A brief report published in Acta Paediatrica points to the dangers of replacing breast milk or infant formula with a non-dairy drink before one year of age. An electronic questionnaire sent to 310 French pediatricians identified 34 children who suffered medical complications between 2005 and 2015 when they consumed non-dairy drinks as infants.
The alternative beverages were mainly based on almonds, chestnuts, rice and soya. A third of the children had malnutrition. Other clinical issues included height and weight impairment, anemia, hypoalbuminemia, hyponatremia, hypocalcemia, seizures, and low vitamin D levels, noted lead author Dr. Julie Lemale, of Hôpital Trousseau, in Paris, France.