Resources from PAN

These resources are designed to deepen your knowledge of the science and evidence for plant-based nutrition.

Introduction to Plant-Based Nutrition

Nutrition and Planetary Health

The Future of World Health

This comprehensive guide to the basics of plant-based diets for infants and toddlers includes key nutrients required for adequate nutrition, feeding babies breast milk or infant formula, first foods, and foods that meet nutritional requirements.

This comprehensive guide to plant-based diets during pregnancy and breastfeeding provides the basics of plant-based nutrition, key nutrients critical for adequate nutrition, healthy diet and behaviors before and during pregnancy and while breastfeeding, and foods that meet the nutritional needs of mothers

Other Resources

Breastfeeding Information and Support (USDA WIC Breastfeeding Support)
Learn more about breastfeeding, including the different stages of breastfeeding, breastfeeding benefits, and solutions to common breastfeeding challenges here.

Complete Vegan Pregnancy: All-in-One Guide to a Healthy, Holistic, Plant-based Pregnancy
Your Complete Vegan Pregnancy provides the essential knowledge, expert nutrition advice, and recipes that support a healthy pregnancy. Discover how a plant-based diet is beneficial for both you and your growing baby, as well as everything you need to know about nourishing your body with the proper nutrients and minerals.

National Women’s Health and Breastfeeding Helpline (HHS Office on Women’s Health)
The women’s health information specialists at The National Women’s Health and Breastfeeding Helpline are trained breastfeeding peer counselors. They are available to answer common questions about women’s health and provide breastfeeding support to anyone, anywhere, free of charge.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding (USDA MyPlate)
Making healthy food choices along with regular physical activity will help fuel your baby’s growth and keep you healthy during pregnancy and while you are breastfeeding.

Seafood and Mercury
Metals and other pollutants tend to bioaccumulate, meaning they concentrate as they travel up the food chain. As smaller animals are eaten by larger or predaceous animals, pollutants within many animal products pose a health concern to humans who consume them. Mercury is a metal that is difficult for the body to remove and is very toxic, even in small quantities. Mercury exposure during pregnancy, infancy, and childhood is particularly dangerous. Learn more.

Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Storing Infant Feeding Items (CDC)
Infant feeding items, including bottles, nipples, rings, and caps, require special attention to cleanliness. Learn more about the precautions you can take to keep the milk you feed your baby from becoming contaminated here.

Feeding Vegetarian and Vegan Infants and Toddlers (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)
This article gives an overview of how to provide healthy and balanced meals for babies, including which nutrients to pay extra attention to when planning meals.

How to Make Homemade Baby Food (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)
Making your own food can help expose babies to more flavors, which may help them become more adventurous eaters. You are also in greater control of your baby’s nutrition. Follow these guidelines if you choose to prepare homemade baby food.

Infant Growth and Development Stages (USDA MyPlate)
Good nutrition is crucial for optimal growth and development during the first year of life. Learn about the steps you can take at each stage of infancy to ensure good lifelong health for your child here.

Reducing the Risk of Choking in Young Children at Mealtimes (USDA WIC Works Resource System)
Young children are at a higher risk of choking when eating solid foods. Learn how to reduce this risk through proper food preparation methods and good mealtime habits, as well as choking hazards to avoid here.

Safely Storing and Preparing Breast Milk (CDC)
Volume, temperature fluctuations, and environmental cleanliness are a few of the many factors that affect how long human milk may be safely stored. Learn more about recommended storage and preparation practices to maintain the safety and quality of expressed breast milk for the baby’s health here.

Safely Storing and Preparing Infant Formula (CDC)
Like breast milk, infant formula should be handled with care for the baby’s best health. Learn the steps you can take to ensure proper preparation and storage of your infant’s formula here.

Signs Your Child is Hungry or Full (CDC)
Your child will communicate their hunger or fullness through nonverbal signs such as sound and movement long before they can speak. Understanding these signs is essential to know when and how often to feed your infant. Learn more about how your child may express hunger and fullness during their first two years of life here.


Dietary Guidelines for Americans (USDA, HHS)
Developed and written for healthcare providers, nutrition educators, and policymakers, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans offers guidance on meeting nutrient needs, promoting health, and preventing disease for people in all life stages, including infants, children, and pregnant and lactating women.

Interactive Nutrition Facts Label (U.S. FDA)
The nutrition facts label on food and beverage packaging is a powerful tool for making informed nutrition choices that promote healthy eating habits for life. Learn how to interpret and apply the information on these labels as your guide for healthy food options here.

MyPlate Food Group Recommendations (USDA MyPlate)
Healthy eating habits centered on a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, lean protein, and fortified dairy alternatives are essential for optimal life-long health benefits. Learn more about food groups, including how much of each is necessary during every developmental stage of life, at MyPlate.Gov.

Personalized Food Group Recommendations (USDA)
The MyPlate Plan encourages healthy eating habits by providing personalized food group recommendations tailored to each individual’s needs based on factors such as age, sex, and physical activity level. Learn more and get your customized plan from MyPlate.Gov.

Recommended Portion and Serving Sizes for Children (American Academy of Pediatrics)
Each child’s age, appetite, and activity level are a few factors that influence optimal food portion sizes. Learn more and get guidance on suggested portion sizes for children ages 1-10 here.

Regrow Food Scraps: 19 Foods You Can Regrow from Scraps (Food Revolution Network)
While many people think of food scraps – such as carrot tops, onion bottoms, and the tips of romaine hearts or pineapples – as waste (or future fertilizer), these items can be enjoyed all over again. Reduce waste, save money, and build self-sufficiency with this handy guide to growing real food from scraps.

Vegan for Life: Everything You Need to Know to Be Healthy on a Plant-based Diet
Vegan for Life is a comprehensive guide to healthy eating for everyone, including athletes, children, and pregnant women. Registered dietitians Jack Norris and Virginia Messina provide insightful information on plant-based nutrition myths, protein requirements, essential vitamins and minerals, and nutrient needs during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as well as a six-step transition plan to a plant-based diet in this go-to handbook.

Adolescent Development (HHS Office of Population Affairs)
Learn about the biological, cognitive, and emotional changes that occur during adolescence and how adults can support young people to build skills they need to thrive here.

American Academy of Pediatrics Parenting Website 
The American Academy of Pediatrics was founded in 1930 by a group of pediatricians with the purpose of addressing the physical, mental, and social health and well-being of infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. The AAP undertakes research, raises public awareness, and supports professional education, among other activities. To learn more about the AAP’s work and access their family-focused resources, visit

Child Growth Charts (American Academy of Pediatrics)
For decades, healthcare professionals and parents have used growth charts to track ideal growth in infants and children using metrics such as height, weight, and head circumference. Learn more about growth charts and their importance for keeping track of your child’s overall health here.

Eating Disorders Support (National Eating Disorders Association)
Eating disorders are serious but treatable illnesses that affect people from all walks of life. Though commonly misunderstood, eating disorders are responsible for the second-highest mortality rate of all mental health conditions. The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) supports recovery for individuals and families affected by eating disorders through programs and services dedicated to increasing awareness, creating supportive communities, and funding scientific studies.

Kitchen Scrap Gardening (Action for Healthy Kids)
Involving your children in hands-on activities such as cooking and gardening is one of the best ways to encourage positive attitudes toward fruits and vegetables. Learn how to grow a garden using food scraps and other common household items to help your children develop healthy eating habits here.

Dietary Reference Intake Calculator (USDA)
Developed by the Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, this dietary reference intake calculator for healthcare professionals calculates personalized daily calorie and nutrient recommendations based on each patient’s specific body metrics.

Micronutrient Supplementation (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)
This position paper aims to increase awareness of current issues relevant to micronutrient supplementation and of the resources available to assist clinicians in evaluating their potential benefits and adverse outcomes.

Nutrition Myths and Facts of Vegetarian Diets (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)
Are vegetarian and vegan diets healthy? The answer is yes, but many myths still surround the health implications of a vegetarian diet. Learn the facts when it comes to plant-based diets here.

Online Growth Calculators for Health Professionals (PediTools)
Explore calculators and references useful for practicing pediatric providers, including Fenton and Olsen growth calculators for preterm infants and WHO growth charts for percentiles and z-score calculations.

Physician to Physician: Plant-Based Nutrition Podcast
Physician to Physician is a podcast created and co-hosted by PAN USA research director and board member Dr. Tracy Cushing. Each episode explores the nutrition science behind plant-based diets and answers the questions most physicians have and most patients ask.

Veganism and Eating Disorders
The practice guidance is intended to provide a framework for dietitians working with patients with eating disorders who have adopted a vegan diet. Practice in this area varies widely and this document provides considerations for making the most clinically-appropriate, evidence-informed decisions for the treatment provided.

Highlighted Resources from PAN Collaborators

Physician to Physician: Plant-Based Nutrition Podcast
Physician to Physician is a podcast created and co-hosted by PAN USA research director and board member Dr. Tracy Cushing. Each episode explores the nutrition science behind plant-based diets and answers the questions most physicians have and most patients ask.

Nourish: The Definitive Plant-Based Nutrition Guide for Families
Nourish is a comprehensive, evidence-based resource for achieving optimal health through plant-based nutrition for pregnant women, children, and families. Written by award-winning authors and members of PAN’s Nutrition for Families’ Clinical Advisory Council – Reshma Shah, MD, MPH and Brenda Davis, RD – Nourish offers practical guidance that empowers parents with the expertise on how to best meet their children’s nutritional needs during all stages of development. A step-by-step guide for busy families, Nourish brings together scientifically-sound medical and nutritional advice, recipes, and strategies that illuminate the power of plant-centered eating.

Balanced is a global network of health professionals, nutrition experts, and citizens whose mission is to advocate for a more accessible and healthier food system for everyone. Get Balanced Now offers a quick and easy assessment and menu guide with simple, practical ways to balance the meals families make at home.

Other Organizations

PAN does not necessarily endorse the resources listed above and provides them for informational purposes only.