Many parents were upset to learn that a physician recently suggested an obese child should be removed from a parent. The physician stated the case, using foster care as a possible answer.
Parents with an underweight or overweight child may find it offensive to hear such comments. Actually, most may be frightened. Could they lose their child because they are not able to keep the child’s weight at a healthy number?
The following information is shared on the site of Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina:
A number of factors contribute to becoming overweight. Genetics, lifestyle habits, or a combination of both may be involved. In some instances, endocrine problems, genetic syndromes, and medications can be associated with excessive weight gain.
Much of what we eat is quick and easy ‘” from fat-laden fast food to microwave and prepackaged meals. Daily schedules are so jam-packed that there’s little time to prepare healthier meals or to squeeze in some exercise. Portion sizes, in the home and out, have grown greatly.
The thought that children not being fed enough are often removed from their homes, so those being fed too much should also be removed is being promoted as making sense. However, others would rather promote a better understanding of the reasons a child would be obese by offering classes for the parents and the children.
If it is learned a child has underlying health issues that cause the obesity, this can be addressed. Children who are inactive often may be easily encouraged to add exercise that is enjoyable to their day.
Children who are obese do not enjoy living with this issue any more than an obese adult enjoys living with extra weight. The health concerns implied for young and old with too much weight are not new.
Those who have been foster parents may well understand the position they would be in if they were to suddenly be temporary parents for a child dealing with weight issues. There are so many complicated issues that may have to be dealt with. Could a foster parent do any better dealing with such health issues than a biological parent? If a child is overweight because of emotional issues, would being in foster care make things worse?
Obesity and the health issues connected to being overweight will not be solved by shuffling children in from one house to another. As many adults throughout the world continue to battle with obesity, the solution for children with weight issues may not be that simple.
Levine Children’s Hospital