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Creating Healthy Children Paperback – 2010
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Creating Healthy Children presents many values nature has given us to restore our children’s health through solid nutritional principles. In this informative transformational book, Karen Ranzi will guide you on the path to creating happier and healthier children, confident of their disease- free future. She will share the importance of understanding children’s biological and emotional needs. Rather than medicate a child’s asthma, ear infections, chronic allergies, learning, attention and hyperactivity disorders, and other illnesses, Karen’s approach simply eliminates the causes of disease through the healthful raw food lifestyle. You will learn the importance of obtaining the best possible nourishment for your family, and how to implement healthy choices successfully. Creating Healthy Children reveals terrific tips for children of all ages in how to improve their diet and lifestyle. Parents, future parents, pregnant mothers, teachers, social workers, psychologists, and anyone else who works with or has children needs to read this book.
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I was not sure what to expect when I first started the book. I am a firm believer in Attachment Parenting, but I could never be called a raw food enthusiast. I lean towards a vegetarian (often vegan), organic, all natural diet, but it is generally cooked and I had no desire to change that.
That said, I found the book fascinating, informative and incredibly well researched, and have already made small changes in my food choices and my family's. I do not intend to switch to a completely raw food diet, but Ranzi makes it clear that I don't have to in order to still see some benefits of raw foods.
Subjects included in the nearly 500-page book include: The health of the parents before conception, home birth, circumcision, diet during pregnancy, the B12 question, breastfeeding, the importance of skin-to-skin contact, co-sleeping, feeding baby uncooked foods, teaching children how to eat, personal care products for children, children's exercise and ventilation, transitioning children to raw foods, kid-tested recipes, Essential Fatty Acids, vitamins and minerals, eliminating causes of illnesses, water needs, genetic engineering, homeschooling, nonviolent communication with children, vaccinations, dental health, vision health, the importance of the sun, questions from parents, stories of raw families and their journeys and more.
When I first began reading, I have to admit to feeling rather overwhelmed and depressed. Ranzi lists so many health risks that adopting her lifestyle may seem impossible to some (and this is coming from someone who already makes a concerted effort to live a healthy lifestyle). From the chlorine in your shower water to the toxic molds in peanut butter, it can seem that nothing is safe.
By the time I finished the book, however, I had put those elements in perspective. I now feel more educated and empowered, and see that information as simply knowledge and perspectives to use as I see fit.
As parents, we tend to accumulate vast amounts of information on our journeys. We research, we ask questions, we learn from our own mistakes and we eventually emerge with so much wisdom to pass on. With this book, I feel that Karen Ranzi has gathered all the knowledge of her own parenting and health journeys in one place for those beginning their own.
The book is incredibly well researched and Ranzi quotes her sources extensively. In the chapter about B12, for instance, she tells all perspectives and lists so many studies that I felt as if I could pass a test by the time I finished it. The chapter about circumcision is twelve pages long and includes a personal story of a mother who became an anti-circumcision activist and two full pages of books, websites, videos, organizations and other resources on the subject.
Karen Ranzi shares her knowledge and beliefs without concern for whether people see her as a radical or disagree. The book is not watered down in an attempt to please every reader or avoid ruffling feathers. Ranzi quite simply shares what she believes is best for children, from breastfeeding to avoiding vaccination to choosing organic foods, and why.
Ranzi also talks about common pitfalls of raw food diets, such as relying too heavily on dried fruits (which harm the teeth) and nuts (which are high in fat and not necessary in large quantities).
Since I began reading this book, my twelve year-old daughter decided to begin eating raw. In the past, I might have worried about her protein intake, vitamin needs and other issues. Armed with Creating Healthy Children, I feel completely comfortable with her decision and have been able to help her choose good foods and prepare simple recipes (Ranzi's recipes do tend to be very simple indeed since she advocates consuming whole fresh foods most of the time).
I highly recommend this book and plan to keep it in my personal collection. I am still not ready to switch to an all-raw diet, but I have been serving more salads, smoothies and fresh fruits for snacks and meals. Who knows what the future may hold.
I cannot recommend this book as a reliable nutrition source, especially for kids, pregnant, and nursing women.
This book feels like a rant at times because there is so much repetition of what the author feels is best. I feel like the book wasn't well edited.
There are conflicting opinions even on the same page because she uses many passages from other books and statements from other people.
It ends up feeling confusing.
I do recommend going to mercola.com if you would like some well researched nutrition information.
I will also note that David Wolfe, a raw food pioneer, and nutritionist, does recommend eggs, raw dairy, and certain other animal products, although cautiously, for certain people. I recommend his books. They are well organized and he covers all of the nutritional concerns one would have.
Shazzie, a raw vegan for many years cannot recommend this diet for children as she has seen many neurologically and physically damaged children from eating a raw vegan diet.
The pros of this book are that the author does point out the positives of eating lots of fresh veggies, also noting that lots of nuts and seeds are hard to digest, she also states that dried fruits are not a good choice due to the high sugar content. Also, the loving approach to raising children is very positive.
There are too many cons to cover. She doesn't mention how plant based omega 3's can be hard for the body to convert. Although she briefly mentions oxalates, she doesn't note what a serious problem it could be for people eating lots of raw produce and also fails to mention that it also inhibits absorption of other vitamins and minerals besides calcium and a few others. She fails to mention what a problem candida and other things that flourish can be from eating too much fruit. This can be a major problem from this diet, especially with the smoothies and juices, even if green.
She lists coconut and olives under proteins. Whoa...
There is a very small section of recipes, very simple, not great looking, and ironically many contain nuts and seeds (this is something she recommends limiting).
The bottom line is, I would be seriously concerned if someone used this as a guidebook nutritionally for their kids or their own health, especially if they are pregnant or nursing.
Most recent customer reviews
"I purchased Karen's book during my pregnancy (2011).Read more