Don’t you dare put your baby or young child on a vegan diet just because you choose that style for yourself. Babies need plenty of fatty milk, especially breast milk. Check out the Sept. 12, 2011 Associated Press article by Greg Bluestein, “Vegan couple’s life sentence holds in baby’s death.” And too many mothers give their baby sugary juices or even sugar water to rot their teeth before the teeth even erupt. But in the newspapers today, one vegan couple killed their baby by feeding a 6-week old soy milk and apple juice until the child lost half his body weight and starved to death from malnutrition. Vegans and vegetarians may not realize that babies need milk fat, preferably breast milk, donated or from the mother, or a specialized formula made just for infants.
An Atlanta vegan couple had the nerve to feed their baby their own diet of soy milk and sugary apple juice. That’s enough to rot the baby’s teeth from the inside out before the teeth were even formed. But the reality is fatality. The baby starved to death. The couple’s malnourished 6-week-old son starved to death after they fed him a too-limited diet. And the parents will, of course, serve their life sentences for murder, Georgia’s top court ruled on today, Sept 12, 2011. The Georgia Supreme Court’s unanimous decision rejected appeals.
The misinformed parents apparently didn’t know that a vegan diet is fatal to infants and babies. In fact, they rushed their baby to the hospital too late, when the baby had trouble breathing. The baby died of starvation caused by malnourishment. Babies can’t live on soy milk and apple juice. And you don’t give a 6-week old baby milk unless it’s a specialized formula made for the infant’s ability to digest the particular formula, but not made with vegan milk substitutes. They could have bought donated breast milk, even goat-milk formulas for babies allergic to cow’s milk formulas. But the milk would have had to be made into a specialized formula to prevent starvation.
The young parents are in their twenties, and the baby was their first. The police found soy milk cartons in their apartment. Never use soy milk as a substitute for baby formula. Even worse as the baby wasted away to 3.5 pounds while being starved by this vegan diet of sugary apple juice and soy milk, they never took their baby to a doctor. The baby had probably lost half his body weight.
If an average baby weighs seven pounds at birth, the 3.5 pound baby is what an unborn baby usually weighs when it’s 7 months into the pregnancy, not a full-term baby. Basically, the baby starved to death on this malnourishing soy milk diet. And apple juice is simply the sugary water removed from the apple fiber. That diet is fatal to babies six weeks old. Why starve a kid to death and worse yet, not even take the baby to a doctor to get a diet that would allow the 6-week infant to thrive? The baby would have been better off getting donated breast milk from La Leche League or similar groups.
A jury convicted them of malice murder, felony murder, involuntary manslaughter and cruelty to children. No baby should be put on a vegan diet at six weeks. The baby needs the breast milk fat to live and grow. The child died because the diet fed was fatal to infants. If you’re vegan, don’t for a moment think you can put your baby on a vegan diet and expect the infant to live.
Defense attorneys countered that the parents did the best they could while adhering to the lifestyle of vegans, who typically use no animal products. They said the parents did not realize the baby was in danger until they rushed his emaciated body to the hospital. The defense attorney theorized the boy’s death was due to cystic fibrosis. But no expert was called in to support that theory. According to the judge, the evidence showed the parents were guilty. And if the baby did have cystic fibrosis, a special diet is required for that ailment, which was not proven in court as the cause of the child’s death. The outcome of the trial sent the parents to prison with a life sentence.