Vegan Parents' Toddler Dies After They Fed Him Only Raw Fruit And Vegetables
They were charged with negligent manslaughter after their 18-month-old toddler died of malnutrition.
This is such a sad story...
A toddler died after his vegan parents fed him almost nothing but raw fruit and vegetables, and at one point, only breast milk for an entire week.
Ryan O'Leary, 30, and Sheila O'Leary, 35, were arrested after their 18-month-old son died on September 27 weighing 17 pounds - the average weight of a seven-month-old. The autopsy showed that the boy died from complications related to malnutrition, including dehydration, microsteatosis of the liver, and swelling of hands, feet, and legs.
The mother called 911 after she found him cold and not breathing. His father tried to resuscitate him, but sadly, paramedics arrived and pronounced the boy dead. Police spoke to the parents and noted that two of their children, aged 3 and 5, were pale and yellowish in color. Authorities weighed them and found the kids were in the very bottom-weight range for their age, and one of the children also had blackened teeth, indicating decay.
Sheila O'Leary told police that they are vegan and only eat raw fruits and vegetables. She said she also breastfed her toddler, adding that he hadn't eaten solid food in a week. On the day he died, the woman said she nursed her son for about a minute before he started exhibiting shallow breathing. She said she should have called someone but instead fell asleep with her husband.
On November 6 authorities established the boy's cause of death, and shortly after, the couple turned themselves in.
The NHS advises a vegan or vegetarian diet is suitable for babies and children, but parents must ensure the child is receiving enough nutrients and calories. Supplements may be required and parents are advised to talk to health professionals for further advice.