as children grow and develop the taste for delicious plant-based recipes, they will increasingly appreciate the well-being, mental clarity, and better health that they experience as a result.