You may remember a few weeks ago, I wrote a blog about a 2 year old boy who underwent dramatic obesity surgery in order to lose weight. (see blog here: https://loseweightwithsue.wordpress.com/2013/09/23/obese-two-year-old-gets-weight-loss-surgery/) . I mean, I think this is an appalling display of child abuse: how can parents let their child be so grossly overweight at such a young age and then opt for surgery that will impact on this child’s quality of life forever? However, I found a story in the news this week that almost makes me applaud the actions of the parents of the 2 year old: I mean, at least boy who received the obesity surgery has a chance at staying alive once he loses the weight, whereas, this week, I have read about a coronial inquest into the death of a 10-year old Australian boy who died from his obesity-related complications (click on link here: http://news.ninemsn.com.au/national/2013/10/01/12/01/inquest-examines-death-of-obese-boy )
If the first story made me sad then this one makes me feel totally devastated. How can parents’ stand-by and watch their child literally eat himself to death despite being told that their child was a massive health risk and given advice on how to help their child lose weight years’ before?
In saying the above, I am not here to criticize the parents nor DOCS for their management of this child (as that would be a whole different blog). However, I think that this tragic story points out that, left untreated, obesity is deadly and therefore a condition that cannot be ignored.
Recently the WHO announced, in Western countries, that obesity now kills more people than the smoking. Australia is now one of the Top 5 most obese countries in the world: and to be perfectly honest, if we do not start taking obesity more seriously, our hospitals will become choc-full of overweight people who have weight-related diseases such as cardio-vascular problems and diabetes. Our health care system is barely coping now, so how will it cope with a tidal wave of patients wanting care for conditions that could have been avoidable if they chose to lose weight?
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