Is It Child Abuse to Let Your Child Become Obese?

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We're back and we're answering the question, "Is it child abuse to have a child who is fat?" There are nine states that mandate body mass index testing for kids, and it's into the pounds report card, they get nutrition and exercise advice as well. Now the state law maker Illinois has suggested the parent of rules the child tax credit and that child is obese.

Starting there. Significant financial hit for parents if they get they got heavy kid, is that, could you think could think they're going to change their behavior? Well the only two things that will change anybody's behavior is money and fear. Okay, those are the things, money and fear.

You start taking a person's money, then they get depressed, and what happens when they get depressed, trust me up from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina everybody gained 10 pounds. Because they didn't have a house, okay. You take that money from people then everybody gets depressed.

The mother's depressed, the child's depressed. The way that goes. Alright let me ask that Daren Greens the pediatrician author of Feeding Baby Green, so they've been lots of court cases recently how would a court decide, if a child should be removed from the custody of their parents because they are too heavy for their own health? So child obesity is a serious problem and letting a child to become obese, does harm them, it's harming them, but when the court is trying to decide what to do, they consider a lot of factors, they don't look at just the number on the scale but what's going on in their home, and if parents are engaged and wanting to do the right thing, then the step to take is to empower them to take responsibility to get them to support the tools they need to make a change.

It's when the parents aren't engage or aren't willing to take responsibility, that the court really intervenes. So I just want to put some meat under discussion we're having with Dr. Green, if you're eight years old as a boy and you're four feet two inches tall, and you weigh 142 pounds, I say that's a crazy amount of weight, your body mass is 40, 40 that's more than obese, that's equivalent of being on average of at least 100 pounds extra as an adult.

[xx] process society is what other things can we give parents to stimulate activity, action and change. Catherine Suller is an advocate for an eight year old boy who weighed 175 pounds. Right that's 30 pounds more than the number I just gave you as the definition of morbid obesity, and this child was taken away from his mother's custody.

Catherine, talk to me about this case, why do you think it doesn't make sense to step in? The fact is Dr. Ross it didn't help him. A school nurse called and said he soiled himself and that he was the smelly overweight kid, so she didn't call his mother, she called social services and that was where the fault of the system happened.

She was given the summons on her door, but in the meantime she had moved and so she didn't make the court appearance. So, when she finally got there, they separated them, put them in two different different rooms, it was Nazi Germany for fat people, it was really an amazing case.

Mimi, how would you respond? Not just about what was done which obviously was too irrational but also the whole reality of a child being 30 pounds more than the morbid obesity cutoff. What you're describing sounds like an extreme case. It's a human rights issue. That is why end up ruined.

That is not the handle. You know the reality Dr. Ross, I don't think we as a society know how to handle this, many people in child services are overweight, may people in the police department are overweight and so, here they're supposed to intervene and fix a problem that they're not able to solve for themselves.

So even though we don't have the precedent set right now to do it correctly, we've got to solve the issue.