Parents who left baby toothless and malnourished through forced vegan diet are spared jail

Ellen Manning
·2-min read
Cut bananas in the plate
The girl was fed a cup of oats and rice milk and half a banana in the morning, the court heard (Picture: Getty)

A mother and father have been slammed by a judge in Australia for forcing a vegan diet on their baby daughter, leaving her seriously ill.

The girl, who is now in foster care, was left with no teeth and unable to stand up because of the malnourishment she suffered.

A court in Sydney heard the girl was 20 months old when she was found, yet weighed less than 11lbs and looked like she was three months old.

Now three, she has not developed properly and has suffered from rickets.

Her parents, who have since reportedly split up and whose other children have also been taken away from them, avoided a prison sentence this week, instead being given an 18-month correction order and community service.

scanogram of lower limb or X-ray image of total lower extremity . Medical background concept.
The girl's vitamin D levels were 'undetectable', which led to her suffering from rickets (Stock picture: Getty)

The court heard the mother fed her baby daughter oats and rice milk and half a banana in the morning, followed by toast and jam or peanut butter for lunch and tofu, rice or potatoes for dinner.

Her restricted diet means her vitamin D levels were ‘undetectable’ and she also suffered from a lack of calcium, phosphate, vitamin B12, vitamin A, iron and zinc.


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Judge Sarah Huggett reportedly told the couple they had left their daughter in “considerable danger of injury falling short of death” because of the mother’s fixation on a vegan diet.

The father, who said he was not a vegetarian or vegan, claimed he could not be blamed because the mother was in charge of food in house.

The foster carers looking after the girl, who has just learned to walk and can only speak around 20 words, said caring for her was like caring for a young baby.

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