During the segment, two mothers with opposing views debated whether it was ok to bring babies up on a vegan diet.
Following the discussion, GMB released a poll revealing that 79 per cent of people say babies should not be raised vegan.
And the debate continued on social media.
Veganism is on the rise! 📈
More and more people are going vegan, but is it wrong to make babies follow suit? 👶
Let us know what you think… pic.twitter.com/OtW5zgvub7
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) March 7, 2019
Many agreed with the majority of the poll that there were health risks associated with babies adopting a purely plant-based diet.
Expert and vegan – irony right there. They get their info from a leftie leaflet in their health food shop and think they’re an expert on farming and all things environmental. Completely dangerous for babies to be raised on a plant based diet
— RobA (@retrorb) March 7, 2019
It can be seen that most vegans are mentally deficient so now they want their children to be as stupid as they are.
Inform social services on vegan parents on their cruelty to children and the impact on the NHS will be drastic with drooling zombies. pic.twitter.com/7hy2VOT5LG
— Peter 🇬🇧 (@Peter32574843) March 7, 2019
Sadly we again see vegans forcing their lifestyle on others, in this case their own children
— Graham Williams (@grahamdw40) March 7, 2019
But others didn’t see anything wrong with parents bringing their children up on a vegan diet.
20% of the kids in primary school in the UK is obese but a vegan mother should be an expert ?
why would you feed a baby cow’s milk ? And would you feed it Shaun the sheep and Peppa pig? Congrats to all the vegan mums #veganbabies
— annemie (@pleasedonotbend) March 7, 2019
Babies are naturally vegan , they have their mothers breast milk ( as should be the right of all baby mammals !) There ante many resources for successfully raising young children on a vegan diet. how about we have a positive spin on veganism for a change from @GMB ??
— Michelle Duquemin (@MichDuq) March 7, 2019
Others argued that it should be down to the child to decide whether they wanted to be vegan or not.
Veganism must be up to the individual, and babies should be fed a conventional diet until they are old enough to decide.
— Raymond Stock (@RaymondStock6) March 7, 2019
Dont believe in forcing kids to eat specific foods let them make there own minds up when old enough
— stephen todd (@stephentodd28) March 7, 2019
With increasing numbers of adults switching to plant-based diets, there are now thought to be 540,000 vegans in Britain, up from 150,000 a decade ago, many parents are choosing to raise their babies and children in the same way.
But what are the health implications of bringing up a child as a vegan and is it still possible for them to get the nutrients they need?
While many experts note that a vegan diet can be perfectly healthy for children, some also warn that it must be done properly.
Should babies be brought up vegan? [Photo: Getty]
A study of veganism in children at University College London concluded that a lack of nutrients such as vitamin B12, calcium, zinc and high-quality protein (found in meat and dairy) could lead to malnutrition and “irreversible damage” to their nervous systems, the Daily Mail reports.
According to the NHS babies and young children on a vegetarian or vegan diet can get the energy and most of the nutrients they need to grow and develop from a well-planned varied and balanced diet.
But they might need specific supplements (such as vitamin B12) in addition to the usual vitamin supplements recommended for all babies.
“Vitamin B12 is found in animal foods including eggs, cheese and milk,” the site reads.
“If your baby or child has a vegan diet or a vegetarian diet that does not include dairy or eggs, they’ll need to take a supplement that contains vitamin B12 or eat foods fortified with B12.”
Foods that may be fortified with vitamin B12 include breakfast cereals, yoghurts and milk alternatives, such as soya, oat, coconut and almond drinks.
The NHS goes on to discuss the importance of other nutrients including Omega-3, calcium, iron and protein often found in animal products, but offers plant-based substitutes for parents raising their children as vegans.
Calorie-intake is another consideration for vegan parents. “A vegetarian or vegan diet can be high in fibre,” the NHS explains. “This can mean your child feels full up before they have taken in enough calories and nutrients.”
The site suggests that in addition to the higher fibre wholegrain and wholemeal versions, should have some lower fibre foods, such as white bread and rice, until they’re 5.
“If you’re concerned your child is not getting enough energy, offer them higher calorie foods, such as hummus, smooth nut and seed butters or full-fat yoghurt (dairy or dairy alternatives), and use vegetable oils or vegan fat spreads in cooking,” the NHS adds.
Veganism has been on the rise of late, so it makes sense that more parents will therefore likely opt to bring up their children on a vegan diet.
“We have seen a notable rise of vegan meal ordering on our platform since we launched in 2016, reflecting the wider growing trend,” explains Riya Grover, Co Founder of Feedr.
Riya says that over a quarter (27%) of food vendors added to the Feedr platform in 2018 had predominantly vegan menus.
“This highlights that more and more restaurants are now looking at innovative and nutritiously dense vegan options to feed this growing demand,” she explais. “The same can be said for supermarkets, which are beginning to sell more high-quality replacements for non-vegan products.
“This in turn is making it easier for people to access increasingly varied vegan food both at home, in the office and when out for a meal.”