A Pittsburgh area vegan mom allegedly “obsessed” with vegan diets, lost custody of her boy after she was reported for feeding him only nuts and berries.
Elizabeth Scarlett Hawk, 33, faces criminal charges for endangering the welfare of a child, KDKA reported, after her ex-husband and sister-in-law reported her to Fayette County’s Children & Youth Services.
Her extreme views on diet included subsisting on “water and sunlight,” sister-in-law Brandy Hawk told KDKA.
Hawk said that during a visit she noticed that her 11-month-old nephew had a “severe rash” and poor “motor skills.”
“He couldn’t use his hands at all,” she said.
The child was taken to child services and then brought to a West Virginia hospital for treatment. Court records show that a physician said the child’s condition was “inhumane” and that the diet would result in developmental delays.
However, family members told KDKA that since he and the couple’s other two children have been brought to the father’s home, he is doing well.
A spokeswoman with PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) said going vegan is good for kids, but that the diet Hawk was feeding her child was clearly unbalanced.
“Children are malnourished from eating carcinogen-linked processed meats,” said PETA spokeswoman Katie Arth. “Eating only fruits and nuts is also bad, whereas a real vegan diet—rich in green vegetables, beans, pulses, grains, seeds, and fruits and nuts—is nutritious and sets a child on the path to a healthy old age.”