Roasting a juicy chicken and watching its skin crisp in all the right places would surely be a treat for all the senses. But did you ever put that savory piece on a side and sat down for a moment to reflect on unnecessary suffering and slaughtering that these animals had to endure in order to satisfy your cravings? Nevertheless, as cruel as it may sound, veganism perhaps is not the answer.

Apparently, Italian politician Elvira Savino agrees with it as the other day he boldly proposed a legislation claiming that all the parents who enforce a vegan diet on their children should be locked up behind bars. Ooh! Isn’t that a tad bit harsh? The bill recommends a one-year prison sentence for those found guilty and harsher consequences may be put into play if the child becomes a victim of malnutrition or hurt in any way.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics claim that vegan and vegetarian diets are healthy for infants but they also highlighted the fact that these sort of ‘extreme’ diets are only effective if they are well planned and carefully followed.

Did you know last month a 2-year-old vegan was hospitalized due to vitamin deficiencies and a 1-year-old was also put under medical care for being severely underweight?

Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin essential for the formation of blood and involved in the daily functions of the brain. Turns out that, according to a research, 92% of vegans are completely deficient in this nutrient. Creatinine is another nutrient which serves as a secondary energy reservoir. According to the National Center of Biotechnology Information, which conducted a study, this nutrient is significantly lower in vegetarians when compared to non-vegetarians. Being vegan is not a hobby, it is an expensive lifestyle as one has to make sure that they take in enough calcium, iron, vitamin B12, vitamin D and protein which are typically not found in plant foods.

Being vegan or vegetarian shouldn’t be something that should be thrust upon someone forcefully. It should be a decision taken by the person who wishes to follow such a lifestyle, and not something enforced by the parents of a minor.