Belgian parents who make their kids eat vegan could face prison time after new findings about the potential health impact on their health…
A study conducted by Belgium’s Royal Academy of Medicine could see parents who make kids eat vegan sent to prison. The study found that the diet is ‘unethical’ and lacks vital nutrients which could cause deficiencies and growth delays.
A Big Responsibility
The Belgian government requested the study after a number of deaths in the country’s schools, nurseries and hospitals.
“It is unsuitable for unborn children, children, teenagers and pregnant and lactating women,” the paper says. “It is not medically recommended and even forbidden to subject a child, especially during periods of rapid growth, to a potentially destabilising diet, requiring frequent supplementation and control.”
Professor Casimir, who carried out the study, says that the vegan diet is comparable to ‘non-assistance to a person in danger’ which carries a sentence of up to two years in prison. Children will only be permitted to eat a vegan diet if their parents seek medical advice, take them for regular blood tests and ensure their child takes vitamin supplements. Those who fail to comply, and whose children experience health issues, will face prison, fines and the possible removal of their child from their care.
The Sydney Children’s Hospital network says that parents whose kids eat vegan should seek the advice of their family GP. “To grow and develop appropriately, children need to eat foods from all of the food groups,” they said. “The vegan diet is low in iron, B12, and potentially protein and total energy. It will need additional consideration and it is recommended that you seek advice to ensure your child is eating an adequate diet.”
We think sending parents to prison for how they choose to feed their children is excessive, with the obvious exception of extreme cases. That being said, the vegan diet can be quite restrictive so it’s definitely worth considering the potential health implications for young children.
Do you think parents who feed their young children a vegan diet should be prosecuted? Let us know in the comments.
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