He was only seven months old, but baby Lucas was already on a gluten-free and lactose-free diet, prescribed by his parents.
Owners of a health food store in Belgium, they fed him mainly quinoa, oat, semolina and rice milks after diagnosing him themselves, despite warnings from doctors.
Lucas died of starvation on June 6, 2014, severely dehydrated and with a completely empty stomach. He weighed only 4.29-kilograms – little over the average weight of a newborn, reports The Independent.
His parents, identified only as Peter S and Sandrina V, now face 18 months’ imprisonment, with their trial starting this week.
“Sometimes he gained a little weight, sometimes he lost a little. We never wished for the death of our son,” his mother, in tears, told the court.
“We never went to a doctor because we never noticed anything unusual,” his father said in their defence.
But public prosecutors say the pair drove hours to a homeopath in the final days of Lucas’ life, as he gasped for air, instead of taking him to hospital.
The trial continues.