Child Care Obese
December 5, 2011 by staff
Child Care Obese, The case of a 219-pound 8-year-old boy taken from his mother for health reasons spotlights a problem that has almost tripled in the U.S. in the last 30 years — cases of extreme child obesity.
“Not only do we have a higher percentage of kids who are obese but a higher percentage of children who are severely obese,” said Dr. Garry Sigman, director of adolescent medicine and associate professor of pediatrics at Loyola University Medical Center near Chicago, in an interview with Reuters.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 17 percent or 12.5 million of children and adolescents aged 2 to 19 years are obese, as opposed to merely overweight.
Obesity in children is defined by the CDC as having a body mass index (BMI) at or above the 95th percentile for children of the same age and sex. “Overweight” is defined as a BMI at or above the 85th percentile.
About 2 million U.S. children have a BMI at or beyond the 99th percentile, according to a July article on childhood obesity in the Journal of the American Medical Association, co-authored by Harvard University child obesity expert Dr. David S. Ludwig. The article ignited controversy by saying that in some cases, removing a child from a home may be justified.
An average 8-year-old boy is about 55 pounds, making the boy in question approximately 165 pounds overweight or four times more than average, according to the CDC.
The Cleveland-area boy’s mother petitioned a state court two weeks ago to regain custody. But on November 14, a judge agreed with the Cuyahoga County Department of Children and Family Services that the boy, an honor student who gained 60 pounds in about a year, should not be returned to his home due to concerns for his health. The next custody hearing is set for later this month.
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