Britain Dealing with Obesity in Young Children

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Many young children in Great Britain are suffering from the effects of obesity as the nation struggles how to teach and counsel parents and children on nutrition.

Hundreds of children under the age of three have been admitted to British hospitals to be treated for obesity-related diseases that normally don't appear until later in life, according to a report published by The London Telegraph.

Two children, ages six and eight, have even suffered strokes that were apparently related to their weight. Some of the children have had gastric surgery.

One doctor said there are many more obese children who aren't receiving treatment. Doctors say many of them are being fed a diet of junk food.

Specialists at some health clinics report seeing 1-year-olds who weigh nearly twice as much as healthy children of the same age.

"I certainly see children under the age of two years old. We are seeing more and more referrals in that age range, Dr. Ken Ong, clinical lead for childhood obesity at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge, told the newspaper.

"The one and two year-olds we see are massively obese but it is only the very extreme who are coming to hospital clinics. There will be many more who are in the community or are not being recognized at all," Ong said.

"The popular hope is that it is just baby fat and they will grow out of it. But our studies show that it is more likely to continue being obese and even become more obese," he added.

Research suggests that unhealthy eating can program a young child's tastes for the rest of their life. Health experts say parents need to do a better job of eating better as an example to young children.

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