A Brisbane mother has recently faced court over her malnourished baby, who she refused to feed baby formula to as she believed breastfeeding was more beneficial.
AAP reports the five-month-old baby boy weighed only 3.7kg when he was brought to the attention of police, which is half of the average weight for a baby that age.
The mother pleaded guilty to cruelty at Brisbane District Court after she ignored medical advice to supplement her breastfeeding with formula because he was not gaining weight.
The baby was so emaciated that his ribs were showing, and his growth was stunted from the lack of nutrition.
Judge David Kent told the court, "This child could have died.
"Baby formula is not harmful, it is required for babies that are not thriving on breastfeeding."
As the mother had breastfed all her previous children, the defence argued that she believed that formula was harmful, and that she would 'fail' as a mother if she used it.
The mother was sentenced to 18 months jail with immediate parole, and the father has also been sentenced to 12 months jail with immediate parole for doing nothing to intervene and help his son.
The baby has made a full recovery and is currently living with his parents.