A 7-month-old boy in Belgium, named Lucas, has passed away after his ultra health-nut parents fed him an entirely gluten-free and lactose-free diet. The parents have been arrested and the case is being looked into.
The parents maintain their innocence, claiming that they fed him as best as they could, but saying that the child had health problems that required special dietary restrictions. Police, however, aren’t buying that story, as it shows that the parents did not seek any medical help for the child.
“The parents determined their own diagnosis that their child was gluten intolerant and had a lactose allergy,” lawyers said in court during the trial for the child’s 2014 death. “Not a single doctor had a dossier about Lucas and child protection services did not know about them.”
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At the time of his death, Lucas weighed less than 10 pounds, which is only half the size of an average baby his age. An autopsy later found that his stomach was completely empty when he passed away, and his official cause of death was dehydration and malnutrition.In court, the parents noted that they never took him to a doctor because they didn’t noticed that anything was wrong. The mother added that sometimes Lucas would gain a little weight and then lose it, and apparently they thought such weight fluctuation was normal. However, they did eventually take him to a homeopathic doctor, who insisted they take him to a real hospital. By the time they did, it was too late. The hospital pronounced him dead upon arrival.
In addition to quinoa milk, they also fed Lucas oat milk, rice milk, buckwheat milk and semolina milk from the natural foods store they own. While doctors warn that such a diet will not sustain an infant that age, the parents’ lawyer argued that wasn’t the case and that Lucas passed away for another reason.
“Lucas had an eating disorder. He got cramps when he was fed with a bottle and his parents tried out alternatives,” their attorney Karine Van Meirvenne said.
The parents’ trial began this week, and they both face up to 18 months in jail for contributing to the infant’s death.